I've worked one day this week so far. I subbed for a Spanish teacher. Quite a few students wanted to know exactly how much Spanish I knew. One wanted to know if I knew what the word "perro" was? I told him, and he said, "Wow, you're good." For those of you who don't know the word, it means "dog". I'm immediately skeptical of teenage boys, but I had a feeling that he was going to go where I didn't want him to go with that. Luckily, I was able to cut him off at the pass. (If you don't know what I mean, then . . . GOOD!) Anyway, another student said something and ended it with "Jesus Christ". I told him to watch his mouth, unless, of course, he was talking to Jesus. He said that he hadn't said "Jesus" but "Besus". I totally believed this, of course, and told him not to use "Besus" either, because he wasn't talking to him! Good grief! Such is the life, sometimes, of a substitute teacher. You gotta stay a little ahead of the game, if possible. I've learned to give sharp funny answers whenever I can. That day, thank God, my brain was in gear.
I've found so far, that for the most part, subbing is not bad. In fact, I've enjoyed getting to know the students. Most of the kids like me. If I get a couple of students that I know from church or the neighborhood, I just pretend that I don't know them until they decide that it's safe to acknowledge me. It all depends on how the class goes. They love the riddles. I'm having to look for more -- so if anyone has more -- particularly puzzles that can be done on a chalkboard -- let me know! One student on Tuesday came in the class and said, "I. LOVE. YOU!" He was so fervent. Cracked me up.
In fact, that day I had quite a few students that had been in classes with me before. Ninth graders last year. This year they seemed either 1) more subdued or 2) more beaten down at the beginning of a school year. I don't know. I do know that eighth and ninth graders are the hardest kids to deal with. They have a lot of angst going on.
I have a friend at church who also substitutes. She and I are going to go take the GACE together and hopefully we'll be on our way to getting certified by next year. It's nice to have someone to compare notes with. She's a lot like me -- laid back, enjoys life's humor. We were exchanging near-death experiences our kids have had. It's a wonder mine are all still alive. Seriously!
Another lady and I are in charge of 4th grade GAs at church. If you don't know about GAs, then obviously you're not from the South. GA's is a missions minded girls' group. We meet on Wednesday nights for an hour, after they've been in choir the hour before. By the time they get to us, they are HYPER. It's going to be an interesting year!