Montessori preschool teacher job interview: What should I expect?

I have been told that the interviewer is going to ask me some questions about my personality. She may ask, “Tell me how you describe your personality. I want you to use three adjectives to describe it.” I was going to say, “Educated, Understanding, and Nurturing.” Then she may ask, “How do these personality characterists mold your teaching style?” I’m getting really worried about this job interview. I know alot about Early Childhood Education from a High/Point and Creative Curriculum approach, but I’m not all that familiar with the Montessori method outside of the books I’ve found at the library. Can anyone help me out with what to read in order to prepare for this interview? Any advise on websites or documents on-line would be helpful.

I am applying for a position that is for a permanent full-time teaching assistant. The preschool teacher position would be a short term contract job while someone is out on medical leave. I’m hoping to get my foot in the door by applying for both positions. I’ve been reading up about Montessori method and I have seen how they have an academy for training in the methods. Thank you for sharing your advice.

6 Answers

  • Sadly there are many schools that are Montessori in name only. They use the name Montessori to attract customers. http://www.montessorianswers.com/selecting-a-schoo…

    A true Montessori school would never hire a teacher who wasn’t Montessori trained. (An assistant teacher, maybe, but a head teacher-never!) There is so much to the method, from philosophy and materials, to classroom set up and management, that no one without prior Montessori training and/or experience could run the classroom correctly.

    I know that you are looking for a job, I’ve been there myself and was willing to take just about anything so that I could pay the bills, but honestly, I would look someplace else. Besides the fact that “non-Montessori Montessori” schools mislead people in their understanding of the Montessori Method, frequently giving them a highly inaccurate, and often a negative view of the method and philosophy, the fact that they are willing to be deceiving in the portrayal of their school bothers me greatly. It makes for a hard environment for a dedicated teacher to work in because it tells me that money is their motivation as opposed to education.

    On the other hand, if you are still dead set on applying, here is an excellent website written for the layperson on the method, materials, and philosophy. http://www.montessorianswers.com/

  • Montessori Teacher Interview Questions

  • My parents owned a preschool for over 10 years and they looked for outgoing individuals that dressed comfortably and weren’t about highend fashion. Listen to “i hate dr. phil’s” response. She’s correct in stating to wear flats and no low cut tops. Dress in slacks, collared shirt and comfortable shoes. And definitely bring materials and ideas you have to teach these kids. As for questions, be prepared to answer questions like: 1. How long have you been teaching? 2. What do you enjoy about teaching? 3. Have you ever successfully potty-trained children? 4. How would you handle an angry parent? 5. How would you handle two kids fighting? 6. If someone other than the parent came to pick up a child what would you do? Those are just a few. I’ll answer them for you. 1. This is your opinion. I’m sure you can answer that easily 2. Same with this one. 3. Again, same. 4. Handling an angry parent is difficult only if you’ve never done so. If the director is available, always tell the parent that they can speak with them. Never get involved, since it’s not your place, and it’s best handled by upper management. 5. Separate the two and speak to them individually. You probably know the answer to this as well. 6. If someone other than the parent comes, the school usually has a list of names the parents leave in case of an emergency. First contact the director. If they’re not there, then call the parent to confirm pickup. I really hope this helped. 🙂 And Good Luck!!

  • If they’re seeking non-Montessori teachers, there is a good chance it’s not Montessori. I would start to prepare by looking at http://www.montessorianswers.com/

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    1. Can you tell us a little bit about what you are doing at the moment? 2. Why are you interested in this position? 3. Describe to us the strengths that you feel you could bring to the job. 4. What past experience do you have of working with children? 5. What sorts of activities would you provide to occupy the children in your care? 6. Tell us about any relevant training which you have had. Would you be willing to take additional training? 7. Can you tell us what you know about equal opportunities? 8. Imagine that I am a dissatisfied parent, what would you do if I complained to you about the behaviour of another child within the setting? 9. What sorts of policies would you expect to see in a pre-school? 10. How would you ensure good standards and practice within the setting? 11.How would you aim to offer inclusion to children with special educational needs? 12.Where do you want this job to lead? Are there any questions you would like to ask us?

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