6th Grade Perm Sub - Lesson plans, what lesson plans?

Discussion in 'Sixth Grade' started by woahmelly, Dec 21, 2008.

  1. woahmelly

    woahmelly Rookie

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    Dec 21, 2008

    Hello all,

    Some background: I have a permanent sub position starting in the new year for a 6th grade Multicultural Studies teacher who "resigned". I previously interviewed at the school for the same position as a full time teacher, as well. There's a hiring freeze in my county at the mo' so there's no pure contract hiring going on at all anyway. This, according to the principal, is my litmus test for the next year. I expect obs and concrit like no one's business.

    Regardless, I am at a loss as to how to proceed. I know I have no lesson plans - that there were none left at all by the departing teacher. I have written them in the past for ESL classes I am teaching so i know where to start. I basically need advice as to how to survive the first week as the "new teacher".

    The classes are 50 minutes long and there are 7 periods in a day.

    Thank you so much,

    WoahMelly.
     
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  3. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Dec 21, 2008

    Has school ended for Christmas or will someone be in school tomorrow??

    If someone will be there, make an appointment to come in early in the morning. You'll need a copy of the textbook(s), any workbooks, the syllabus, and the state standards (though those can be downloaded from the state board of ed website.) You also need to know where the departing teacher left off. At the very least, ask for a notebook from a "good" kid in the class so that you have some idea of what has been covered.

    If they're on break already, you'll need to be a bit more creative. Download the standards. Hit the school or district website, and see what you can find out about the textbook or curriculum or focus or anything.

    If all you have is the standards, you're going to have to get creative for the first day or two.

    I've picked up classes mid year. The overriding thing is to be both competant and confident. The kids need to know that you're not the sub, you're the teacher. (With apologies to all subs. The distinction is one the kids make, not one that I'm making.) You'll be the teacher for the rest of the year, so there's no need to think they can get away with anything.

    Any time I've picked up a class midyear, I go in, put homework on the board, and introduce myself. I explain that I'm the new teacher, and that the homework will always be in that particular place on the board, and I begin. When possible, I pick up where the class has left off. If that's not possible, I teach a lesson that can be covered in one class so they can do that homework (it really does send a great message about your class.) Then, that night, borrow a notebook from a kid who seems to pay attention, and figure out where they are in the material.

    Good luck, and congrats on getting the job!!



    edited to add: here are the standards. This shoudl get you started:


    http://www.floridastandards.org/Standards/FLStandardSearch.aspx
     
  4. woahmelly

    woahmelly Rookie

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    Dec 24, 2008

    Thanks for the quick reply (and the link).

    I completely understand the distinction that the kids make between sub and teacher. It's annoying but there nonetheless.

    School is already out for break so I won't know anything about anything til the Teacher work day on Jan 5th the day before classes start.

    In the mean time, I presume that I should expect to furnish everything myself like grade book, classroom decor, the works?

    Thanks again.
     
  5. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    Dec 26, 2008

    You might be surprised at what resources are available so I wouldnt' go out and buy a grade book yet. I would, however, spread the word to family and friends to gather decorations. For instance, if your subject is world geography, Uncle Ned may have maps from his National Geographic magazine collection and your friend who works as a travel agent may have posters to share.
    As far as lesson plans go, plan several day of map study or something else generic that will help you get to know students and they will get to know your ways. After a couple of days, you'll figure out where the kids left off and you'll be ready to jump into the curriculum. Good luck. Let us know what you're working on and maybe someone can help.
     
  6. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Dec 26, 2008

    A lot will depend on why the previous teacher left. If she left angry at being fired, the odds are good that there won't be a lot to work with. If a sudden medical crisis left her unable to continue, there may be a ton of stuff.

    Either way, you can do without a grade book for a day or so until you get the lay of the land. I agree with Marhhf-- come in on those first days with something generic to get you started.
     
  7. wig

    wig Devotee

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    Dec 26, 2008

    You have gotten great advice. Fortunately you have the teacher work day so you don't have to go in cold. I teach sixth grade and this is what I would do. Prior to the first day, write out your procedures and classroom expectations. Put it in writing and make certain you have enough to give each student. Prepare a letter for the parents introducing yourself and how they can get in touch with you. (I imagine you will have a school e-mail address - otherwise set up an account that you will use strictly for professional use). Tell them that you have gone through procedures and expectations with the students and that they should ask to see them. You can send this home the first or second day. Make sure your admin sees it first.

