So over the last 3 years I have been relief teaching in the UK, Australia and now a New Zealand. I have been into many different types of schools, classes and taught a whole range of children. Through my experience I have to see how important a few things are in education and what I need to have on hand to help me through the day.
I have a small notebook to keep good ideas in. I have seen so much which had inspired me to use in my future teaching and for a class when I settle into one school. I jot down notes onto post-it’s which I then sick into my notebook or straight into the book.
If I’m using a resource which I can take an extra of and it will fit into the book I pop that in as well.
I also have a selection of stickers on me. You never know the age of the class your teaching. Even if you do know before hand you may get moved or have to take a younger class for an hour. The big kids really like stickers as well I’ve found.
I keep the notebook and my stickers in a small plastic pouch to keep it from the wear and tear of my hand bag.
I find it very important to have a whistle on hand as well, you never know when you have to go outside to do sports or just want to play a game.
I keep a variety of pens in my bag as well for use marking, filling in forms and making notes.
This year I was given a 2015 diary to keep track of my schools, notes about the school, classes taken and when I was there. This has been really helpful. Before I’ve kept notes on my phone which is fine but I’ve changed phone before and lost them all. Not fun!
I don’t take folders of planned lessons around to each school with me. I know people who cart around boxes of supplies. I was getting the bus /tram /train to school and never knew how far I had to walk, so I didn’t want to be lugging that around. I managed just fine without and probably had less stress.
If no work had been left, this happens very rarely I find, I use this simple format for the day:
1 hour reading (using the normal format if the kids know it, if not – shared story, independent reading, then some shared thoughts on the books)
1 hour writing (free writing if they don’t have a topic or theme to adapt)
1 hour maths (maths games, posters to show what they have learnt on a topic they are studying or have recently done)
1 hour topic (posters of what they know, a piece of writing, a play or any form of showing what they have learnt so far)
* class sharing (work or items/ stories about them)
* an inside game
*an outside game
* free time if they’ve been good
* shared story
I find being creative and flexible is far better than carrying around a while bunch of paper.
A Wandering Woman’s Travels