Anyone miss being a substitute teacher?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by WhatchaDoin?, Feb 18, 2010.

  1. WhatchaDoin?

    WhatchaDoin? Comrade

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    Feb 18, 2010

    I spent several years in my own classroom. Last year, I decided I needed a change and am spending this year as a substitute teacher, with hopes of becoming a "permanent" teacher in the near future. Because of the many differences between where I taught, and where I hopefully will teach, I began to wonder: is subbing really that bad?:rolleyes: I mean, other than the anxiety....

    So, here are my questions:

    How many teachers out there got a start as a substitute?

    and

    Is there anyone that misses being a substitute?

    Just wondering....

    Thanks for your input!!!:)
     
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  3. MissJill

    MissJill Cohort

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    Feb 18, 2010

    The only thing I miss about being a substitute is that I didn't have to grade the kids.

    I really hated subbing. I love everything about my job right now (except for grading).
     
  4. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    Feb 18, 2010

    When I first started out (oh, five years ago), subbing was really fun and exciting. I had way more good days than bad. I really did look forward to a new day full of new challenges. Then, last year, I was in between jobs and subbed about five times. Boy did I hate it. Well, it wasn't that bad, but I realized that I am so set in routines that it was so hard for me to start each day new.

    It was nice to choose the school s I was interested in subbing at, to choose the grade/subject that I was in the mood to sub for, and to feel needed. I got lots of requests and calls from teachers/Ps asking me to come in.
     
  5. WhatchaDoin?

    WhatchaDoin? Comrade

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    Feb 18, 2010

    Thanks for your input. I really get anxious about each "fresh start," and some of the goofy behavior really gets annoying after a while. I also enjoy some of the benefits of subbing, like no parent conferences and occasionally being a specialty area teacher. I really like the media center! I just keep thinking, this is all being done with a goal in mind. But, what if I look back, and think, "wow, I had it good!"?
     
  6. newbie87

    newbie87 Comrade

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    Feb 18, 2010

    I think you have to have a certain type of personality to enjoy subbing. I've done some subbing on and off. It's not for me at all. I enjoy being organized and like routines. I may have to when I graduate because jobs here are slim. The one thing I truly dislike about subbing is I feel it's more political than regular teaching. In many ways it seems to be a popularity contest here. Teachers often pick subs they know or like regardless of ability. Sometimes teachers pick subs who they are "friendly" with instead of subs who actually teach. Another thing I don't like about subbing is if the class has an aide or assitant, I feel they can be really over bearing to work with.
     
  7. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Feb 18, 2010

    I'm sorry it's like that where you are. I always pick a certain sub because I know she can teach anything I put out there and she has great control. She is popular with everyone, though (except the kids who were hoping for an "off" day.)
     
  8. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Feb 19, 2010

    Speaking of this subject, I was a sub for about 5 yrs, then was an RSP teacher for just a yr, then returned back to subbing which I've been doing for a few more yrs when I decided to return to school. I must say that I've become very spoiled being a sub. I've done it for so many more yrs than being a permanent teacher. No worries about being responsible for how they progress (or not), doing report cards, being able to leave a few min before the bell rings, & not having to do the many other obligations of being the permanent teacher.

    I'm trying to be a speech-language pathologist & I know there's a lot of paperwork & assessments, which I don't mind. But I'm sure I'll miss the days when I can just arrive & leave at the end of the day!
     
  9. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Feb 19, 2010

    Is this a joke???

    I guess you all may be financially very secure, but the pittance they pay substitute teachers greatly outweighs the positives in the job.
     
  10. WhatchaDoin?

    WhatchaDoin? Comrade

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    Feb 19, 2010

    Sorry, John Lee, I was thinking about all things, excluding pay. Of course, the paycheck of a permanent job would be greatly appreciated. I came from a low paying private school (they did what they could), and I am now in a decent paying county. With a few modifications, we have made it work.

    I was trying to get records together for taxes the other day, and was adding up all of the expenses from last year's teaching. That's another benefit to subbing - not a lot of out-of-pocket expenses.

    Newbie87, I think a lot of the "popular" subs in my area are friendly with the teachers and good at subbing. Just observing when I can, they seem to really enjoy subbing. I think in this way, it's a lot like teaching. It's hard to excel at subbing or teaching, when someone openly, and constantly, acts like he or she is not enjoying the job.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2010
  11. DHE

    DHE Connoisseur

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    Feb 19, 2010

    I was a sub for ten yrs before becoming a teacher. Subbing increased my desire to become a full time teacher. The one thing that I did not like about subbing is being in a different class/grade everyday. The upper elementary students were a challenge for me and I will never ever teach jr high again. I think I subbed in our jr high school for 3-5 days and I did not like that level at all. I like the younger students; I don't think that I would want to teach anything over third grade.
     
  12. Anne wmcosuvamu

    Anne wmcosuvamu Companion

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    Feb 19, 2010

    One of the things I like most about my field experiences (in the same high school classroom 2 days a week) versus my subbing experiences is the ability to establish a relationship with the students. I only sub at 3 schools (a middle school, a jr high, and high) but they're huge schools and I don't think I've ever had the same kid twice, or if I have, it's been far enough apart that I don't remember him/her.

