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Help Teaching Assistant Interview and haven't got a clue what is expected!
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# 1
missymoo81
Old 04-10-2010, 5:22 PM
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Default Help Teaching Assistant Interview and haven't got a clue what is expected!

Help.... i have applied for 30 teaching assistant jobs and have finally, finally been given the chance of an interview, it is for a position within special needs in a high school.

I have never worked as a teaching assistant before but love working with children, my nephew has learning difficulties and I have volunteered for youth club and rainbows etc for years which have all had challenging children, so I do have some experience.

Now what I need to know is what will the interview be like? As I have a feeling it will be different to a normal interview, what sort of questions will they ask, what can I do to give myself the best possible chance, what sort of answers are they looking for?

Please please help, I want this job so so much.

Missy.

p.s. I'm so sorry if this is in the wrong place but I didn't know where to put it and am so desperate for help




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Last edited by Former MSE Lee; 12-10-2010 at 1:10 PM.
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# 2
Pink.
Old 04-10-2010, 5:35 PM
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Hi missymoo,

You should get more help and advice on this on the Employment, Jobseeking & Training board, so I'll move your thread over there.

Good luck with your interview.

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# 3
GavB79
Old 04-10-2010, 5:59 PM
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They may ask why you want to work there in the first place (and don't say because you like the long holidays), how would you react if a child hit/swore at you, what would you do if you suspected a child was being neglected/abused, if a parent saw you in town and started asking questions how would you deal with it, how would you help a certain child achieve their goals, are you prepared to do after-school clubs etc.
Plus the usual where do you want to be in x years, what can you bring to the school, what are your strengths and weaknesses, how would others describe you blah blah blah.
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# 4
hollyh
Old 04-10-2010, 6:06 PM
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In all the TA interviews i've been to there's always a panel, usually the Head, a Teacher and then some Governers. There's usually about 6 questions. Some questions i've been asked are

What can you bring to the role?
How would you deal with challenging behaviour?
What's your greatest achievement?
What experience do you have?

I can't remember any more sorry. Good luck for your interview.
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# 5
socks_uk
Old 04-10-2010, 6:16 PM
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They may ask you if you know about ADHD and Autism. Make sure you tell them you are keen on training if you are not familiar with the conditions. Mention that you are aware of the importance of confidentiality.
It seems like you already have a great deal of experience. Good luck for tomorrow!
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# 6
missymoo81
Old 04-10-2010, 7:11 PM
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Thanks so much guys I am so grateful that you have taken the time to post, GavB79 your questions are great, it's difficult as I know there are right and wrong answers.

if a child hit/swore at you, what would you do? What would you do? react calmly, tell them that it is not acceptable behaviour..... then?

if you suspected a child was being neglected/abused, I have no idea on this one it is such a tricky subject..... you'd obviously have to reassure them that it is going to be ok, and you would obviously have to tell someone, but what would you do if they told you not to.... obviously you would still have to... but how would you go about not losing the childs trust.....

if a parent saw you in town and started asking questions how would you deal with it? Tell them that you understand they have a lot of questions but unfortunately you are unable to answer questions about pupils out of school and if he/she feels they need to speak to you, to come and see you inschool time where you would be more than happy to listen and answer any questions....... ok?

Im worried also as it is high school children who obviously have a lot bigger problems than younger children?

Any tips or ideas would be so gratefully received, thank you.

Missy
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# 7
weanie
Old 04-10-2010, 7:46 PM
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First of all - Good Luck and try not to panic over the interview. All candidates will be asked the same questions and so it is important to show that you are keen but calm and able to work as part of a team and also that you will accept and use the advice and direction given to you by the teaching staff.
You would be obliged to report any knowledge or suspicions over abuse of children to the names person in the school. You do not have the right to promise to keep a 'secret' regarding abuse with a child and you would have to tell the young person that you will have to report this to the appropriate person to get help/advice. There will be one person named as Child Protection Officer and so it would be important to know the name of this person when you start. There will be lots of names to learn and policies to make sense of too. When you start your role, you will be given some Induction training which give you access to all this information as well as necessary information about Fire Drills, Confidentiality, Punctuality etc.
I think the ideal TA will listen to/act on advice from her line manager, adhere to the school dress code, be better than punctual, support the pupils needs but not their bad behaviours, support the school with positive comments and discretion, support the teaching by reinforcing and directing pupils to the main points etc etc. I also think it is vital for a TA in a secondary school to show almost superhuman adaptability. Some teachers will want the TA to be almost invisible and to support in a very low key manner and others will want a very lively interchange between TA and teacher right throught the lesson. Each teacher may have different expectations of your role.
You obviously have enough relevent experiences to assist if you need to describe how you have dealt with challenging young people but do remember that there will be a system of behaviour management in place in the school and it is important to you to follow these processes.
Relax and show you are approachable, adaptable and amenable.
good luck
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# 8
vixtay
Old 04-10-2010, 7:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by socks_uk View Post
They may ask you if you know about ADHD and Autism. Make sure you tell them you are keen on training if you are not familiar with the conditions. Mention that you are aware of the importance of confidentiality.
It seems like you already have a great deal of experience. Good luck for tomorrow!
I would make myself familiar with the autistic spectrum....iv been a TA for 7 years in 3 different secondary schools working in SEN...finally said goodbye as i am a level 3 and always got paid a level 1 and could no longer live on the wages anymore.... anyway enough of me..... the other money savers on here have already written what may be asked,they are ''spot on''
Look confident and take a breath before you answer questions...im sure you will be fine....goodluck and let us know how you get on
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# 9
missymoo81
Old 04-10-2010, 8:03 PM
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Thanks Vixtay hun, am just reading up on ADHD and am then going to move onto Asbergers and Autism.

