Why this matters:

Effective educators demonstrate flexibility in the classroom, regularly adapting their instruction according to students’ progress and level of understanding. To gauge student performance, teachers can resource an array of formative and summative assessments that measure skills and content mastery.

What to listen for:

  • Openness and curiosity toward trying new methods to assess student learning
  • An ability to identify areas of improvement and action plan for future lessons
  • Proven experience in academic data collection and analysis

Why this matters:

By incorporating technology into their daily teaching, educators can empower students with more individualized learning experiences and a platform for building digital literacy skills. Teachers who can effectively use tools like gamification or augmented reality exhibit creativity and openness — both of which are valuable traits to have in the classroom.

What to listen for:

  • Proven experience using education technology products
  • The ability to explain why digital literacy is beneficial for students
  • An eagerness to develop their own digital literacy

Why this matters:

Every student is capable of learning and demonstrating academic success, but teachers can’t expect them all to follow the same roadmap. Differentiated instruction may sound like a special education teacher’s area of expertise, but general education or content teachers are just as responsible for delivering inclusive instruction to all types of learners.

What to listen for:

  • Previous experience in developing differentiated material, or in assisting with instruction design
  • An ability to explain the outcomes and benefits of differentiated instruction
  • An ability to adapt and communicate effectively

 

Why this matters:

Relationship building with students and their families is a crucial part of the job. In order to facilitate difficult conversations, such as a student’s struggle to adhere to classroom rules, teachers must know how to collaborate with families to develop meaningful, long-term solutions.

What to listen for:

  • A focus on maintaining positive, honest relationships with families
  • An ability to remain calm in tense situations
  • Patience and empathy when working through student conflicts

Why this matters:

Lesson planning takes a great deal of time, effort, and content expertise. But instruction can be unpredictable — and students don’t always respond as planned. Flexible, adaptable teachers know how to deliver the core understandings of a lesson while changing structure when needed.

What to listen for:

  • An ability to adapt to unexpected changes during a lesson
  • An ability to clearly communicate the changes made in a lesson, as well as the results
  • A willingness to identify growth areas and future action steps

Why this matters:

Relationship building is a crucial skill that teachers need to hone in order to build a unified classroom community. When students are able to trust teachers and their lessons, they are more likely to take necessary risks in their learning — advancing their skills and accelerating their growth in the process.

What to listen for:

  • A desire to build meaningful, professional relationships with students and families
  • Proven experience in building trust and rapport with students
  • A passion for prioritizing students and their overall success

Why this matters:

One of the most important components of a safe and productive learning environment is a classroom structure that keeps students accountable and provides security, out of which they can take healthy risks in their learning. Teachers need to hold students accountable through strong verbal and communication skills, while also maintaining positive relationships.

What to listen for:

  • Familiarity with effective classroom management practices
  • An ability to verbally communicate consistent expectations to students
  • Proven experience in applying effective classroom management practices

Why this matters:

Teachers with strong organizational skills are able to plan lessons efficiently, prepare their materials accordingly, and manage their time wisely. Students respond well to teachers who exhibit these qualities, taking their learning more seriously as a result.

What to listen for:

  • A clear explanation of how the candidate applies their best practices to everyday responsibilities
  • The ability to communicate best practices in detail
  • Honesty when identifying strengths and weaknesses in organizational skills

Why this matters:

Students of all ages focus best when they are wholly invested in a lesson. If teachers want to see meaningful academic development in their classes, they need to create and deliver lessons that are both immersive and challenging.

What to listen for:

  • Creative approaches to delivering instruction when students may be unengaged
  • Experience planning lessons that engaged and challenged students
  • A clear understanding and definition of academic rigor
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