Discussion in 'Substitute Teachers' started by Upsadaisy, Mar 29, 2012.
Mar 29, 2012
Post your hints for best practices here. Indicate the grade level, too.
Apr 2, 2012
I assume this thread is for best practices for subs, right?
I'm just dying to tell you all what happened today, but there is a message in there, too
So we had a new sub, she's supposed to be in for a teacher for the whole week. My first period class is held in this teacher's classroom, who has prep, so he usually tells the subs to come and assist me with whatever I want.
So this sub is very young, in her early 20s. Pretty, with a nice shape, easy going, etc.
Since it was her first time, told her she can just stay in my class, I don't really need help, but she can see how things go, etc.
She was wearing skinny jeans, with a form fitting (tight) T-shirt. It wasn't low cut, it didn't need to be, you could see her entire body shape, including her ahm, chest. Which was well developed She also had a sweatshirt tied around her waist.
After about 20 minutes a probation officer pulled me aside, and asked me if I could talk to her and explain to her that she needs to cover up. The school is full of teenage boys, who haven't seen any girls their own age for months.
One of the male teachers tried to talk to her, but somehow it became awkward, or something, not sure. So as nicely and as clearly as I could I told her she should cover up, because the boys are checking her out, they're gonna give her a hard time, and she won't be able to control them.
I even pointed out what I was wearing: dress pants (not tight), a tank top, on top of that a button-down shirt. I left it open, because it was more comfortable, but I actually pinned it to my tank top on the front, so it won't even come apart
Well, she listened, but didn't do anything, She stayed like that all day. Later on I found out, because her shirt left her midriff bare, so it was best to cover it with the sweatshirt, tied around her waist. Her sweatshirt was also too short, so it wasn't very useful.
Interestingly no one got sent out. I'm sure they all wanted to stay in her class, eating her up with their eyes. One of the guys told me she couldn't teach anything, because a few guys kept bombarding her with questions about her personal life, which she revealed in some detail.
Oe of the officers said: I know every inch of her body just by looking at her, she looks like she's wearing a catsuit.
I just don't get it, what was she thinking? Even if she went to sub at a regular school, this is still not professional attire.
BEST practice: dress appropriately, for whatever grade level
I know, this should be obvious, lol.
Apr 30, 2012
I remember some of your posts so I understand where you work and I'm shocked that whoever is in charge didn't do something. Even grabbing a uniform like the students wear (I'm assuming your facility has uniforms of some kind) just so she could cover up. I'm a guy so this issue doesn't come up the same way. I feel weird when I'm wearing a polo and dress pants as opposed to a shirt, tie, and dress pants.
Aug 20, 2012
this will be my 4th year Guest Teaching (a sub is a sandwich)...and i always tell kids that i am a teacher. i dress like a teacher,act like a teacher and look like one. i don't have a lot of money and definitely shop on sale, and find a lot of cute tops that look professional at the $5.00 store. i know how to take a long jean skirt ane a nice long tunic top, put on some funky jewelry and boots, rock an afro puff and get compliments from teachers and students who of course think i look cool and want to get on my good side LOL but i am strict with them. a lot of guest teachers come to school looking like they can be run over by the way they are dressed, and that is what happens.
women should not come to school looking like tramps, it's really uncalled for. the principal should have said something before allowing her inside the classroom. smh
That's sad, but funny in a way. She noticed at some point that morning that her tummy was showing so she tried to fix it by grabbing a sweatshirt, and NOT by changing.
Hollywood has found the star for Clueless II.
We never saw her after that.
But this was nothing to what I've seen / heard later!
We had a sub who has been working there for a year or 2. She has gotten in trouble for wearing see-through clothes!!! she actually is much older (I mean at least 50), so she can't even blame it on being young and clueless, and she has been working there for a loooong time, so she should have known better. This happened more than once, seeing underwear or a bra through her clothing.
Interestingly this is a sub who can't control the kids, and one student actually grabbed her butt. (that was in my classroom, btw). I'm not saying she deserved it, but we always send messages to to the world with what wear, how we act, how we carry ourselves, etc.
So this would be Clueless III.
Aug 27, 2012
Dressing professionally is definitely a best practice. I remember in my college classes, before we student taught, we were given very specific instructions on what to wear and most of it involved modesty. With pants riding lower and shirts getting shorter and lower cut, it's often a struggle to make sure you'll be covered doing everything a teacher does. However, it makes a huge difference in the way you are perceived.
To get back to the OP's question, there are tons of best practices. For all kids, keep them busy. If they are busy, they won't goof around. And by busy, I don't mean busy work, but just keep the pacing of the day moving along. Dead time causes trouble. When I taught kindergarten, I planned in 15 minute increments, because I never wanted them doing one thing or sitting in one place for more than 15 minutes. That seemed to work great for me.
