I LOVE substitute teaching – or relief teaching as we call it here in Australia. When I was studying teaching at university, I always dreamed of having my own class, but there is a lot to be said about the joys and benefits of substitute teaching. I am very lucky because I have my own class three days a week and I choose to substitute teach at the same school on the other two days. This gives me a good work-life balance, but I know that I am very fortunate to have this choice.
So, why do I say I love it so much? Here you go:
1. The marking is minimal. I always stay back at the end of a sub day and mark whatever I can for the regular teacher but that only takes 30 minutes max. Not having to take home 32 essays or narratives to mark is fantastic!
2. If I’m busy (or just need a rest), I can simply say no.
3. The students are always so excited to see a new face and it’s a great chance for me to build relationships with them.
4. I get to work with children of all different ages and hone my skills a little more. Great for your resume and your confidence.
5. If I don’t love a particular class for any reason, I just say “no thanks” next time it’s offered to me.
6. I can try out innovative activities and ideas and get feedback from a range of students.
7. If I’m needing a little extra cash for a holiday or to pay a big bill, I can choose to take on some extra work.
Whenever I’m subbing, I make sure I have a file full of go-to activities just in case the normal class teacher has been caught short and hasn’t left anything for me. Click on the image below to see the my sub-pack that I take with me to all middle school aged classes: