Teachers - Do you like getting notes from your Subs?

Discussion in 'Substitute Teachers' started by microbe, Dec 23, 2012.

  1. bison

    bison Habitué

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    Dec 23, 2012

    There are a lot of conflicting opinions here! It seems like the safe option is to just leave a detailed note and those who don't care either way can just skim or ignore it. I'd love to hear more feedback on emailing rather than leaving a hand written note. Is this something that's becoming routine or preferred?
     
  2. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Dec 23, 2012

    I usually don't email. There are a few exceptions, for example, I was there for 3 weeks right before winter break. I typed up my notes for the teacher, left them on the desk. I also saved it on my flashdrive, and will email it to her in a couple of days. This way if she doesn't go in her classroom during the break, will still know what happened. If i was a teacher, I'd want to know ahead of time.
     
  3. microbe

    microbe Comrade

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    Dec 23, 2012

    So the more on the note, the better? Mind if I quickly poll you guys on a few scenarios and whether or not they should be reported?

    • Bobby pushes Sally at the drinking fountain.
    • Lisa and Patty rush out of the classroom without talking to the sub.
    • Eric back-talks the sub the entire day.
    • Emily passes notes during instruction.
    • Harry peeks at another students test.
    • Kelly calls Dave stupid.
    • Tom walks out of the classroom before he is excused for the day.
    • Ed refuses to do his work.
    • Tiffany keeps taking her cell phone out during class.

    I'm just trying to figure out a good range of what I should report and what I should just handle myself and not alert the teacher about.
     
  4. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Dec 23, 2012

    I would handle some of them myself.
    I would write up Eric (he shouldn't be allowed to back talk all day long)
    Harry should get an F on his test, or have to start it over.
    I would take Tiffany's phone and turn it in the office (or whatever school policy is)
    I would leave a brief note on these incidents, along with Tom and Ed, and not report the rest.
     
  5. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Dec 23, 2012

    I'm really hoping you don't have to leave notes about more than one or two of the above on any given day...:eek:hmy:
     
  6. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Dec 23, 2012

    • Bobby pushes Sally at the drinking fountain.
      Not unless it knocked a tooth out. :)
    • Lisa and Patty rush out of the classroom without talking to the sub.
      No.
    • Eric back-talks the sub the entire day.
      Yes, since it was all day.
    • Emily passes notes during instruction.
      Put their note on my desk.
    • Harry peeks at another students test.
      I would never leave a test when I'm out. :).
    • Kelly calls Dave stupid.
      No.
    • Tom walks out of the classroom before he is excused for the day.
      Yes.
    • Ed refuses to do his work.
      Yes, although I'd probably figure this out.
    • Tiffany keeps taking her cell phone out during class.
      Yes, per school rule.
     
  7. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    Dec 24, 2012

    Yes, I like to receive a note from my sub. I ask for it in the detailed plans I leave for him/her.
    A note from the sub lets me know what they have accomplished during the day, what my students may need reteaching, and what they understood. Behavior issues are added if they are major. Most of my kids will tell me anyway if someone acted up! :)
    A quick note on a post-it telling me it was a good day does not cut it.
     
  8. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    Dec 24, 2012

    • Bobby pushes Sally at the drinking fountain.Use my behavior system to deal give them their consequence. I don't need to know, but I will not mind if I am told.
    • Lisa and Patty rush out of the classroom without talking to the sub. I want to know. They are obviously trying to take advantage of a sub.
    • Eric back-talks the sub the entire day. I definitely want to know. Disrespecting adults is a huge no-no.
    • Emily passes notes during instruction. I would want to know. I am having a big problem and cracking down hard on this. Normal years, I wouldn't care. But since you don't know, I would leave the note with a "found this traveling between Susie and Sarah" sticky note on it or something.
    • Harry peeks at another students test. Take the test from him and leave me a note. I don't like leaving tests when I am out, but sometimes it happens.
    • Kelly calls Dave stupid. Give the consequence with the behavior plan. I don't need to know.
    • Tom walks out of the classroom before he is excused for the day. See #2. They cannot leave without permission- safety thing.
    • Ed refuses to do his work. Tell me. I'd prefer him be sent to one of my teammates to work for the day. They would handle it.
    • Tiffany keeps taking her cell phone out during class.
      I'm elementary, so I would take it from them. In high school, I'd take it from her until the end of the class period. I would want to know.
     
  9. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Dec 24, 2012

    Bobby pushes Sally at the drinking fountain. Follow behavior plan
    Lisa and Patty rush out of the classroom without talking to the sub. I teach kinder, I try to leave in my sub notes who needs to go to the bathroom immediately after nap, I have a couple of kiddos that need to RUSH to the bathroom. Please deal with this situation. Unless it's for the above reason I don't need to know.
    Eric back-talks the sub the entire day. I want to know about this, but I hope that you dealt with this.
    Emily passes notes during instruction. Once again I teach kinder so this doesn't happen. Take the note & leave for me.
    Harry peeks at another students test. I try not to leave a test, I use "offices" In my class it's an automatic behavior plan. I also move their seat & regive the test.
    Kelly calls Dave stupid. Talk to them about it, if it happens again follow behavior plan
    Tom walks out of the classroom before he is excused for the day.Doesn't happen in kinder, unless Mom is outside of the door. Leave me a note
    Ed refuses to do his work. leave me a note & collect work. Or send to another teacher
    Tiffany keeps taking her cell phone out during class. This is kinder. Is it a real, working phone? If so, take phone & return to parent at pick up. Leave me a note. A non-working or toy phone, the child should put it in their locker, if it comes out again it goes on my desk. It is the child's responsibility to ask Mom/Dad to get it from me.

