1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

New to supply work. Can you give me some advice please?

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by thedancingqueen, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. Hi everyone. I graduated in July from university (3 year primary ed course). I'm starting supply work from September, whenever they want me. I had an interview/informal meeting and I've signed up with a supply agency. For me personally, I thought supply work was the best option for me because I still feel like I have a lot to learn and while I had positive feedback during my three placements at university, I really want to gain more experience before I have a class of my own. My worry is how often I will be working. I'm used to having a strict schedule and the fact that I can't drive is likely to really limit me I feel, in terms of what I'm offered. I have no problem with taking public transport and I know the area and the surrounding schools really well. Getting up really early is no problem at all. I just want to stay motivated and I've found this summer hard because I like working and learning. I was going to learn to drive this summer, however I haven't been well and ended up in hospital. I've since recovered and am back to full health, but unfortunately it means that I haven't been able to finish my driving lessons and take my test yet.
    Anyway, can anyone give me an idea of what I should expect when I'm doing supply work please and any advice? It's completely new to me. Also, if there is anything I can do before September to prepare can you please suggest it. I feel like I should be getting general resources together but I'm not really sure what I might need, so if anyone can suggest any good general resources I can get my hands on and bring into school with me, that would be really useful. I have taught years 1, 3 and 5 on placement. My worry is for example, if I'm asked to teach reception, year 4 or year 6 and I'm not left any work by their class teacher, because I've never worked with those year groups before and it's been two years since I last taught year 1 on placement. I'm going to have a good look through my old teaching files at lesson plans and resources I used.
    How can I prepare before September please and when I go into school, what should I be taking in with me generally? If you know of any useful resources, books, etc which can be used for a range of year groups, please share! Thanks. Sorry the post is so long. I'm just a little nervous and don't really know what to expect. The thought of going into lots of different schools (if they want me) is a little nerve wracking and I'm worried in case I'll be hardly working at all. I'd hate that.
  2. Don't worry Dancing Queen. Supply work can be tough but you always get to leave the class behind and if you are in demand you can choose the schools you work at.
    As for frequency of work it really depends on where you live and how good your agency is. If you find they are not giving you enough work call local schools and ask which agency they use. Or better still send a short letter detailing your experience to all schools nearby. I did this and had work for a year before I even applied to an agency.
    I would say passing your driving test is a priority. Schools don't tend to know about cover in advance and I would sometimes not get a call until 8.30.
    Have a bag packed ready with a few lunch things, stickers,a poetry book, short story book and a good picture book for all ages like 'Tuesday'. Essential things to ask are what the daily timetable is, what the photo copier code is, any codes to access buildings and most importantly what the PC log on is.
    I hope this is useful. After a couple of months of supply I got offered several temporary posts it's a great way to get known.

  3. sm1971

    sm1971 New commenter

    Good advice from floralgums (sounds like a nasty affliction, btw!) and in my generosity, you can have my supply file contents - just look in the resources section under my name (or check out the post on this page called 'I've only gone and done it again' or look under 'supply pack' in the resources section). I have uploaded two, just look for the one with least ratings, it's the most recent and most thorough.
    So now you're well armed with ideas, you'll probably never have to use them, but it doesn't half make you feel better to know you can cope!
    As for routine / hard work, supply has been thin on the ground, so I also work as a seamstress which is something I can do whenever I'm free, so it fits round supply really well. If you can find something similar (which earns you money!!) such as proof reading maybe, then it will keep you feeling like you are achieving something even in your quiet work periods.
    Good luck, ignore the bad days and revel in going home at 4pm without any stress on the better ones!
  4. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    This question comes up regularly so have a quick search on this forum for previous threads such as New supply teacher - advice please!
    https://community.tes.co.uk/forums/p/345621/4919751.aspx#4919751but there's loads more.
    sm1971's resources are superb & I've put some up under PE ideas for non-specialist supply teachers as she/he mentioned PE resources were lacking.
    Best of luck! Let's hope there's work out there next year!

  5. les25paul

    les25paul Star commenter

    Good advice from previous posters, I would emphasize that getting your own transport of some sort is apriority, it will enable you to get to placements quickly at short notice which is what schools and agencies like.
    An excellent, if not the best, way to build your skills and experience and its not that bad.


Share This Page