Subbing and the Golden Rule - ProTeacher Community




Home Join Now Search My Favorites
Help


      Substitute Teachers

Subbing and the Golden Rule

>

Reply
 
Thread Tools
OneGreatSub OneGreatSub is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2018
Posts: 39
Junior Member

OneGreatSub
 
Joined: Aug 2018
Posts: 39
Junior Member
Subbing and the Golden Rule
Old 10-17-2018, 10:19 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #1

It's a no brainer that people should ideally treat others the way they like to be treated. I've been subbing for 10 years and can count on one hand the number of times I've been treated courteously by teachers who were present when I was in their classrooms. Today was a typical example. I had a half day assignment in 4th grade. I guided the students through a computer lab, math class, and reading workshop. At 11:30 the teacher returned. She greeted her aide and then addressed the class regarding their next activity. I didn't even rate an acknowledgement much less a "Thank you." I quietly departed.That was nothing compared to the time I took a last minute job in a high school classroom. When I walked in, the teacher, who was scheduled to attend a meeting, greeted me rudely with, "Who are you? I was expecting so and so."He then stormed out without so much as telling me what the class was doing or taking a moment to introduce me. The message this type of behavior sends to the students is that subs aren't important and don't deserve respect. Anyone else encounter this dismissive attitude toward subs on the part of some teachers? I find it demeaning, unprofessional, and all too common.



Last edited by OneGreatSub; 10-18-2018 at 06:48 AM..
OneGreatSub is offline   Reply With Quote

Lumberman
 
 
Guest

Lumberman
 
 
Guest
beat them to it
Old 10-18-2018, 03:36 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #2

Maybe it's a personality thing but I had learned that once I introduce myself to them first, it breaks down the ice. But yes, if people are rude or cold to you for no reason, it's a definite deal breaker for me as well. I usually don't take things personal because I realize that people do this without realizing. It's still important to remain civil and courteous. Otherwise, don't let this get you off track.
  Reply With Quote
mooba1's Avatar
mooba1 mooba1 is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 9,514
Senior Member

mooba1
 
mooba1's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 9,514
Senior Member

Old 10-18-2018, 04:23 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #3

I got that kind of reception a couple of years ago, when the teacher had parent conferences in the building. The rest of the team was pretty dismissive, as well, but the office staff was very gracious. They need to have a workshop and show that second grade team how to treat subs. It was an easy decision for me to cross that school off my list.
mooba1 is offline   Reply With Quote
SubMan SubMan is offline
 
Joined: Feb 2013
Posts: 1,400
Senior Member

SubMan
 
Joined: Feb 2013
Posts: 1,400
Senior Member

Old 10-18-2018, 05:38 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #4

Sounds like the middle school I was at today.

I arrive at the office a few minutes early, press the call box button to be buzzed in, no response, wait a few minutes, press it again, wait some more, look in through the window in the door (I see people in there!), press it a third time, hear "just a minute," wait a few more minutes, teachers start to arrive, and let me in.

Wait for secretary to look up, I tire of that and say "I'm here to substitute," I hear "folders are at the end of the counter" followed by a dismissive wave in the direction of the folders. Go to the end of the counter locate the teacher's folder and sign in. Look around for the exit, locate exit and wait to be buzzed in the school.

All told it was about 20 minutes from the time I first pressed the buzzer button until I was in the school walking to the classroom. I never did find a sub badge and apparently nether did the other subs I saw. Teachers in the lunch room were complaining about the lack of subs (I wonder why).

The end of the day was no better; no one acknowledged my presence in the office returning the folder so I returned it to the counter where I got it from and left without saying anything.

I wonder what the response would be like if I showed up 20 minutes late?
SubMan is offline   Reply With Quote
dietcoke99 dietcoke99 is offline
 
Joined: Sep 2018
Posts: 162
Full Member

dietcoke99
 
Joined: Sep 2018
Posts: 162
Full Member
somewhat off-topic
Old 10-18-2018, 06:52 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #5

This is different than described, but I question whether I would consider working at a school where I would need to be "buzzed in." Do they have that much crime?

