A teaching cover letter is a letter that you include with your resume or curriculum vitae when applying for a job as a teacher. When the employer receives your application for a job vacancy, the cover letter will be the first thing they see.
A cover letter could be described as a preamble or an introduction. It should be written to highlight your skills and experiences while providing additional information about your teaching accomplishments.
From the perspective of a recruiter or hiring manager, a good cover letter is one that immediately draws attention to your CV. Your letter should elaborate on your qualifications, position you as being more qualified than other potential applicants, and explain what specific skills and qualifications make you the best person for the job.
It should also highlight why you are interested in the position you are applying for.
Why is Preliminary Research Necessary?
Applicants who extensively research the position usually receive special consideration from the hiring managers. This is beneficial because it allows you to impress the employer and demonstrates that you are committed and well-informed. Most importantly, clearly understanding your employers’ achievements helps you prepare for your future position.
For example, if you are applying for a teaching position in a school that prioritizes inclusive education, you should discuss that in your teaching cover letter. Briefly share your thoughts on why having equal opportunities for all children is essential. Convey your passion for teaching children with special needs and learning disabilities and explain how you would make a difference.
What Should you Include in your Cover Letter?
If you are writing a cover letter for the first time, the following guide will help you impress every hiring manager who reads it:
Explain your motivation
Following your name, phone number, and email address, the opening paragraph of your cover letter should share your excitement about the role. This is the section where you introduce yourself as a teacher and explain why you have great respect for your vocation.
After this introductory part, which should not be longer than two sentences, you should clarify the intent and purpose of your teaching job cover letter. Then, mention what role you are applying for and talk about it briefly to show that you understand the job description and are the right fit for it.
Show enthusiasm for the job
Most cover letters for teachers include emotionally charged language highlighting the applicant’s passion for the role. Express your excitement, but do not exaggerate it.
Sharing your genuine excitement is an excellent way to approach the hiring manager on a more personal level. For example, you can say that you are “excited to apply” or “thrilled about the opportunity.” If you have any personal links to the school or the position, feel confident about including them in your letter. For instance, if you are applying for a position at a school where you were a student, mention that.
Explain why you are a perfect match
Regardless of position, a teaching cover letter should always help the hiring manager see the connection between an applicant’s resume and the job description. Teaching roles are no exception. Your cover letter should include the following information to demonstrate that you are a suitable match.
Elaborate your experience
A mistake most applicants make when writing a cover letter is just paraphrasing critical points from their CV. There is no need to list all of your previous employers and positions. Instead, you should only mention a few significant things and elaborate on how those experiences have helped you become the teacher you are today.
For example, if you have been in education for over a few decades, you can always use that to your advantage. Talk about your perseverance, patience, and persistence. If you are inexperienced, you can convince the recruiters that this is your strength. For instance, you can say that your desire to learn and improve will motivate you to work harder.
Mention any specific training or certification
Most job descriptions have specific requirements regarding educational background, training, and certificates. However, just as you did with your experience, limit yourself to a few examples. Mention only those qualifications that make you an exemplary candidate and explain how they have contributed to improving your expertise in your job. If you have an impressive educational history and certifications, do not forget to mention them.
Quantify your achievements
Professional managers whose role is to hire new employees prefer your cover letter when you support your claims with solid facts. When listing your achievements for a teaching cover letter, it is highly recommended to quantify them. Instead of simply stating that you have taught many students in your career, mention the number of students.
Try to mention figures and statistics when discussing your achievements as a teacher. Your students’ grades, performance in standardized tests for college entrance exams, and other assessments, for example, are all important in this regard. You should also include the number of teachers you have trained, the percentage of curriculum goals achieved, and your student retention rate in your letter.
If you have received any awards for teaching or in another field, mention that too. If you used to manage or actively participate in extra-curricular activities, then you must specify the programs’ attendance, frequency, and duration of these activities.
Mention your teaching skills
Every teaching cover letter should include a list of skills you have developed throughout the years. Remember that some skills are more valuable than others for a teaching position. For instance, a good teacher is expected to have excellent communication skills, compassion, and a strong work ethic.
Besides this, some of the soft skills you can mention are:
- Positive reinforcement
- Conflict resolution
- Constructive feedback
- Critical thinking
- Leadership skills
Here is a list of the hard skills that you can add to your cover letter for the teaching position:
- Computer literacy
- Learning management systems
- Collaboration tools
- Foreign language skills
- SMART boards
- First aid
- Knowledge of any musical instruments
- Curriculum knowledge
- Lesson planning
Mention any non-teaching work
Non-teaching work such as volunteer experience looks stellar in any cover letter, especially when real-life experience, people skills, and social responsibilities are part of the job description. However, even if your volunteer experience is not related to the position you are applying for, it still demonstrates valuable personality traits such as commitment to a cause, dedication, and teamwork. Therefore, your cover letter should also include some details about other types of work on your resume, even when they are for-profit.
