Being a substitute is HARD. I can tell you this from experience. I subbed for on and off in different classrooms in 2008. I enjoyed subbing for the most part but it wasn’t easy.
Many times, I found myself with no lesson plans and just a stack of papers for the students. It wasn’t near enough to keep them engaged and none of the work was beneficial for the students.
I challenge you to ask yourself, are you guilty of this? I know I am. When I began teaching, I did the. same. thing. Except even worse, I just called a team member when I was sick and asked them to make copies for me and “find some work for my students.” I cringe at the thought of that now.
It wasn’t until I was asked to do the same for another teacher that I realized how hard it was to pull work together at the last minute.
Combining my knowledge of how hard it is to take over someone else’s class, and how hard it is to prepare another teacher’s class for a sub…I decided to make things easy on myself and GET PREPARED.
I have printed out FIVE days of sub plans and placed them in folders (the black file folders in the back.)
These are sub plans I have worked hard on and I know they will benefit my students at ANY point in the year. It isn’t just busy work either. It is great activities that will engage the students but not make life hard on the sub.
There are TEN days of sub plans included but I just printed out five days. After I use a few days, I will replenish my sub file stock.
I also knew my sub would need important information about my classroom. Things such as class list, schedule, medical information (basics–nothing that violates student privacy), and student leaders. These are extremely important for anyone taking over your classroom.
I wanted all of that information in one place. So I created an Editable Substitute Quick Guide. (It is FREE) Just fill in your information and place it on a binder ring. It is the perfect way to provide important information for the sub.
In the end, I think it is just important to be prepared for a sub. Sickness or a family emergency can hit at a moment’s notice. Being prepared can help ease the anxiety of feeling unprepared for someone else teaching your students.
You can also include other fun items in your sub organizer!
Lesson Plans, EZ Grader, Flair Pens, Snacks, Drink Mix, Dice for Activities, First Aide Kit, Quick Guide, Notepad, Whiteout.
I hope this helps in preparing for your substitutes this year!
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