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Dear Theo, observation & interview

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by jomaimai, Oct 9, 2015.

  1. jomaimai

    jomaimai Established commenter

    Dear Theo and dear all,

    I have an observation and an interview for a EYFS post.
    I have not been given any further information.

    Would you prepare a carpet session, a story or anything for the observation?

    Any advice will be welcomed!
  2. CWadd

    CWadd Star commenter

    Hey up,

    Theo will be along in a moment, but on this forum there is a policy that ideas for interviews/observations are not given out. You never know who is reading this!

    Regarding further information - why not try dropping the school a polite email, asking if you could know how many children are going to be in the class, and if there are any specific needs?

    Good luck!
  3. jomaimai

    jomaimai Established commenter

    Dear CWadd,

    I know and I am not asking for specific ideas, just your opinion.
    What will you prepare: a story, a phonics lesson....? Nothing? Will you take your favourite book with you?
    I have already asked the school, politely, and they said I will be told on the day.

  4. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Well done on getting that interview! You have already impressed them, now go and get that job!

    As you know (but I am repeating it for other posters) the policy on here is NOT to give any answers to interview questions, nor any suggestions for observed lessons. Not because we are mean and unkind, but because it just isn't wise.

    If we gave you ideas, another candidate might see them, and do the very same thing! Don't think it would never happen - one Head once had 4 - FOUR! - candidates do a lesson which had been suggested on the Primary Forum in response to a request for suggestions for an interview lesson. She recognised it. Wouldn't matter if she hadn't, because the four of them doing the same thing sort of gave things away. :)

    And best not to use something from the TES Resources either, for your interview. Another True Story: a Deputy Head asked a candidate to explain the rationale behind the materials and lesson used, and enquired specifically how they had been devised. She wasn't too impressed by the floundering answer. No wonder: the lesson and materials had been devised entirely by the Deputy Head herself, and posted on TES Resources! :):)

    So the sensible rule is: nothing from the internet for an interview. The Head wants to see how YOU can plan and deliver a lesson, even though you may well use other materials on a day-t-day basis. they want to see what you can manage on your own. I'm sure that you can really, you are just suffering from nerves!

    Well certainly I wouldn't prepare nothing! :)

    Instead of thinking Story? Phonics? Carpet? Book? You really need to think Objectives? In other words, what do you want them to learn? That must be the starting point.

    Start by thinking of a really good lesson that you have given in the past. What was it that made it so successful? Bear that in mind.

    Then think of the objectives of your observed lesson. You will need the right objectives for this age group, but make sure that you have high expectations, yet are prepared to be flexible if you have got the level wrong. How will you (a) achieve these objectives and (b) show that they have been achieved? Progress is important, so show it. Then look back at your best class - is there anything there that could help achieve the objectives.

    Then work on from that . . . including one or two lines at the end of how you would develop this work in follow-up lessons, perhaps.

    Below you have (I hope!) Links to the newly-transferred advice articles from old-TES. Some of them are not relevant to you, but I am including them all for the benefit of other posters.


    I have created links to these articles, but have not yet been able to go into them and check/change any internal links. So some internal links may no longer work on nu-TES.

    Help, I've got an interview! *** The basic advice ***

    Teaching an observed lesson at interview

    Using mind-mapping for interviews *** The best-loved advice ***

    Tell us about yourself - dream or nightmare question?

    Daft Interview Questions

    What shall I wear to the interview?

    Interviews – making a positive first impression

    How do you decide who to appoint?

    What excuse can I give for going to interview?

    Child Protection: the questions, NOT the answers

    A typical Child Protection Policy

    Two interviews and a dilemma

    Interview feedback - they blamed my experience, but they knew that when they shortlisted me!

    SLT interviews - possible questions

    In-tray exercises. Deputy Head

    Assistant Head interviews

    General interview questions

    Questions to ask at the end of your interview

    On Old-TES we had a very nice tradition that when you actually got a job, you started a brand-new thread (not adding it to this one - a brand-new thread) where you told us your good news. You call it Dear Theo - I got that job! and this gives everyone a chance to congratulate you. It also gives them hope and inspiration for their own jobseeking, to see you successful.

    If you see one of these threads, make sure you congratulate people!

    So I will end by saying that we look forward to seeing your Dear Theo - I got that job!

    Best Wishes
  5. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter



    Love the Mary Poppins avatar!

  6. jomaimai

    jomaimai Established commenter

    Thanks Theo for the lengthy post!
    I see you are not posting with your phone anymore.

    Glad that you noticed my avatar. She is not Mary Poppins although, a lot of times, I feel like her. She is Shary Bobbins, I love the way she makes the kids tidy up (We always do her way, sometimes)

    And yes, I have butterflies in my tummy!
  7. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    (the missing Thumbs Up avatar)

  8. CWadd

    CWadd Star commenter

    As Theo says, you need to think what you want the children to have achieved by the end - an objective.

    Very best of luck!

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