When I was in the classroom one of my least favorite things was having to leave sub plans. It always seemed like it was more work to take the day off rather than arranging for a substitute. If I'm being honest I wasn't always the best at preparing for a substitute. I remember having to scramble to make copies, typing up my lesson plans last minute, and always worrying that I would forget something important. That's when I decided to create my own templates to make my life so much easier! I also want to share with you my top 4 tips that you can use when creating your own sub plans.
Tip 1: Have Sub Plans in One Place
When I was teaching I learned that it was so much easier to have everything the substitute would need in one place. Start by getting yourself a binder with dividers and labels. Designate a tab for each section such as class lists, seating chart, daily schedule, school information, etc. It will help your substitute stay organized and alleviate a lot of questions that may come up.
Tip 2: Create a Class Schedule
Make sure your substitute is aware of beginning and end times for lunch, recess, and fine arts. Also, it is important that they know the dismissal time. I always found it was easier for me to type out the daily schedule using the editable template. There is also a separate template for fine arts and all of this information can go right into your substitute binder.
Tip 3: Classroom Management Procedures
Include some basic classroom management procedures that you use with your students. This may include classroom routines, attention getters, discipline procedures, etc. Try to keep things simple as the substitute typically has limited time to review the plans. If you are looking for some new ideas, my students loved using table points! It was incredibly effective and I came up with a great method that worked for my class. It's also very substitute-friendly!
Tip 4: Keep Lessons Simple
When creating lesson plans for your substitute try to utilize resources you already have. A lot of times I would have activities saved that we didn't have time to complete. I would incorporate those activities into my lesson plans so that my students could have additional practice. Also, incorporating independent reading time into your plans is another great option. Last but not least, make sure to leave some early finisher activities for students that are done quickly.
What other tips do you have for creating sub plans? I would love to hear them below!