As a supply teacher there are some considerations to bear in mind, ensuring that your working day goes as smoothly as possible. Whilst you probably won’t be able to cover every eventuality, there are certain things you can do and prepare for to get you through to 3.30! Helpful golden rules for every supply teacher include things like, finding out if the work has been pre-set, with teaching plans left for you. It is a good idea to always have some work prepared in the event of a position at short notice. You may also want to check if there will be a white board available to you. Make sure you arrive at the school in good time, so that you can be made aware of any key policies, school rules, read through any teachers written plans and note where you can arrange any resources.
Remember to take a set of back up plans with you, in case of any mishaps like existing plans being mislaid. It is wise to make yourself known to other members of staff at the school, including the caretaker and office staff, they may be able to answer any queries or assist you if the need arises. Its nice to create a good impression by smiling and saying hello to other teachers, teaching assistants etc.
The beginning of the day is important and will affect how the rest of the day goes, if you know all of the relevant routines etc, the children will see that all is usual and that you are in charge.
In order to best utilise any teaching assistants within the class or adjust any lesson plans accordingly, you should be made aware of any children with particular needs. You should also discover if there are any children who are taking medication, and general information like the daily timetable, specific class behaviour rules, the writing style and how children are meant to move around the building. Learn where the fire escapes are and the procedure in place in the event of a fire. Find out from the teaching assistant what the toilet rules are, generally there are a maximum of two pupils using the bathroom at one time.
Methods practised by many supply teachers include, giving children an immediate challenge, by for instance, writing the name of a well known story character on the board and getting the class to write a list of as many words associated with that character as they can. The child with the most words can get a reward hand stamp. Try to assertain vaguely which groups the children are in so there is no confusion [either for them or you!]. It is a good idea to have some ‘time filler’, activities which can be carried out when there is a short gap in the timetable.
A significant portion of the famous Roman landmark, Hadrian’s Wall exists in North East England, stretching 73 miles across the country from Wallsend, Newcastle to Bowness-on-Solway in Cumbria. There are Roman artefacts at regular intervals along the length of the wall, in museums and sites, where stunningly recreated replicas of Roman buildings and a dramatic cityscape of Tyneside can be found. The most spectacular part of the wall is thought to be the section between Birdoswald in Cumbria and Housesteads in Northumbria National Park. Hadrian’s Wall reached a height of 6 metres in some areas and was built in around 6 years by 3 legions [15,000 men].
It was an incredible feat of engineering, winding its way over rolling countryside, across rivers and through crags and valleys, and it is nowadays a magnet for ramblers and hikers.
A new and unusual course is to begin at Northumberland College in hexham, teaching a traditional skill that has been practised in the area for centuries. Students can gain a certificate in Creative Leather Work, taught at the college’s, Hexham Centre on St Mary’s Wynd, by local craftsman Andy bates. Included in the course will be a study of the history of leatherwork, as well as business opportunities and enterprise. Students will be taught on how to become successful designers and makers. Andy has produced pieces for Grayson Perry, the Turner Prize-winning potter, the Lindisfarne Gospels exhibition in Durham, the Discovery Channel, Channel 4 and the Grange Park Opera, amongst numerous others. He has also been commissioned by Bloomsbury to write a book about leather and working with it.
The Sage Gateshead, is a centre for musical education and performance, it is also used for conferences, consisting of three separate buildings, encased in a glass shell like structure. The centre has an exciting range of accessible courses for all ages, and an active interaction with local schools and academies, attracting many educational visits. The outer building has an impressive almost surreal architectural design of curved glass and steel. The unique construction of the centre incorporated a ‘spongy’ concrete mix, which has a higher than usual air capacity, in order to improve the acoustics. The dimensions of each hall are adjustable, making them conducive to a variety of different sounds, and catering to a wide range of music types.
According to the Times Higher Education’s 2014 THE Best University Workplace survey, Sunderland is one of the best universities to work at in the UK. In an online survey, 4,500 higher education staff from 150 UK institutions, completed the form. The University of Sunderland scored highly in several categories which included questions about how the leadership was performing, work responsibility balance, working conditions and benefits, being taken seriously and being happy to remain employed there. The result was a big thumbs up for Sunderland University!