When you are
working as a supply teacher either for a school that you are familiar with or
through an agency it is not always clear what your responsibilities are beyond
the obvious ones of teaching the class and making sure that safeguarding
guidelines are followed to the letter. Some schools have a clear policy on what
they expect of a supply teacher but many haven’t so if you want to be offered
work on a regular basis it is important that you create the right impression
and fulfil the duties expected of you in a particular school.
teachers whose classes you cover will leave work for the children to do and
expect this to be carried out as their guidance. This is especially the case
with older children who often have a fixed curriculum to cover in a given
timeframe. If this is the case it is important to carry out the teacher’s
instructions as fully as possible. A brief note to the teacher outlining how
the day went is a valuable way to communicate but should focus on the positive
aspects if possible.
a supply teacher is needed to cover for an unexpected absence no work has been
allocated so it is a good idea to have lessons up your sleeve that can be
adapted to the age group you are teaching. Always mark any work that either you
or the teacher has set, checking with the school marking policy or a senior
member of staff if in doubt as to the level of marking required.
people the thought of sitting exams fills them with dread and prevents them
from achieving their academical potential as they avoid studying subjects that
require a final exam assessment. There are however steps that can be taken to
minimise this anxiety and make the prospect of sitting an exam less stressful
prepared for the exam by having revised appropriately can help to boost
confidence as can being part of a study group where revision is shared by
students undertaking the same course.
On the day
of the exam it is vital to have had sufficient sleep the night before even
though this may seem difficult. By using relaxation techniques and meditation
this is achievable. Eating a healthy but light meal is a good idea and keeping
hydrated with water or juice is also advisable.
exercises have been shown to relieve anxiety symptoms and instructions for how
to perform them correctly can be found online. Arriving ten minutes early to
the exam location is advisable as nothing builds tension like rushing in at the
last minute but avoid talking to others who may be showing anxiety instead play
a game on your phone or read a magazine.
that most people feel nervous before tests and reward yourself with a treat
when the exam is over.
are taking examinations at the end of your secondary education or at a higher
level you will have been encouraged to revise the curriculum you have been
studying to further your chances of getting good grades but it is difficult to
know where to begin and what strategies are most effective.
teachers and tutors will be able to guide you on the essential knowledge that
you will need to have and also on frequently asked questions that may be posed
but this should only be considered as a guide as they will not have prior
approach is to write down the key points of the area you are studying as a
reminder. This will usually be enough to enable you to recall the detail if
needed. Mnemonics are useful to help remember important phrases or lists and
have been used throughout education as an effective learning tool. Some
students find that sticky notes placed around the house can be a good strategy
when it comes to recalling facts as it almost becomes a subliminal way of
another person can be a helpful way to revise especially if you are both
sitting the same exams as you can test each other on facts whilst also revising
If you are
returning to work after maternity leave or simply wish to reduce the hours you
are working, you may be considering taking on a job share. This is often an
excellent way to address the work life balance that many teachers find
challenging and can even benefit the pupils in school.
question to ask is how the job is going to be divided up. Is it going to be a fifty-fifty
split or is one employee going to do more than another? Obviously, this will
result in a difference in pay too and will be directly proportional to the
hours or days worked.
consideration is curriculum subject responsibility. Some job shares work best
when a teacher’s strengths are utilised so that, for example a teacher who
enjoys and is good at art leads that subject and a teacher whose strengths lie
in technology takes responsibility for computer studies. This strategy is going
to be of benefit to the pupils in the class as they are getting twice the
expertise than they would normally.
some curriculum subjects that both teachers will need to teacher however the
burden of planning and marking can be shared making these time-consuming tasks
many different types of primary schools ranging from the large inner-city
school with hundreds of pupils to a small rural school with possibly only
thirty pupils on roll. Which ever sort of school you find yourself in, one
thing is certain the pupils in that school will have to face sitting exams. It
may be internal exams, or those compulsory exams instigated by the authorities.
In a small
school setting, there may only be a small number of children sitting the exams
and therefore the rest of the class need to be accommodated and catered for. As
staffing is sometimes an issue this needs careful planning in advance of the
with parents beforehand even though there may only be two or three sets of
parents is essential to answer any questions and allay any fears they may have
concerning the administration of the exams and give them ideas on how their
children can be better prepared.
having to sit compulsory exams of any sort can be very stressful for pupils in
any school, in a small primary school setting the children may have more
opportunity to discuss their concerns and fears thus minimising their stress.