Friday, February 28, 2014

Sub Adventures #4: 9th and 10th grade Health/Physical Education in the Bronx

Yes, you read that correctly. I was covering health and gym classes today. Pure torture.

9th/10th graders + health/phys ed busy work + half of the teachers and students gone on a trip = 

The students were out of control, even more so at the end of the day. I didn't have a class until the third hour (10:30a). The teacher had wanted me to read a chapter in the textbook with the students aloud and then they were supposed to complete some questions. However, the students were unwilling to read aloud. I don't know why--I've always found contraceptives absolutely fascinating! *rolls eyes

So, I gave up, told them to read silently and complete the task, and sat back. The students spent the entire time talking--loudly. And the potty mouths on these young people, my goodness! I ignored the talking for the most part--until period 7 that is. They were out of control and the volume was ear-splitting. I got sick of it finally and demanded utter silence for the 15 minutes that were left of the period. If I hear a single word, I told them, I'm calling a dean in here immediately. And they shut up. For a little while anyway.

My last two periods were gym, which I was secretly looking forward to. However, they moved the gym classes to the health classroom. So, I ended up with 10 students in 8th period and 4 students in 9th period as the rest of the students decided not to show. And I was perfectly okay with that. 

At 4:30, I dragged my butt home, exhausted after 8.5 hours of subbing.

Week one of substitute teaching: SURVIVED!


Alex Lengers said...

Hey Its Alex!

Sounds like you had fun. I was thinking that an incentive might help out. In the class i'm student teaching in we hand out plain raffle tickets. The kids earn them for doing something good. So if we want them to read and they volunteer, they get a ticket. It doesn't matter which they get (customer info side or "keep This" side. All they need to do is put their name on it. We collect them at the end of the class. At the end of the week we draw from the cup and the winner gets a prize which is determined by the the teacher.

In this case, you could collect and draw at the end of the class. The prize doesn't need to be over the top, my teacher has a candy bucket, a box full of simple dollar store goodies (like the ones you get in a variety pack) or he will give them free work passes. He also offered to get lunch or drinks from a local deli but for you and me I'd stick to the more practical, cheap, stuff.

Just make sure you explain at the beginning of the class how it works and don't tell them what you have until after the name is drawn. You could become the coolest sub in school. You should also let them know that if you see them using their goody out of class they lose it and are reported to the dean, or something like that.

What do you think?

Fatuma said...

Thanks for the awesome suggestion and I think I could definitely do it. With some slight tweaking: Give tickets to students who are following particular criteria, such as quiet, on-task, not cursing perhaps. Then, because it's just subbing, I'll give everyone who has a ticket a treat. My only concern with candy is allergies, but that's also the most convenient treat. I'll have to give this a little more thought, but I think it's a great idea. Thanks again!

Alex Lengers said...

No problem. Anytime!