how to show energy and enthusiasm

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by brandy, Aug 24, 2009.

  1. brandy

    brandy Rookie

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    Aug 24, 2009

    o.k. so i still haven't gotten any interviews but i can't seem to stop thinking about past interviews that i have had that did not work out. So, i thought i would try to be constructive (in a way). Last year i had an interview that i thought went really well (made it to the 2nd round) but did not get the job. In an email I asked the principal for feedback and she said in an email that i gave strong answers and that it is clear that i am a good teacher but she is also looking for someone with more energy and enthusiasm. Does it mean that she just didn't like my personality? i do have a quiet demeanor (not mousey though) and i can get nervous, but i tried very hard to speak up with confidence and elaborate on my answers. I gave eye contact and tried to smile. Also, i am much different both in the classroom with children and when i am not having to prove myself during an interview. She said that she could tell that i am a good teacher with strong answers, shouldn't that be enough?
    So my question is, how do you show energy and enthusiasm when you are sitting there answering question after question with about 5 people watching you and writing down notes about what you say? How do you show energy and enthusiasm when explaining something as general as how you assess students or form reading groups (just an example)? Any suggestions or ideas to help me improve upon this without changing my whole personality (which i personally think is pretty good) i really am trying to understand this better for when i finally get another chance. In the classroom i will get down on the floor and be silly with them, how do i project this with adults during an interview, if this is what "energy and enthusiasm means". thanks
     
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  3. SCTeachInTX

    SCTeachInTX Fanatic

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    Aug 24, 2009

    I think some of this comes with experience. You are not quite so focused on saying the right things and you are more easy going and natural. You tell about yourself. You give anecdotes in your answers. You infuse humor in the way you answer questions. You generally treat the people you are interviewing as friends that you have a natural ease with. You make them feel at ease. They are nervous too. And most of all you show your personality. How do you do this? When they ask you to tell them about yourself... put a little of the human touch in your answer. Talk not only about your experience, but also tell then you are a wife or mother or that you are engaged or that you are looking for Mr. Right. When they ask what you struggle with as a teacher... I said something about sitting on "this" side of the desk interviewing when I thought just 8 months ago that I would stay at my former school until the walls came down. I just laid if on the line and showed them my human side. When they asked about my strengths I told them that I am a team player. I will go the distance with my class, with the parents in my class, and will continue to grow as a learner in the education profession. When they asked me a question about assessment, I told them what I would do surely... but I also noted that I realized there are many different kinds of assessments out there and that I will work tirelessly to learn their system. I talk about what I know about the school and I let them know that I have researched the area. All these little touches help you to stand out. You obviously have the knowledge. Now, next time you interview.... ENJOY the experience. It will make a big difference.
     
  4. MissJill

    MissJill Cohort

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    Aug 24, 2009

    I try to laugh, smile a lot, and be very personable. That is why I got the job that I have.

    I'm also VERY honest on interviews. When I first started interviewing I tried to give them answers I thought that they would want to hear when it came to personal questions. Then by the end I was giving answers straight from my heart.
     
  5. allisonbeth

    allisonbeth Comrade

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    Aug 25, 2009

    I found that using pictures from my portfolio helped me open up and show my excitement for teaching. So, if they asked me about how I would differentiate, I would open up my portfolio and start talking about a picture where I students were working in a small group with me on a specific writing skill while the co-teacher was helping the large group as they worked in their portfolios. Because I loved the lesson/ students/ coteacher I was able to "shine".
     
  6. McKennaL

    McKennaL Groupie

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    Aug 25, 2009

    Hmmmm... good question.

    (My experience with interviews has seemed to swing from the far ends of the pendulum. I am either VERY enthusiastic/energetic but -to me - seemingly shallow on content. Or i dive deep into content and -again, to me- come off as dry. I have worked VERY HARD to try to find the middle ground. But...since you ask me about adding enthusiasm and energy...)

    Steps I seem to use:

    I don't sit back in my chair. I know that "popular interviewing wisdom" states that you are to mirror the demeanor of the person interviewing you. If they are laid back-so should you be. But i don't agree with these interviews. I notice that teaching interviews seem to be an exhausting pain in the butt to administrators...and i want to show them a breath of fresh air. I sit more on the edge of my seat and lean forward. I don't lean on the table...and tend to be expressive (talking with my hands/using gestures that capture enthusiasm...but don't make me look like I'm landing a plane).

