Well, I need to clearly clarify some things I said yesterday.
(I was not a cheerleader. But I was in Pep Club. And that's just as good. Especially because you didn't have to try out or do a dangerous back flip or anything. Anyone could be in Pep Club. And whether or not you were a cheerleader or a pep clubber, you still got dog bones thrown at you at away games. We were the bulldogs so it happened occasionally. And then at home games, we would shake our keys and chant "Go start the bus!" It was just as good to be in the pep club, as you can see.)
1. So . . . first of all, let's clarify the sub thing.
Yes. It's true. I hide books from subs.
Besides leaving subs the dictionary to read, I also leave various User's Manuals from our microwave or stove or dishwasher. There is plenty for the sub to read if there is extra time.
Okay, okay, okay.
I only hide the good books. And however many good books I think I own is for me to know and you to find out.
I appreciate what subs do. Truly. I have only subbed three days in my entire life. Two were for friends of mine when I was off track. It was first grade and I knew what I was doing. But it still felt weird. And the third day was in kindergarten. It was a really fun day and I left thinking I could teach it if I had to. Especially because our kinder day is still a half day. And that's all. No afternoon class. No early bird -- late bird thing. You just teach for half a day and then you prep. Or help out your partner. Or nap. I don't know, really. I've never done it.
In any case, I appreciate that subs walk into a strange class and have to figure out what to do and how it works . . . which is why I write a NOVEL of sub plans and pray the subs are fast readers and can finish the whole book before the kids arrive.
I have some go-to subs that I love and ask for every time. Plus the kids love them so it's a win-win. I don't like subs who leave a big mess at the end of the day. Trash on the floor, chairs pulled out, lunch boxes left behind, cubbies not cleaned out, etc. THAT annoys me. So did the sub who came when I had a REALLY challenging class and left this note: "I did the best I could."
And to clarify things further, I think there is a HUGE difference between a sub that is a credentialed teacher and could not get hired because of a sad state of affairs called Our State, and a sub that decided this would be a good gig instead of working as a . . . well, I can't think of anything that's polite so I'll stop there.
2. Student Teachers
I have had two and a half. The half was my good friend, Kelli. She started with another teacher on my team, and then that teacher went off track, so I inherited her when I came back on track. It was confusing, but Kelli needed a master teacher so I took her. Against my will. And with a bit of whining.
She was born to be a teacher. She was awesome.
We became great friends and then I was in her wedding. I'm sure that happens with every master teacher/student teacher relationship. Right?
The second student teacher I had was . . . she always . . . well, she never . . . and then she would . . . and so I had to . . .
Um. Well, I think, maybe, quite possibly, she didn't want to be a teacher.
So I was a little confused as to how she ended up in the credential program in the first place and then in my classroom.
The parents of my kids weren't very happy.
Neither was I.
But I have this confrontational phobia thing . . . so I didn't really do my job as a Master Teacher correctly. Unless you agree that my job was to let her bleed me dry of all my good ideas, evenings, mornings, enthusiasm, comforting, there-there-ing, reteaching, doing it over again, and planning every single thing with a back up plan just in case. Then I did a fine job.
I also let her talk me into speaking at her university to her "student teaching class" or what have you. They met once a week to discuss their experiences (or in her case, what she watched me re-do that day) and I went as a guest speaker. On a school night. And I had to drive to a place at least 30 miles away. I know. Shoulder shrug. I'm a martyr.
I have not heard from that girl since. Nope. Nada.
My third and final student teacher was two years ago.
She is now my friend, Kassie. She was also born to be a teacher, but the state didn't get that memo so she can't get a job to save her life. She subs (which is wonderful because then I don't have to write plans and she knows exactly how I run my classroom!) and has also done a long term for someone on my team. She deserves her own classroom. As do many of you.
Now you have it.
I'm not crazy.
Not so much, anyway.
I just like to teach. Children. Not grown people who want to become teachers.
And I want to read the books. In the right way. With the right voices.
I just do.
If I were to have a student teacher this year, I think I'd like to interview her first.
Maybe she could audition by reading a book???