Saturday, October 15, 2011

Adventures in Substitute Teaching: Outside All Day

I've just discovered a secret jewel in the crown of the substitute teacher. The PE teacher. Wait.... before you roll your eyes, just listen for a moment, there are moments of awesome. Truly blissful, awesome.

The PE teacher job is tricky. It's success depends greatly on weather. I was just happily the PE teacher for two solid days of absolutely beautiful sun-shiny weather.

The PE teacher job also comes with a tool. The whistle. Fans, until you've held the whistle power, you really do not know what you are missing. Literally, dozens of children will stop in their tracks when you blow the whistle. Some of the children will watch you carefully. Very carefully watching for the moment you may bring the whistle to your lips to signal the 'line-up' time. Their only goal? To be first in line.

The PE teacher job also comes with the liberty of wearing my most comfortable, most favorite sneaks to school. After all, I'm the PE teacher. That's almost like an assistant coach, right? I mean.... they let me have a whistle for Pete's sake.....

Whistle + Sneaks + children running = Coach-like person or PE teacher. It's science. Or simple math. Either way, it doesn't matter to me, because I'm the PE teacher.... no math or science necessary.

Many of you that know me, will be wondering how I might exploit this limited whistle power. Let me just tell you, children are fun. My options are almost limitless. Let's begin.

First of all, I quickly figured out this 'first in line' thing was a huge deal. Towards the end of every class, I would 'fake' bring the whistle to my lips, and 'almost' whistle. Children would run to the line. Then, I was able to actually blow the whistle to signal that it wasn't line up time yet. I know, it's subtle humor that mostly only I laughed at, but I've got to fill the day, right?

Next, I would hold the whistle in my mouth for no reason. The children didn't like that much.

"Why is the whistle in your mouth?"


"Why is that in your mouth?"

Two very popular questions. My replies were dumb:

"I'm warming it up."


"I forgot where I left it."

I'm outside all day with children. I'm making it fun for all of us.

Even when I got a little bit hot and a little bit sun burned it was okay because there was a shade tree and a bench to sit on. Under the shade tree were also boys digging in dirt and collecting rocks and sticks. Fun stuff, mostly only little boys will enjoy. I knew they had made me part of their club when I was presented with a prize. A bug.

Tiny little boys, digging in dirt and bringing me bugs. I am super good at that.

No whistle needed.

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