There is a very large city that I could sub at, but there is a lot of crime there. I work at the two districts closer to my house, but pay MUCH LESS.

I consider the large pay in the "big city" to be "hazard pay"


dietcoke99 is offline   Reply With Quote
YayaSub YayaSub is offline
 
Joined: Sep 2016
Posts: 133
Full Member

YayaSub
 
Joined: Sep 2016
Posts: 133
Full Member

Old 10-19-2018, 11:50 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #6

All of our district buildings have gone to video at the locked entrance now, and I think we will see all schools following suit eventually. Our district is one that was in the news last year for a shooting. Locked doors are just the tip of the security iceberg here. Unfortunately, the world is not the same as it used to be.
YayaSub is offline   Reply With Quote
Lenoral
 
 
Guest

Lenoral
 
 
Guest
Friendly Greeting with My Name on the Plan
Old 10-20-2018, 02:07 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #7

Since I started subbing again, I have not received one greeting with my name on it such as Good Morning Ms. Any Surname Here. People have less manners now than twenty years ago.
  Reply With Quote
MaineSub MaineSub is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 1,261
Senior Member

MaineSub
 
Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 1,261
Senior Member
We're all in this together, really.
Old 10-20-2018, 05:12 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #8

I firmly believe "the way you get treated in life (or at school) is the way you teach people to treat you." It's a process, not an event.

I also believe that subs have an obligation to understand the school and classroom environment. That may mean adopting the fundamental bias that most of what exists can often be explained. Not everything that happens is actually about us.

As a sub, I'm quite certain I have appeared "aloof" or distant because I have been focused on something else--usually the kids, the lesson, the schedule, whether or not the kid I sent to the nurse is okay, how I'm going to get... I am all in favor of common courtesy and do my level best, but there are times when something else takes precedent, intentionally or unintentionally.

I was recently talking with our principal when a student approached us to ask me a question about something I had just finished teaching. I held up a "wait a minute" finger to the child, said "excuse me" to the principal and took care of the student's question. The principal certainly did not feel insulted, unimportant, or dismissed. I do know one teacher who, if I did the same thing, she would accuse me of being rude to her.

One of the required qualities for a sub is, I think, resiliency. This is not a job for someone whose feelings are easily hurt. We are working together in an extremely demanding and difficult environment. We are often thrown into a position where there are a gazillion stakeholders, all who want a piece of us at exactly the same moment in time. So are the teachers and staff we work with. Oftentimes when we think they are against us, it's just not true. It just happens that at the moment they are otherwise focused. They are simply "for" something else.

I don't think I'm an idealist, far from it... I have worked with teachers and aides I found unpleasant (to put it mildly) and, in some cases, unprofessional. It's not a perfect world filled with perfect people. We have to make quick decisions. Hopefully, we get it right most of the time. I've worked at our school for over a decade and I'll admit, that makes a difference. But we still don't always get it right.

I learned a powerful lesson about this from a first grader. She was, frankly, driving me nuts while I was trying to organize my class for dismissal--one of the most difficult times of the day for a sub in a lower grade trying to figure who goes where when and on what bus... She kept wanting my attention--not an unusual behavior for her--we'd been through an entire day of it. I assumed this was another plea for attention that just didn't fit into my current priorities. I brushed her off with "not now, I'm busy." (Experienced teachers/subs know the practice---"Unless someone is bleeding...") Finally, when everyone was packed and in the correct line order wearing their coats and backpacks, I went to the back of the line, found her, and bent down to say, "Okay, I have a minute now, what did you want to talk about?"

She said, in sincere tones, "I just wanted to apologize to you. I know my behavior was not the best it could have been today. If you are our sub tomorrow I will try to do better."

