In my educational career, I’ve had two interviews. One for a paraprofessional position while student teaching and the other for my first teaching position. I can recall every little detail to both outfits worn. Not due to my love for fashion, but because I was so nervous about each and every aspect of the interview, I second guessed every little thing.
Teacher Interviews can feel like you’re on a supreme scream at Knott’s Berry Farm. We put so much pressure on ourselves to know exactly what the interviewer wants to hear. I remember reciting the special education process from start to finish. I used the exact language and order from the textbook. Preparing is stressful enough, that deciding on the right outfit to wear is enough to set us over the edge.
Not to worry– if you are preparing for an interview in education, you are already amazing and our world needs you. When thinking about what you should wear to an interview or job fair, I’ve only got one tip for you!
OUTFIT D E T A I L S
tip 1 – don’t dress to impress, dress to feel confident
If going out and buying a new outfit makes you feel confident, do it. If you have a favorite pair of pants that you survived your hardest days of student teaching in, wear those. A dress you bought 3 years ago from Target and never wore, but think it would be the perfect interview outfit… except you keep thinking about how old it is? WEAR IT!
Wearing the perfect outfit to the interview, isn’t going to get you the job. What’s going to get you the job is you. While it might make sense to wear a cute necklace that someone you talk with might remember, what’s even more memorable is your story. When did you decide you wanted to be a teacher? What are your beliefs about education? What are your core values and how will those guide your relationships with students and colleagues? What is your why? Why are you going to show up to your classroom after what you believe to be the hardest day?
Clothe yourself in whatever outfit is going to let your purpose shine through. Don’t wear an outfit because you think you have too. Wear something that is you.
For this post, I styled two outfits with items I had in my closet as if I was going to a job interview. When trying to choose what to wear and what I felt confident in, I thought about a couple different things:
What colors do I feel the most comfortable in?
What won’t wrinkle easily?
Nothing too tight, too low, or too loose
Shoes I can walk in
Who is the interview with? District Office? More dressy. Teachers and admin? More casual. No jeans.
Check, check, and check!
You matter, your story matters, but your clothes– they don’t matter.
Yah this is a fashion blog and all… but I don’t share my outfits to try to convince you that if you buy something you’ll be happier. I don’t believe if you wear the interview outfit I recommend or use the interview outfit tips I share, you will get the job. You will get the job because of you.
I share my outfits because they’re what I’m clothed in when I am hearing my students stories and when i’m staying calm when desks get thrown across my classroom. When their neurons have officially built a connection that we’ve been strengthening for weeks and when i’m sitting on the floor behind my desk crying because I don’t know what to do. The teacher dress code is way more than cute things from Target and seasonal teacher outfits– it’s about wearing the timeless statements that matter.
Clothes are great and all, but not as great as you. Wear something that makes you feel confident, strong, and worthy… because you are all of those things. Your future students are going to be lucky to have you.