Monday, October 20, 2008

Survival of the Substitute

After today, I have a huge appreciation for all the substitute teachers I had over the years...especially during high school. While I'm on the job search, I signed up to substitute teach to bring in a little income (and I mean little). It's a great side job because I can always decline to work that day if I have a job interview.
I have been waiting for my background check to come back so that I would be added to the sub roster. I had planned on putting in a call to the central office today to follow-up with the process. Well, no need! At 6:50 a.m. I got a wake up call from a high school asking if I could come in and sub. Somehow I stumbled out a "sure" in my half asleep state. (I had trouble sleeping last night and didn't go to bed until after 1 a.m.) I was then given a choice between music and spanish. I was thinking "well, if I have to pick..." I chose Espanol. (I ended up in both since they still couldn't find a sub for music.) Before I hung up, she told me what school and said I needed to be there at 7:30 a.m. Sure, sure, no problem. Except for the fact that when I stumbled out of bed, I noticed the time! And when I looked up the school on the computer I realized that it was in a town (Jonesborough) that was 30 minutes away. Ahh! Needless to say, no shower, no washing of the face and no breakfast. I had time to jump into clothes, trample all over a dazed Chloe and swipe the toothbrush over my teeth.
When I was asked what age I wanted to sub for I had said middle school or high school. Was I crazy? Well, it really wasn't that bad. But, I do kinda feel sorry for the student looking back on it. I was very strict and made them do their work. (Not my experience with the subs back in my day.) I felt like I was on them all day. I'm sure the teacher will appreciate it but I remember the feeling of walking into a class and finding out a sub was there for the day. The equation pretty much went like this: No Teacher+ Substitute= Free Day! I know they were highly disappointed after about 5 minutes into the class. I defiantly didn't win "cool sub of the day" award. But, my mind doesn't think that way with my teacher background. I was operating under the mode of, this is my class and trying to have some classroom management. I have now decided that I'm not getting paid to teach them. I'm really there to just make sure they are quiet and don't get into trouble. So, I'm going to go to adhere to that philosophy. Still, I'm not going to let them pull one over on me. And believe me I got so many excuses and had a few try some pretty clever things. (Were we that devious in HS?) I think the school is desperate for subs because I had only been there 10 minutes when the French teacher knocked on the door to ask if I was available for Weds. Before I left I was asked to come in tomorrow for Driver's Ed. Ha! This should be an experience to say the least. (And no, I already asked, thankfully I will not have to get in the car with any kid behind the wheel!)


Lindsey said...

Wow! Thats a big change since we talked on the phone Sunday ha! Glad you got in some work though.. I know you were excited to get yourself out of the house :) And good job with being strict ha.. were they all taller than you? I know they were me when I did it in college and i was often mistaken for a student!

Brad, Tara, Cooper and Connor said...

How hilarious! Good to you for sticking to your guns and not letting them have their "free day"! ha! GOOD LUCK with the drivers ed!

Summershea said...


There are many jobs in education there are simply an adventure. One thing is for sure everyday of a sub brings a new story. Good luck with your adventures.


Rachel Owens said...

How exciting for you!!:) It is hard for me to imagine your little petite self amongst those high school kids. I always imagine you with elementary kids. I hope you are enjoying it, but never thought of you teaching Spanish or music. I have heard your singing.:)Hope you the best.