How was your day?

Discussion in 'Substitute Teachers' started by jen12, Sep 22, 2011.

  1. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Sep 22, 2011

    Last year there was a thread in this section where people posted about how their day went. I thought I'd open it again.
     
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  3. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Sep 22, 2011

    And...make the first response. I was in a special ed K-2 class today. I've always been afraid to take spec ed jobs but this one was not listed as such, so it was a surprise.

    The good part was that there were only 6 students and two aides in addition to me, so it was a pretty easy, if sort of boring, day. Definitely an experience. I've done spec ed preschool before but not school age. All I can say was, it was a memorable experience.
     
  4. snapples

    snapples Rookie

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    Sep 22, 2011

    I had an interesting day...I subbed for an art teacher, my first time doing this. I had a 2nd grade class, which went great. The next teacher came in to warn me about her class, Kindergarten, but again that class was great. The aide commented that they are not usually so well behaved which made me happy! Then came the 6th grade class.....They were quite something, talking back to me, not listening, fooling around. I couldn't wait until their period was over. So overall 2 wins and 1 struggle. Glad it's almost the weekend!
     
  5. sunshine*inc

    sunshine*inc Cohort

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    Sep 23, 2011

    Fabulous!
     
  6. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Sep 26, 2011

    Second grade. Showed up to find a note from the teacher saying the group was excessively chatty and if I had to sacrifice work in order to spend time with them on classroom manners, that was okay. They definitely lived up to her warning.

    I spent the whole day with my foot on their necks (figuratively, of course!) I made them repeat transitions over and over until they could do them quietly (lining up for lunch, etc) and they put their heads down several times. I rearranged their lines to boy/girl because they were playing in line and I have no idea how many kids I banished from the rug back to their desks during calendar time and story time. By lunch I'd lost my voice, which was going anyway since I came down with a cold over the weekend.

    Then for the last 30 minutes or so, I had to go over a rather complex homework assigning system with them. They had to write down several different things as well as keep track of several handouts I was passing out to them. I went very slowly and checked each individual student's folder for completion. By that time, they were bouncing off the walls and ready to go home and taking full advantage of distraction. Then who should walk in but the principal. Yeah. Naturally.

    I really hope they didn't seem as loud to her as they seemed to me at that point. She realized very quickly that we were going over homework assignments, and I think this was only the second week they'd had it. Hopefully it looked better than I felt like it was looking.
     
  7. uncleal

    uncleal Rookie

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    Sep 26, 2011

    I went into a dual immersion class with Spanish-speaking students. I walked in and the teacher was teaching Spanish. However, most of the students spoke English too. It was a good opportunity for me to practice my Spanish with them. Overall, it was a very good day. I am hoping to get a long-term sub position in special education so I can continue to move forward with finishing my credential.
     
  8. Julie9789

    Julie9789 Companion

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    Sep 26, 2011

    2nd grade

    (this will be very brief because today was just one o those days where I feel like Alexander in the THNGVBD book...I felt like moving to Australia! But with other things in addition to subbing)

    I walked in today only to be met by the teacher. Apparently today was one of those in-school training days. She also informed me that she had been out sick Wednesday-Friday and that I was the 4th sub these kids will have had. Oh boy.

    They had totally lost all knowledge of school rules. And the pencils...oh the pencils! Not sharpened, don't have one, it broke, she took it...it went on and on. We did get through all of the activities though. She had a high school intern that came over. I don't know how I feel about them. I felt like she was criticizing my every move and if I screwed up, was she going to run and tell the teacher upon her return?

    Then for math in the afternoon, as they switched classes, the math class was just as bad! Half the kids didn't show up with pencils or folders. Granted this could have been the other subs' faults as the entire grade had subtitutes for the day, but still...shouldn't 2nd graders know they need pencils??!?!??!

    Then there was that 1 kid...you know the one...he always wants to help regardless of whether or not you ask for it. I must've tripped over him 10x today.

    Then I went to my college class where that was 1 million x worse than any bad day of subbing :(

    Most of my days are not this bad and I can usually handle anything that's thrown at me, but I guess it was just all the events added together that made it seem worse
     
  9. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Sep 27, 2011


    Sorry, but I had to chuckle at your post because I completely understand. I was in a similar situation yesterday. I even read Alexander to the class!

