Formal interviews are usually reserved for students entering sixth grade and up. The interview may occur during a walk around campus or in the admissions office. Parents may or may not be included. Here are some tips to help your child prepare.
- Avoid “yes/no” responses. The interview should give the school a sense of who your child is. Help your child practice thoughtful responses that reveal something about him or her.
- Think about what to say. While your child shouldn’t try to memorize answers, you can talk through typical interview questions:
- “Tell me about yourself.” What makes your child special? Highlight talents, interests, experiences, and goals.
- “Why do you want to come to this school?” Focus on something specific about the school and connect it to your child. For example, “I’ve been playing the flute for six years, and I know your orchestra is one of the best in the state. I hope I can try out.”
- “What are you studying now?” Give positive answers to any question about your current school, subjects, or teachers. Don’t criticize or compare the two schools.
- “Do you have any questions for me?” Absolutely! Help your student formulate a few questions that are not obvious and reflect your child’s interests. For example, “I enjoy creative writing. Does the school have a literary magazine or a writing club?”
- Practice. Ask another adult to spend 15 minutes asking typical interview questions, and then offer constructive advice.
- Don’t over-prepare. You want the school to get a sense of who your child really is, not what the child has been coached to say.