Conclude with a call-to-action statement
A call-to-action statement at the end of your letter will demonstrate your enthusiasm for the job. This is the statement in which you request the hiring manager to contact you for an interview at the given number if they want. This section is necessary as it shows you are serious about the position.
Sample of a Cover Letter for a Teaching Position
June 19, 2022
Dear Mrs. Bush,
I am very excited to be applying for a teaching position as a high school teacher at your school. I have a Master’s degree in Classic Literature from Sorbonne University and an advanced teaching certificate from the American Board. I have recently graduated and am ready to start my first job. This is, in fact, the first time I am sending my resume, and I am very excited about the possibility of working at your school.
Even though I lack formal experience as a teacher, I have participated in five different volunteer programs while studying in France. I am proud to have been involved in a volunteer program with Pangea Educational Development, based in Uganda, where I taught for three months to help illiterate children learn to read. Eleven of them have been enrolled in an elementary school this fall. This practical experience has taught me to be patient and persistent. It has also allowed me to improve my foreign language skills and practice self-discipline, open-mindedness, and interpersonal skills. I am confident that this unique experience, my diploma, and other credentials I have cited in my CV have prepared me for a classroom position in your school.
I have been inspired by your teaching philosophy for years and would be happy to start my career at your school. Your commitment to our community and the advancement of classical education has inspired me to become a teacher. In addition, I studied your program and curriculum as part of my studies to obtain my teaching certificate. Therefore, I am convinced that my knowledge and skills are suitable for your job requirements and educational values.
I would be delighted to receive a call from you and hope to express my enthusiasm and discuss my future contribution to your school’s mission in person.
Professional Tips to Help
The difference between a good and an ineffective teaching cover letter is in its writing quality and how well it summarizes the applicant’s credentials. The letter should be convincing but not too long.
If you want to be noticed as the best candidate, these tips will hopefully help you:
Keep it brief
Nobody, in reality, has the time or patience to read through lengthy letters; therefore, a cover letter should not be longer than a single page. Try to be concise. Two or three paragraphs, or roughly 60 seconds of reading time, should be the ideal length. Anything longer than that is unlikely to retain the reader’s attention. Job applicants who write lengthy teaching cover letters are usually not invited for interviews.
Align the letter with the values of the institute
Every position, employer, and job location is different. Therefore, when applying to different schools, you must research and learn what distinguishes each institution, then write your letter in accordance with that information. The letter should demonstrate that you understand the employer’s values and have done research on the position. Focus on how your goals align with theirs and mention the elements you like about their work culture.
Explain how the work you do can mutually benefit your future and the requirements of your prospective employer. You can demonstrate in this section of your teaching cover letter that you are qualified for the position and that you will also contribute positively to the team and the workplace in addition to being able to perform the job well. This is necessary if you want to prove that you are the right match for the job posting.
Write a cover letter that is specific to the job posting
Learning about the employer and the role before applying is essential because you want your cover letter to align with their values. If you use some of the keywords listed in the job description, your chances of getting an interview will also increase. These keywords are the requirements and skills the employer expects to see in your cover letter and CV.
Invest time and effort in writing the letter
You cannot expect the hiring manager to give your application serious consideration if your cover letter does not demonstrate that you have invested some time and thought into writing each part. A cover letter that is dull, impersonal, and poorly phrased does not present you as a diligent and committed candidate for the job. Thus, research the employer and job description thoroughly and draft your teaching cover letter accordingly.
Proofread your letter
Misspelled words, grammatical errors, and incomplete sentences in a cover letter are unacceptable in any situation, particularly when applying for a teaching position. Therefore, before you send your cover letter, proofread it thoroughly for any errors.
- Your chances of getting a job with a reputable employer depend heavily on your cover letter.
- Carefully drafted cover letters help prospective candidates share their working experiences and examples that show they are the most qualified for the job.
- Your cover letter is a unique opportunity to showcase your skills and how you plan to apply them in a specific teaching scenario.
- The best cover letters are authentic and convey a candidate’s enthusiasm for the role and passion for teaching.
- When reading cover letters for teaching roles, hiring managers expect to be impressed by your educational qualifications, determination, and commitment. This is especially important if you have limited experience with a few quantifiable achievements.
- Personalizing your letter to the institution and the role you want to be considered for will give you some advantage over other candidates.
- A cover letter that shows that you have put effort and thought into writing indicates that you take an opportunity seriously.