HoldThatThought
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Report Thread starter 7 years ago
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Literally beyond excited, I can barely type but I know I've gotta get my head down and prepare. I want this with all my life. The school said they want someone asap

Can you guys be kind enough to give me some advice?!

X

Also I have a 3yr gap in employment
I have a level 3 btec in social care.
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MythThistle
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Hi there!
I'm a TA in a primary school. Your best bet is to make sure that you interact with the children if you are able to visit a classroom. Kneel down at a table, talk to some of them, ask them questions etc.. Ask the class teacher / person showing you around about displays, stuff that catches your eye. Talk about working with groups of children or one to one - if you haven't had much experience just say you are keen to work alongside the teacher to develop the child's learning. Ask about grouping for Literacy and Numeracy. Do they have PPA time (time out of the class for teachers to prepare ahead and the lessons often covered by TAs or outside MFL or PE providers). Ask about listening to readers - is there a weekly/fortnightly schedule? Just sound really interested and make sure you talk to the CHILDREN! Even qs about playground duty, what happens at lunchtime, first aid training and the sort of stuff that makes them feel that you are keen to join in with sch life will be good. Remember TAs often work in more than one class and with different sets of children, if you are arty or like sport say so. Often bigger jobs around the sch are given to TAs who have a 'talent' - you could be the next football coach or cheerleader - or the best person for making the backdrop for the sch play. Sell yourself, you'll be fine especially when the others at the interview just stand in the class doorway looking scared. lol. Best of luck xx
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HoldThatThought
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(Original post by MythThistle)
Hi there!
I'm a TA in a primary school. Your best bet is to make sure that you interact with the children if you are able to visit a classroom. Kneel down at a table, talk to some of them, ask them questions etc.. Ask the class teacher / person showing you around about displays, stuff that catches your eye. Talk about working with groups of children or one to one - if you haven't had much experience just say you are keen to work alongside the teacher to develop the child's learning. Ask about grouping for Literacy and Numeracy. Do they have PPA time (time out of the class for teachers to prepare ahead and the lessons often covered by TAs or outside MFL or PE providers). Ask about listening to readers - is there a weekly/fortnightly schedule? Just sound really interested and make sure you talk to the CHILDREN! Even qs about playground duty, what happens at lunchtime, first aid training and the sort of stuff that makes them feel that you are keen to join in with sch life will be good. Remember TAs often work in more than one class and with different sets of children, if you are arty or like sport say so. Often bigger jobs around the sch are given to TAs who have a 'talent' - you could be the next football coach or cheerleader - or the best person for making the backdrop for the sch play. Sell yourself, you'll be fine especially when the others at the interview just stand in the class doorway looking scared. lol. Best of luck xx
Aw. Can I take you with me?! I can't even express how grateful i am. I'm really excited as this job will (que the dramatic music) .. Change my life

I'm going to read over you post over & over again..
I'm currently preparing possible questions.
They've just sprung this on me & want to see me tomorrow!!! Ahh. Thanks again. Any hard questions that i may be asked?
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shorty.loves.angels
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The advice you have been given is fab.

I'd also suggest that, whenever is appropriate, you drop in things you've done with kids. Be that in school, in your home life (young relatives), as a volunteer, or even during study. Someone who has already had experience with children will look better than someone who hasn't. Have you been a leader? Taught a kid to play a sport or game? Helped them in art or with homework? Looked after them? Anything will be better than nothing And definitely voice your interests :yep:

Good luck
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MythThistle
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Bless xx. I don't think you'll be asked any trickys qs. Just be yourself and answer as honestly as you can - you'll be working really closely with a great bunch of people - TAs are usually really helpful to each other and share ideas and stuff - so you want to make sure that you tell them just what you are like otherwise any fibs that you told will be quickly spotted lol! The sch will be looking for a team player - someone who will want to join in on sports day, help another TA with a big display, sit with a kid with a nosebleed, help a little reception kiddie choose a book in the library along with all the stuff that the teacher will ask you to do in the class. You could be photocopying one minute, then listening to a reader, phoning up about a coach booking for the sch trip, then helping a group working on their literacy. After break duty, you'll be supervising a science experiment with a group where it all goes belly up despite great planning and then after lunch clearing away the painting equipment - joy! A day as a TA in a sch is wonderful, you never know what might crop up. If you are assigned to one class most teachers will have daily routines that they stick to as far as possible or if you are being interviewed for a one to one support post for a child you will shadow him/her throughout the day and support all of his/her activities offering help whenever needed. A good interview subject is talking about knowing where to draw the line about overly helping a child and allowing them to make mistakes and learn through discovery and trial and error - ie not taking over and showing a child what to do but just steering them in the right direction and always being positive and encouraging. Talk about positive encouragement and how its good to reward good behaviour and learning. I could blab all day lol. Do you have any specific info about the post?
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HoldThatThought
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(Original post by MythThistle)
Bless xx. I don't think you'll be asked any trickys qs. Just be yourself and answer as honestly as you can - you'll be working really closely with a great bunch of people - TAs are usually really helpful to each other and share ideas and stuff - so you want to make sure that you tell them just what you are like otherwise any fibs that you told will be quickly spotted lol! The sch will be looking for a team player - someone who will want to join in on sports day, help another TA with a big display, sit with a kid with a nosebleed, help a little reception kiddie choose a book in the library along with all the stuff that the teacher will ask you to do in the class. You could be photocopying one minute, then listening to a reader, phoning up about a coach booking for the sch trip, then helping a group working on their literacy. After break duty, you'll be supervising a science experiment with a group where it all goes belly up despite great planning and then after lunch clearing away the painting equipment - joy! A day as a TA in a sch is wonderful, you never know what might crop up. If you are assigned to one class most teachers will have daily routines that they stick to as far as possible or if you are being interviewed for a one to one support post for a child you will shadow him/her throughout the day and support all of his/her activities offering help whenever needed. A good interview subject is talking about knowing where to draw the line about overly helping a child and allowing them to make mistakes and learn through discovery and trial and error - ie not taking over and showing a child what to do but just steering them in the right direction and always being positive and encouraging. Talk about positive encouragement and how its good to reward good behaviour and learning. I could blab all day lol. Do you have any specific info about the post?

I DONT! I was just literally called and told to phone them tomorrow or more information about the post.
I really wish I had more time to gather my thoughts. I know its a catholic school. That is all. I was attempting to be professional through my excitement & was asking questions but totally forgot as soon as I got off the phone.

He also said I might be working in the nursery part or with the older children.
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HoldThatThought
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(Original post by shorty.loves.angels)
The advice you have been given is fab.

I'd also suggest that, whenever is appropriate, you drop in things you've done with kids. Be that in school, in your home life (young relatives), as a volunteer, or even during study. Someone who has already had experience with children will look better than someone who hasn't. Have you been a leader? Taught a kid to play a sport or game? Helped them in art or with homework? Looked after them? Anything will be better than nothing And definitely voice your interests :yep:

Good luck
that's a great idea. Mentioning things I have helped my brother with. Having siblings can finally come in handy.
Interests relating to the job? Erm.. :/ any help?
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shorty.loves.angels
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(Original post by HoldThatThought)
that's a great idea. Mentioning things I have helped my brother with. Having siblings can finally come in handy.
Interests relating to the job? Erm.. :/ any help?
Art, sports, games, reading, stories, plays, dancing, singing. I hate how arty most of these are... I was totally UN-arty as a kid, what did I like?
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*Darcie*
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In interview they will ask you about things like safeguarding, confidentiality etc.
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HoldThatThought
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(Original post by *Darcie*)
In interview they will ask you about things like safeguarding, confidentiality etc.
about confidentiality.. In relation to the children. If a child told me something that could mean they're at risk. Surely I am suppose to pass that information on?

