What in the world happened?

Discussion in 'Substitute Teachers' started by TNSub, May 8, 2015.

  1. TNSub

    TNSub Rookie

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    May 8, 2015

    So some time ago, I Subbed for a set of periods that was one of my favorite classes to Sub for (middle age level.) I have subbed in the class multiple times over the year. The teacher had a very good sense of how to keep a sub around. On my first day, she assigned a simple video for each class, so that I could worry less about behavior and more about getting to know the students. (I don't care what anyone says, every age group loves videos no matter how boring and educational, and it gives a sub a grear opportunity to have a quiet, interactive class.) So at first, she made sure that the class saw me as "That cool sub who rewarded them with a video."

    Each time I returned, the students were given more responsibility to handle, but slowly. The second time, it was a video with note taking. The third, it was me presenting a slideshow lesson plan with notes. 4th time, a silent pop-quiz. 5th time, a silent test. All great, structured opportunities for a sub and students to expect silence in the classroom, which gives the sub the opportunity to be "the one talking" and truly knowing and remembering the students.

    By this time, i was regarded as the students' all-timr favorite sub. I had classes that would sign petitions for me to return. I had the pin-drop respect of a daily teacher, because the lesson plans were set up just right. Soon, every student in each of the 6 periods would run up to me and give me a high five or hug me, and these were teenagers!

    However, the 6th time was not good. The assignment was arts and crafts essentially. The students, who all previously had the upmost respect for me, turned on me and acted absolutely crazy. They didn't take the assignment seriously, wouldn't sit in their seats, threw stuff everywhere, and constantly yelled over my instructions. That's the power of lesson plans that a teacher leaves. Teenagers... can't handle crafts. Especially on a sub day.

    So, regrettably, I had to get strict, loud, dissapointed, and frustrated, and the punishments were dished out... even to students I thought were the best. They were beyond out of control. Now, the most "advanced" class in the set were perfect, but the rest went bonkers.

    But I did nothinh different! If anything, I only gave more high fives, more hugs, more smiles, laughed with more of their silly jokes, and kneeled down for every student question to show that I care. And yet by the time the class was over, I felt like I was the enemy. What gives? What changed? Has this ever happened to you?
     
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  3. justwanttoteach

    justwanttoteach Cohort

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    May 8, 2015

    We have 4 days of school left.....it's the time of year
     
  4. ~mrs.m~

    ~mrs.m~ Comrade

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    May 8, 2015

    I don't think the teacher left you certain assignments so the students would think you were a cool sub. More likely, those are the assignments that needed to be completed.
     
  5. ArtistLyfe

    ArtistLyfe Rookie

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    May 29, 2015

    Never let your guard down.
    Once Ss feel that, they will run over you.
     
  6. Ykk27

    Ykk27 Rookie

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    Jun 4, 2015

    O-o... I learned hard way to never show out frustration and nervousness. If I feel I can not control the class I just make a poker face for a while to allow myself to come up with a solution how to deal with the mess. I isolate myself mentally from the class while coming up with a strategy. Nothing is going to happen during 2 minutes of them going loud and crazy. But then, I do my move.
    1) spot the troublemakers
    2) come up with busy task for them
    3) send one of them to the office (to take attendance roster for instance)
    4) for middle age (6-7th grade) I used this: the teacher had some kind of cards of animals and words (enough for entire class). I gave everyone 2 cards and said that I am going to take away 1 card for every disturbance (noise, talking). If by the end of class all the students manage to keep at least 1 card, I give them the last 5 minutes of free time (can play on the phones). It worked several times. Kids were excited because normally they are not allowed to play on the phones.
     
  7. Ykk27

    Ykk27 Rookie

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    Jun 4, 2015

    ...and make sure you say everything in regular tone (not raised, not disturbed) like nothing major is going on. Just make sure you get their attention first. Tell that you are going to say something important and wait until they get quiet.
     
  8. Milsey

    Milsey Habitué

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    Jun 6, 2015

    I noticed several grammatical errors in your post.

    I don't want a cool sub in my class. I just want someone who can manage a class and hopefully teach some of the material. Last month, I actually had one with a Master's and let him teach some of the material, but most seem to view the job as an opportunity to have a bit of fun, to act cool. One used the class computer to play a music video; one played classroom games when she was supposed to read the short story with the kids.
     
  9. LifeIsAThrill

    LifeIsAThrill Rookie

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    Jun 8, 2015

    Day-to-day subbing means you are only there for the day. Leave stressful experiences behind when you leave in the afternoon. Day-to-day subs are not getting paid enough to worry about the consequences of behavior. It is the end of the school year; the students had most likely mentally checked out. Try not to stress over this.

    I have to agree with mrs.m. that those were probably just lessons that needed to be completed. I don't think most teachers have time to carefully scaffold their substitute teacher plans.

    Also, ignore Milsey. This is a place to ask questions and vent; it's not a cover letter.
     

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