    Totally with you on tripping over the helper at your heels. It's always either that student or the one who has a dozen physical ailments to tell you about.

    The good thing about subbing is that sometimes there are days like this and other times there are days that are completely the opposite. And take comfort in the fact that you're not the one who has to fix the damage done by 4 days of inconsistent teachers.
     
  10. Julie9789

    Julie9789 Companion

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    Sep 27, 2011


    :)

    Today my story is with 5th graders...

    1. I told a 5th grader he was being defiant and disrespectful today...and it was all about washing face paint off his face after a presentation. I wasn't going to make him take it off until it became an issue of trying to wipe it on other people, making a scene about it, and goofing off. He went and looked up "defiant" in which I complimented him on using his resources. 20 minutes later, he still has paint on his face...I finally made him go to the bathroom to wash his face because he was distracting everyone else. When he came back...yea the red face paint that he was so proud of....dyed his face pink.

    2. His friend made a great choice to wash his face as soon as the presentation was over....but then 30 seconds before the bell rang, pulled out a sharpie and drew lines all over his face.

    Both instances required the straightest of teacher faces I could muster up...when I really just wanted to crack up laughing at how ridiculous they looked. Thankfully this was only a half day position. I love the school, but that class (it was high average/GT) was tough.
     
  11. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Sep 27, 2011

    Fantastic! Since I got my new job & am a 75% employee who's starting after the school year started, I get 3-day weekends every week & several 4-day weekends...NOT counting Thanksgiving, Christmas, & Easter vacations! :D:D:D
     
  12. Joy

    Joy Cohort

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    Don't they just always end up coming in at those moments! She probably knew that it was a tough class so I wouldn't worry.
     
  13. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Sep 27, 2011

    5th grade class at a school I'm regulara at. Nice group, easy day, no A/C though. I sweat too much.
     
  14. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Sep 27, 2011

    John Lee, I get hot quickly too! I need my A/C.
     
  15. Jane Err

    Jane Err New Member

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    Sep 28, 2011

    Nice day on Tuesday doing a half day job in an autism class. The kids were so sweet. One of the aides was quite power-hungry. So much so that the other aide in the class felt the need to warn me. And she was right! All in all, a good day, though.
     
  16. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Sep 29, 2011

    Today's my 1st of 5 days off in a row, so I'm a happy camper. I'm cranking out this school work & tests though. After Sun night, I'll be a little more free for the next 2 wks. Then, my next grad class starts.
     
  17. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Sep 29, 2011

    I had a half-day today and when I arrived I saw that the students had the entire afternoon taken up by specials, so all I really had to do was escort them from one to the next one. I had to stay in the second because the teacher is not credentialed. Unfortunately, the class acted up several times despite her warnings that she would ask them to leave. And, she did. So I was left with 10 minutes in the day with no plans and a class that had just gotten in trouble. I thought I'd just have them sit with their heads down until the bell, but the time ticked by so slowly, I decided to have them write apologies to the teacher who'd kicked them out. I knew I was cutting it very close timewise, but it seemed like a good idea. Only about 1/3 of the class finished. I left the letters along with a note of explanation for their teacher. Hopefully when she finds everything tomorrow, she'll follow through and make them all finish.
     
  18. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Sep 29, 2011

    Today was one of those days... I always say that subbing is an exercise in humility = Subbing in a classroom where are subbing for someone you know you are better than...

    We spent a lot of time managing the class, working on class structure, being better LISTENERS, and not being disruptive. Nothing major, and actually had a good day with them. Just subbing for someone you know you can do a better job than... like I said, humbling/depressing.
     
  19. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Sep 29, 2011

    Why do you think you are better than the teacher for whom you subbed?
     
  20. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Sep 29, 2011

    Haha... gimme a break Gabor!
     
  21. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I'm no Gabor...plus she spells her name differently.:eek:hmy:...so you're not going to answer the question?
     
  22. StudentTeach

    StudentTeach Comrade

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    Sep 29, 2011

    Not a good day today. I had an asthma attack in the middle of the day and told the kids and asked that they be especially good because I had zero energy and you would have thought I had told them to be as rambunctious as possible. (My kids are 16/17 so they are old enough to have some compassion and control themselves).
     
