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How Even a Substitute Teacher Can Keep a Kindergarten Class Calm

The unique difficulties of teaching kindergarten often makes schools desperate for subs willing to take on these jobs. Learning how to keep a kindergarten class calm as a substitute teacher can help you go boldly where few subs dare.

Understanding Kindergarten

Kindergarten is as much about teaching proper socialization as it is the "ABCs." As a result, you may run into a lot of children who don't quite understand how to behave in a classroom setting.

If you are subbing for a kindergarten class and multiple wild children are banding together, try to break up their group and sort them in with better behaved children. Often, these calmer and more socially competent children will calm down the less socially apt child.

Be Firm, But Not Mean

When a kindergarten class falls into chaos, the instinct of many subs is to start yelling and laying down the law. This is a huge mistake: your students will not only feed on your anxiety and frustration, but will perceive you as "mean."

Being a mean sub will make your students think you are picking on them. Feelings of persecution can ravage their poor young psyche and cause serious damage that can take years to reverse.

When introducing yourself at the beginning of the day, let your students know that you understand the classroom behavior control method and that you will use it when necessary. Often, that's enough to let them know who is in charge.

Have Fun

Successful kindergarten subs learn how to have with their students. Treating  it too seriously will make it a lot more difficult. Remember, most students will look at you as a fun alternative to their normal teacher.

So, tap into that belief by making it clear that good behavior will be rewarded by unique fun activities you've brought to the class that day. Movies, books, and even board games work well as rewards.

Remember that very young children are forming the structure of their lifelong personality and damaging it too early may cause irreparable damage. Before taking on a kindergarten subbing job, ask yourself this question: am I willing to take that responsibility into my hands?

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