So sad I'm only getting a few hours to plan this interview... An interview that I don't know where its being held, or for what particular position or age group as the guy told me to call back.
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HoldThatThought
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(Original post by shorty.loves.angels)
Art, sports, games, reading, stories, plays, dancing, singing. I hate how arty most of these are... I was totally UN-arty as a kid, what did I like?
I'll always be un-arty.
I'm more of a practical person.
I'm also un-sporty.
I'm totally up for reading.. Writing etc.
But if they want an all singing all dancing type of person I'll be it.
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MythThistle
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That's cool - we are all the same on the phone! Still you've got time now to gather your thoughts and hopefully you have some clues now about what you might have to do in the post.

Catholic sch - I can't comment much on that but I know all schs have some sort of collective worship / thought gathering moment every day.

Thinking about the ages of the children you could be working with - its all about where you would feel most comfortable - nursery age - lots of learning through play, working stuff out, interactive learning, song singing, phonics stuff (sounding out to learn how to read and spell but I'm sure you've heard of that), learning to form letters, lots of social interaction stuff, making friends, caring for others and being aware of the world around us blah..... Ask if they have a 'buddy' scheme where an older child mentors a younger one and helps them at playtimes, reads to them, has a time alloted when they play together etc? In nursery you will spend a lot of time up to your elbows in playdough, sand, paint, loo roll innards etc. You will have 'incidents' to deal with and lots of sulks, giggles and fallouts. It is lovely but hard work you have to be on the ball all the time and have eyes in the back of your head. You can't leave children unattended and have to err on the side of caution, be one step ahead all of the time and it helps to wear trousers!
In an older year group I suspect you will be working more closely with the children in groups. Perhaps assisting with a lower/higher ability literacy and numeracy group. You will need to feel confident about explaining stuff - although the teacher will always do a whole class explanation at the beginning of a lesson before you work with your group. You will have to work alongside children perhaps with their reading - it might be up to you to do this independently and keep the records up to date - listening to them read as often as told and recording in sch folder and child's diary. You may be asked to take a group pond dipping one am and then another group for a game of rounders in the pm. Once happy you will often be asked to work in a different area of the sch with a group of children maybe in the ICT suite or the library so will need to be solely in charge of say 6 children. There's lots to do and all schs have different timetables and methods but you would soon get the hang of it. most teachers operate a TA communication book - where they write in what they want you to do during the day. Always remember to ask if you not sure and its best to check with the teacher rather than not know what to do and have 6 expectant faces looking at you. With the children be fair and calm. Have a great sense of humour and don't get stressy. Kids like to know where they stand with you - respect that they are all individuals and deserve a good deal from you and they will appreciate you. Make sure they are quiet and listen when you talk to them but when its their turn encourage them to speak up and have a go. Encourage them to be confident and sometimes daring and to respect the views of others in their class.

Anyway - you might be asked to work with both yr gps on different days but as long as you realise it will be really different at each end of the sch then you'll be fine. If you get asked which you would prefer then hopefully I have given you some ideas about what you might be expected to do.

I think you'll do really well. You seem really keen and excited and now you can talk about some stuff at the interview and hopefully ask some pertinent qs. I remember my interview and being shown around and I remember holding open doors and smiling at any child that moved. Then trying to pay a keen interest in the wall displays and asking qs about topic work on the walls and making some daft comment about folding up PE kits before putting them back in gym bags!

Just get there in plenty of time, hang around outside if necessary and walk in with a smile. You will meet the sch receptionist first I suspect and then off you go..... have fun!
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MythThistle
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On the confidentiality issue - we have a system that if a child tells you something that you think might need 'exploring further' then you fill out a form and pass it to the Head. She then will take it further but at least you have set the ball rolling without having to decide how to handle the issue.

We also have a pyramid system about behavourial issues and incidents so that you know what the level of action should be taken and to whom you should direct your concerns.
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*Darcie*
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(Original post by HoldThatThought)
about confidentiality.. In relation to the children. If a child told me something that could mean they're at risk. Surely I am suppose to pass that information on?

