Substitute Folders and Binders
Not sure what types of material to leave for your substitute. Other teachers can help. Check out what they leave in their classrooms!
I have a "sub folder" that I leave on my desk. It's one of those binders with the clear plastic cover on the outside, and I've slipped in a bright pink paper that clearly reads "Substitute Teacher Folder," with a "Welcome to our Class" logo. My colleagues know where it is, too, just in case. I usually leave detailed plans for the teacher even when I am very sick, but there have been times (especially when I was pregnant and put on bed rest a couple of times until I could see the doctor) when the sub folder was VERY helpful.|
Here's what I put in it:
Front pocket: lunch count tickets, referral slips, office passes
The first thing I put in the rings of the binder is the seating chart. My school has a very good substitute teacher handbook that...
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I am a third year teacher who just switched schools. I am currently creating a new folder for my new position. I used a three ring binder. Inside the front cover I put a list of 101 ways to praise a child. Then I put a table of contents page. I started with a cute teacher joke and a short one paragragh thank note to the sub. The contents are as follows:|
1. Maps of classroom and school - label where to find things
2. Schedule - one for teacher and one for students if different from yours
3. Seating chart
4. Important Information - teacher references, helpful students, daily routines, etc.
5. Discipline Plan
6. Helpful forms - Substitute report form, class checklists, etc.
7. Duty Schedule
8. Alternative Lesson plans for all subjects - in case there was no time to leave specific plans or the...
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I've done this for 28 years, and it has worked wonderfully. In my spare time (HA!), I create a substitute folder for each day of the week (this way some of the work can be planned in sequential order if I'm out 2 or more days in a row). I plan review work. Whether it be in the form of worksheets (sometimes if I don't have time to run the copies myself, I leave a master copy of the worksheet with a note attached, "Need to run-off "X" # of copies) or in their books, I put things in that are definitely on our CRCT test in the spring. A little review never hurts. The sub is not responsible for introducing anything new, just guiding the review. I place the folder with my teacher editions near my desk marked in large print "SUBSTITUTE TEACHER'S LESSON PLANS" and day of the week marked on...
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(Kindergarten) I put together a binder for my sub and included: 1. an explanation of our daily schedule - specifics about what we do for each thing. 2. a list of our favorite songs and I made a special CD with those songs on it (so she wouldn't have to search through all my gazillion loose CDs to find one song.) 3. a list of all the greetings, group activities, and songs we do for our morning meeting and where all the needed materials are. 4. a list of our reading and math centers, expectations, and where the materials are 5. a list of transitions & attention getters that my kids are most familiar with. 6. our behavior plan. 7. the after school happenings chart 8. list of parent names & phone numbers 9. my cell number|
Our unit of study for my sub was going to be All...
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In my emergency sub folder I have a class list, seating chart, a list of who goes where when math and reading is going on. I have three resource kids that leave at different times during the day. I leave a list of who they can go to for adult help and three names of my students that I know will help the sub. I leave generic lesson plans that I know they can do and the kids can do. I have copies of math puzzles and states pages for extra work that I leave in a box next to my folder. I also let the sub know where the bathroom is and where the cafeteria and specials are located in my school building. I leave a piece of paper attached to the back so that the sub can tell me what was covered and who...
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I always put work in my sub folder that I know the kids can do and is a review. You don't want the sub to try to teach new material unless you know they are really good. A simple math that you know they can do, a writing activity, a reading activity, and I usually include some art type things that will take a long time to do. The main thing is to keep them busy and quiet. I hate to say "busy work" but that's what you end up doing. |
You need to include all of the pertinent information about your class that you can think of. Spell out the routines and times for everything you do throughout the day. Make sure you note any kids that go to special classes and what time they go. Also make note of the medicine takers and what time they go to the...
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Most schools require a folder in the office and have a form. Include:|
Daily schedule including specials
Individual children who leave for special classes and their schedule
All serious health concerns for individual students
Usual location of teacher manuals and worksheets
Names of two or three reliable students
Class seating chart
Make sure fire drill directions are at the door
List of students taking bus if grades k - 1.
Recess duty and work should be in your plans.
Nice to have rules: bathroom proceedures and special privledges (they will try everything)
PLEASE keep the folder updated, so many teachers do this in August and never review class list or schedule changes. Hope this helps.
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What would I like to see in a sub folder. Every teacher has his/ her own way of getting the attention of students. What signals do you use that way the sub is not totally confused at children giving unknown signals. I had one class where half the children raised their hands during announcements. In another class that would put a finger up when he/ she needed to use the restroom.|
Seating chart is a must, please keep it updated.
Extension numbers for team teachers/ office in case you need assistance.
Emergency plans! Once there is an emergency, the teacher updates it upon return.
List of reliable students (2-3) and a list of potentially troublesome students.
Location of adult restrooms, teachers lounge
Location of teacher manuals
Procedure for end of day.
Routine. What's done first, second etc. How long do you give students to...
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Be sure to include like an extra seating chart, what to do in case of an emergency, (ie: fire drill, hurricane drill, tornado drill, lock-down procedures etc.).|
Make sure it also lists students with special medical and needs.
A sub folder is mandatory in my school, and the principal keeps them in a manila envelope in her office. This way should something happen last minute she can grab our folder and take over our class until a sub gets there. (She has had to use these before.) But anyway, Sub folders are great!
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*big red note on folder: please leave on my desk (i've had a couple subs return it to the office (????? why? it wasn't picked up in the office). i realize some school do it this way.|
*a page of pictures of my students' faces along with their names
*i have a (those of you that visit proteacher often know that i can be verbose and like things "just so") list of Important Information for Substitutes--Please Read. It lists everything that i think would make the day run easier for a guest teacher: phone numbers of who to call and where to send a behavior problem; my bathroom policy; info about classroom jobs; note to please not grade any work, etc. (if i have a new sub lined up, i ask him/her to come in early to give enough time to read)
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It drove me crazy to write detailed lessons each time I was out. I created two narrative lesson plans on the computer. One address our routine s at the first of the year and the other addresses it later. I left "insert lesson here" for reading, math, spelling. These are in our weekly plans for the office. The sub has a narrative and only has to refer to the curriculum plan to insert the lesson. Since this is on the computer, it is easy to change if need be.|
A schedule, dependable children list, roll, labels with names, going home form, medical needs form, and special needs form along with fire drill, tornado drill and lock-down drill instructions is included in the folder. On the schedule I highlight the times we are out of the room. My team created a simple check sheet for discipline that is also...
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I'm in a middle school, so classes change every 45 minutes.|
*Detailed lesson plans
*Map of the school
*Instructions for Emergency Lockdowns, Fire and Tornado Emergencies
and Crisis Evacuation plans
*Daily schedule (times of each class, lunch, etc.)
*Instructions on who to contact for behavior issues, etc (names and
*Information on who needs to go to the office for medications and when
If I have a good educational article I may leave that. I have 2 paraprofessionals that are in and out of my room throughout the day, so I also leave their schedules and a note explaining that they can probably answer any questions.
I place all necessary books, worksheets, etc. with post-it notes identifying which class, etc. it is for, on my desk with the sub folder on top.
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