How to be a Super Hero Supply Teacher... Final Instalment!
Tip 6 - Don’t be afraid to use humour where appropriate and have fun!
Such a cliché now, but so true! Sarcasm, is of course not the aim of the excercise here and should be avoided at all times. There are plenty more avenues for you to display your more human side of your personality. Again it about creating a collaborative environment and making your experience and conversely that of your pupils a more enjoyable one. Inspiring resources and approaches to learning are invaluable, and basic classroom management skills, which focus on positive reinforcement rather than sanctions, are always preferable. This way everyone emerges at the end of the lesson, full of enthusiasm for what they have just learnt and eager for more and you surface with a satisfied smile on your face rather than a harassed frown. A utopian dream? Totally unrealistic? Once again, it starts with your attitude and moves on beautifully from there.
Tip 7 - Connect with others in your position
Life as a supply teacher can be a lonely one, but it doesn’t have to be. If you are on a longer term assignment, you usually benefit from being able to build relationships with teachers and students around you, and in this respect, you enjoy a similar experience to that of a permanent member of staff. However, if you choose a more flexible approach and opt to be a ‘day-to day’ supply hero/ine, then you could literally find yourself in a different school for every day of the week! Exciting, adrenaline inducing yet potentially isolating. This is where your supply agency can be of so much help to you. Does your agency encourage you to mix with its fellow supply staff? Most agencies worth their salt, should host regular ‘Teacher Parties’ throughout the year and also offer you Continuing Professional Development courses, not only to enable you to meet those performing a similar role to you, but also to look after your professional welfare and help you to develop your skills and adapt to the ever-changing political and legislative landscape. Ask your agency for help! That’s what there are there for!
I hope that you have enjoyed the tips and that you can use them to benefit you in your daily supply work and truly show your Super Hero colours!!
Kirsty Jandrell, is the Managing Director of TARA Professional Recruitment and a qualified Primary Teacher.