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Sunday, September 22, 2013

Switching It Up....

One of the assignments I had last week was "roving sub" for 26 teachers over two consecutive days at the same school.  

Twenty-minute slots in 26 classrooms while the teachers had to attend some kind of "coaching meeting". Twenty minutes isn't really enough time to do more than monitor the class with what they were already doing when I walked in. In one of the Kinder classes, the teacher told me to just read them a book from the classroom library.

After having several selected choices rejected as "we already read that one", I picked up "The Three Little Pigs" and sat down and read them my inverted rendition of: 
 The Three Little Wolves and The Big Bad Piggy.

Imagine my surprise when composing this blog post that a book with that title already exists. I should probably get a copy for my sub bag.

Friday, September 20, 2013

3rd Grade Math -- Really?

We are 27 school days into the new near. Sub jobs normally show up slowly the first three weeks. I have already put in 13 subbing days and I have 7 future assignments booked over the next two weeks.

Since I just dropped a bank vault load of money into car maintenance and repair, I'm grateful for the fast start but also tired of working almost every day. I wonder what is going on in the school district that has so many substitute covered vacancies so soon?

Anyway, today's class of 3rd graders presented me with the following math problem from last night's homework.

After reading (...and re-reading it a few times), using a pencil to write down stuff as I carefully and slowly read each sentence, I finally figured out the answer to #15....I think.

I invite you to give it a go and post your answer in the comments section. Please include the number of times you had to re-read it and the total time it took you to get it.

(I'll hold off posting all responses until a week from today to foil the cheaters who might be tempted to peek.)

(click to enlarge)

9/25/2013 update:
Judging by the comments, we seem to have a pretty bright readership group here.
898 is the correct answer, but I would not expect the average 3rd grader to reason it out without help.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Decline to Participate...

One of the few benefits of substitute teaching is the ability not to.

If I want the day off and I'm not already scheduled, I don't have to ask or get approval from anyone. When the phone rings, all I have to do is select option "decline", hang up and go back to sleep. The automated system will offer the assignment to the next available substitute teacher on the list.

At least that's the way I'd like it to work.

As there were no assignments available before bedtime last night, I decided to take the day off. Sure enough at 05:30am the phone is ringing. The wife is jabbing me in the side to make it stop. I grope blindly for the phone set.

To decline, you HAVE to wait for the job description to complete before I select the "DECLINE" option and go back to soothing sleep. Only to be awakened by phone calls at 05:45am, 06:00am, 06:15am, 06:30am and finally 06:45am. All offering the same assignment that I "DECLINED" at 05:30am.

The final call came at 08:30am from the substitute teacher coordinator (a real person) asking if I was available today.  At this point, I really wasn't in the mood to work so I politely responded: 

"Not today".

Sunday, September 08, 2013

Understanding Algebra...

For those who don't "get" Algebra:

This would make a great T-Shirt for subbing Math class!!

Monday, September 02, 2013


It occurred to me this afternoon that the kids in the very first Kindergarten class I subbed for, are now in High School. I wonder if I will still be subbing when they reach college?