The children were so kind, loving, and helpful as I prepared for a few days out of the classroom. They helped me organize science supplies and followed changed direction in light of the unexpected change in the routine.
The principal helped out too giving me an extra hour to xerox a study guide for the substitute to follow for my 75 math students.
I am humbled by the great show of support of those students, the principal, and so many other colleagues that lent a hand and offered further support if needed. Sometimes it takes a time of need to really demonstrate to you how much love and care surrounds you.
I left the students with the polygon unit of study. It's an easy-to-teach unit that students grasp quickly so I knew it would be a fairly easy unit for a substitute teacher unfamiliar with the class to lead and teach. I also left some good related tech practice sites too for students who finish early or when there's extra time. Silent reading and a science study of matter and their properties are on the agenda too. In general almost every child in the class enjoys reading, and though the science lesson is a bit cumbersome, they'll enjoy working to identify the many varied properties of a large number of objects as the first investigation for our matter and energy unit.
When I return, I'll engage students in some portfolio reflection work related to our last unit of study, and then we'll begin the fraction unit. In science, students will study volume, and for reading and math RTI will take up where we left off before vacation.
Also the fact that I work in a shared model has made this unexpected hiatus from the classroom much more manageable because while the students will not have me for their teacher for a few days, they'll continue to have my partner teachers who lead the English Language Arts, social studies, and some science study. They know my colleagues well, and if there are any problems, I feel comfortable that the students will seek my colleagues help. In the one-teacher-one-classroom model you don't have this kind of advantage when the unexpected strikes.
So now I'll attend to family matters knowing that when I return the study materials are ready and the students will have completed a number of important lessons in the meantime. Onward.