Grade Range: 4-6

ACF Lesson Plan: STEM Careers: Mock Interviews


Students learn about different careers in the coal industry and what skills are needed to pursue those careers.

Download a PDF version of this lesson.




Students will:
  1. Read about STEM Careers
  2. Plan and participate in a mock interview for a STEM-related job

National Standards:

Time Needed:

One class period



  1. Print the PDF version of Sourcebook for STEM Careers in Coal and cut apart the job descriptions. Have them placed around the room. Have students rotate through the stations, reading about each of the jobs.
  2. Then provide access to the full PDF so students may review their choices. Tell the students they are to select two careers that appeal to them the most.
  3. Students who choose the same careers will be assigned a role, either interviewer or job candidate. The interviewers will work together to create interview questions one might ask a candidate for that particular job. Questions might include:
    • Why do you want this job?
    • What is appealing about this position?
    • What job responsibilities do you anticipate?
    • What skills do you think you need to be successful in this job?
    • What school courses have you taken and know well to do your job in this field?
  4. The job candidates will work together to think about questions that might be asked of them in an interview for this position, and will prepare responses to the anticipated questions.
  5. Students will then participate in a mock interview. Pair one interviewer with one job candidate. Have them ask and answer the questions about the job.
  6. Then, have the interviewers discuss who would be the best person for the job and why. They should then make a written recommendation to you, their supervisor.
  7. The job candidates will write a letter of thanks to the interviewer, reviewing why they feel they are the best candidate.


Review the recommendations written by the interviewers, and the thank you letters written by the candidates. Through these, look for evidence of understanding of the STEM career and its requirements. Your writing curriculum might have a rubric that is appropriate for this style of writing.


  1. Students should explore the links at the end of the PDF for more information about STEM careers. Are there any other careers that interest them? How could they learn more about these careers?
  2. If there are workers in your community that have these or similar jobs, you might invite them in to talk with your class.


Students who need more support might be assigned the interview role. This is less abstract than the candidate role because they are working with more concrete information from the PDF. Share