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special gurl special gurl is offline
 
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interview help, please.....
Old 06-21-2008, 10:36 PM
 
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I have gone on interviews( a million,) and I seem to have gone through all the district within my area. PLease help people. Well , I have been a teacher for 4 years, and last year got a teaching job in the city. Job is bad and I am getting layed off this month, soon. Well to make a story short , I have an interview with a district on Monday. I feel this is my last chance to make an impression. I am so stressed , since I want this to go good. Well , my last interview the principal liked me but he said the other people on panel were not impressed. Lets see they were all middle aged women , that were threatened with me. I have a hard time with women, that is usually how it goes. Not to sound cocky, but I work out like crazy to have this body and I barely eat. Please do not hate. I also dress and clothes always look nice on me since I have such a nice figure. But come on I work out hard for it. Two hours a day with barely any food !! Give me a break!!! Im really in to fitness and have a great body for my obsession, which really never works in my favor among women, my age too , I am 26. The last interview the two older ladies were looking at each other with smirks on their faces. Talk about uncomfortable. They were both in their mid 40's and the man said they did not meet eye to eye with me. Let's see I answered all and my resume is flawless. So what the hell was the problem. They gave the job to a guy right out of college and he is not certified, he has enrolled to college courses to get his certification. Does that make sense???? I have two certificates within S.E. I am so upset!!!! Well, anyway the man said last time I should be more specific on my methods , I guess I am just not answering them right. Any suggestions.


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Old 06-22-2008, 03:38 AM
 
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I know you said you didn't want to sound cocky, but that is the way it came across to me. You are judging the decision of two woman based on your figure. I don't know anyone who would do that. What makes you think they were threatened by you? In my opinion it's cocky to think someone is threatened by you when you don't even know them. Ummmmm, I'm "middle aged" and I could give two flips what a candidate looks like. I'm thinking that some of your cocky attitude may have come across in the interview. Confidence is a good thing, but it can be a turn off if it's over the top. Also, these women have no reason to be jealous of you---they are seasoned teachers who are probably pretty respected in their community or the principal would not want them in on the interview process. A flawless resume and body? How could a principal want anything else?
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Old 06-22-2008, 03:40 AM
 
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Unfortunately, I am a recent graduate so someone can probably give you more advice than I can. However, I was told by many people to use as many examples that you can. When you are asked a question, try to respond with "In the past, I _____". Also, I prepared a portfolio to take with me with my observation forms from student teaching, reference letters, sample powerpoints I used, lessons I taught, as well as some pictures of me with the students using technology, etc. I took it to the last two interviews and got the 2nd job. She said she was very impressed. I tried to just be myself but I know it is hard because interviews are SO stressful. Good luck!
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Old 06-22-2008, 04:47 AM
 
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seriously? get off your high horse about your body. no one cares.
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come to our school
Old 06-22-2008, 04:53 AM
 
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The principal seems to hire based on appearances. Seriously, you do seem very cocky. I am a middle aged woman who looks pretty darn good. I would not feel "threatened" by you unless you were holding a gun to my head. When I'm on the interview committee, I look at resumes, letters, and credentials, but most importantly I look at how personable the interviewee is. That is key, be kind and sincere. I wouln't give a rip about your appearance.


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Get over your self!
Old 06-22-2008, 07:43 AM
 
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"clothes always look nice on me since I have such a nice figure"

Get over yourself!!! Teaching is about WAY more that how nice you think you look!
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Being a colleague
Old 06-22-2008, 08:11 AM
 
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When teachers are on the interview committee I think they often look for a colleague. They are thinking, can I learn from this person, and can they learn from me? Will we be enough alike that we want to share ideas, go on field trips together, drive together to work shops and eat lunch with each day. It sounds like you have a good resume and have experience. Perhaps you could tone down the outfit a little bit? Could you wear something casual that you think would be something a "typical" teacher might wear? Because people are so visual, perhaps you are wearing something too low cut or 'young', and the committee can not see past that? Best of luck to you.
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Trying to figure it out....
Old 06-22-2008, 08:30 AM
 
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I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt. My guess is that you have some serious body image issues, especially since you claim to barely eat. How sad and joyless to fear eating and to spend so much time working out. It is possible to have a nice healthy slim body with regular sensible exercise and a decent amount of food. Thinking that women who came into existence a decade or so before you did and may weigh more are seething with jealousy of your youth and beauty is certainly one theory of why you haven't been hired. However, I can easily imagine another job searcher wondering if his or her difficulty in finding a job is because of age, weight, race, sex, height, name, or plainness. Job searching is hard and scary, but it is also time for serious reflection and an opportunity to recast oneself.
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My advice...
Old 06-22-2008, 09:37 AM
 
