It is difficult to come into an environment as a substitute, especially at a school you are unfamiliar with. Getting adjusted quickly is a lot easier if you are able to find a teacher mentor: someone you can go to for simple questions or for advice in the event of a classroom problem such as a disruptive student.
Introductions to other faculty and staff will be much easier if you have someone to guide you and remind you of peoples’ names. You will also have someone to point out problems that are likely to arise before you are faced with them, so that you have time to work out a strategy beforehand.
Who should you choose?
Take note of the teachers who are friendly to you. Usually, there will be one or two teachers who go out of their way to make sure you feel comfortable at the school. Generally, your teacher mentor will be the one who is actively taking you under their wing.
If there is no one actively mentoring you, make an effort to say hello to the teachers in classrooms nearest the one you will be teaching in for the day. Ask for directions to the bathroom or ask where to get extra supplies, or any simple question that won’t be too much of a hassle for them to answer, and notice which teacher you feel a stronger connection to. This is likely to be a good teacher mentor for you.
You can ask your preferred teacher to be your mentor. Everyone loves flattery, and most teachers will be happy to show you around and help you get to know the school. You might even ask your teacher mentor if you can sit in on one of their classes during your free period.
Best of luck finding your own teacher mentor! For a better chance at snagging substitute teaching jobs, please contact us!