Supply Teacher Tips


I qualified as a teacher in 1997.  At the beginning of my career, I spent 2 terms supply teaching. In November 1994, I decided to become a supply teacher which I absolutely love!  I have learned a great deal about supply since then so I have created this list to assist teachers new to supply teaching.  Please feel free to share and add to this list.

I wish you well in your career – supply can be daunting but I love the challenge of going somewhere new and having to be innovative- each school has its own character and the ideas you can ‘magpie’ are invaluable.

Kind regards, Lisa Moran

  • Bring your own thermal mug with lid;
  • Bring a bottle of water;
  • Bring your own coffee/tea – the ‘all in one’ sachets of coffee are ideal;
  • Make up a ‘tool kit’ of resources you could possibly need – this saves time looking for such things – ie white board different colour biros etc;
  • Save plans on a memory stick/one drive/ drop box;
  • Eat your lunch in the staff room – this gives you a feel for the school ethos/morale;
  • Have a mascot – KS1 pupils respond well to this, (I have ‘Little Miss Pasty’);
  • Have a supply of sticky labels for names. I am hopeless at learning names and this certainly helps.
  • Don’t be afraid to change the lesson if things aren’t going to plan – it is difficult to follow other’s plans – it is better to teach in a style you are comfortable with and which the pupils respond to.
  • Have resources easily accessible, a call in the morning gives you little time to get organised – I keep most of mine in the car boot.
  • Have your ID with you, also having a presentation folder with relevant certificates and CV will give a head teacher a greater insight into your strengths and capabilities.
  • Don’t rely on a smart-board, often teachers have their laptops with as well as faults with such technology.

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