So sad I'm only getting a few hours to plan this interview... An interview that I don't know where its being held, or for what particular position or age group as the guy told me to call back.
Yeah, it's usually framed around a 'if a child told you...' kind of question. Jst have to talk about how all staff members have a duty of care and responibility to tell the 'named person' and that person only, if a child discloses anything. Reassure the child that you will try to make sure that they are kept from harm but don't make any promises you can't keep (such as I won't tell anybody). Let the child tell you in their own words, don't ask any leading questions or implicate anybody.
I was a TA and this question is always asked.
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burgers
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(Original post by HoldThatThought)
Literally beyond excited, I can barely type but I know I've gotta get my head down and prepare. I want this with all my life. The school said they want someone asap

Can you guys be kind enough to give me some advice?!

X

Also I have a 3yr gap in employment
I have a level 3 btec in social care.
Would you mind telling me how it went? I have one coming up and I'm pretty clueless. Did you have to engage in an activity with the children?
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burgers
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(Original post by MythThistle)
Bless xx. I don't think you'll be asked any trickys qs. Just be yourself and answer as honestly as you can - you'll be working really closely with a great bunch of people - TAs are usually really helpful to each other and share ideas and stuff - so you want to make sure that you tell them just what you are like otherwise any fibs that you told will be quickly spotted lol! The sch will be looking for a team player - someone who will want to join in on sports day, help another TA with a big display, sit with a kid with a nosebleed, help a little reception kiddie choose a book in the library along with all the stuff that the teacher will ask you to do in the class. You could be photocopying one minute, then listening to a reader, phoning up about a coach booking for the sch trip, then helping a group working on their literacy. After break duty, you'll be supervising a science experiment with a group where it all goes belly up despite great planning and then after lunch clearing away the painting equipment - joy! A day as a TA in a sch is wonderful, you never know what might crop up. If you are assigned to one class most teachers will have daily routines that they stick to as far as possible or if you are being interviewed for a one to one support post for a child you will shadow him/her throughout the day and support all of his/her activities offering help whenever needed. A good interview subject is talking about knowing where to draw the line about overly helping a child and allowing them to make mistakes and learn through discovery and trial and error - ie not taking over and showing a child what to do but just steering them in the right direction and always being positive and encouraging. Talk about positive encouragement and how its good to reward good behaviour and learning. I could blab all day lol. Do you have any specific info about the post?
I've made another thread about teaching assistant interviews but have received no replies. There's a particular question about if a parent comes up to you in a shop and asks about how their child is doing, what do you say? I have had no experience in a school and would greatly appreciate any advice you have!
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MythThistle
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I would suggest that due to data protection / confidentiality stuff that you do not talk to a parent about his/her child outside of the school setting. If approached I would say that I know the whole class is enjoying the 'Tudors' (or whatever) project - just to be polite - but then I would say that I work with lots of children in different classes and can't comment on individuals. I would say that the class teacher would be happy to talk to the parent and if they can't pop in then send an email to start a dialogue. I would not even offer to mention to the teacher that the parent had approached me. It's best to play totally safe and say nothing specific or pertinent to a particular child - you are not allowed to discuss children outside of school with anyone as far as I know. Hope that helps.
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burgers
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(Original post by MythThistle)
I would suggest that due to data protection / confidentiality stuff that you do not talk to a parent about his/her child outside of the school setting. If approached I would say that I know the whole class is enjoying the 'Tudors' (or whatever) project - just to be polite - but then I would say that I work with lots of children in different classes and can't comment on individuals. I would say that the class teacher would be happy to talk to the parent and if they can't pop in then send an email to start a dialogue. I would not even offer to mention to the teacher that the parent had approached me. It's best to play totally safe and say nothing specific or pertinent to a particular child - you are not allowed to discuss children outside of school with anyone as far as I know. Hope that helps.
Ah what a life saver! Interview is tomorrow and I'm fretting. Thank you very much!
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rajodah
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#19
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I recently had a TA interview and found the website tatips.com to be very useful.
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Lisamac84
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Did you get the TA job? What questions were you asked?
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