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  #1  
Old 04-21-2011, 08:09 PM
I.D. Clair I.D. Clair is offline
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Writing Assignment at Job Interview

Has anyone ever had to do a writing assignment at an interview? I am just nervous about what the question could possibly be. Is it going to be one of the more difficult ones that they ask at an interview? Anyone ever been asked to do this?
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Old 04-21-2011, 08:39 PM
cartwheels cartwheels is offline
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I had to do one that was several questions long, but I don't remember what the questions were. I'm pretty sure they were basic interview questions, though - tell us about yourself, how do you modify lessons, what is your strength, stuff like that. Try not to stress over it. The purpose of a writing sample is generally just to make sure you have decent writing skills. Use paragraphs, watch your grammar, make sure your ideas flow well, and you'll be fine.

I was watching a video of interview tips and one principal said a good format for answering questions is three-pronged: state what you believe, explain what that looks like, and tell how you have demonstrated it. (For example: I believe great classroom management is ______. Effective classroom management will have ______. Some things that have worked well in my classroom are ______.) Maybe keeping that format in mind for three separate paragraphs will help guide you when you're responding to the question/prompt.
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Old 04-21-2011, 11:46 PM
EdEd EdEd is offline
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Wow, I can't believe people do that! I can see in the application, but as part of an interview? Does anyone else experience this? I can't imagine it's a good use of a panel's time to sit in a room and watch someone write for 20 minutes, unless the candidates are expected to do it as part of the application/pre-interview process while waiting?
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Old 04-22-2011, 12:04 AM
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MissAnt MissAnt is offline
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I had to do this for 2 interviews last summer. They gave the writing assessment after the interview. I had to answer an essay question about differentiation for the first interview. The second interview gave me 5 or 6 questions to answer. I was limited to 30 minutes during the first and was allowed unlimited time got the second. I did much better on the 2nd.
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Old 04-22-2011, 12:35 AM
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Jem Jem is offline
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I had to do this for a training and development position with the city court a few months back. They asked us to do it by hand-no spell check in my hand! Eeek! I was the last one done, but I outlined what I wanted to say and really thought about how to phrase it best. I think the other candidates whipped through theirs.
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Old 04-22-2011, 12:45 AM
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cutNglue cutNglue is offline
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I had to do this. I did this in a separate room while the panelist talked about me for a bit, took a break, etc. Mine was also done by hand.

My question was related to a classroom management scenario. Since they asked me the question in other formats during the interview, I'm assuming the emphasis is on my writing skills.

In our case, I believe it made good sense to do this. I worked in a bilingual environment. Often people are not balanced bilinguals. Thus our interview was done in one language and this provided evidence of the second. The Praxis test also gives evidence but not quite as clear to the panelist.
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Old 04-22-2011, 04:56 AM
smurfette smurfette is offline
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I had to do one a couple of months ago. It just asked me to write a paragraph explaining why I would be a good fit for the school.
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Old 04-22-2011, 05:06 AM
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czacza czacza is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EdEd View Post
Wow, I can't believe people do that! I can see in the application, but as part of an interview? Does anyone else experience this? I can't imagine it's a good use of a panel's time to sit in a room and watch someone write for 20 minutes, unless the candidates are expected to do it as part of the application/pre-interview process while waiting?
Our candidates do the written part right after their interviews. We have several questions from which they can choose.
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Old 04-22-2011, 07:33 AM
jenneke607 jenneke607 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by czacza View Post
Our candidates do the written part right after their interviews. We have several questions from which they can choose.
Right; I have had two interviews for classroom positions that required writing samples, and they were both (1) after the panel interview, and (2) much more specific. One involved a writing sample from a student, and asked candidates to analyze the sample and describe the kind of feedback the student would receive. The other detailed an issue with a parent, and asked the candidate to write a letter to the parent to diffuse tension.
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  #10  
Old 04-22-2011, 08:00 AM
cartwheels cartwheels is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EdEd View Post
Wow, I can't believe people do that! I can see in the application, but as part of an interview? Does anyone else experience this? I can't imagine it's a good use of a panel's time to sit in a room and watch someone write for 20 minutes, unless the candidates are expected to do it as part of the application/pre-interview process while waiting?
When I did my writing sample, the panel was not in the room with me. They had me sit in the AP's office and work on it while the panel prepared for the actual interview. I think one reason they do it is because it shows them that you can write well on-the-fly. With the application questions, you have the ability to spell and grammar check it, run it by other people, get tips, consult online sources, etc., so it's difficult to tell if that is a true reflection of your writing ability.
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