Building a Tool Kit to be the Best Substitute Teacher

Every good tradesman needs the right tools and the same is certainly true for substitute teachers.  The kit you carry into the classroom should have key tools that will work for a variety of students.

The graphic organizer is versatile.  It is a concise and easy way for students to organize information.  Often substitute lesson plans have students watching a movie, reading an article, or playing a learning review game.  Having a graphic organizer ready to pull from your tool box helps the students summarize information and can fill in those last few minutes of time when the lesson is complete.  There are many to choose from; investigate which ones would work for you and add them to your kit. 

Conversations cards  and questions are an indispensable tool for a substitute teacher.  Substitutes need to think on their feet, but sometimes we all stumble.  Having cards and questions prepared and ready to be pulled from your box is smart.  There are cards for problem solving, math, discussion starters, holidays and more.  They can be used to supplement a lesson, create a lesson, or simply to fill time and keep students engaged.

Another must-have item for every substitute teacher toolbox is a pack of index cards.  A full size sheet of paper can be intimidating to some students because it seems like a lot of empty space to fill.  An index card is friendlier, and can be used in a variety of ways.  Students might write or draw a question, one thing they learned from the lesson, or one thing they wish their regular teacher would follow up on when he or she returns.  Think how impressed the teacher will be when the substitute leaves the cards and the teacher is easily able to assess what students learned – or what they still need help with – in her absence!

To be the best substitute teacher, you need the best tools.  Make sure you have your tool kit filled and ready for your next job. contact us

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