Sep 8, 2012
On my first day, I would dress in professional attire. Then as the time goes by, I'd dress a bit more casual, but nothing that breaks the dress code. A nice tshirt and a pair of nice jeans doesn't hurt at all. I sometimes also wear some of my summer dresses as the weather gets warmer (whichever doesn't reveal much), but I also wear a little jacket on top (could be short-sleeved, but whatever looks good with those certain dresses). My point is, I'm not afraid to dress comfortably being that I work with kids, but as long as it's appropriate! As long as you're covered up and not wearing anything that shows alot of leg!
Sep 12, 2012
Our subbing company hammers into our heads just how important it is to dress professionally. I'm a young woman so I tend to wear simple button up shirts, dress slacks, and black flat shoes (no heels). On some occasions, I wear a business dress that comes slightly below the knee.
A lot of these attire posts are geared toward women and modesty, but I want to emphasize that it's just as important for men to dress professionally, too. Last year, we had an incident where a man showed up to sub wearing a baggy sweatsuit (covered in food stains, yuck) and beat up sneakers. He dressed like this even though our company and partnering districts have a strict dress code in place. Apparently, he spent 90% of his time texting in the classroom and the kids were out of control. He was banned from subbing at that particular school.
Which leads me to my next point...
As a sub, act like you're the regular teacher which means PUT AWAY THE CELL PHONE. This should be common sense, but we've had a lot of problems where younger substitutes spend their time texting/playing Angry Birds than actually teaching the kids. I've heard so many complaints from aides and inclusion teachers about subs who refused to help and played with their phone instead. People were always so appreciative that I actually followed plans and worked! :O Anyway, I understand playing the same movie every single class can get boring. I understand it can be boring if you're responsible for testing and aren't teaching. But that doesn't mean you can whip out the phone and shut yourself off mentally from the students. Put it away.
Lastly, always follow the teacher's plans. Nothing upsets a teacher more than throwing plans out the window. What I do is check off everything completed in class and then write a summary of how the day went.
Oct 8, 2012
One more: always leave notes!!
I subbed for a teacher for 1 week (2 weeks ago). He left me plans, some were very vague (that's when I asked here about life skills, so i can come up with something for them to do). We did everything he asked, and more. Left everything organized for him and a note letting him know what went on during the week.
The next week he was still out. I was already somewhere else, they got him another sub.
He was still out, I was subbing for a floating sped. teacher. This same sub was schedule but never showed up!!!
So they pulled me in the classroom. This sub has not left any notes! (she did not know the teacher was still gonna be out, so as far as she was concerned, she was done). I had no idea what they did last week and where I should pick up.
I had to improvise, it wasn't easy. because there were 4 different subjects. And of course the kids said all they did was movies, which I know is not true, but maybe they have seen some.
So I did my best, and left my notes for him so he knows what happened today.
the type of notes I always leave include the following:
- thanking the teacher for having me
- letting her know what was taught, where we stopped, etc
- letting her know a basic idea of which classes were better / worse, etc.
- but I always make sure I handle all disciplinary issues, i don't want the teacher coming in after a sick day and having to deal with issues that weren't evening happening when they were here.
Nov 29, 2012
I got some free business cards from vistaprint (shipping cost me a little, of course) and I leave 2 of them with my notes to teachers and drop one with the secretary anyplace I would like to sub again. I have gotten calls from other teachers in the building who got my card from the teacher where I subbed because they saw me that day and asked. They're a good way to make sure they remember who you were. Mine just say my name, phone number, professional email address (different than for friends), and the areas in which I'm certified. I chose a design that showed my love for literature and writing.
Feb 8, 2014
Ooh, what an interesting topic. Thanks to the OP for bringing it up and the other replies!
I am a new teacher doing the substitute teacher rounds (we call it relief teaching where I am from), and I have set myself up with the following. I don't know if it could be called 'best practice', but here's what I do:
+ Come prepared with a bag full of activities for the day, in case the regular teacher has been unable to leave plans (due to sickness, etc). Even where teachers are MEANT to leave something they often say 'do what you want' for a session or more so this is very handy.
Personally I'm a primary teacher so I have one folder for JP (elementary) and one for MP/UP (middle school).
I make sure my bag has educational games and activities that don't require photocopying too, as some schools are on a very tight copying budget.
+ Have copies of a blank 'feedback form' and business cards to leave details about what happened while the teacher was gone, including behaviour/topics covered/notes handed out etc.
