Thursday, October 31, 2013

Dear Subbing Perks

Dear Subbing Perks,

As challenging as being a substitute can be, you actually do exist.  Which is probably why we continue to do what we do--face classrooms full of children and actually get some learning accomplished in the short amount of time we have to learn the materials and execute the lesson plans.  And attach some names to new faces while we're at it.  Here is my list of #TopTen Subbing Perks:

10.  Little girls bring me flowers.  I get flowers when kids return from outdoor recess, just because.  These little dandelion flowers didn't even make it through the day, but their sentiments are definitely long-lasting.  #MadeMyDay

9.  Little boys give me big, wet kisses.  Okay, one boy.  One loving, affectionate boy who planted his face into my belly and smooched it, marking the spot like a lipstick kiss imprint.  Except instead of lipstick it was drool.  As in saliva.  As in ewww my shirt is wet.  #GottaLoveKids

8.  I work as much or as little as I want.  I can accept as many posted assignments as I like, and I can block as many hours or days as I need to, and I'm loving this flexibility.  Today, I was able to take the day off to attend the kiddos' classroom Halloween parties in the afternoon, after making some spooky Halloween treats (mummy dogs and cheesy broomsticks) for them in the morning.  #FlexibilityRocks

7.  The work day ends when the bell rings.  There are no lessons to plan or homework to grade.  Which means I can still schlep kiddos to after-school activities AND WRITE THIS BLOG.  #TrulySavedByTheBell

6.  I get a natural transition for getting back into teaching.  Years ago when I'd walk down the halls of the kiddos' school, I'd think to myself: how on earth am I ever going to get back to teaching?  It's been so long!  Setting up a classroom would take weeks let alone trying to teach anything!  But now I can actually see it happening, and it doesn't seem as impossible or faraway.  #LifeLongLearner

5.  I have a part-time job and I am a substitute teacher.  #I<3StrikeoutTypography

4.  I'm following my yellow brick road.  That hopefully leads me to a suitable teaching position in the future.  No better way to do it than subbing in different schools.  #NetworkingAvenue

3.  Excellent social media addiction therapy.  Being unplugged is no longer as traumatic for me as it was before <blush>.  So the day's stream will still be there at the end of the day.  And I'll get to reading blogs when I get to them.  The offline world is full of real, live peeps, without which social media have no foundation for survival.  Carpe diem.  Seize the day.  #CatchUpAtNight

2.  Easiest (though not healthiest) weight loss method, ever.  Teachers have very little time for breaks and lunch as it is.  Trying to read the lesson plans + making sure I go to the restroom during a tiny lunch break = not enough time to eat.  In the past weeks, I have fully experienced the sensation of low blood sugar and pangs of hunger so striking that I had to stop what I was doing and EAT.  My body had ran out of reserves, I guess.  I used to yell at Dear Husband for skipping lunch cuz he was too busy to eat.  Touche.  #DontTryThisAtHomeKids

1.  I finally hired a cleaning service.  Hallelujah!  Not that I ever loved to clean, but I just couldn't justify the cost when I wasn't working.  This has been a huge weight lifted off my shoulders since I haven't gotten around to cleaning for so long.  Goodbye, cobwebs; goodbye, dust bunnies!  Hello, time to actually fold laundry and de-clutter the house!  #MajorFistPump

Our district now refers to substitute teachers as "guest teachers."  I guess that sounds a little more official and a little less makeshift.  Some have called me a crazy lady for doing what I do.  But I am a teacher, guest or not, and I do it because I love it.

So, Dear Subbing Perks, I'm glad I have you to count on at this time.  Life is full of surprises: I had never considered being a substitute teacher.  But this opportunity just happened to land magically in my lap and right now, I couldn't be happier with what I've got going on.  I'm exhausted but fulfilled, busy but grateful, and teaching and learning.  



  1. I'm glad you're able to see through the busy times and exhaustion and recognize the perks. There is no way I could do what you do :)

    1. Thanks, Janna. Exhaustion is why I'm responding so late. That and I've caught some yucky germs from the kids. Comes with the territory, I suppose. Thanks for reading!

  2. What a great way to remain positive about subbing, considering your past post on being so very busy with subbing and life and things were just a bit cray cray in your life :). Completely natural!! Kids are so genuine when expressing their feelings. You know they mean it when they give you gifts or give you a hug or kiss! It puts a big smile on my face when J gives each of his teachers a hug (and maybe a kiss) at the end of the day. It reassures me that they are treating him right and that he likes being there. I seriously LOVE those broomsticks and mummies! I HAVE to do the mummies next year since J LOVES hot dogs! Lastly, yaaaay for getting a cleaning service. I sooooooo want to get one. How often does yours come? Big company? Local one? And do you get benefits as a sub, like healthcare?

    1. J loves hot dogs? Know what I did with my leftover hot dogs? Fried rice with hot dogs! Have you ever had this neo-Chinese classic? So yummy! Bacon fried rice is also awesome! Thanks, Lisa!

    2. So is SPAM fried rice, as my hubs introduced me to when we got married.

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