What I Did to Land my Job as a First Year Teacher
I now know that landing my position as a first year teacher was a rare, and stupendous feat. In seven years of teaching, I have been in the same school, running the same program. Most of my colleagues around the same age are now at their second, or even third position, because as a first year teacher, you take whatever job you can get...even if it's not the best situation long-term.
Though not everything was perfect, there were great building blocks already in place for me, like:
A large program of 200+ students
A Class schedule that was (and still is) all choir, all day...no random music classes to fill out my schedule
Nice room with attached office, and storage
Supportive and wonderful fine arts colleagues
Supportive administrators that were open to anything I wanted to try.
With these resources available, I couldn't believe they hired me, a first year teacher, for the job!
Whether you're just entering the education world, or you're looking to make a change in your career, I'm going to share the one thing I did that helped me land the job: YouTube.
During my internship, my supervising teacher made sure I had great experiences and opportunities. One of which was assisting in preparing and conducting students at MPA (Florida's state adjudication). A parent videoed our performance that day, and uploaded the videos to YouTube. Those videos were my "secret weapon". Check them out below!
In my interview, I brought copies of my resume, with an additional piece of paper attached. This piece of paper contained links to both videos, and a brief explanation of what the video was. I mentioned this paper in my interview, and explained that I included it to show the committee my abilities as a teacher, because each video was a piece that I assisted in teaching.
At the end of the interview, I was told they would come to a decision in a month. An hour after leaving the school, my supervising teacher called to tell me she was just called by the principal, who seemed interested in me.
I was hired by the end of that week.
On the Hunt? Here's My Advice
You can tell someone how qualified you are all day. Why not show them instead?
Video yourself teaching in rehearsal, video performances...just show what you're capable of!
Let your professional network help you.
I didn't know anyone in the area when I was applying for jobs as a first year teacher. But, beefing up my reference list with people who knew my capabilities best (professors, supervising teacher) helped sell my qualifications.
Do you know someone in the area/district you're applying for? Guess what, I bet they know someone they could mention your name to.
Communicate with your professional network to keep updated on any positions available, or may become available.