    As teachers we make hundreds of decisions a day. Depending on the circumstances the same situation may be handled differently with different children.
     
  10. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Dec 24, 2012

    That is interesting. If you are interested in feedback,that sounds like a great way to do so. As a sub, I don't want or need feedback from teachers. But I do think it brings up an interesting point--that is, teachers leaving feedback on subs. Let's face it: Subs are peons in a school district. We are not seen as faces, just warm bodies. There is always a focus on modernizing the teaching profession, but nothing as far as I've seen, has been done to modernize substitute teaching. Many of us are trying to use subbing as a stepping stone to a teaching career, and would appreciate it more if it added (resume-wise) to their job prospects. It is much more, to have a file of customer reviews (from teachers, which BTW wouldn't have to be any more than a a couple minutes of a teacher's time), than just to say you were a substitute teacher on your resume.

    After all, what is more important: daily experience working with children in all manners, or earning some certification or credential to fatten up your resume? I would say the former, but that is certainly not the case since employers can simply gloss over one's work as a "Substitute Teacher".
     
  11. microbe

    microbe Comrade

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    Dec 24, 2012

    It really depends on the class and most definitely the school. Sometimes I only have to make one behavior note (there always seems to be at least one) and sometimes I need to make several.

    I typically sub middle school and high school, and most periods I sub for a day go by smoothly, and then I have the one class that tries to break all the rules (leaving class without permission seems to be a popular one). In elementary, it's typically the one student that the teacher already knows has behavior problems, so I figure the teacher appreciates the extra documentation.
     
  12. Joy

    Joy Cohort

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    Dec 24, 2012

    I appreciate a detailed note and always left one when I was a sub. I believe that the sub does need to try to include as many details as possible even with minor behavior incidents. I always wanted incidents no matter how small to be documented for the teacher. That way if there were any complaints about anything she already knew what happened.

    I find that now that I have my own classroom, I also appreciate the details. In my clasroom, I have a behavior system where the class earns a number for how well they did. A 5 means the class was perfect, a 4 would be one warning and so on. I have had subs who left that the class earned a 4 but they never let me know the reason why. To me, a 4 isn't a horrible number and I give it out all the time but I would like to know why the class earned it while I was gone so that I can talk with the kids and improve it for the next time that I am gone.
     
  13. Ilovesummer

    Ilovesummer Companion

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    Dec 25, 2012

    I like to get a detailed note about the day, including both academics (what was and wasn't taught) and behavior. I have very high expectations of my students, and if students were taking advantage of the fact that I'm not there, I'd like to be able to enforce consequences upon my return, to help them realize that the misbehavior is NEVER acceptable. I have never felt the need to follow up with a sub though. I appreciate them telling me what happened, but at that point, there's not much left to say. That said:

     
  14. MrsPoppy

    MrsPoppy Rookie

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    Dec 25, 2012

    Here's what I leave in a note:
    1. Whether students struggled with anything and whether everything was covered (also whether there was extra time and what I did with it)
    2. If there was any behavior issues that need to be addressed by the teacher the next day. For instance, if Joey called Sally a toad and I appropriately dealt with it, I wouldn't specifically mention that. If, however, Joey continued to be mean to Sally throughout the day, I would send Joey to the office or resource room, or wherever, and leave the appropriate note for the teacher.
    3. If there was a particular student who was extra helpful or extra good.
    4. Whether the class as a whole stayed on-task (I won't just say they were good. I will say that they got a little talkative, but returned to work when reminded, or that they tried to convince me to let them do their individual work in groups, etc.) OR, if I had issues with the entire class, I will specify such, and who I DIDN'T have to address.
    5. Whether they earned "extra recess" (which some teachers allow for subs), or whether they had to stay in and do some activity
    6. If there was anything I couldn't teach, or anything extra that I did teach. (sometimes teachable moments present themselves... I did a stranger danger lesson with 1st grade after a couple tried to get my students to play with their dog while walking from gym class back to our building).
    7. Absences, if they're not on any other form already.
    8. IF I WOULD LIKE TO SUB FOR THEM AGAIN. I never say, "I'll never come back here again" (although I have noted it in my personal notes about one class before), but if I would like subbing again, I leave my name, email address and phone number (in the form of a business card I printed up), and say "Contact me if you ever need me again. I truly enjoyed teaching your students today."
    <p>
    I also sometimes leave additional notes for the teacher. One girl once described double-vision at the end of the day and said it has been that way for a week, so I left a note for the teacher, told the principal and secretary, and told the little girl's mom when she picked her up 10 minutes later. I've also left comments about how the lesson plans are written. I am dyslexic, so I find that visual breaks between subjects, bolded times, and consistent layout from one subject's instructions to the next are very helpful, and leave a positive statement to that effect on my note. I have also OCCASIONALLY left feedback about sub plans the other way... letting them know that just watching movies all day instead of sticking to their normal structured day made it tougher to keep them being good than if they'd had meaningful work to do.
    <p>
    This sounds like a lot, but each portion is maybe 1-2 sentences. For 1-day assignments, the note is usually a small piece of paper (I keep a small notebook in my bag) unless there was something major (like when I had to call the discipline officer to the room to remove a bully so I could continue.
     

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