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Your message comes at a good time as I just finished up on an interview panel for our district. I am probably much like those 40 something women you are describing, but in my opinion, you're probably a bit off if you think they wouldn't hire you because of your figure. We interviewed 11 women, some with nice figures, some without, and honestly, that never entered my mind other than a quick thought of "I wish I still looked like that" . I would do several things to prepare for an interview. First, if you are able, I would talk to someone in the school where you now are...a teacher who has been there awhile, has some experience with interviewing, etc. See what advice he/she can offer. Search the web for teacher interview questions, and write and re-write an answer until you get one that sounds great. At the interview, I would dress professionally, smile, and answer confidently, relating back to your previous experience. Find out as much as you can about where you are interviewing beforehand. Be sure not to say things like, "you guys" or "ok" over and over again. Be sure to shake everyone's hand as you are leaving and thank them for the experience. I hope this helps!
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Old 06-22-2008, 04:50 PM
 
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My advice would be not to wear such tight/short clothing. That way you can't use that as an excuse.


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Old 06-22-2008, 05:42 PM
 
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Are you dressing professionally, or to flaunt the figure you are so proud of? I agree that you come off very cocky on this forum, so I do wonder if you come off very cocky in interviews as well. You also seem very disparaging and biased against "middle aged women"

Make sure you dress professionally, act appropriately. I agree with another poster that if I were on a committee looking to hire a colleague, I would be looking for someone I could work with. It would be hard to see eye to eye with someone who has a superior attitude, or who did not present herself as a teacher. You mention your body is your obsession, and I would guess that obsession comes across in interviews as well. I would not care at all what the body type of the teacher I want to hire is like, as long as the teacher seemed approachable, friendly, and a good fit with our school.

As far as looking for suggestions, it is hard to comment on anything else, as I have no idea what types of answers you are giving. You spent pretty much the whole post talking about your body and how threatened other women are by you! You commented that a man told you you should be more specific, so go with that. Give specific examples to back up your answers; things you have tried in the past, and the results, perhaps.

Good luck- it sounds like you have the education and experience to land a good job. I am assuming you have good references from your previous school? That should go a long way towards helping you land a job as well. We had a terrible person working at our school this year. No one would give her a good reference, and the school considers her as unrehireable. That is really hurting her as she looks for a new job, but, honestly, she really earned that. No matter how great she comes off in an interview, it is doubtful that a school would hire her based on the reports. If you have good references, that should work in your favor.
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Old 06-22-2008, 07:01 PM
 
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Believe it or not, you'll be middle-aged soon enough. I think you've been given some valuable advice from the previous posters. A little self-reflection on the inside wouldn't hurt, and you'll have that job in no time!
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Thanks for the laugh
Old 06-22-2008, 07:54 PM
 
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Thanks for the chuckle.
Please let me assure you that that we middle age teachers are rarely threatened by a teacher such as yourself. Really what do you have to threaten us with?
Don't forget we were once 26 and someday, hopefully you will be 45 or 54 or even 80.
Truthfully I don't think I have ever wondered about what an interviewee eats or how often she works out.
I admire your dedication to physical fitness. That is indeed to your credit but it is your ability to answer the interview questions that will get you a job. Lots of people have flawless resumes but simply do not interview well.
As for your dress and attire --- the only thing I would notice would be inappropriate dress. Too much cleavage, too short or not clean, and only then because it would indicate poor decision making for professional attire.


I wish you good luck in your job search. It is tough. Ask for an interview debriefing and take each and every one of the suggestions to heart. Time to change your tactics.
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Old 06-23-2008, 09:18 AM
 
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It probably doesn't have anything to do with your body type, but more to do with your personality. You don't come across as very professional in your post, and you wrote more about your body image/type than about getting a teaching job. This will come across in an interview.

Those interviewing you are asking themselves, "Would I be able to work with this person?" If the answer is "no" you will not get a job offer.