  23. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Sep 29, 2011

    :sorry: hope you're feeling better!:love:
     
  24. Joy

    Joy Cohort

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    Sep 29, 2011

    My day was tough!!! I subbed in fourth grade. I usually enjoy fourth grade but this was at a school that I don't go to very often because it has a reputation for being hard. The kids today lived up to that reputation.

    They were horrible listeners, and had no motivation! The school has alot of low income kids and is a Title I school. I knew at the beginning of the day that I couldn't fix all of the behaviors in the class. I needed to keep them focused and try to accomplish as much as possible although we didn't get done everything the teacher left. I also tried to use alot of positive reinforcement. When that didn't work, I started taking away recess for certain kids.

    The bad part came when I taught S.S. The title one teacher came in to assist (criticize me). She sent one of the kids to the principal. He deserved it but I knew that it wasn't going to help in this situation because I know the principal at this school. He came back about five minutes later smiling and laughing!

    I let the teacher know everything that happened but this other teacher also had to leave a note saying that she had several issues to talk over with her in the morning. I think she was trying to help but I am capable of writing a note to the teacher saying which kid was a problem.

    It's so hard to have someone come in and critique you when you have a tough class and are trying your best to keep them on task and quiet!
     
  25. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Sep 29, 2011

    Especially when they undermine you in front of students and then are snarky about it! I'm sorry that happened.
     
  26. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Sep 29, 2011

    Yeah, sympathy doesn't work. I have a cold and can't talk over students. That just makes them talk louder. Fake it til' the bell rings. It's all you can do.
     
  27. Joy

    Joy Cohort

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    Sep 30, 2011

    I know exactly what you mean by this and have felt that way myself. I am starting my third year of subbing while looking for a full-time music job. Some of the music teachers that I have subbed for have been somewhat lacking. Their rooms are disorganized, their behavior expectations are not clearly established, the content they are teaching is very week, and they expect a licensed substitute music teacher to turn on a movie. I realize that I might not be seeing them at their best and sometimes their absence was not expected. However, if fifth graders do not know how to count quarter notes when asked to do so, there is a problem! It can be depressing and sometimes I don't even enjoy subbing in music because of it. I do sub for some amazing music teachers and I end up learning so much just from subbing for them for the day.
     
  28. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Does your district only allow licensed music teachers to sub for music? Where I work if you're credentialed you can sub in any special - music, science, P.E....I've been in music classes where I've had to have students sing to CDs and also where they've just watched movies. I suspect it's because the teacher doesn't know how qualified the sub is in the subject.

    Sometimes subbing for music can be even more challenging than subbing all day in a regular classroom because as soon as the kids see you they immediately think it's recess time. Showing a movie *should* make for an easy day, but it really just reinforces the "day off" mentality the kids come in with. So I get where you're coming from.
     
  29. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Kinder in September. Never easy. Procedures are just not ingrained yet. Today I was in a school with hovering parents and a teacher who didn't leave me notes on what to do with homework. Apparently it should have been collected today. Not one kid mentioned it, which would have happened if they'd been doing it for several weeks, but it's new to them. I had parents coming in the door after school handing me the homework packets and acting like I must have a single digit IQ because I hadn't collected it.
     
  30. Joy

    Joy Cohort

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    The districts where I sub allow anyone to have music jobs. That's why I think that those who are licensed in that content area should be offered the sub job first. I realize that is somewhat hard with the automated systems but it would be nothing for the districts where I sub that have actual people that call. They still seem to favor their retired teachers that can't read a note.

    Even with the automated system, music teachers can still request a qualified sub. I think that teachers should try to be more careful in doing this and then the time wouldn't have to be wasted doing fillers like watching movies. When I show up at a school to sub for music, I feel so disappointed to find that I will be showing a movie all day. It is such torture for someone who wants their own music classroom! I do fortunately have a number of music teachers that do request me and leave me with meaningful content or allow me to improvise my own thing.
     
  31. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Sometimes it cracks me up when a teacher writes on her note about what a good class she has and how easy they are to control, and then I find they just wont....shut...up! Today the Principal walked in while I'd had them listening to me (one of the few periods of silence) while correcting homework. She came across the room to talk to me and they decided it was free conversation time. While the Principal was in the room! She had to remind them that if they should be behaving for anyone it was her, since she was the big boss! LOL...I think I wrote more names on the board today than I've ever done. And there were probably a lot more who deserved it but I missed catching them. On the other hand, I did give a lot of award tickets too, so she really did have some good kids in the room.
     
