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How To Chalk Up Success If You're A Job-Seeking Teacher

Enthusiasm is key.

04/10/2017 10:29 AM AEDT | Updated 04/10/2017 10:59 AM AEDT
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"Focus on sharing the stories and things that drive you as a teacher and a person. It's those stories and insights that will connect with your school and show them more about you."

The end of Term Three is normally a key point in the year. Class routines are well and truly established, you can give that look that not only stops kids midway through eating glue but also passes on that feeling of disappointment/guilt, 'come-on-it-is-bloody glue'.

Yep, our classes are buzzing. And so are the upcoming positions for the next school year.

If you're a teacher, the end of Term Three is usually the time that those 'fake jobs' posted online are taken by those already in the position and the real ones are turning up. So, how can you get your unique 'awesomeness' into that school in 2018?

Try these three things to help you get to that next step:

Your story as a teacher.

Yes, you probably like kids, that's a given. Every single one of us got into this ridiculously great, creative, rewarding, intense, fun and emotionally demanding job because we want to help kids. Have your background story, your reason for getting up in the morning and being there in front of those kids or teenagers, ready to go. Practise and know this story well -- after all, it is yours!

What are the things, values or experiences you are most looking forward to? It's okay to be earnest and enthusiastic -- share a part of yourself so your interviewers better know you and can picture what you could bring into the community.

Enthusiasm is key -- you're new and aren't supposed to know everything (no one does), but not everyone is enthusiastic about discovering the power of learning. Be one of the enthusiastic ones.

(Just not too enthusiastic, then people get... concerned.)

I'm LITERALLY so excited I might die -- figuratively speaking.

Dealing with conflict.

At some point in your teaching year you will face conflict of some kind. Whether it is between students, between team members, yourself and a parent, yourself and a student or yourself and a colleague.

With teaching being centered around people, at some point you're going to have a disagreement or face an unexpected challenge.

The thing that you need to think about is how you respond, what strategies you use and what have you learned from conflict?

Yes, you've probably learned some people can be jerks. Yes, sometimes you'll want to go into a corner and not come out. But that's probably not too helpful while teaching a class...

Just act cool.

Know an area you want to target.

Every single person is learning. Every day we are learning. There's no hiding from it. Don't try to be that smug person saying you care too much.

Own the fact you are a life-long learner. Share what you are looking forward to building on -- reading, science, the arts, numeracy, wellbeing. Whatever it is, share your excitement at working with others to build up your expertise.

Remember, the role of the school is to build you up as much as possible. Share your strengths, interests and future learning to get them thinking about mentoring and other possibilities with you.

'You mean, I don't have to say I care too much? Finally!'

Focus on sharing the stories and things that drive you as a teacher and a person. It's those stories and insights that will connect with your school and show them more about you.

When in doubt, smile, breathe and keep breathing.

Breathing has always been a good thing.

​​​​​​​If you're interested in more posts by Daniel, head to Upgrade Think Learn. You can also find Daniel on Twitter @LifeButUpgraded, on Facebook @Upgrade Think Learn or on Instagram @upgradethinklearn.

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