Once you are admitted into the Arizona Teachers program, you will have access to all of our resources. We offer more than just test preparation tools– we’ve also got a library of videos, seminars and services to help you prepare for your interview, craft a great teaching resume and get hired as a full-time teacher.
Before you start your job search, consider the following to help make you the most marketable candidate to hiring districts.
The best way to get hired quickly is to demonstrate subject matter knowledge in an area that is in high demand. Consider teaching High School or Middle School Science or Math. You would be surprised how many options there are within these areas — Physical Science, Biology, Geometry, Algebra — all kinds of diverse and interesting topics.
You may also consider testing or becoming eligible to teach in more than one area, which gives your employer greater flexibility in what type of classroom they can place you in, giving you greater marketability. Remember that once you are fully certified, you can add and change those areas as your experience in the classroom grows.
Arizona Teachers of Tomorrow advises that you expand your search area to include a reasonable commute. Sometimes the district or school you really want to teach at isn’t hiring. So working for a year or so at a different school will give you the necessary classroom experience to be the top candidate when other schools are hiring. Or you may just find that the job you have is actually the one you love.
Many times a school will ask if you are willing to help with extracurricular opportunities. Would you be willing to coach the seventh-grade cheerleading squad? Would you be able to help with the eco-bots or mathletes team? Would you be the leader of a club like a book club or a community service club?
Being willing to help out where needed for these extra opportunities will help you stand out as a candidate. It shows that you are a team player, and are willing to help where needed. Plus you’ll get a little more experience to add to your portfolio.
When applying for jobs with schools, never underestimate the importance of taking the time to include a personalized cover letter with your resume. Don’t give the person screening resumes a second to entertain the thought: “But how can this person help us?”
When you are applying for a particular position, show that you know something about the school or the school corporation. This is where your research comes in. Don’t go overboard, but within the letter, make sure you communicate how your talents and experiences align with the culture and goals of the campus or district. Remember, the purpose of the cover letter is to explain why you are sending a resume and to provide you with a second opportunity to advertise yourself to a hiring official or principal. Keep your cover letter short, to the point, accurate, targeted, and easy to read.
Cover letters can be used generically and not addressed to anybody in particular or for any position specifically. This is what you use for job fairs and any other time when you generically applying for many positions. However, when possible, try to write an individual, customized cover letter for every position you apply for.
Arizona Teachers of Tomorrow offers a free resume review service. Once you have done your best to complete your resume, you can email it directly to our experts and they will provide you with custom feedback. Please ask a Program Advisor for access to this service.
Through our years of working with district HR administrators and principals, we have collected a wealth of advice and expertise on how to make your resume effectively communicate the type of educator you will be. To access this library, click here.
Your portfolio is an extension of your resume and cover letter. This is where you will present all of your official documents, a collection of sample work, and any other material often requested by school districts.
Items to Include:
• Philosophy of Education
• Supporting Documentation
• Any other related materials related to your past experience
PHILOSOPHY OF EDUCATION
This is a brief essay that expresses your overall viewpoint of education. Keep it positive and non-political. This is about what education means to you and how it taps into your passion as a person. Your philosophy of education should be 1-2 pages double spaced, well organized and thoughtful. You need to write to your reader. What does this person need to know? It should include the following:
• Your role as a future educator
• What is important to you about teaching
• How do you help students learn & develop as individuals
• How your personal characteristics & approach to teaching impact the learning & development of students
• Passion for teaching should come through within this philosophy
• Cover Letter
• Statement of Eligibility from Arizona Teachers
• Copies of your exam scores or registration receipts
• Transcripts with degree(s) conferred
While not necessary, including some or all of these items will take your portfolio to the next level.
• Strategies for teaching any content area(s) you are targeting
• Sample lesson plans
• Classroom Management Plan: Routines, Procedures, Materials, Discipline Management Plan
• Other related materials. Include any other supporting documentation that is pertinent to the teaching position that you are seeking. For example, a Theater Arts candidate could include pictures/documentation on working with Children’s Theater.
Teacher interviews are not like regular interviews. A principal may give you classroom scenarios and have you respond with discipline management strategies or you could even be asked to create a sample lesson plan.
So, Arizona Teachers of Tomorrow has put together a resource library to help you prepare for your interview. Here you will find common questions asked in a teacher interview, do’s, don’ts, and helpful tips on making a great impression, and much more. We’ve asked top Human Resources administrators and principals to help us, help you with your teacher interview.
To access this library, click here.