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How to Prepare for a Substitute

Sometimes being absent seems like more trouble than it's worth. Here's how to give a substitute teacher the tools for a successful and productive day in your room.

Difficulty Level: average Time Required: 30-60 minutes


Here's How:
  1. Write or type out the day's schedule, including begin and end times.
  2. Under each time frame, explain in detail what needs to be done by the substitute teacher.
  3. Mention any supervision duties that you might have that day.
  4. Include details about your behavior management system, especially positive and negative consequences.
  5. Write a list of both trustworthy and mischievous students.
  6. Place nametags on the desk, if at all possible, and/ or leave a seating chart.
  7. Mention any parent helpers that are scheduled to volunteer and what the helpers should accomplish.
  8. Tell where to find any supplies needed throughout the day.
  9. Describe any modifications you have made for students with special needs.
  10. Make all necessary copies and label what they are.
  11. Place sticky notes on the pages of any books to be used that day.
  12. Put all necessary teacher's editions of textbooks and other resources in a sequential stack according to the day's schedule.
  13. Leave the answer keys to all assignments so that the substitute can grade any work collected.
Tips:
  1. You may want to leave your copy machine code in case of emergencies.
  2. When it comes to writing sub plans, the more detail, the better.
  3. Relax! Chances are, everything will be just fine until you get back.

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