I awoke early Tuesday morning and decided if I couldn't "land" a job by continuously refreshing the "Subfinder" website for "Available Jobs". One job did come up, and it honestly took about 15 minutes of "refreshing" the site for it to become unlocked and available for me to take. (Those are jobs that the system is probably in the process of calling "preferred subs", and it only unlocks the jobs when those preferenced folks turn it down). The position was for third grade in a school furthest away from where I live (about 30 minutes drive), and most out in the boondocks, located very near the McKenzie river and on the route to our Cascade mountains. 15 years ago, I subbed at this school quite a bit - it's a wonderful community and the school is situated in a beautiful area - so despite the headache of getting the family up and going that much quicker, it was worth it.
The job turned into a two day assignment at the end of day one. (The teacher's child was sick). The beginning of Tuesday was much more chaotic than I had hoped for, but by the end of the day, I had kind of gotten into the groove a bit and learned the kids' names - so when the request came to return, I was all about it.
This little timeline will give you a taste of what my Wednesday sub day looked like:
7:15 - Drop Mikayla off, having left Brayden with his "When Mom Subs Checklist Before Leaving" to get to his school in a timely manner. I was literally REJOICING that there were enough cloud breaks in the sky to actually spot some blue and a little bit of sunshine....what a difference that makes for my attitude at this time of year.
8:15 - The door is opened in the classroom for students to come in- I greet each one and record whether or not they are having hot or cold for lunch. I praise myself for only forgetting about 5 of the 29 kids' names.... Names which included: Jabin (boy), Davin (girl), Cedar (boy), and Kazden (boy). It's always the best behaved quiet kids I forget because I'm not having to use their name aloud to redirect them......
8:20 - A student by the name of "Braden" =) asks if he can bring his baby lamb into class to share. I'm a bit taken aback thinking when we might fit that into the schedule when he tells me his mom is standing in the hallway outside holding "Annie" the lamb. Oh...well in that case...bring her on in. I rush to grab my cell phone, set up the camera app and completely disregard my professionalism to beg the mom to hold the lamb and take my picture. At least I let all the kids go through the line to pet the lamb first before taking my final turn.....It was a blissful little moment for me. (And, rest assured, because baby Annie has a name, she will not end up on a dinner plate in the future...the mom told me this).
9:00 - I'm asked by a student if she can go to the bathroom because "Sue" gave her a wedgie. This strikes concern to me as it sounds a little too much like physical harassment to be ignored. I jot details down - including an incident that occurred the day prior regarding her cutting another boy's hair with scissors when he laid his head on her desk. (Neither circumstance did I witness). "Sue" had appeared to me to be mild-mannered and quiet....but, better safe than sorry.
9:30 - Kids go to library - I discuss "Sue" scenario with secretary - she says they are "familiar with Jane" and passes my documentation to the principal.
10:15 - Kids at recess. I use my alone time to extract one of the three baby chicks from their warm heat-lamped box in the classroom and take a picture of it. I didn't hold it very long as I was afraid it'd jump, break its legs and then I would never be welcomed back......
10:30 - Kids to p.e. It's a special activity day as one of the moms came in to teach the entire school moves to the song "Dynamite" to perform in a flash-mob style at the upcoming Multi-cultural night. The parents don't know about this, so it will occur in the middle - unannounced, and all of the kids will spontaneously break into dance. I had so much fun going a bit out of my comfort zone to help demonstrate the moves (I caught on pretty quick) - and then later on, bringing the CD I actually had in my car with the song on it, to practice with them after lunch. So great....
11:40 - Sharing time. Sue raises her hand. I call on her. This is what she says....
"I just wanted to let you all know that for sure my sister is pregnant. She's 16."
(Collective gasp in the classroom from myself and the kids).
"She got pregnant last weekend."
(I interrupt at this point and suggest that she meant 'she found out she was pregnant last weekend' - Sue agrees that that is what she meant).
"It's gonna be a boy. I'm gonna be an aunt. The reason my sister got pregnant is because she forgot to take....."
(At this point I immediately stop her and suggest that the rest of the class doesn't need to know these details....fortunately, we are literally 'saved by the bell' for lunch....)
11:45 - I return to the office to share this story with the secretary....we both laugh and she decides to also add this information to what was previously given to the principal
1:00 - Reading - I am reading aloud a story about a girl who's grandpa died. I decide to share a story about my dog dying prior to me senior year in high school - and what a horrendous summer that was due to breaking my ankle and all sorts of other reasons. Just like popcorn, one after the other of the kids' hands fly into the air to share a story about the death of a pet or an injury they had. We spend a good 30 minutes (while the kids moved on to independently do the reading workbook) listening to their stories...
2:20 - The principal enters the classroom and just stands in the back for 10 minutes watching. That's always a bit nerve-wracking - I tried my hardest to make going over the answers to a math test as educationally stimulating as possible. Finally, he hands me a post-it note that he'd like to have "Jane" come down to the office at 2:30.
2:40 - Say good-bye to the kids, write up several "positive behavior awards", leave a very detailed account to the teacher and consider it a VERY memorable/fun day in my life as a substitute.