Friday, February 7, 2014

Setting Up for a Sub

Leaving my kids with a sub is so hard for me.  Even though my aids are great and my kids can practically run a most of our activities themselves, I still struggle.  (I guess I have control issues??).  Anyways, this week, I have training EVERY SINGLE DAY.  A whole week without my kiddos!  My assistants have been good at telling me what works best when I am out.  They like when I leave activities at my stations that the kids can practically do alone.  That way, the sub can be "me" and run my stations and the kids don't need to interact a lot with them (since we all know how hard social interaction and challenging academic tasks can be for our kids…they need to be approached in just the right way…and most likely my sub hasn't been trained in how to work with kids with autism).

So, here are some things I left behind this week!  First of all, my detailed schedule and notes.  I left the sub with a detailed schedule of their day, stations they need to run, children they need to work with, and general routines/ responsibilities.  Here is a snippet:

I also left a detailed page describing some characteristics of each student.  I especially focused on my 2 students who have 1:1 aids and that they  need to be attended to by an adult at all times for safety.  The #1 thing I want to avoid while I'm gone is any of my students being put in an unsafe position!

I also always leave a little mean note about not using my technology.  Last year, a sub broke my computer, and another sub broke my coworker's printer…so all of these things are completely off limits.  I cannot afford to lose these materials that I rely on daily to make my kids' curriculum!

At the 2 main stations I run during the morning, I left detailed instruction as well as bins of work set on the table for the sub to utilize.  Here is my written out schedule that I put on the "Teacher Time" table. 

 I also included bins of work at 2 different levels.  

For my morning group with my lower functioning students, the visual schedule is already posted on the board, and my students can basically run it themselves (I mean, even when I make a mistake or try and rush through something, they come up to the front of the room and do it the right way!) For my higher functioning students, I write their schedule on the white board so they can help the sub follow it (and I know they will!).  I basically just provide them with a bunch of different literacy centers and games in a milk crate. 

Here's to hoping I get a ton out of my training to bring back to the classroom to make this all worth it!  Do you have any good tips/tricks for having a sub in your classroom?


  1. It looks like you do a great job preparing for subs. We have a complete shelving unit with my life skill tasks and one for our vocational tasks that I make. These always work great for needed time fillers.

  2. I am right there with you about leaving being so hard and about giving detailed sub plans. It helps so much to hear what you do! I had an iPad break when I was out (my only day away last year) but thank the Lord I had someone work a miracle to fix it for free. Thanks for sharing!

  3. First of all, I think you do a great job leaving things for your subs. Secondly, I'm impressed they give you a substitute! I have worked in many classrooms where if I'm out, they do not replace me, and usually they just have a para take over. Or I've had people who they just stick in there to be a "warm body" and who do not really follow plans. I do like how you have set things up though!