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A bit nervous about supply teaching! ....

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by thedancingqueen, Aug 29, 2011.

  1. I graduated from a three year primary ed degree in July and now plan to do a year's supply to gain some more experience. I'm hoping that after that I will have a full time job to look forward to, but I don't feel ready for that just yet. I've signed up with a supply agency and hopefully I'll be working soon, but I'm a little nervous. One worry is how flexible I'm going to need to be (teaching different year groups) and I'm questioning my ability to think on my feet too. My previous placements (with a year 1, 3 and 5 class) were quite stressful and tiring, but rewarding and fun too. I was obviously able to prepare resources in advance and read up on topics that I didn't know much about. With supply teaching though, I can imagine myself going into school and having to teach something that I know very little about. Even if I had the worksheets, I'd feel like I could've done a much better job if I'd had time to read up on it in advance. I'm a bit of a perfectionist. I'm also worried about being in a situation where no work has been left by the teacher. I don't know how quickly I'd be able to come up with ideas on the spot and it would be even harder if again it was for a topic which I know very little about. I know my weaker areas and I've been doing a bit of wider reading this summer which may or may not come in handy. I know that there will be many additional challenges along the way and these are just a couple of my concerns. I am looking forward to it. I just am not really sure how to prepare for it all, before I actually start the supply work. I asked a similar question on here recently and have started to fill a file with things that might come in useful, but I still feel like I'm not doing enough. I guess it's just fear of the unknown and not completely knowing what to expect or how I'll find it. I'm sure that it'll get easier in time and as I gain experience. Teaching new year groups, e.g. reception and year 6 is also a little daunting, but I like a good challenge and to push myself. If anyone has any advice, it would be really great to hear from you! [​IMG]
  2. Advice! DON'T WORRY SO MUCH [​IMG] You will get there. You know what the NC programme is for the different year groups so you can sort out your resources for that into each year...Don't go over the top remember its usually only for 1 day..if longer it gives you a chance to sort out the class and the evening to prep for the next day.
    You can do it! I'm secondary and I tell you I have loads of admiration for the Primary sector I can't get my head around you you cope.
    Loads of people will give you help on here but you must tell yourself you can do it. You passed so you can!!
  3. les25paul

    les25paul Star commenter

    I believe that supply teaching is the best way to rapidly gain lots of experience in lots of varied environments. A year on supply will make you a better teacher in the long term. You might even find you prefer supply teaching and stick with it, I did.
    My best advice would be to collect as many resources and ideas as you can from each placement, whilst being careful not to break any school's confidentiality. So when you hand out a class set of worksheets keep one for yourself, what text/reading books is the school using buy yourself a copy of the most common, download (with permission) onto a memory stick any IT resources you like and so on.
    Before long you will have a vast teaching file of ideas which would be the envy of regular teachers and no shortage of things to do if no work has been left.
    I have never had a problem from school with me asking for copies of resources since they realise they also gain when a supply teacher comes to them with lots of new suggestions.
    Good luck
  4. I trained in Primary. Taught first in secondary which was scary. After some time off with my children I got back into the swing by doing supply around the borough and eventually this led to working in two schools that I really liked and to a full time job. This is what I think you hope for. Working in different schools is invaluable as you learn lots of techniques and find out where you wouldn't like to work as well as being snapped up if they like you. After 25+ years I've taken early retirement but true to form am now back doing supply. Not in my old school but two new schools who knew I was free. It's a whole new ball game now and much harder being a supply teacher as you are expected to slot in with the planning etc which is foreign to you. So here are a few tips. Try to stick with one keystage until you gain more experience. Ask for detailed plans and things like class routine , timetable etc. Take some suitable generic lessons for maths and literacy on a memory stick and ask to be logged onto class computer ( visitor access) as fillers if needed. TES resources great for these. Storybook or poetry also useful. A whistle in case you are on duty. Don't be afraid to ask other staff for help as they often forget the little things. Don't let class dictate routine to you. They love giving advice . You will pick up lots of good techniques and hopefully get a job by showing a head you are worth it! Relax and good luck with your future.
  5. VelvetChalk

    VelvetChalk New commenter

    You are in EXSACTLY the same position as me last year and you are doing Supply for the same reasons as me, its definately worth it! I got my first supply day pre-booked and it was in one of the worst schools in my city. The year 2 class were managable but erratic, Aftter different schools and lots of experience supply became a breeze and i got lots of good feedback. I always made sure I left a note for the teacher, marked work, and had a bag of tricks for days with no planning (Memory stick with various powerpoints/ toy for circle time/ a childrens book for free time class read/ some photocopiables)
    Also, be friendly to anyone you meet, especially office staff as they are the ones that phone the agencies. :)


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