Thursday, January 2, 2020


I've been subbing a long time... 

Today's post from the wayback files goes along with yesterday's video post. It was the last week of school, and I had gotten assigned a science class. It turned out that the science class wasn't absent a teacher. The principal asked for another body in the room to help the teacher control his classes during finals. 

I didn't put too much on the blog at the time, but it's been ten years, so I think it's safe. 

The new teacher had a difficult class. Very difficult. And from what I observed of him, he was doing a great job of trying to contain them. But it was a battle. 

His contract was not being extended/renewed. He knew this at the time. The thing that pushed him over the edge and got the principal thinking he needed backup during finals wasn't his fault. It was entirely the fault of a class out of control, and that class was out of control because it was filled entirely with kiddos who were not interested in doing any work. (It's seeing classes like this that convinced me I was not cut out to teach full time.)

What happened? He had pulled a kiddo out of class to discuss his bad behavior. While they were outside, the teacher could see the entire classroom through the windows. But still, someone in class managed to get a porn DVD into the player and going... 

The video wasn't on long, but the damage was done.

I was feeling out of place on day one. On day two, the following occurred. This post originally appeared June 16, 2009... 

Day two as an assistant. Today I understood why my help was needed.

Most students enter a room calmly. Andres announced his presence. He headed right for the teacher's desk, and he sat in the teacher's chair. As this was the chair I had been using (I was standing as the class entered), I told Andres to find another seat.

"But Mr. D always lets me sit here."

A glance at the teacher told me this wasn't true, and the teacher told Andres to get to his own seat. He did, but then he started talking loudly. Humming. Rocking in his chair. I told him to settle down or he would spend the period in a not so nice place.

Then another student rushed across the room. Andres stood. They started menacing each other. I got right in the middle of the two of them and told them to settle down. No fighting.

"We're not going to fight. We're going to have a jerking contest."

Also inappropriate, and I said so.

I got busy dealing with other students in the classroom. Then I saw Mr. D kick Andres out. I wasn't at all surprised. But Andres was.

"But I didn't dooooo anything..."

What brought this particular class to mind? After the kiddos finished their finals, Mr. D put on a video. The last week before winter break, I was covering a science class, and they had finals. I needed a little something to keep them busy after they had all finished. And I remembered his video. It's the show I linked to yesterday.


  1. Oh, I understand about classes like that.

    I’ve told you that my dad served in the Army with my mother’s cousin, and that’s how my parents met.

    But how they got together as a couple ...

    My dad was an English teacher, and later a school administrator. He was one of the best teachers...

    My mom’s first career was as a Social Studies teacher. Her first job was in a law-income neighborhood in the Bronx. She was having a miserable time of it, totally out of control classes. So she called my dad for advice.

    1. And I'm sure it wasn't her fault. I don't know how they do it, but they manage to get all the worst kiddos together in one classroom, in one class, sometimes. I don't know how teachers survive those classes. I'm pulling my hair out after one day.

  2. I couldn't substitute teach, either. ~shakes head~ So again, thank you so much for this important career choice.

    1. At least this time there were two of us. I wouldn't have wanted to cover those classes on my own.

  3. Ugh, kids. He probably thinks he's being hilarious and cool. Little does he know. When my Barbarians have kids like that in their classes, their comments to me (and comments I overhear when they talk to their friends) are not complimentary about the offender at all.

  4. I laughed out loud about the porn DVD. Those kids!! Did you ever see the young teacher again at any other schools? Or did he wisely find another career?? Wow, 10 years, you wonder what those kids in the class are up to now! (hopefully being productive).



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