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Didn't expect a day like this. (VENT)

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Tori58 Tori58 is offline
 
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Tori58
 
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Didn't expect a day like this. (VENT)
Old 02-21-2020, 11:43 AM
 
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I hardly ever sub these days. I'm retired but have a 40% teaching job that more than covers my need for some extra funds. I do take a job once in a while, though, mainly so that I stay in the system in my two nearest schools.

I took one this week because it was in my area of certification (music) and I figured, with solo/ensemble festivals coming up it might be helpful to have a sub who could actually teach some lessons and not just babysit classes. What a mistake.

I started out at the middle school and, fortunately, had a 1st period prep. I say fortunately because, do you think I could find any lesson plans? The sub folder that I was given when I checked in at the office said to look for lesson plans in a particular desk drawer if they weren't left out on the computer keyboard. Looked there, looked through the massive pile of music on the office piano, looked at the teaching station in the shared classroom. Nothing. Finally, I asked one of the other music teachers, whom I had introduced myself to and exchanged a few words with, if he had any ideas about where else I could look for lesson plans. Turns out HE had them. Don't you think he might have mentioned that when I introduced myself?

So, I taught three classes of middle school choir. The lesson plans were basically the same for all groups - watch a video and do an assignment in Google Classroom. No problem, ONLY, because of of the set-up of the music wing (two rehearsal rooms connected by hallways with practice rooms) I had band students traipsing through every single choir class. They were apparently going for lessons but primarily just hanging out in practice rooms with no teacher paying attention to what they were doing. I had to wonder whether this is always allowed. Does the regular choir teacher have to shoo band students out of his room every day?

So then I had to travel to another building. Do you think there was anything in the lesson plans to indicate when I might take a lunch break? Nope. I gobbled my sandwich in the car in the parking lot of the high school. And it's a good thing I did, because students started coming in for lessons almost right away. (No lesson schedule in sight, though.) I did get some good work in with some motivated soloists, but then came a junior/senior concert choir. Out of 26 students, 11 arrived late because they had stopped in the bathroom. All 11 threw fits because I noted their names to pass on to their teacher. (Note that I didn't even report them as tardy to the office. It seemed clear that they are generally just allowed to arrive late, so I left it for the teacher to deal with.) Two students were so upset that I wrote their names down that they left the room without permission, evidently so one of them could go complain to Mommy who apparently works in the district. Mommy then phoned me IN THE MIDDLE OF CLASS TIME to demand an explanation!

Now, have I lost my marbles or does this entire day show some really shockingly unprofessional behavior on the part of teachers? Needless to say, I won't be accepting any more middle/high school sub jobs in the music department of this district.


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bodhimom bodhimom is offline
 
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Old 02-21-2020, 01:32 PM
 
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No good deed goes unpunished. I seem to have better luck with non-elective classes. They are taken more seriously, I think. No state testing, I guess.

I think you should report the mother. Her daughter is a snowflake and they both need to learn a lesson.

Both girls should get real tardies, at the very least, for walking out.

Last edited by bodhimom; 02-21-2020 at 02:04 PM..
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SubMan SubMan is offline
 
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Old 02-22-2020, 11:46 AM
 
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I taught high school chorus classes once. No lesson plans because the teacher didn’t expect to get a sub so why bother writing them. School calls teacher and she claims to have emailed plans. I’m to show the Disney classic Peter Pan to all classes. One class the boys started going “shhhh” and the girls would echo back “it!” I told them to stop, they said “we’re not swearing.” Never again took a Friday floater job at that district.

Another time I took a tech ed assignment at the request of the teacher. I taught two periods at the high school, got in my car and drove to the first middle school and taught two periods with a lunch, then got in my car and drove to the second middle school where I taught two periods and had coverage during my planning period. I was to show a video from YouTube (always a bad idea in my mind) about bridges. In this district all subs don’t have internet access due to a few subs abusing the privilege; checking Aesop and online shopping during class time.

At the end of the day I get a call from the principal of the first middle school. Someone made a mess, paint was spilled in the one tech ed room, do I know anything about it? No, I tell him, all my students were across the hall watching the video. Apparently there was another sub who told him that my class made the mess. I’ve not seen a job at that middle school since.
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Tori58 Tori58 is offline
 
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Old 02-22-2020, 04:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Both girls should get real tardies, at the very least, for walking out.
Oh, I did phone the office and told them that I had two students gone AWOL. I've dealt with enough "runners" that I always let the office know. And I didn't know where they had gone until Mommy phoned me. I don't think there would be any point in reporting Mommy, though. The daughter didn't become such a snowflake because the school is willing to stand up to Mommy.

Quote:
I seem to have better luck with non-elective classes. They are taken more seriously, I think.
I don't think the issue is that they're elective classes. I've subbed for art at both buildings and had very pleasant experiences both times. If I were to guess, I'd say it's more that music teachers have to recruit numbers. It's okay if there are only 6 kids in advanced art but not okay if there are only 6 kids in concert choir. I had to deal with this issue, too, when I taught middle and high school choir, but I didn't do it by not enforcing school rules. That's a quick and easy way to get numbers but then you have a bunch of entitled, unmotivated kids who won't work. I guess there's job security in that, but you're not going to have quality choirs that way.

Quote:
Im to show the Disney classic Peter Pan to all classes.
Yeah, not the best plan. I don't imagine that Peter Pan grabbed the interest of high school kids very well. My back-up plan was always some type of musical on DVD, but never Disney. They are notoriously picky about copyright laws. I always had a follow-along worksheet (or assignment after I got Google Classroom) that required them to pay some attention. I agree that YouTube isn't a good idea. As you say, not all subs can access it and then, if you can, it's hard to predict what else may come up.

And, if videos are your go-to, you at least have to be sure that the sub will be able to play the video on the equipment you have. Last year I subbed for band in this same middle school (Mr. "I'll let my students wander into your classroom at will.") and the DVD that he left wouldn't even play in his computer. Even the IT people couldn't make it play. I had to take every group to a LGI classroom.

I've been keeping my foot in the door, so to speak, just in case I want to sub more frequently when I'm fully retired but, more and more I'm feeling that it's probably not worth it.
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Old 02-22-2020, 04:51 PM
 
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I remember having a similar scenario. A student came late into
a class as I was taking attendance. The student is late everyday. The student always goes to another teachers room at the beginning of the day everyday. I found this out later. I marked her tardy. I didnt think too much about it. The student found out and flipped out. Her mom worked at the school and her daughter went crying to her. I talked with mom, and it ended up alright, but I was annoyed.I won't go back to that teacher's class. That wasn't the only problem in this class. I try to mentally prepare myself for the worst when I sub because of situations like this. Subbing is pretty thankless at times.


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seenthelight seenthelight is online now
 
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Old 02-22-2020, 04:59 PM
 
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Youd be surprised. Sometimes everyone has assumed Mommy has been told on and nothing has been done only to have a brave soul report something and a P to go, She did WHAT?!?
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