I had known about today’s gig for about a week. My teacher and friend Dawn asked if I would do placement tests for all her math classes. As a teacher, it’s something she’d rather not do. As a sub, it makes for a perfect day so it was a real win-win for us both. As was the case yesterday, the first three classes were great, and then the last two periods were progressively worse. Thing is, her last class was an “honors” class, so I had the expectation that they would behave better. Nope. They were so loud that we started this timed test about 10 minutes late. Their test was harder as well, so very few finished within the allotted time. All the earlier classes had taken a much easier test, and most of them were done about 10-20 minutes before class let out.
During the various periods, I saw many students I recognized from art class or multimedia, two classes I had subbed for recently. They all recognized me as well. The art students were happy to see me; the multimedia students were not. The multimedia teacher told me today that her classes liked the other sub much better than me, to which she said: “Good – I’ll keep asking for you then because you made them work!” (I also found out today that I might be subbing for the Art teacher again for maybe a week or two, since she has jury duty in December. She actually asked what I’d like to teach if she wound up on a jury. We agreed on water color exercises. It’s always so nice to be asked back!)
During break, I talked to one of the history teachers about the possibility of being a student teacher in his class. Much to my surprise, he was very agreeable. I spent my prep period relaying this news to my college (after also getting permission to be a student teacher from the principal). My college told me that they didn’t actually have any placements for me so far, so they asked if I could find a second teacher at this middle school so I could do my whole student teaching experience at the one school. To me, it would be ideal. The principal told me to get with the head of the history department and discuss this new strategy. I am so pleased that things seem to be working out!
Every Friday at this middle school, the teachers try to outdo each other with “break food.” Subs like me LOVE teaching here on Fridays! Today on this rainy day, we had fully loaded potatoes, two kinds of salad, deviled eggs and a spinach dip with gourmet breads. After the break, my wife’s class also made grilled cheese sandwiches and various kinds of tea. They then delivered sandwiches and tea to many of the teachers, including me. It was a little disruptive when the students came in right in the middle of a test, but the food was great.
Today, we also had a new student arrive from Egypt. I had him for homeroom and 4th period. I really liked the kid and tried to make him feel welcome. He was a little wet by 4th period because it was raining and he didn’t have an umbrella or a jacket. I guess he didn’t need either in Cairo. Still, I hope he had a great first day.