I arrive at a school fully prepared for anything and everything.
My Relief Teaching Bag of Tricks is essential to the success of my day.
Check out what I carry with me day in and day out.
My Relief Teaching Bag of Tricks
1. A laptop.
Planning for teaching must start with a computer. I can't live without mine, especially when relief teaching. Mine is actually a Toshiba net book with a 10 hour battery life. All my relief teaching lessons are in this laptop - and backed up in a million places. The laptop is part of all my teaching strategies. It also contains a few movies for those wet weather lunch days.
I love PowerPoint. Most classrooms now have electronic whiteboards but if they don't, I keep a data projector (also bought from eBay) in the back of the car. The first task of my relief teaching day is to plug the lap top in.
I know many classrooms have electronic whiteboards but I chose not to load the range of whiteboard software available.
All whiteboards have an input for a vga cable and that plugs into the vga cable of the netbook. My netbook is a critical part of all my teaching strategies.
2. A data presentation tool.This is the most liberating gadget in my bag of tricks. All of my teaching strategies includes controlling my netbook and hence my lesson from anywhere in the room.
It is very liberating not being tied to the front board. I wish I had it 30 years ago. The one pictured cost $7 post free from eBay.
The netbook and presenter tool make up 95% of my relief teaching lessons and activities. Money well spent.
3. Shopping Catalogues - new and unused. CLICK HERE for my teaching strategies using catalogues. This includes a range of lesson ideas.
4. Table tennis balls.These are so handy for a wide range of investigations and because they are so inexpensive, they make a useful resource for a range of age groups. CLICK HERE for my table tennis investigation teaching strategies.
5. A box of straws.These are consumables unfortunately. Straws cost about $5 for 200 so with a class of 30 kids that’s only about 6 each. But their use in construction and art is invaluable for all ages. A handy stop-gap if needed. CLICK HERE if you would like some ideas.
6. A Hat. You know you are going to be given playground duty. I am guessing everyone relief teaching always gets a playground duty.
7. Water - A large bottle is always in my bag of tricks. No teacher should ever be without water. Protect your most important tool - your voice.
8. A business cardto leave with the teacher and at the office. I keep these in my wallet, not really my bag of tricks. If the teacher is pleased with the job you have done, they may request you by name (if they remember it). Make contact with the staff member who appoints relief teachers. It makes relief teaching so much easier if you develop a relationship with a few classes (and a few schools). 9. Tennis Balls just in case you need to introduce a PE lesson into your day for one reason or another. There are hundreds of easy games using tennis balls including