What I am Currently Loving about Substitute Teaching

What I love about substitute teaching is that everyday I have a chance to make an impact.
Last year was my first year as a sub. Last year was a lot different for me than this year. Last year, was a learning experience and I was drained daily. I enjoyed doing the job but it was more of a job. This year, I have come to a new perspective. It is not just a job that I love but every day is a unique opportunity to make an impact. 

Everyday is really all to my advantage. I get to leave the classroom and go home when the day is done. The kids have to keep coming back to the same culture, environment and teacher(s) day-to-day, everyday.  I may not ever see those particular kids again and I may get to see them several times in the next month.  
So you can imagine the opportunity to make an impact on these kids. If I can make a few of them smile, laugh or simply enjoy a fun break from norm, then I feel like I have had some success. Trust me, we get things done too but school can be fun too.

The truth about substitute teaching is that we don’t really get to teach much. Teachers do not often leave us many teaching tasks, which seems ironic. And for the most part, the stereotypes can be true…subs come into a situation where the students want to test the waters and get as close to the line as possible. I have learned to be firm, strong and establish rules and respect early on in the day. Last year, I was too fun and personable without first establishing respect and it was difficult. This year, I come in hard and establish respect first, then it is fun to be able to be more personable with students who are respectful to me also. If they are not respectful to me, I can be a commander and make the day, not as fun.

 This year has been a lot more fun, easier and smoother for me, simply because of this respect factor. In fact, I even miss some of those kids, I think of them as “my kids” but I am obviously not their full time teacher or anything, it is just those neat connections, you get to make.  It is amazing how just a few riddles, funny jokes, pieces of candy and/or coloring activities can save a boring day. 

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