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Sub Resources: Things Every Substitute Teacher Should Have

No two teachers are exactly alike, and in turn, no two substitute teachers are exactly alike either. Still, many of the essentials for substitute teaching are the same no matter where a substitute works.

Other Teachers

One of the most essential sub resources is other teachers. Whether full-time teachers, retired teachers, or other substitute teachers, those who have experience in the world of education can help you to succeed in the world of teaching. Teachers can help you to know what works and does not work in specific classrooms. They are people who can understand the joys and challenges of working with children, particularly children who regularly cause issues in the classroom. Other teachers can also be a great place to learn strategies and activities to use when a lesson ends early but there is not enough time to start a new lesson.

Grab Bag of Rewards

Many substitutes find it helpful to have an assortment of rewards for kids who behave well. Stickers are great for elementary school children. Candy can be a good incentive to encourage children to listen and be on their best behavior. Small games from the dollar store are another option. Some substitute teachers find giving these rewards out throughout the day helps the kids stay on-task. Others find rewarding children at the end of the day is the best tactic. Many teachers, especially elementary school teachers, have their own reward system, so you may want to go with their system instead of your own when in a classroom with a pre-established reward program for good behavior.

Assortment of Activities

Because lessons do not always go as planned, it is always a good idea to have a list of potential activities to do if a lesson ends early or if a student completes an assignment before the other children. Bored students can cause a disruption to the other kids. Coloring pages, word searches, crossword puzzles, and logic puzzle are great ideas for individual students or to do in small groups.

Full classrooms games which make the learning process more enjoyable are often enjoyed by the students. Around the World is a popular game, and it can be used for math, English, or just about any fact-based subject. Of course, many teachers will provide filler activities, and if the teacher has specifically stated these are the activities to be used in the classroom, use those instead of your own ideas.

Reference Resources

There are many online resources which can help you to be a better teacher even when you are only there for a short time. provides training and other resources for substitute teachers to help them learn essential skills for substitute teaching including how to handle situations they may encounter in the classroom. Although created for regular classroom teachers, Teach Hub is another resource subs can use in their classrooms. This can be especially helpful if you get a long-term substitute teaching position.

Of course, before you can use any of these sub resources, you must have substitute teaching jobs. At SubAssistant, we make the process of getting substitute teaching jobs easier. Contact us to create your own account. You can even use our system for free through the 21-day trial.

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