When you get a call from a school administrator inviting you to interview for a teaching position, how do you feel? Happy? Exalted? Excited? Highly strung? Scared?

You don’t need to worry about the interview if you are a qualified and well-prepared candidate. Preparing for a teaching interview is a lot like studying for an exam. You can review the frequently asked questions, think about what you will say beforehand, and do your best. If you prepare ahead of time, the interview questions will seem routine and familiar. You’ll have the answers on the tip of your tongue, ready to go.

Below is a list of six frequently asked teacher interview questions from my eBook, Guide to Landing Your Dream Teaching Job. How would you answer each question?

1. Tell us about yourself.

This will be the first question in almost every interview. Just give a brief summary in about three sentences. Tell them what colleges you graduated from, what you are certified to teach, what your teaching and work experiences are, and why you would love the job.

2. How do you teach to the state standards?

If you’re interviewing in the United States, school administrators love to talk about state, local, or national standards. Reassure your interviewer that everything he does is up to standards. Make sure the lesson plans in your binder have the state standards written on them. When they ask about them, pull out your lesson and show them the close links between your teaching and the standards.

3. How will you prepare students for standardized tests?

There are standardized tests at almost every grade level. Make sure you know the names of the tests. Talk about your experiences preparing students. You will get bonus points if you know and describe the test format because that will show your familiarity.

4. Describe the philosophy of your discipline.

You use a lot of positive reinforcement. You are firm, but you don’t yell. You have appropriate consequences for inappropriate behavior. You have your classroom rules posted clearly on the walls. You establish common routines that students follow. You adhere to the discipline guidelines of the school. Also, emphasize that you suspect discipline problems will be minimal because your lessons are so interesting and engaging for students. Don’t tell the interviewer that you “send the kids to the principal’s office” every time there is a problem. You should be able to handle most discipline problems on your own. Only students who have committed very serious behavior problems should be sent to the office.

5. How do you make sure you meet the needs of a student with an IEP?

An IEP is an “individualized education plan.” Students with special needs will be given an IEP, or a list of things to do when teaching the child. An IEP can include anything from “additional time for the test” to “you need all test questions read aloud” to “you need to use a braille textbook.” How do you make sure you meet the needs of a student with an IEP? First, read the IEP carefully. If you have questions, ask a special education teacher, counselor, or other staff member who can help you. Then just be sure to follow the IEP requirements word for word. When necessary, you may be asked to attend a meeting where you can make suggestions for updating the IEP. Her goal, and the goal of the IEP, is to make sure the student has everything she needs to be successful in her class.

6. How do you communicate with parents?

This question will come up in almost every elementary school interview. It is quite common in middle school and high school as well. You may have a weekly parent newsletter that you send home each week. For grades 3 and above, you may require students to have an assignment book that must be signed each night. This way, parents know what assignments are due and when projects are due. When there are discipline problems you call home and talk to the parents. It is important to have an open door policy and invite parents to share their concerns at any time.

For more teacher interview questions, I invite you to download my eBook Landing Your Dream Teaching Job (http://www.iwantaeachingjob.com). In it, you’ll find 50 common interview questions and answers, as well as practical tips for landing the teaching job you want.