Stop obsessing about your body and working out. Start thinking about your personality and how you come across to people. Don't look at those interviewing you as "middle aged and jealous of me"...look at them as colleagues that you can work with and share teaching ideas with.
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Old 06-23-2008, 10:24 AM
 
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I think you have gotten wonderful advice from everyone else so I do not have too much to add. I am about your age, 27, and am in pretty good shape. I work out but I eat what I want in moderation. I have a few pounds I could lose but I am happy with who I am. I have to say though that I doubt the woman who interviewed you were jealous. There is nothing to be jealous of someone who barely eats and is obsessed with working out. I can say that with experience too since during hs and part of college I had an eating disorder and worked out for hours a day and barely ate as well. When I worried that much about food and myself, I could not focus on other parts of my life, my friends, family, or a job. Maybe that comes across in your interviews. It was not until I was happy with myself as a person that I could really be passionate about teaching and my life.
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personality
Old 06-23-2008, 11:19 AM
 
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Similar to what AD said, personality is very important. A great resume is what got you the interview as well as all the other candidates being interviewed. You need to go beyond the credentials and answers and show the panel that you have a good personality and will be easy to work with. I suggest you converse with them, show your passion about teaching and perhaps express more interest in the team and school.
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Old 06-23-2008, 12:46 PM
 
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I started at 21 with a master's and a fantastic resume, great grades, etc. I am now 35, and still a highly requested teacher. I've gotten every job I've ever applied to except for one (was called a month later to see if I was still available--I wasn't) IN SPITE OF being slender, tall, having long, thick, blonde hair and intelligence.

If you do indeed have a great body AND the qualifications, believe me, you'd get the job! Work on the way you come across, your answers (try a career coach like Candice Davies) and academic preparedness. Are you child-centered, or all-about-me?
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Middle aged teacher here
Old 06-23-2008, 12:46 PM
 
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I guess at the ripe age of 40 you consider me middle aged. I've sat on many interview committees for my district. As the candidate you want what I have (a teaching job) What you said in your post is pretty insulting to any seasoned teacher that takes his/her profession seriously. When I sit across the table from candidates I could care less what kind of body they have. Here though is what I can tell. I can tell which ones have no self confidence, which ones I think would make a good colleague and which ones seem so arrogant and full of them selves that I wouldn't want them in my building. The reality is that based on your post you probably don't come off as someone that would be a team player. I'm also not interested in candidates that feel they know everything and have nothing to learn from me. I'm where I am because I worked hard to get here. As one of the PP mentioned one day, you will look in the mirror and see a middle aged reflection looking back. I would recommend that if you want serious consideration for jobs in the future that you learn to check your well toned ego at the door.
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Okay...here to help!
Old 06-23-2008, 04:04 PM
 
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You have had a backlash of responses to your original post and relatively little constructive help. I myself responded that I look great, am intelligent, AND get the jobs I want (cocky, right?); so, I too have not offered any help. After going away for a while and coming back, I have decided to give you some advice.

1. Obviously, something in your interview is bothering perspective employers since you say that you have no problems scoring the interview.
2. Have you practiced your answers with another person, a best friend or family member?
3. Have you kept up-to-date on the latest research-based instructional techniques?
4. Do you read professional books and journals about educational issues to keep these in mind for reference during the interview?
5. Were you ever fired or given poor evaluations? If so, can you explain these without blaming them on the evaluator?
6. Do you wear a suit and dress appropriately when going on an interview?
7. You say you barely eat. Are you scary skeleton-looking? If so, you may think you look great, but might actually be scaring off employers who think you have a problem. There is a teacher at my school like that, and she seriously looks ill. Her arms are fuzzy and she is so pale and sickly. I think that her hair is coming out too. Aren't those signs of anorexia? If you frighten women off, it might be that and not jealousy. Again, I am fit and trim, so I am not hating you for being proud of your body.
8. Are you positive during the interview or subconsciously negative when referring to your past teaching experience?
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Old 06-23-2008, 06:26 PM
 
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One more thing quit showiing off you body (short skirts) , we had a teacher like that in my student teaching school. You work in a school not a club. Good Luck!
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getting a job
Old 06-24-2008, 08:32 AM
 
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I am 32 and have been on interview committees a few times to hire new teachers. I do not care about the body of the person being considered. I care about attitude, confidence (not cockiness), and ability to answer the questions in an appropriate manner. Personality plays a big role. Last summer, there were two candidates we were considering..one smiled a lot and answered the questions perfectly and fit well with the commitee. One did not smile and seemed monotone, but she answered the questions and also seemed like she fit in with us. We went for the one who smiled. As I look back, maybe the other woman was just nervous.
I think mentorteach gave you some great advice:
*Do not flaunt your great body...wear respectable clothing...you are a teacher, not a hooker.
*Smile
*Read up on strategies and such
*Try to come across as a nice, intelligent person and you should be ok.
*Try to bring a portfolio if you have one.

I serioulsy doubt its your terrific body that is the problem....check out your attitude.
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