    On the first day, introduce yourself and go through your procedures and expectations. Review them by giving examples and what they should do in various situations. I had a friend who actually set up a jeopardy game to review on day two.

    I would also have them write a paragraph telling you about themselves or what they have enjoyed in SS this year or not enjoyed. You can make it as simple or complex as you like. By doing so you will see where they are with their writing skills. This will help you plan assignments.

    I think you have Eastern Hemisphere studies. As someone else suggested, do some map skills during the first week.
     
  8. woahmelly

    woahmelly Rookie

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    Dec 26, 2008

    Once again, you all are so helpful! I think I'm just feeling overwhelmed. This got thrown at me less than a week ago and I'm scrambling to figure out what to do and how to do it in so short a time with limited knowledge. You all are lifesavers!

    Maryhf: Thanks. I happen to be a bit of a travel buff (i dream!) so i have some random maps lying around. Great tip. I was googling syllabi for other florida counties and have some up with a rough idea of where the kids should be (unit wise) so review map studies should work great.

    wig: Yeah, the teacher work day is pretty much a light at the end of a tunnel ;) I've been working on procedures and expectations - trying to get them to sound right - but since I didn't major in education and my training is through planning and teaching ESL classes for adults and kids and 3 years of subbing running my own classroom is a big step. One I feel confident in making, mind, and one I want to start off right.

    "I had a friend who actually set up a jeopardy game to review on day two."

    I've been thinking about that or something similar.

    Thanks for all the advice!
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2008
  9. wig

    wig Devotee

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    Dec 26, 2008

  10. cheeryteacher

    cheeryteacher Enthusiast

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    Dec 28, 2008

    The best thing I did with my 6th graders this year is making a copy of all of my procedures for them, reviewing them, and making sure they are followed. If I have a student get out of their seat and throw paper away I ask what is the procedure. If they tell me they don't know (which I know they do) I whip out my list of procedures and we go over the procedure as a class. You would be surprised at the number of students who go into a folder, pull out their paper from August and read them along with me. I have to review a procedure maybe once a month. Letting them know what I expect out of them makes the class run so much smoother.
    I also agree with having an assignment ready on the first day back. Send the message that you are in control from day one.
     
  11. reverie

    reverie Companion

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    Dec 28, 2008


    Yes!! Rules and procedures are so important. Create your own and pass them out.
     
  12. woahmelly

    woahmelly Rookie

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    Jan 5, 2009

    Thanks for the advice everyone. Today is a teacher work day and tomorrow classes start. *bites nails*

    I'll let you all know how it works out (and come back with a ton more questions, for sure).
     
  13. Writer02

    Writer02 Companion

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    Jan 7, 2009

    So, how did it go? I'm finding my classes are acting tired :yawn:and worn out from the holiday break, which is actually good since they didn't come back hyper. Hopefully, yours will be ready to start a new year off right with a new teacher.

    My advice would be treat the first day like it's the first day of school, but you have already been back for a few days now. Hope it's going well!
     
  14. woahmelly

    woahmelly Rookie

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    Jan 23, 2009

    Ah! Sorry it took so long to check back in. I obviously had no idea how busy i would be. ;) It's been about 2 1/2 weeks since the beginning of classes and we're past the "let's test the new teach" phase except for one of the 6 classes. I've hooked up with a few of the older teachers (since I am still way over my head) and they have been amazing about everything from management questions to lessons to individual student issues.

    The first week I was there until 6.30pm now im leaving at about 4.45 :) It's all working out! Thanks all for your advice. I'll be back.
     
  15. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Jan 23, 2009

    I'm glad that everything is working out for you.
     
  16. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Jan 23, 2009

    I advise not to stay at school that late. I was doing the same thing, and it was getting old fast. My advise (it took me a while to learn this trick) is to have a set schedule of when you do things. I am not really sure if this is possible for your class, or how you would do it as I was teaching English, but I had a specific routine like grammar on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and reading and writing Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The sooner they have a solid routine, the better things will flow. In addition, it will make your planning easier (again, I don't know what sort of set things you do in a world's history class, so I don't know if this would work for you). At first I was going home and planning (late into the night) for the next day. I did this until I figured out that if I have a weekly routine of what we do in class, filling in the details were easy...
     
  17. woahmelly

    woahmelly Rookie

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    Jan 23, 2009

    @TamiJ Yeah, this week I was leaving about 4.30pm - 5pm. You're right about a set schedule it's a lot easier to plan for.
     
  18. Writer02

    Writer02 Companion

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    Jan 24, 2009

    :D So glad it's going well, and you have met some very helpful colleagues.
     

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