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"There is no substitute for a good substitute teacher."

Need training but short on cash? District ignoring you? Here are 3 easy steps for training yourself!!!

Step 1: Read, read, read.
Pick up a copy of a book on substitute teaching at your local library. There are many available if you're willing to search through the card catalog--or not many libraries offer an inter-library loan exchange. Read through several books to pick up ideas, tips, or lesson plans. Remember, though, that these may work for one person, but not for another. Jot down the ideas you find most valuable and that you may actually use. You can also photocopy limited amounts of the book if writing out an entire lesson is not an option. You can also buy these books on the internet or at your local bookstore.
Observe the Pros!
One more great way of gaining ideas is to observe a professional teacher in action. Check with the school's secretary (these ladies and gents often know exactly which teachers are pros--remember, they hear parent complaints first). Then, schedule an appointment with that teacher during a time when they will be delivering a lesson. Ask to meet with them after school for a few minutes so that you can ask some pre-prepared questions. It is a good idea to spend time with these pros for many reasons: you'll pick up new ideas, you'll know what turns students on to learning, and you'll endear yourself that school's principal (good P.R.).
Form a Coalition
If all else fails, you can gather together with fellow substitutes in your area and have a "Share Fair". Everyone brings one good idea, tip, lesson plan or even a horror story. It is a good chance to network with veteran substitutes and have them offer advice. You may want to keep this club informal or make it more formal and hold monthly meetings. Its a good way to share ideas and vent about situations you found difficult. If someone volunteers to keep meeting notes, it is a good way to collect a wealth of ideas in the form of a newsletter. You can also check out various websites which allow you to start an "online" group with other substitutes.

STT Online: The FIRST Newsletter for Substitute Teachers...Now ONLINE!