Salisbury University Education Portfolio Workshop-156
TETC-Kevin Lonergan-7:15 PM
Write down five components
that you think would
be key to have in your portfolio
Whether you are a 20-year veteran or just starting out, a portfolio should
be a key component of your teaching tools. Portfolios are a nearly universal
requirement for the hiring process, but if you already have a secure job you
should view a portfolio as your insurance against unforeseen district
shake-ups. Keeping one of these self-promotion tools up-to-date also can be
a good exercise in self-evaluation.
Think of a teaching portfolio as an expanded resume. A few personnel
administrators will welcome a variety of formats, such as a box of notes,
clippings, photos and objects. However the majority look for a standard
3-ring binder. Inside they will expect to find things that show a
teacher's strengths, goals and achievements. This variety of items could
include a resume, references, letters of recommendations, transcripts,
education philosophy, classroom management theory, examples of lessons and
photos of your classroom in action. It's not a scrapbook, but a
representation of your teaching abilities.
SU Education Survey: -(Sent to 98
schools in eRecruiting-28 responses)
What Makes a Good Portfolio?
Use this list as a starting point for ideas for information and items to
include in your portfolio:
including continuing education, special committee work and awards and
worksheets, games and tests
of lessons - units or projects
of your classroom in action to illustrate your lesson examples
of students' work
short video showing you in action in front of the classroom and one-on-one
screen shots and addresses of school or classroom websites you have created
computer disks and print-outs of programs you have written or modified
It Simple: Don't overload your portfolio with page after page of lengthy
text or repetitive photos. Imagine viewing a friend's home video...would you
rather see two hours of jerky graduation footage or five minutes of
It Manageable: Three-ring binders are the preferred choice for
Timely: Review your portfolio at least twice a year. During winter and
summer vacations you can use some of the breathing room to pause and reflect
not only on your portfolio, but your teaching in general. Also pencil in
changes to your resume at this time so that when needed, an updated version
can be retype without having to round up the latest information.
Cheese: Keep your cell phone or a cheap camera with fast film, flash and
batteries at your desk to use on a moment's notice. Using a cell phone
camera regularly will get your students used to being photographed in the
Copies: Where possible, use copies of originals in your portfolio,
keeping the originals in a safe place. To add a professional touch to
photos, tape them to a sheet next to captions printed from a computer. Run a
color copy of the whole finished sheet to use in the portfolio, and take the
originals back off the taped-up master.
It Clear: Create a custom cover for your portfolio with a three-ring
binder with a clear insert on the cover. Use clear plastic page holders
inside to keep your pages clean and neat.
It Legible: Use a computer to type and print out easy-to-read
information sheets or a table of contents. Use 12 point type where possible
for easy readability.
Do You Really NEED a Teaching Portfolio?
by Tim Wei-TeachingInterview.com
a teaching portfolio absolutely necessary to get a job in education? I bet
you think I am going to say, "Of course. You can't get a job without one."
Actually, you CAN get a job WITHOUT a teaching portfolio. I've been on many
interview committees and I'd estimate that less than 50% of all candidates have
a portfolio. And we've even hired people who do not have a portfolio. But, even
so, I STRONGLY recommend assembling a good portfolio and presenting
it to your interviewers.
why? I hear the argument AGAINST portfolios all the time: It takes many
hours to prepare a proper teaching portfolio. (Which it does.) Interviewers
seldom ask to see the portfolio. (Which is true.) It's hard for inexperienced
teachers to find enough quality material to put in the portfolio. (Perhaps.)
why WOULD you want to have one? Even though you don't NEED a portfolio, I
really think it's a good idea to have one in front of you next time you sit
down at an interview table. Here's why....
you have a portfolio, the interview will be easier because you will have
something in your hands to talk about. When an interviewer asks you how you
would do something, you can simply open your portfolio, and SHOW him/her how
you HAVE BEEN DOING whatever it is they're asking about. When you are asked a
question, you can only do one of two things: a) You can answer by simply
telling them what you would do-- or b) you can answer by SHOWING them PROOF of
what your teaching is like. Which will impress an interviewer more? Of course,
it is better to show and prove your teaching experiences because the
interviewer will have much more confidence in your ability if he/she has seen
concrete EXAMPLES of your work.
simple act of walking in the room with a portfolio sends off positive signals.
When you have a portfolio in-hand you seem serious about wanting the job. You
are showing that you took time to prepare for the meeting. It shows that you
are organized enough to compile evidence of your teaching experiences. People
who are serious, prepared, and organized at an interview are usually serious,
prepared, and organized teachers. Principals know this and they'll be looking
for signs of these attributes in their new employees.
interviewer will find you more INTERESTING if you use your portfolio
effectively at an interview. Think about it: All day long, this person is
sitting in a room asking questions about teaching practices and philosophy of
education. After 3... 4... 5... 10... 12... 15 candidates they are bored to
death of listening to cliche responses and tired of focusing. So, with your
portfolio, YOU have a chance to add a little excitement to their day. How? You
make it a conversational, interactive interview. When they ask about your
teaching philosophy, you don't just tell them-- you pull it out and put it in
their hands while you talk about it. When they ask about a successful lesson
you've done, you pull out photographs and pass them around the table. If they
ask how you communicate with parents, you pull out a copy of a parent
newsletter you made up and say, "Here's a copy of my parent newsletter-- you
can keep it!" By giving your interviewer things to hold, examine, and discuss,
the interview becomes more interesting. It's not longer just a question-answer
session. It morphs into a show and tell... a bragging session that shows off
your qualities as a teacher. And THAT will make you stand out above the other