How to be a Super Hero Supply Teacher... Part 2!

3) Respect yourself, your colleagues and your students.

As a professional educator, this almost goes without saying, however, in our busy times of short concentration spans, fast food, faster internet access and instant gratification, this basic social tenet can sometimes be overlooked in favour of just ‘getting things done’! Especially in the school environment where the emphasis is all too often upon exam results and league tables, having mutual respect is even more valuable. Treat yourself kindly, don’t be too critical of your lessons, or your teaching, have realistic expectations of each one. Likewise, respect your pupils, and understand that as a supply teacher it is often an impossible task to know each students with them, you will find that more often than not, this is reciprocated. Your colleagues, who in this case are your fellow teachers, they are going through a very similar experience to you, so recognise this and fine some common ground to talk about, a little solidarity goes a long way!

4) Make your lessons fun, entertaining and enjoyable for yourself.

‘Dry’ subjects don’t have to be boring! So, its Monday morning and you’ve got double Maths with a notoriously troublesome Year 9 class. The material you have been left by the absent teacher is scanty and uninspiring to say the least, so the challenges really on! Each challenge in life is poised to become a fantastic opportunity, so grab it and take it by the horns! This is where you not only get to on the creative and ground -breaking resources you have spent years collating, but also your tool box of classroom management tricks. AT the end of the day, empathise with your students, if you would find your lesson dull and uninspiring, then so will they!

5) Enlist the help of your students to make your time more effective in class.

Human nature factoid – people like to be of assistance. Even teenagers! It’s a trick that will serve you well, even with the seemingly most unruly class, but select the most responsible looking class member and ask for their assistance where you can. This may be as simple as getting names for the rest of the class, or enlisting with errands to gather resources, etc. Whatever form it takes, involving members of the class, creates a sense of a team mentality and in providing them with more ownership over their learning environment, thus making them more enthusiastic learners.

Join us for the final instalment of your guide soon!

Kirsty Jandrell, is the Managing Director of TARA Professional Recruitment and a qualified Primary Teacher.

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