Looking for your very first teaching job or your third? One thing rings true: all the best credentials, experience and passion go unnoticed without a strong cover letter. The main rule? Sell yourself the way a publicist would. Sing your praises! Cover letters aren’t a time for modesty. They’re a time to brag and make your passion for teaching known. Here are a few of our favorite teacher cover letter examples.
But first, a few tips:
Always emphasize your achievements.
Teach your students “show me, don’t tell me?” Do the opposite! Share every detail of your teaching accomplishments. Overshare all your awards, accolades, relevant certifications and completed training.
Don’t forget your work outside the classroom.
When you’re just starting out, it’s understood that your experience is limited. You can still expand on all your relevant experience working with children from running workshops to volunteering. Discuss the impact it made and why.
Always tailor EACH letter to fit the specific school, district and job for which you’re applying. Research the school and its culture so you understand their expectations and use specific examples to explain why you’re a good fit.
Here are some great teacher cover letter examples:
1. For a first time teacher
This letter (linked above) is friendly and enthusiastic. It uses concrete examples and experiences related to teaching, building a strong case for why you want to become a teacher.
2. For an experienced teacher looking for a new position
Make it short, sweet and to the point—but chock full of important career information that highlights why you’re the right candidate for the specific job available.
3. For an assistant teacher position
With this letter, a slightly different approach is taken by breaking down the most relevant achievements and accomplishments into bullet points. They’ll jump out at the hiring manager while scanning through all their applications.
4. For special education teachers
If you’re applying for a special education/lead teacher position, you’ll see that this letter is not too different from the others. It does call out the specific qualifications and experience needed.
5. For a specialist position
Here’s letter is specifically for a food service specialist. Yet, it can easily be adapted for any job that goes beyond the traditional classroom.
Do you have any more great teacher cover letter examples? We’d love to add to this list. Please share in the comments.
Length: While the resume can be two pages in length, the cover letter should be no longer than one page.
Content: If you’re struggling to think of what should comprise the content of your cover letter, look to your resume for inspiration. Are there success stories touched upon in your resume that warrant further explanation? If so, those success stories, phrased briefly, are worthy of sharing in the cover letter. Try to focus on stories/anecdotes that show how your efforts improved student performance or how your efforts are evidence of innovative teaching. Another approach is to devote some words to why you are a good fit with the school. This is an opportunity to show you have done some research on the district/ school philosophy, programs, initiatives, etc. that reflect your goals and interests.
Sentence Structure: Since you are prohibited from using the first-person “I” in your resume, you may feel the temptation to begin many, consecutive sentences with “I” in the cover letter. Avoid doing so, as the sequence of so many simple subject-simple predicate sentences makes for tedious reading.
Mailing: Since your resume and cover letter will be mailed with other documents (such as the application and a transcript), mail all documents unfolded in a large manila envelope.
Paper: Make sure your resume and cover letter are printed on the same paper. White or off-white paper without borders, shading, or background design is the best choice because it is not only professional looking, but also produces “clean” photocopies. A photocopy of a resume printed on even a slightly marbled-looking background is likely to produce a mottled appearance. Since your resume and cover letter will be reviewed by a search committee, it’s likely that your materials will be photocopied.
Titles for Targets: If you are addressing your cover letter and application materials to a superintendent (as is often the case), but the job announcement posted on the web or in a newspaper doesn’t indicate whether or not the superintendent has an academic title (e.g. “Dr.”) go ahead and address the superintendent as “Dr.” It’s better to incorrectly ascribe the academic title than to slight a person by omission.
In the Absence of a Target: Job announcements usually will ask that you mail your materials to a specific individual, such as the superintendent of a school district or a headmaster of a private school. Sometimes, however, no specific individual’s name or title is given. In this case, you are encouraged to a) call the school to inquire about the name and title of the person to whom applications should be sent or b) consult a state department of education website (which usually list superintendents of schools). If no information of this kind can be gleaned, you are encouraged to use “Dear Members of the Search Committee” rather than “To Whom it May Concern” in the cover letter salutation.
Make sure you sign your cover letter before mailing it.