Steff Ellis from Protocol shares a Micro Teaching at Interview Tip:
You’ve updated your CV, perfected your covering letter and your job search into the exciting world of the FE sector is well underway.
Before you know it, you’ve been invited to interview with a prospective employer who is keen to see your teaching techniques by preparing and delivering a micro-teach activity as part of the interview process.
Here you have the perfect opportunity to showcase your fantastic skills and talents in the classroom. But how can you make sure that your session stands out from the competition?
To help you out in the run-up to the day, we’ve put together a handy guide to make sure your micro-teach is memorable, engaging and (fingers crossed) will land you the job!
The most obvious solution, but you would be surprised how often preparation is overlooked. For the most part you will be given a scenario/topic to prepare in advance, in which case pick something interesting or creative. If the topic is to be given to you on the day, think of a few minutes of material beforehand that you especially would like to make sure your learners understand by the end of your session. Think of something generic, that can be applied across a variety of subjects, and have an idea ready in your head should you need something last minute!
Cover all bases!
You should not only plan out how to tackle the scenario/topic but also give some thought to how you are going to present yourself, manage the class and engage and enthuse the learners. Activities should be short and sharp, learner-focused (not teacher focused!) and incorporate interaction where possible, acknowledging the varying abilities of all students.
Practice makes perfect
Have a practice run with someone who will give you honest feedback- does it flow well? Is it running slightly too long or too short? Are your objectives clear and concise and is your audience engaged? You don’t want to sound too rehearsed on the day, but you do want to be able to relax without constantly checking your notes. Use a ‘beginning, middle and end’ method if it helps!
Identify the aim
The interview panel will be referring to specific criteria that you need to fill to ensure you meet the requirements of the job. Ensure that you establish a clear aim and objective at the beginning of the session and make your audience aware of these (SMART objectives) Feel free to re-visit them at the end of the session to assess the learners understanding and answer any questions.
Be mindful of your hands, eye contact and the tone, pitch and volume of your delivery. Always be yourself and not something you think the interviewer wants you to be- if you’re genuinely passionate about what you’re teaching this will be evident and the confidence will come naturally. The more confident you seem the less likely people are to doubt your authenticity.
If using PowerPoint slides, keep them to a minimum and stick to the main points. You want the learners to be engaged and focused on you and not reading lengthy slides. Use the slides as a point of reference and feel free to elaborate on them naturally.
Have a plan B!
It’s never a good idea to rely solely on technology- so make sure you have a back-up plan should you encounter a last minute malfunction. Slide handouts, worksheets or learning resources are always useful props to support your teaching and demonstrates you have thought ahead!
Less is more!
You only have a short period of time to get all your information across. Don’t let yourself be tricked into thinking you need to prepare a rigorous and thorough lesson plan to stand out- keep it short but informative. Remember the age old saying- quality over quantity!
And finally… relax!
If you feel nervous, take a deep breath and slow down. The more flustered you get, the more likely you are to trip on your words. Enjoy the day and let your genuine enthusiasm shine through. Remember- you can do this!
Steff Ellis, Marketing Assistant, Protocol
About Protocol: Protocol is the leading supplier of flexible staffing solutions and HR outsourcing to the FE Sector. Recruiting visiting lecturers, Permanent academic staff, Interim Managers and Senior Executives and non academic support staff.