    I really like getting to know the kids, and once I've got that relationship I feel like I can really push them in their schoolwork and they can perform so well. It's amazing to look back over, say, writing poems: there's the first one they did when they came to me (as the extra teacher) for help, then the one where I led them through with encouragement and suggestions and explanations, and then the one that they did on their own afterwards. Or, even, just yesterday I was helping a girl with a study guide question on their novel. I helped her out by asking a bunch of smaller questions and she got it, and even thought about the original question way beyond what the study guide asked. That's what I love about teaching.

    Subbing, on the other hand, is not quite so exciting. Usually the teachers leave worksheets or a quiz or test and I feel like a babysitter or an exam proctor. :unsure: The kids are more unruly because they know they won't see me the next day, and just because it's traditional to overthrow substitutes. I think I handle them fairly well, and sometimes we have fun (like the French I class that I subbed for -- I've had 6 years of French and had a ton of fun teaching them words like "grapefruit" ;) ) but for the most part, I just want a continuity of students who see me every day (or every other).

    I want routine. I want exciting assignments. I want (at least occasionally) eager faces, not the dull eyes of teenagers who know they're about to be bombarded by packets of worksheets.

    Okay, I'll shut up now. That got really long, but I guess that's been bouncing around in my head for a while? :lol:
     
  13. kidsandpups

    kidsandpups Companion

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    Feb 19, 2010

    Actually, I took a pay cut to take a "real" teaching job. I subbed full time for two years in a public school district, then took a job in a very poor private school because there was little hope of actually getting a public school job. I really dislike my school (except for my students) and would rather go back to subbing in the old district (more pay, less hours, less hassle.) Oh, and the kids were better behaved for me as a sub in public school than they are in private school. The administration also had a clue what they were doing.
     
  14. newbi22

    newbi22 Rookie

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    Feb 19, 2010

    I totally miss subbing. I have been in corporate america(aka corporate he@!) for a number of years but decided to return because I couldn't find a permanent teaching job, and boy do I hate it. I plan to enter an ACP in March and am so ready for the change. I have always felt that teaching is what I should have done. With the economy being in the state it's in, I think I should do something that really makes a difference.
     
  15. WhatchaDoin?

    WhatchaDoin? Comrade

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    Feb 19, 2010

    newbi22, thank you for your thoughts. I was torn between subbing to "keep my foot in" the teaching world and finding a steady, paying job. Even though, right at this moment, I am sweating bullets because I am about to enter yet another new situation at noon, I think I am still happier than if I took a job outside the world of education. Honestly, I don't even know if I could have found anything that pays better than a couple days of subbing a week. I hope things work out for you!
     
  16. Toak

    Toak Cohort

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    Yes but then I'm not working at all at the moment. What I loved about being a sub, when I could easily get 180 days of work/year, was that I could take vacations whenever I wanted and still know there would be work for me when I returned. I also knew I wasn't going to get in trouble for calling off the morning I was supposed to show up. And of course, usually there was no work for me to take home with me, so when the school day ended my job ended. I made enough money that taking two international vacations for a total of 18 days in one year was possible so I could live off the work I did (I also had a summer job that I don't miss one bit though).
    I'm going to miss those things this upcoming school year. Of course, getting paid more is worth actually having to show up every day, and its medical reasons that make any more international vactions, or even long domestic ones, unlikely
     
  17. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Feb 19, 2010

    I'm not sure why you left your classroom...were you unhappy where you were?
     
  18. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    But, can you really take off days? I think that's largely a fallacy in subbing. Yeah, you can I guess--but, it's at the expense of making money that day. Unless I'm going to something kinda meaningful (eg. an out-of-town wedding), I kinda feel like I'm blowing money if I don't work.

    A teacher can all a sudden *cough, cough* take the same day off (and take a sick day).. they still get paid for that day.
     
  19. WhatchaDoin?

    WhatchaDoin? Comrade

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    I chose to enroll my child in public school - many reasons, none of which were disatisfaction with the school. This was explained to admin., but several comments were made to me that led me to believe the situation would not work. It was too much of a conflict of interest.
     
  20. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Feb 19, 2010

    Got it, I think I remember this from an earlier post...anyway, I NEVER miss subbing, didn't sub for long...I hope you find happiness in wherever you land.
     
  21. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Feb 19, 2010

    I agree, shouldbe...I request specific subs because of the good job they do and ask that other subs not ever be in my room because of the disasters I've returned to...
    I also think classrooms with aides/paras would make a sub's job easier since that person is in the classroom every day, knows the routines, procedures, the kids...it would seem that would be more help than 'overbearing' hindrance.
     
  22. WhatchaDoin?

    WhatchaDoin? Comrade

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    Feb 19, 2010

    I've really liked the experiences I have had in classrooms with EA's. I usually trust their guidance, becuase they do know the routines. I think it makes a difference with the kids' behavior, too.
     
  23. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    Feb 19, 2010

    I subbed for a year before I got a teaching position. I don't really miss it. I am a big stickler for being prepared, and subbing was a very "unprepared" kind of job. I like knowing what I'm doing and going into, and subbing just isn't really that kind of job.
     

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