Thanks again my lovely.

x
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# 10
mrbrightside842
Old 04-10-2010, 8:10 PM
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I've been asked:
Why this school?
What can you bring to the job?
What are your strengths and weaknesses?
What would you do if a parent approached you with a problem with their child/bullying etc?
What relevant experience do you have?
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# 11
mrbrightside842
Old 04-10-2010, 8:10 PM
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ps good luck!
I'm a lady

Started comping in August!
August wins: Festival Tickets, tickets to a local show, iphone4!
September: Lost series 6 blu ray
October: Time Out New York, John Frieda hair care kit,
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# 12
u_r
Old 04-10-2010, 8:26 PM
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missymoo

i got a TA job without working in schools prior to that.
something I was asked were case scenariosne I remember:

someone phones up saying they are the police and want a certain childs address and details wot aud you do???Ans, every Police officer has a unique ID number(on shoulder) I would ask for that plus name and also say can I take your number so I could call u back with the info.(that will gimme extra time to do the checks like calling police station and enquiring if officer number is genuine for data protection). however I will try my best to address the issue asap as this caller could well be genuine and e could be handling a child protection case.

why do you want to work here?(check school website and offsite inspection report, find out about the community it is serving).

what are your strengths? pick somethings from home life, vlntary , previous jobs and link them to what a TA role would be about.examples language skills, supprting elderly and disables(empathy) etc)

where do you se yourself in a few years time??

good luck and when is the interview!!!!!!!!
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# 13
missymoo81
Old 04-10-2010, 8:37 PM
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Thanks my lovelies, the interview is 1pm Wednesday!!!!!!

have just read up on ADHD, Autism and Asbergers. Feel a lot more informed now thankyou. Very scary wanting something so much though.
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# 14
missymoo81
Old 04-10-2010, 9:02 PM
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I'm having problems answering a couple of questions I've set for myself:

What would you do if a child told you they were being bullied:

What would you do if you saw a child being bullied:

What would you do if a child told you he/she was being abused and told you not to tell anyone

what would you do if you suspected a child was being abused:

ANy help on the answers would be really helpful.... am at a bit of a loss on what to give as a good answer.

fanx muchly xx
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# 15
Gleeful
Old 04-10-2010, 10:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by missymoo81 View Post

What would you do if a child told you he/she was being abused and told you not to tell anyone
Tell them you can't guarantee confidentiality and that you will need to pass the information on to the designated CP person.

Do reassure them that you are listening, but do not ask searching questions. Let them tell you, don't try and suggest what happened.
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# 16
missymoo81
Old 04-10-2010, 10:25 PM
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thanks gleeful its a difficult situation to try and come up with an answer for isnt it. x
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# 17
missymoo81
Old 05-10-2010, 3:09 PM
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have just had my programme though and i have to do an activity for 25mins with the children!! I have no idea what this will be? Any ideas??
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# 18
vixtay
Old 05-10-2010, 8:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by missymoo81 View Post
have just had my programme though and i have to do an activity for 25mins with the children!! I have no idea what this will be? Any ideas??
Try this little exercise
This activity is ideal for the start of the year when you want to get to know the class more, although it can be used at any time of the year.
1) Ask the children to write a short description of themselves. These should only consist of a few sentences outlining who they are and what they like to do. They should NOT write their name in these descriptions.
2) When everyone has finished, collect in the work, and read out the descriptions to the class. Do not reveal who wrote each description.
3) While you are reading, the class should listen carefully, and try to work out who wrote each description (this can be done individually or in small groups).
4) Reveal the writers of each description, and ask the children if they were correct.
25 mins should cover it
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# 19
missymoo81
Old 05-10-2010, 8:31 PM
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Vixtay what a brilliant idea, thank you so much. x
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# 20
missymoo81
Old 05-10-2010, 8:35 PM
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oooh weanie for some reason i managed to miss your post, thank you so much, it is very informative! x
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