Full-time teachers get a prep period, a time that they use for planning or grading or whatever else they may need to get done. Subs, however, don't need to plan. So, whenever a teacher needs coverage for one period, we subs are sent to cover. (Or sometimes they don't have enough subs to cover all the teachers, so they'll send a different sub each period; but that's for a different post.)
It's a bit irksome (I like a break in the day), but where I am we get paid for the extra, so I have no reason to complain.
Today I was covering for the photography teacher. It was a pretty easy gig. The students worked on what they had to work on, and I just had to periodically check the darkrooms to make sure the students weren't doing anything they shouldn't (they weren't).
On the prep, I was asked to cover another class. Severely handicapped special ed. Wow, what a difference!
The special ed. room had five or six aides. I ended up helping a couple kids who were working on their spelling (words like bite, dive, I, and tie). And they were struggling with it (alphabetizing and completing a crossword puzzle). I tried to be as helpful as I could. Basically, I followed the aides' lead.
The other thing about classes like these is that they are exhausting. When I went back to the photo class, I could have fallen asleep. (I didn't, of course.) It took a little time to transition back into regular class mode.
Today's prep period was 4th, so I had three periods before and two after the special ed. class. It was an interesting way to break up the day.