I confess I choked back some tears while I apologized to her with the explanation what she'd been trying to tell me was very important and I was sorry she had to wait. She is now in fifth grade. She still wants a lot of attention but understands she can't always have it. I would say we are good friends.
MaineSub is offline   Reply With Quote
Ima Teacher's Avatar
Ima Teacher Ima Teacher is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 26,743
Senior Member

Ima Teacher
 
Ima Teacher's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 26,743
Senior Member

Old 10-20-2018, 07:02 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #9

Fortunately I was generally treated well by those for whom I subbed.

I did always keep in mind that I wasn't always dealing with people who were on their best game.
  • sick teachers
  • teachers dealing with an emergency
  • teachers who were frustrated by having to do their work AND the work not done by the absent teacher

I subbed in the same two schools most of the time, so it was easy to figure out who was actually hateful and who was just having an off day or frustrated.
Ima Teacher is offline   Reply With Quote
luv2teach2017 luv2teach2017 is offline
 
Joined: May 2017
Posts: 232
Full Member

luv2teach2017
 
Joined: May 2017
Posts: 232
Full Member

Old 10-20-2018, 08:05 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #10

No doubt about it. Subbing can be a major challenge on many levels. It's not an easy job.

I've been subbing for nearly 3 years and have worked for 4 different districts at countless schools. I have never considered myself to be "thick skinned," not by any stretch. In fact, considering all the problems, I never thought I'd survive subbing this long! But I have had many other kinds of jobs, and I enjoy teaching most. It's what I'm good at, and I like the variety and flexibility that subbing provides.

That said, I admit I do often feel bothered or even upset by people's behavior. Each time I experience something negative, I try to get past it and improve my coping strategies. I accept that it's an ongoing learning process.

Here are a few things I do and consider:
* Sometimes (for many possible reasons) it may be just an overly toxic school culture. If needed, I can always choose not to return to that school. And I have exercised that option in the past.
* People (including myself) are not perfect. In fact, many are deeply flawed. This is true not only in substitute teaching, but ANY other line of work. It's a complex and troubled world we live in. No matter where I go, that will always be the case.
* No matter how well I've done my job, there may always be someone who finds something to criticize. That doesn't make them right, nor does it make my efforts any less valuable. I can be confident if I know I've done my best, and leave it at that.
* Keep a serene mind. That's my daily mantra. I meditate daily, and then throughout my day, try to stay centered and mindful of my own thoughts and actions. That's my responsibility. What others do is their own responsibility.



Last edited by luv2teach2017; 10-20-2018 at 10:40 AM..
luv2teach2017 is offline   Reply With Quote
OneGreatSub OneGreatSub is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2018
Posts: 39
Junior Member

OneGreatSub
 
Joined: Aug 2018
Posts: 39
Junior Member

Old 10-20-2018, 07:35 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #11

I really do appreciate all of the thoughtful responses my post has generated. If you took the time to respond, thank you! I know teaching is tough (I taught full time for years) , and teachers have off days, and I shouldn't take a dismissive attitude personally. I know all that. But, really, is it too much to ask to be acknowledged and given a simple expression of thanks? When someone does a service for me, I thank them. Be it a hairdresser, a plumber, a gardener, a clerk at the store, a server in a restaurant. .. anyone who helps me out deserves a simple "thank you." It only takes a second. When a teacher walks into his or her classroom to find the students on task, I would think an expression of thanks to the sub is in order. It's common courtesy. I know teachers read this sub board. The next time a sub is in your room, express a little gratitude. It will make his or her day!
OneGreatSub is offline   Reply With Quote
artladyhere artladyhere is offline
 
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 512
Senior Member

artladyhere
 
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 512
Senior Member

Old 10-22-2018, 04:42 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #12

What an amazing thread. I have nothing to add because you all are so insightful!
artladyhere is offline   Reply With Quote

Join the conversation! Post as a guest or become a member today. New members welcome!

Reply

 

>
Substitute Teachers
Thread Tools




Sign Up Now

Sign Up FREE | ProTeacher Help | BusyBoard

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 01:25 AM.

Copyright © 2017 ProTeacher®
For individual use only. Do not copy, reproduce or transmit.
source: www.proteacher.net