No two people are exactly the same, and no two teachers do teach in exactly the same way. Anyone who has navigated their way through the system of schooling, from elementary to secondary, to high school and eventually to college, will agree with my words. Each teacher has their own way of leading the lessons while trying to help the students reach their educational goals. We can call the system of these methods “teaching methodology“, and you may often have to explain your teaching methodology while interviewing for a job of a teacher.
Before we look at 7 sample answers to this interesting question, let me explain a couple of important points. First of all, job interview is not a school exam. Your goal isn’t to come up with some elaborate description full of technicalities that half of the people in the interviewing panel may not even understand. On the contrary, you should explain your methods in a simple way, and if you use some technicalities, make sure that people sitting opposite to you understand what you are talking about.
Secondly, try to always aim for some variety, unless you teach a specific subject which doesn’t offer many options when it comes to the way one teaches it. We do not live in the twentieth century anymore. Students are more demanding than ever, they lose their concentration quickly, and unless you bring some variety to your lessons, they won’t pay attention to you, and they won’t enjoy their time in the classroom… Let’s have a look at the sample answers now.
7 sample answers to “What is your teaching methodology?” interview question
- I prefer to involve students heavily in my lessons. That’s the foundation stone of my teaching. In my opinion, they should not just sit and write down my words–that’s not real teaching. On the contrary, we have to challenge them with questions, interesting exercises, and also give them some room to express their creativity and imagination. To my favorite teaching methods belong flipped classroom and learning by playing. Of course, one has to work with these concepts carefully, in order to maintain the discipline in the classroom. When you manage to do that, however, the results are often exceptional.
- My teaching methodology consists mostly in conversing with my students in French, plus reading and listening exercises. In my opinion, when it comes to learning a foreign language, the most important skill is talking. We should also try to learn the language as a child does–absorbing the words, “living with the language”. Though we face some limitations in an environment of the classroom, we can always try our best to emulate this type of learning. And that’s exactly how I will define my teaching methodology.
- My teaching methodology consists in applying different teaching methods in the classroom. Students need new impulses, they hate routine. That’s why I try to alternate between various teaching methods, making sure they stay engaged and motivated throughout the entire year. Having said that, I am still quite inexperienced, and no doubt I make some mistakes. But I try my best, and will continue to do so in the future.
- I would summarize my teaching methodology in two words: individual approach. Since I work one on one with students, I can afford to adjust my teaching to the needs, goals, and personality of each student. And I really believe it is the only way to achieve the best possible results with your pupils, because what works with one student may not work with another one. What’s more, each child has their own pace of learning, and forcing something we will cause more harm than good. At least that’s the way I see it, and I also wonder what teaching methods you prefer here, at your school.
- Speaking honestly, I haven’t found my teaching methodology yet. This is my first job application, and though I got some practice, teaching while studying at the university, and I understand various teaching concepts, ranging from teacher-centered to Montessori, I am yet to test them in practice, and see what works best for my classes, and the subjects I will teach. I also want to stress that I believe we should be consistent at school. If you prefer certain teaching methods here, and achieve good results with them, I am definitely ready to go with the flow, and apply the same concepts in my classes.
- I would describe it as highly systematic. Let me explain. I try to set clear goals with each student, bearing in mind both their goals and limitations. I also try to understand their strengths and weaknesses when it comes to the subject. Once we are clear about these things, we can set milestones and partial goals. Having such a precise plan and understanding each student, we simply progress from one step to another, using the most appropriate teaching methods. Of course, it happens sometimes that we have to alter our goals, or at least the time frame for achieving them. But that’s the part of the process and nothing to be worried about really.
- Typically speaking in front of a full auditorium, two hundred or even three hundred people, it is hard to imagine doing anything else than lecturing. But I try to spice it up a bit at least, with a fitting joke here and there, a rhetoric question, or involving the students in one way or another. In my opinion, your success depends a lot also on the way you lead your lectures. You should try to include examples from the real live, some interactive content, and simply do your best to make sure students stay engaged and find the lesson interesting, at least to an extend the subject we teach allow us to do…
Do not hesitate to admit that you do not know yet
In some way teaching is no different to any other job. The longer you do it, the better you understand the nuances, including the most effective teaching methods… When applying for your first teaching job there’s no shame in saying that you have not found your teaching methodology yet. You still need to experiment with various teaching concepts in your classes to see what works and what doesn’t.
In this case, you can also emphasize that you hope to learn from more experienced teachers, and perhaps even want to go with the flow, and apply the teaching methods their educational institution prefers (this is a great answer especially if you apply for a job at a place that follows a certain concept of teaching, such as Montessori for example).
Students should be the center of your talk
Regardless of the methodology you pick, and answer you come up with, you should always try to convince the hiring committee that you want to do things in the best interest of your students. You do not choose this or that method because you find it convenient, or because you’ve been using it for ten years in your previous job, and do not feel like learning something new, or making changes to your teaching routine.
On the contrary, everything you do, you do with a goal to improve your teaching, and eventually achieve better results with your students. That’s the attitude they are looking for in the very best job candidates…
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