It is true. A substitute teacher is the steady rock on which classroom teachers and students rely. Subs are the ones who can save the day and give teachers peace of mind, because they know that their students will be taught, encouraged, and cared for in their absence. It takes courage, enthusiasm, adaptability, patience, and a keen sense of adventure to be a sub.
After having my classroom for many years, I took a couple of years off to pursue an entirely different career. What I quickly discovered was that this new career, which was commission-based, did very little to supplement our income. While I was not quite ready to return to having my own classroom, I decided that substitute teaching was the next best option.
I was quickly accepted into the substitute teaching pool and had my first sub job within a couple of weeks of the start of the process. I ended up teaching a third grade class and realized how much I missed being in the classroom. Thankfully, before the end of the day, the principal approached me and asked if I would be interested in taking a long-term sub position for a first grade teacher who was going out on maternity leave... the following week. Talk about jumping feet first into subbing!
I was there through the end of the year and was lucky enough (said entirely tongue-in-cheek) to be there for state testing. I was thankful for the position though, especially because only a week after I started I found out I was pregnant with our first child. Over the summer I worked at the other job and decided that I would continue subbing until the beginning of October if I got called. A week before school started, I got the call that a second grade teacher in the same school had been involved in a bad car accident, and they needed a long-term sub for her class immediately. So, I became a second grade teacher and had the pleasure of having many of the same children as they had moved up from first. Mid-October arrived, and while the teacher was not quite ready to come back, pregnancy issues forced me to step-down from the position.
I continued subbing occasionally after my son was born and enjoyed every moment of it. These days, I teach my own children at home, and while I love it, some days I sure do wish I could call a sub of my own! They are worth their weight in gold.
Brandi Jordan is a mom, teacher, wife, author, and expert multi-tasker. She is the Managing Director of Really Good Stuff’s blog, The Teachers’ Lounge, and her newest ebook, A Teacher’s Guide to Using Social Media and The Internet in the Classroom, was just released for free download. Follow her on Pinterest and chat with her during #TeachChat every other Wednesday night from 9-10 p.m. EST.