At the end of last school year, I made a difficult decision. I decided to resign from full time teaching. A lot factored into this decision, but we will save that for a later Slice. To supplement my income, I became a substitute teacher.
Substitute teacher: most people cringe at the thought of that job. Pranks…spit balls…disrespectful students…mass chaos in the classroom. Movies and television give the job such a negative connotation. But as a certified teacher, at a school I taught at for several years, I look forward to work every morning. And when I know I’m subbing in the 8th grade, I’m even more excited.
Never in my life did I ever think I would say those words out loud, but I thoroughly enjoy subbing in the 8th grade, where I am placed on a weekly basis. Jr. High students have always terrified me, but these wonderful kiddios make my job so much fun!
I look forward to…
The playful banter I have with several of the boys. We can joke one minute and continue to work diligently on an assignment the next.
The hellos I receive as I walk among the students in the hallways, along with there sweet smiles. They don’t have to say hi, but they want to.
The happy smiles on their faces when I answer, “Yes” to the question, “Are you our sub today?” (And I’ll admit, it’s an ego boost when they seem disappointed if my answer is no.)
The couple of girls, who fondly refer to my as ‘mom’ in the hallway before class.
The students who knew me before I was married, and insist on using my maiden name because “that will always be your name to us.”
The chance to teach them something new. As a sub, teaching isn’t always part of the plan, but for those teachers that allow me to take on a new topic, I like getting the opportunity to enlighten students again.
Watching these amazing kids, most of whom I knew when they were just little 4th graders, grow into smart, respectful, and remarkable young adults. I never, ever thought I would enjoy 8th grade, but I do. I’m excited to see all the marvelous things these students are going to do with their lives. I know I’m not their teacher-teacher, but I still like to consider them my students, that’s something that will never change, no matter my job title.