  32. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Did a two-day stint in elementary school. Very well-behaved and orderly class... very much like how I remember my classrooms when I was a little kid.
     
  33. kikiboniki

    kikiboniki Rookie

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    I had a great day! I subbed a 4th 5th combo and it was rainy day schedule. Naturally the kids were a bit more rowdy than usual due to the rain. Center time was rough (chatty chatty chatty), but once I got them to whole group instruction it was great. I find it much easier to manage a whole group (b/c its easy to pick out the offenders), then multiple small groups.
    Anyways, whole group time was great! We read a story, completed a flow chart together, and did math time :)
     
  34. Joy

    Joy Cohort

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    I was a floater teacher for math assessments today. I subbed in a very chatty first grade room in the morning and was kind of glad to leave. Then I subbed in another first grade room that was much better. The teachers finished their testing early so I was supposed to just help them out with any busy work that they had. Then the music teacher came and got me because her daughter got sick and she had to leave. I walked into her room as the students got to her room and taught her last two classes off the cuff. Wouldn't you know one of the classes was the chatty first grade class I had in the morning. Today certainly was an adventure but I'm exhausted from it!
     
  35. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Today was OK. I'm feeling VERY overwhelmed. There's so much to learn, don't know where to start, but I'll make it! :)
     
  36. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Oct 6, 2011

    Amazingly chatty group of second graders today. Going in from lunch I told them we would not enter the classroom until they were silent. It took ten minutes. Not kidding. I watched my watch. Then they ran across the classroom to get to the floor area, so I made them line up again outside and do it again. It didn't phase them.

    I forget just how immature second graders are in the fall. I student taught in second from the beginning of school to right around Halloween and that group didn't seem quite as young as some of the groups I sub for. Or maybe it was me that was younger! :)
     
  37. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Another one for the "teachers don't respect subs" file.

    I did a 1/2 day AM (ends at 11:30) in which the teacher was on-campus doing some sort of work-related business. At 11:30, she calls the room to ask if I can stay a bit. Now, I don't have a problem staying for certain circumstances (that I find legitimate). In this case, she basically said her business ran long, and I stayed with her class FOR ANOTHER 45 MINUTES off the clock.

    It may sound legitimate... you may say, "What's the big deal John Lee?"The thing that sticks in my craw is that this teacher is one of the consistently worst, in terms of subbing for. Her classes are always unruly, I've subbed for her where she's had NO lesson plan sometimes, where her plans don't engage the kids (i.e. "have them read")... In other words, she's not very good. She should be appreciative of her position (i.e. guaranteed employment), and she should realize that I'm a credentialed and wholly capable teacher, AND that I'm relegated to poverty and that it's disrespectful to me to ask me to sacrifice for her.

    It galls me. Respect the fact that I'm a teacher, but I can't find work. Respect the fact that you run a terrible classroom and that I can do a better job than you. Respect the fact that I get paid a pittance (compared to her), and that you shouldn't ask ME to sacrifice any more than I already do, just by being a substitute teacher.
     
  38. Joy

    Joy Cohort

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    They should pay you more if you had to stay that much longer. I've had a few teachers be a little late but it has only been a matter of minutes. She needs to realize that you might have another half-day at another school or an appointment. I sometimes take half-days when I have somewhere that I have to be in the afternoon. If she really has the reputation for being so sloppy, I think that I might have told her that I couldn't stay and had somewhere that I absolutely had to be.
     
  39. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    John Lee, I don't see it as no big deal. Who wants to work almost an hour w/o pay? When I was subbing, I'd keep a record of how bad the class was to remind myself never to sub for certain classes again...or to sub for them again as the case may be. I'd give a letter grade: A & B of course is great to pretty good, C is so-so, & so forth. I was pretty picky. If I graded them a C (or below), I wouldn't normally sub for that class again.
     
  40. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Oct 6, 2011

    John Lee, ten minutes off the clock is no big deal Forty-five is almost another entire hour. That teacher should have let her office manager or the sub desk or whoever handles such things that you stayed longer than you were scheduled to stay and you should be paid.
     
  41. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Oct 6, 2011

    Next time just say no, you have a prior commitment. No big deal.
     

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