Saturday, December 11, 2010


Lots of times when I meet a new sub, I'll say, "So do you go over to the high school too?" And more times than not, I'll get a "NO WAY!" before I can finish my sentence.

There are certain risks going over there...headaches, heart failure, stroke, disfigurement, not to mention to risk of ambulatory phychotic treatment are all possible side effects of being a sub in a high school, but you usually survive. All the kids think their real teachers are mean...but nice don't work here. Even some of the sweetest ladies I know are teachers and subs at the high school and have a reputation but after one day over there, you'd understand why.

The minute kids see a sub they get excited. Even the sweet looking girls will try to deceive you tell you they are supposed to just sit there listening to MP3 players. Some come in talking about a fight that is supposed to happen during break, some smile at the sub and some come in and go to sleep immediately. I overhear kids talking about all kinds of various things from inappropriate to silly, to drugs, to everything under the sun, but if they are in quiet, private conversations after they have finished their work, I let them be. Nothing I can say or do will change their behavior outside of school. They get things like that from their real teachers. Some have actually flashed their hands in the air and said, "It's just a sub" when they realize they've said something borderline inappropriate too loudly. I can't stand that! It's like screeching fingernails down an old chalkboard!

Some kids, especially girls, tend to have the smart mouths...or attitude. They dislike when a sub is left no assignments but she teaches anyway...**grin** Yep, I may not know how to teach band or music class to high schoolers, but I know what symbolism is. So when people take advantage of quiet time, and use that to dance around the room, talk in their loud man voices about 15 dbs too loud, or ask to go to the restroom one by one...I whip out symbolism. "What is a symbol?" I ask, but I forgot this was music class so I got "a percussion instrument"...

We discussed symbolism in "The 12 Days of Christmas", they actually found it interesting-at least the 9th grade music class did...we even talked about "Every Rose Has its Thorn". We went over the various symbolic meanings of roses, their colors and even how Romans used the term 'sub-rosa' meaning under the rose at meetings, hanging roses above the meeting table at times which meant they kept that matter private/secret...we even discussed some rap and country songs. That worked for about 15 minutes...but I assured them I love to write and that if they got loud again, I'd have them pick a song and break it down, writing me the symbolic meanings of lyrics, etc.

I also assured them that I'll be back several times next month for that class and I'd have tons of writing assignments on standby....sometimes you just have to show them, you're not just a sub. Pretty soon the unruly ones will realize that I am no 

and if I leave some place for ambulatory psychotic treatment, it'll be from my home due to my own kids, not someone elses!

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