One day, you will have a classroom of your own. But today, as you work hard toward that career in teaching, substitute teaching is an important way to hone your teaching skills and meet the people you need to know to get hired at the school where you want to work. But substitute teaching can also be difficult and often intimidating work. How can you be sure you are getting the most out of substitute teaching?
HERE ARE SOME GREAT TIPS FOR SUBSTITUTE TEACHING
First and foremost, she says Plan! When you are a full-time teacher, you will spend much of your time creating lesson plans, planning for the semester, planning for the year. As a substitute teacher, it is important to plan as well – plan for each teaching assignment, and plan for what you want to get out of your career as a substitute.
TIPS FOR PLANNING AS A SUBSTITUTE TEACHER
1. Select the schools/districts you are interested in and complete the necessary steps for substitute hiring. Spread your time among multiple schools to maximize networking and future job prospects.
2. Attend substitute seminars/classes in your district and complete them if available.
3. Visit the locations you are hired for and collect pertinent information – pick up the school map, school handbook, hall passes, bell schedule, fire drill procedure, who is who list, etc. Put it all in a binder, then into a tote bag. Create a tote bag for each school at which you sub.
4. Activate your teaching license.
Once your plan is in place and you are ready to start taking substitute jobs, there are many more important things to keep in mind.
“Remember: Every day is your job interview,” Marcella says. So how do you nail those daily “interviews”?
1. Maintain a professional demeanor and make a positive impression.
2. Dress appropriately and smile.
3. Arrive early and stay late.
4. Be positive and flexible.
5. Follow the school rules and completely execute the teacher’s lesson plans and
Be visible, helpful, and friendly. Network every day with the administration and staff. Be confident even if you are terrified. Leave a detailed report in the teacher’s mailbox. Go out of your way to make an impression as an outstanding faculty member. If you need help, ask for it – before things get out of hand. Administrators will be much more understanding of your need for help than of a classroom out of control or a problem gone unsolved.
Leave a detailed report for the teacher: Everything from an attendance list to a summary of how the lesson plan went to the names of students who used a restroom pass. Be sure to wrap up the report with a sincere thank-you.