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CareerStart lessons: Grade seven

LEARN NC was a program of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Education from 1997 – 2013. It provided lesson plans, professional development, and innovative web resources to support teachers, build community, and improve K-12 education in North Carolina. Learn NC is no longer supported by the School of Education – this is a historical archive of their website.

Learning outcomes

Students will practice appropriate use of language in answering questions in the context of a job interview.

Teacher preparation

Time required for lesson

70 minutes

Materials needed


  1. Begin the lesson with a discussion about the importance of details, listening skills, and appropriate use of language in the career world. Ask students to brainstorm real-world job scenarios where these concepts are particularly important. (Possible answers may include politicians participating in public debates, job interviews, and doctors listening to patients as they describe symptoms.)
  2. Guided Practice: Use the interview skit to have students model the interview process. Choose one student to model an interview for the class. The student will pretend to be an applicant for a job as a sales clerk at Hollister or another clothing store. Play the role of the employer and have the student play the role of the interviewee as you read the skit in front of the class. Tell the class to pay close attention to the question and answer interchange.
  3. Independent Practice: Put students into pairs and give each pair the following interview scenarios:
    • Manager hiring an employee at McDonalds
    • Manager hiring a retail worker at Abercrombie
    • Parent hiring a babysitter
    • Pool manager hiring a lifeguard
    • Principal hiring a coach
    • Supervisor hiring a housekeeper
    • Manager hiring a police officer
  4. Have the students work in their pairs to create five interview questions and answers for different scenarios. Depending on the time available, you can decide how many of the scenarios the students should work with.
  5. Have each pair act out one interview for the class.
  6. To summarize the lesson, have the students complete a 3-2-1:
    • What are 3 things employers will most likely ask during a job interview?
    • What are 2 skills that are important for you to possess in an interview?
    • Give 1 tip you would pass on to someone going for a job interview.

North Carolina curriculum alignment

English Language Arts (2004)

Grade 7

  • Goal 6: The learner will apply conventions of application of grammar and language usage.
    • Objective 6.01: Model an understanding of conventional written and spoken expression by:
      • using a variety of sentences correctly, punctuating them properly, and avoiding fragments and run-ons.
      • using subject-verb agreement and verb tense that are appropriate for the meaning of the sentence.
      • applying the parts of speech to clarify language usage.
      • using pronouns correctly, including clear antecedents and correct case.
      • using phrases and clauses correctly, including proper punctuation (e.g., prepositional phrases, appositives, dependent and independent clauses).
      • determining the meaning of unfamiliar vocabulary words using context clues, a dictionary, a glossary, a thesaurus, and/or structural analysis (roots, prefixes, suffixes) of words.
      • extending vocabulary knowledge by learning and using new words.
      • determining when and where dialects and standard/nonstandard English usage are appropriate.
      • applying language conventions and usage during oral presentations.
      • choosing language that is precise, engaging, and well suited to the topic and audience.
      • experimenting with figurative language and speech patterns.

Guidance (2001)

Grade 6–8

  • Goal 5: Employ strategies to achieve future career success and satisfaction.
    • Objective 5.08: Use employability and job readiness skills in work-based learning experiences.

  • Common Core State Standards
    • English Language Arts (2010)
      • Speaking & Listening

        • Grade 7
          • 7.SL.6 Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and tasks, demonstrating command of formal English when indicated or appropriate.

  • North Carolina Essential Standards
    • Guidance (2010)
      • Early Independent

        • EI.SE.3 Use communication strategies to share information effectively for a variety of purposes and audiences. EI.SE.3.1 Use communication strategies that are appropriate for the situation and setting. EI.SE.3.2 Use conflict management skills to achieve desired...
      • Progressing

        • P.SE.3 Use communication strategies effectively for a variety of purposes and audiences. P.SE.3.1 Analyze available resources and strategies to determine those that are most appropriate for communicating to various groups. P.SE.3.2 Explain how body language...