You've chosen the schools your son or daughter is going to apply for. You've filled out the applications. Now it's time for the dreaded interview. We know this time can be stressful for both parent and student. So our Director of Secondary School Placement Christine Williams offers these seven tips to parents on how to help your child prepare for the all-important secondary school interview.
- Remember the purpose of the interview: to get to know the student beyond the data of the application. Remind your child that they are much more than grades and test scores! The point of the interview is for that to shine through, so they should relax and be themselves.
- Tell a story: Schools love excellent students who do cool things outside the classroom. Use the interview to share the cool things you do. Be ready to share why you love what you do. Paint a memorable picture with stories.
- Understand the format: Expect a conversation instead of a 30-minute Q & A.
- Aim for depth in your answers: Avoid one word responses. Think of these transition words as your friends: "because; and; then; also; one time..."
- Do your homework: Research the school's website and social media channels to find out what differentiates it from other schools and to get a flavor for the school's culture and values.
- Ask questions: Prepare questions according to your interests that your research couldn't answer.
- Relax. Feel confident and comfortable with who you are and what you will contribute to the school's community. Tell your story and ask your questions.
We would be remiss if we didn't offer advice for the equally important parent interview.
- Remember your subject: Focus on your child as only you as the parent can; share the heart of who your child is, what you see at home that is best articulated by the love of a parent.