Substitute teaching can be challenging. One way to be a better sub is to reach out and team up with the full-time teacher. You may be able to make life a little easier for both of you and create a better learning experience for the students. This is especially true if circumstances allow you to communicate with each other one-on-one
Contact between you and the regular teacher will help you get off to a good start. You may be able to meet in person in cases where there is a long planned absence such as maternity leave. Otherwise, even a brief phone call or email can help. Get up to speed on the important details like lessons plans, classroom procedures and student personalities. As you may know, students are much more likely to complete an assignment that a sub hands out if the regular teacher announces beforehand that it must be done.
Leaving a note for the returning teacher at the end of your assignment is a thoughtful gesture. It lets them know what was going on in their absence and can include constructive suggestions to help the next sub. Provide an update on how much of the lesson plan you were able to cover and any noteworthy events. Mention any praise or concerns you have about individual students.
Simply tidying up the classroom on your way out contributes to a smooth transition. Make a note of how the desk looks when you arrive so you can restore it to its original order. Check around the room to make sure everything looks neat.
Good teachers appreciate the advantages of teamwork whether they’re in the classroom full time or substituting. Direct communication is ideal, but you can always look for ways to help each other out and make sure the students benefit from your best efforts.