Welcome to my Blog which combines the unlikely topics of supply teaching with progressive rock. Here you will find my ongoing 'Diary of a Surviving Supply Teacher' and a variety of lists/ timelines/ articles on progressive rock.

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Things You Would Never Hear a Supply Teacher Say

1.      You are such an organised teacher and your explanation of the work made everything crystal clear. 

2.      As I already have an excellent knowledge of every school’s timetable, layout, register and routines, you can take these for granted.

3.      Don’t worry about the behaviour policy, why should I need it to be made clear?

4.      Forget the toilets, I won’t be needing them after a couple of hours in my car.

5.      Your staff at reception were so warm and welcoming. That lady had such a delightful smile. No, I don’t mind waiting at all; I only arrived early because it was such a lovely morning.

6.      Where is your class teacher today? I am glad you asked me that because I always have a full knowledge of why the teacher I am replacing is absent and an exact knowledge of her whereabouts. Sit down and I’ll tell you precisely why she is not in school today and where she is located.

7.      Interrupt me all you want. Despite bringing my own packed lunch, the dinner register is only important to me

8.      Feel free to help yourself to anything in the teacher’s desk, she won’t mind.  

9.      Oh, I do love a drama activity with a year 6 class I have never met before. Don’t worry about making it meaningful.

10.  I don’t mind explaining that again, everyone was so attentive and we all miss things from time-to-time.

11.  Feel free to shout at each other in this lesson, if you find it useful.

12.  Keep rocking on your chair and smirking at me. There is nothing I like more!

13.  Keep calling out – I love it and will respond positively every time.

14.  After all that calling out, I now consider you to be charming, witty and erudite.  

15.  That assembly practice you left me with last time went really well.

16.  Games outside with year 6 and no equipment? Don’t worry, I’ll manage.

17.  I always laugh when you leave me with an art activity in the afternoon. I can find a way of cleaning the paint palettes, even if your classroom does not have a sink, without any trouble at all. I certainly don’t mind spending hours on cleaning art materials before I do any marking.

18.  It’s always heartening to be given music lessons, as a non-musician, especially when the groups were particularly badly behaved with their regular peripatetic teacher last time.

19.  Don’t worry about the key to the resources cupboard.

20.  Oh, I won’t be needing access to paper and, if it helps, take their books home for marking when you are ill.

21.  You were absolutely right, that class was lovely.

22.  Oh, I know he is always well-behaved. It’s just me!

23.  Yes, I like your class too.

24.  Your class worked very quietly today. In groups, they kept their discussion to a whisper and, during the class question and answer sessions, they waited for their turn, put their hands up and did not call out at all. 

25.  The children in your school are so polite, they said ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ without being reminded and expected to hold the door open for adults. Not one tried to push me out of the way.

26.  Of course I will mark the diagnostic tests, it will be far more valuable and useful to me.

27.  F*** off? Well of course I will. You stay right where you are.

28.  You are absolutely right to be rude to me. I asked to teach this class, despite my agency’s protestations, and have been bad-mannered to you since I got here.

29.  What were they doing? Oh, nothing really, it was just me sending for you on a whim because I like doing that sort of thing.

30.  The children are always compliant when they consider the punishment is a detention on Friday, especially if they misbehaving with me on Monday.

31.  Feel free to leave lots of dirty mugs in your room. They add something to the décor. 

32.  Don’t worry about leaving your room in a mess, I won’t need to find anything and I certainly don’t mind clearing up your mess as well as mine.

33.  Don’t blame yourself. Obviously, the behaviour in your school is all my fault. 

34.  How were they? They were excellent as always.

35.  Thank you for all your help and support. I didn’t really need it, but it was reassuring to know that it was available.

36.  The familiarity you have with your children was most edifying. I shared all of their jokes and we had a right laugh.

37.  Agency staff are constantly polite and knowledgeable. They care enormously about education and always put the supply teacher first. They make sure the school is matched appropriately to my strengths and can be guaranteed to provide support should anything goes wrong. Agencies never make mistakes and, if there should be any errors in my pay, it will always be down to me. Above all, I can be totally honest with them, in the knowledge that it will be reciprocated. Pay is never less than fair and I do not mind them undercutting my scale pay whatsoever.  

38.  Teaching assistants are professionals, so I respect and welcome their opinions of my teaching too. Don’t bother yourself over the interruptions during the register. They can also speak to groups of children in a loud voice, while I am teaching.

39.  Hey, I love wet play too.

40.  Just leave me with the plan in front of the class and I’ll just get on with it.

41.  Oh, your cousin has the same name? How fascinating.

42.  No need to thank me, it was nothing really.

43.  Of course I will, I am given playground duties so rarely these days. Oh yes, I know where all the playgrounds and year groups are located.

44.  You teachers on contracts are the ones who really earn their pay.

45.  The charge for the course is no object. Shall I take it in my own time as well? Perhaps a weekend?

46.  No need to tell me where the file is on the computer, I’ll find it easily. I certainly will not need any passwords.

47.  Talk down to me because I’m as stupid as the children in your class.

48.  You will need to remind me how to teach, because I have forgotten.

49.  Hands up if you would like to be the one to explain to the head teacher where I have gone.

50.  Oh, you’re the headteacher. I’m sorry, I thought you were one of the secretaries. Don’t worry, the children will tell me all I need to know.

51.  Of course I’ve got a pencil. I always carry them around with me for times like this. Keep it.

52.  As a ‘year leader’ straight from college, you’ll know far more than me.

53.  To classroom assistant: If you see me floundering, don’t offer to help – it’s hilarious.


Originally posted on Wednesday 9th March 2011

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