For those that bring portfolios.....

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by smalltowngal, Nov 13, 2007.

  1. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Nov 13, 2007

    to the interview, and have been successful? What all have you put in there? So far I have a copy of my cover letter (generalized), resume, philosophy of education, discipline plan, some TAKS strategies, and was thinking about putting some lesson plans in there. How many lessons should I put in there?

    TIA,
    gal
     
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  3. awaxler

    awaxler Comrade

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    Nov 13, 2007

    Yes, you should definitely have lesson plans in there...a handful of lessons that show you using a variety of teaching methods/strategies. This way when asked almost any question you can refer to at least one specific lesson.

    But don't forget the most powerful thing of all...examples of student work.
     
  4. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Thanks for your response Mr. Waxler!

    I'm trying to get into the upper grades after teaching kinder and 2nd grade. I have found some lessons for these grades in the subjects I'm certified in, but do not have any examples of student work. Will that be okay?
     
  5. awaxler

    awaxler Comrade

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    If you do not have examples of student work there is not much you can do about that, but I would definitely bring in lessons on what you "plan" to do in that grade level.

    Also, use your elementary experience to your advanatge. Explain how you incorporate elementary strategies into secondary education...too often the older we get the more we move away from strategies that are proven to work. For example, why is that teachers lecture more as students get older...lecturing has a 5% retention rate regardless of grade level.
     
  6. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Thank you very much! I have read your interview book and I think it has helped me be more confident in my interviews.
     
  7. awaxler

    awaxler Comrade

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    Nov 13, 2007

    you're welcome :)

    Glad I can help.
     
  8. lupin43

    lupin43 Companion

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    Nov 13, 2007

    I did not put any lessons "plans" in the book. I put results from the lessons and products, even if I had to make the examples myself. I put photos of students working taken from student teaching. I put some personal reflection pages to show how I adjust lessons and improve them. I am a FIRM believer in hands on activities and put some actual activities or pictures of them in the portfolio to show. I made sure that everything in there could be "appreciated" by the interviewer in about 10-15 seconds. For example, I would not put in a paper or fully written lesson plan in because to fully appreciate it, you would have to read all of it. Whereas the product of the lessons such as a foldable or vocab definitions with pictures are easily and quickly appreciated.

    I did not include a resume or coverletter because they had them. I did bring extras with just in case there were others in the interview. I wanted the portfolio to be a quick reference of proof that I did what I said I could do. I also did not type out a philosophy because that was inherent in the artifacts I chose to put in the portfolio. Again, I didn't want them to need to read each page of the portfolio.

    Hope that helps. Oh, and I only interviewed at one school and was called the next day. Just so you know, mine must have worked.
     
  9. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    I was hired due to the lesson plans in my portfolio. In it, I have test scores, letters of rec, lesson plans, power point presentations I have done, evaluations, philosophy etc... No pictures, it's not scrap bookish at all. My principal was so impressed with my lesson plans (I had several types: formal typed plans with rubrics [that were used when I had to go teach one lesson to a class], handwritten plans I used day-to-day, in-depth guided reading plans, etc...) that I got a call with a job offer before I made it back to my hotel (I moved several states away, but not until I found a job). The only thing she looked at was my lesson plans. She didn't look through it at all until she asked what she could expect in my lesson plans. I was like, "Well, let me show you!"
     
  10. awaxler

    awaxler Comrade

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    Nov 14, 2007

    Exactly...well done!
     
  11. Learner4Life

    Learner4Life Cohort

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    Nov 14, 2007

    When I was in college taking the "technology for teachers" class they had us put our portfolios on the internet (edited for addresses, phone #'s, etc.). I thought this was a great idea because even after you leave the interveiw, the interviewers can come back to your portfolio if they have questions. It takes a lot of work and I'm currently thinking of starting completely over on mine BUT I think it's worth it.
    oh and I do have a physical portfolio that I take with me as well...
     
  12. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Nov 14, 2007

    So, Learner, you have your portfolio on a CD that you leave for the interviewers?

    What all did you put on there?
     
  13. Learner4Life

    Learner4Life Cohort

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    Nov 20, 2007

    I put it on the internet... places like geocities and such have free websites avaiable and are pretty easy to set up...
    My webpage has been out dated which is why I'm thinking of completely starting over BUT you can take a look at www.geocities.com/helenkayj if you would like
     
  14. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    I'm thinking of putting my portfolio on a CD as a powerpoint. What do you think about something like that? And how do I get lessons on there if I decide to do it this way?
     
  15. awaxler

    awaxler Comrade

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    Nov 20, 2007

  16. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Nov 20, 2007

    Adam, thanks for that article! What are the best websites to use to create my own?
     
  17. awaxler

    awaxler Comrade

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    Nov 20, 2007

    Well...there's many different routes you can take. There are plenty of free ways such as geocites or you can create a free blog through blogger.com. Blogger may be is the easiest and cheapest way to get started.

    However, I prefer to have my own domain name (but I'm into this stuff). To do this you need to purchase your domain name which will cost you less than $10/ year. You will also need to host your domain name which will cost you roughly $7/month.

    I own several domain names and host them on various servers and the hosting company I like the best is called Bluehost (http://www.bluehost.com/track/adamwaxler)

    With bluehost you can get your blog set up with just a click or two...you can set up forums, chat rooms etc.

    However, if you want to create webpages you will most likely need to purchase some type of software such as microsoft frontpage.

    Which ever route you take, free or paid, I think you should create some type of internet presence.

    It is a great way to increase parent involvement in the classroom, a great way to improve the number of students who complete the homework AND is a great thing to bring up in an interview.

    Let me know if you need more info...

    --Adam
     
  18. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Okay...I've started one on geocities. How do I link things like my resume, philosophy of education, and lessons?
     
  19. GrandHighWitch

    GrandHighWitch Companion

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    Nov 20, 2007

    I meant to respond to this thread a few days ago, but got busy and forgot. I'm not sure if my portfolio made any difference or not in me getting hired, but besides my resume and cover letter and all of that, here's what I had in mine...

    Lessons and Activities:
    - Lesson plans from reading, math, science, and social studies
    - Teacher-made worksheets, graphic organizers, and activities
    - Pictures of my class from student teaching doing one of the lessons (a Reader's Theatre)

    Assessments:
    - Picture of a KWL chart my class made
    - A map skills pre-assessment activity I made
    - A checklist for writing I used
    - A math test I wrote
    - Samples of student work
    - Pictures of students doing authentic assessments (hands-on activities, an art project)

    Parent Communication:
    - 2 newsletters I made
    - A couple of notes I sent home to parents


    I also have an online portfolio I had to make as a requirement for student teaching. We had a template to follow, and it included an about me section, our resume, philosophy of teaching, personal goals, artifacts from student teaching, and reflections.
     
  20. Learner4Life

    Learner4Life Cohort

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    Nov 21, 2007

    This is where it gets complicated. You have to create multiple pages in your webpage maker and create links on your homepage... There are classes you can take that will help you do this... show you how to add backgrounds, graphics, multiple pages, etc.... lol now I'm kind-of regretting telling you this because now I'm remembering how much work it was. It's an absolutely great idea but it takes some exploring and learning...
     

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