+ Bring my own behaviour management system. I always fit in with the school policy as well but I know some teachers don't like their points or steps system messed up. I usually set a number of points or steps students have to get before they can get a small prize from my 'treasure box' (dollar store pencils, etc.) or the whole class has to maintain a high level of behaviour to play a game or have free time at the end of the day.
+ Bring a hat, whistle, spare ball, drawing paper, small bag of pencils etc. so if I get swapped from classroom to P.E or Art I have a starting point.
Lastly, of course, as others have said, I cover up!
I hope this lengthy post hasn't been too boring. I'd love to hear more about what others do!
Feb 23, 2014
Mary Kay Latourneau aint got nothin' on her
I have been hearing about that and how it leads many times to permanent positions. I'll have to try it.
1. Arrive on time. Your day does not start when you leave your house but when you sign in at the office for this position. Don't stop in the hall and visit with other teachers you have subbed for in the past. Your time is valuable and my students and aides need you to be in the classroom on time and ready to teach.
2. Read the sub plans. They are out in plain sight and are written for someone who does not know the class. If you have subbed for me before read them anyway. If I took the time to write them, you can take a few minutes to read them. It will make your day easier, I promise. Also...
3. If the principal or a District administrator does a walk through do not complain that there are no sub plans.
4. Write your name on the board.
5. Listen to the aides. You may have been teaching for 5, 10, or 20 years but they know the kids and the routines for this class.
6. Unless I ask you to do so, do not write in the home communication logs for Dick, Jane, and Timmy. My plans specify that you need to leave the logs for me to complete. These children have serious behavior issues that are documented carefully. "Timmy had a perfect day" or "Timmy had a rough day." does not help anyone, especially Timmy.
7. Leave a note for me about how the day went. Put the note in plain sight.
8. Let me know in the note if you want to sub for me again. I'm rarely out but truly value a good sub. If you have a sense of humor, patience, can handle crisis and calm equally and have read the sub plans (all of the above items (except for #3) are referenced in the plans), then you will do fine.
Sep 1, 2014
It's interesting that you say that because if I feel like I want to wear a skirt, I will wear one a bit more straight ( like my denim skirt) and long if I am going to be in older elementary or I will wear my black slacks.
But...if I get assigned to Kindergarten or first grade, i know the chairs are closer to the ground, so if I dress up a little, It's always with a fuller skirt that can be more flexible and easy to sit down on the floor crosslegged with the kids or on one of those tiny chairs!
oops! this got replie to the wrong topic. I was trying to reply to the post about the new sub in the tight clothes. Sorry!
May 29, 2015
Best Practices - Start of the Day
Write on the board: (middle school/high school) along with your name and the date---:thumb:
1. Stay in your own seat.
2. Raise your hand.
3. Work quietly.
4. Use appropriate words and actions.
1. Stay in your own seat and carpet spot.
2. Raise a quiet hand.
3. Follow directions the first time given.
4. Voice level "0" or "1".
Also put the agenda for the day up, if you have different periods then write: Periods 2/3/5 (whatever is on the plans)
Periods 1/4 (whatever is on the plans)
That way they know they are expected to work on an assignment, and if the principal walks in, they can look and see what Ss are supposed to be doing. Write everything. Be specific about what early finishers are supposed to do. Elementary Ss have "must do's" and "may do's". For middle school it's always
You may: Finish work from other classes
No drawing or doing "0" (doing nothing, off task)
Some will always try to get away with doing nothing. You can't make them, but let them know they cannot stop others from doing their work. Write names down, of who had excellent behavior and who did not. It's usually the same Ss who do the same things.
If there is no room on the whiteboard then write it on chart paper and put it up where all can see. Ss sometimes feel that because their regular teacher is absent, the rules of the class don't apply. These are general rules that work anywhere. Refer to them often. Remind all Ss if they forget what to do, look at the whiteboard. It's positive and direct.
Apr 13, 2016
First year serving the sentence...
I try to get to my assignment 30 to 45 minutes before report time and make sure to have a smile for the secretaries up front. They are so critical to having a good day. I think putting your name on the board is key towards building 1 days worth of rapport!
I always leave a note and email the teacher who was kind enough to allow me to sub for them. I've gotten several callbacks based on that.
Sep 25, 2016
Nov 4, 2016
Let's leave the personal comments alone, please.
Jan 30, 2019
Best Practice: SHOWER and have proper hygiene. Had a sub today who reeked of BO and her hair was a total disaster and full of grease. YUCK
That's not only for subs. That's for any ADULT going into public!! What is wrong with people?
No kidding. Hygiene products are cheap, I just simply don't understand somebody not showering if they are able. I know people have pain and other issues, but there are ways and accommodations! Especially if you are working in the public.