    I talk to them as adult versions of my students. In this, I mean that i try to sell the subject...and the subject is ME. I truly believe that kids learn better when the teacher believes and endorses what she is talking about. I BELIEVE in education. I express that.

    Find your PASSION - and let it drive you. What are you passionate about? Sincerely passionate about. To the point that when you speak to someone about it.. your soul takes off. There are a few things that fit that bill for me...my faith and how it's changed my life, how i was born to teach, my love for my kids, and enjoying a good view (I am a true sucker for scenery and views that take your breath away-no matter how majestic or precious). When I speak of these things...my eyes light up, my spirit soars, and (not having watched myself, of course, but imagining what i look like) I rise up with this passion that is undeniable. So what is it for YOU? Imagine talking about that. Practice talking about it with someone. Sense the feeling deep within you. How did you express that? Ask the other person what THEY noticed..and if that passion came through to them (sometimes they can report on things we don't realize).
    Then...take that energy and transfer it over to your interviewing answers.

    Brandy...

    I see teaching (and INTERVIEWS) as a cross between sales and the theater. I am on stage..and I am selling something. Here... I'm selling ME and my ability to teach and reach their children. i KNOW I know the stuff... now I have to convey that to them.

    Best Wishes.
     
  7. l8ybugmom

    l8ybugmom Groupie

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    Aug 25, 2009

    I agree with the previous posters. I try to seem at ease but as SCT said that does come with experience. I've noticed that with the last few interviews I had, that I did start sitting back in my chair. I think this conveys confidence in my responses. I always try to give an anecdote to teach of my responses demonstrating that I understand how to apply strategies, etc (whatever was in the question the P asked). I try to smile and have my eyes "smile" as well.

    Good luck!!!
     
  8. brandy

    brandy Rookie

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    Aug 25, 2009

    thanks

    thanks for the ideas. It is definately somthing that i need to work on, i just wish that great reference letters and knowledge could be enough for them to see that i have energy and enthusiasm in the classroom. Thanks again, it definately does make more sense and seems more concrete to me now after reading everyones postings.hopefully the job market will improve very soom so that i can get another chance to prove myself.
    p.s. scteach--i really like your words of wisdom, especially the one about shaking off the "i'm a loser vibes" and the posting about having faith-thanks.
     
  9. Jlyn07

    Jlyn07 Comrade

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    Aug 25, 2009

    Thanks for posting this thread; I think this may be the reason I haven't gotten any of the jobs I interviewed for. I don't usually show much emotion with people I don't know, interview or not, and I think that I come off as standoffish in interviews. In reality, I'm just uncomfortable with people I don't know.

    I will definitely follow the advice given here though!
     
  10. Junebug

    Junebug Comrade

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    Aug 25, 2009

    This is something I really struggle with. I am laid back and quiet. When I try to be e&e, it doesn't work. I feel silly or something. Trying to be someone else is so tiring, why can't others see that there are all kinds of people and everyone is not the same. I think that children don't need e&e all the time. Sure it is fun to learn and it is important to make sure it is fun, but I guess maybe I am too sensitive or I just don't know...
     
  11. Exclaimation Po

    Exclaimation Po Habitué

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    I'm the opposite!! I think I'm not getting jobs because I'm tooo enthusiastic! They must think I'm playing it up! In general I'm really expressive and use my hands (and whole body when necessary) to explain something or get a point across. I have to try really hard not to talk with my hands.
     
  12. futureteach21

    futureteach21 Habitué

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    Aug 25, 2009

    SMILE! I know its an interview, but saying a small joke, or laughing or something shows that you are easy to be around and aren't too stiff. Never let them see ya sweat!
     
  13. McKennaL

    McKennaL Groupie

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    Aug 26, 2009

    Po... i can get this waay too.

    Sometimes, i wonder if i am coming across professionally. I want to find the fine line. To me... i worry that i am E&E but shallow on content...or deep with content and too dry.

    It's a tight rope!
     

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