Thoughts from a Substitute Teacher

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My oldest daughter is 15 now and I needed to get out of the house and back into the “working world!” Before having kids, I did school social work. I loved it so much. I actually searched and that non-profit does exist in the Dallas area, but traveling in Dallas doesn’t really appeal to me…for now. Carpool lines make me nuts, I can’t imagine sitting in traffic on the high way! Haha! Hey, it’s honest!

I decided that I would get my feet wet by substitute teaching. I initially thought elementary school was my jam. I like kids. For the most part, I think little kiddos (elementary age) are precious and so innocent and fun to be around. But after a few days of subbing in elementary schools, I have learned these three things:

  1. Elementary teachers are underpaid! Their days are jam packed from the moment they get to the school to the moment that they leave.
  2. Teachers must have bladders of steal. I have decided when subbing at elementary schools, drinking much through out the day is a bad idea.
  3. Elementary teachers must have a deep well for self esteem…because those kids are HONEST! They don’t hold back ANYTHING… they think it…they say it! (My legs have been questioned, twice! HA!)

So then I decided I would try middle school. I have two middle schoolers currently and feel like I know that age pretty good. To be honest, it only took three days subbing in a middle school to decide that I don’t love that age either. The constant need for boys to show each other up makes me NUTS! My middle schoolers are both girls… so I am used to “girl drama” but oh man… the need for these boys to show their “coolness” drives me bonkers! I can do it here and there…but not everyday! Middle school teachers are saints! I have a whole new respect for them!

So last, that leaves High School. Initially I was nervous about this setting as I am not very tall and wondered if the boys would be worse than middle school. I decided to give it a try. I am so glad I did. This is my sweet spot. I have a high schooler. She is a great kid…and when I sub at her school, she wants to come eat lunch with me. That makes my heart beyond happy! I have absolutely enjoyed hanging out with high school students. For the most part, they are respectful and do their work when asked. I enjoy learning what is being taught and helping make connections for the students. It’s fun to see my friends kids, and get to know the teachers and coaches. Being asked by a teacher to return as their sub is fun because the students remember me.

On another note, subbing has given me a reason to buy new clothes (not just gym clothes!) and has helped me to feel like I am contributing to things financially and to the students educationally. It’s fun. There are struggles though… like figuring out the new balance with Steve on how to get the kids to/from when I am working. Thankfully he works from home now and when he isn’t traveling he steps up and helps a ton. I’ve also had a hard time finding the balance on working out, grocery shopping and such. It will take some time but we are working through it.

Looking towards next year, I will continue to sub. My little guy is still in preK and has another year before he goes to kinder. I’ll enjoy my summer with my kiddos and jump back in with an excited heart! I love that I can keep blogging on the side and I really enjoy this outlet as well! I’m so thankful for the ability to have the flexibility and do things that I love!


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