It goes like this.
You're tired, you haven't slept well in the past few weeks, it's just a bit easier to let things slip under the radar.
One kid calls out an answer without following routines - you miss it.
You find a pencil on the floor, broken.
Kids start answering back.
All of a sudden you're staring with disbelief at the state of your classroom.
In writing at the moment we are working on speeches. My kids absolutely LOVE writing speeches, and they love speaking in front of our class. I'm quite lucky this year. One of them wrote a speech about bullying, and used this quote in his speech.
"Watch your thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become your character.
And watch your character, for it becomes your destiny."
This is such a powerful quote! How many times have you looked at your kids and thought "How did we get here?!" This can work both ways.
I had a sub in my class yesterday while I had a data review meeting with my principal, DP, and team leader. Totally not a big deal - I just shared where we were. Anyway, I came back to a class in disarray. Things were all over the place, half our pens were missing, and one kid had decided to leave the class and wander around the school. This was my fault! I had let little things slide over the past few weeks, and it had compounded in this horrible display in behaviour and lack of learning.
Is it the sub's job to keep control while I'm not there - absolutely. Is it the kids job to be responsible for their own actions? - You betcha! HOWEVER - is it my job to maintain tight routines during the times I am there so that expectations are high when I'm not - even more so.
Lesson learnt - make sure you learn from mine people! Under ALL circumstances, keep your routines absolutely 100% tight and well structured. Your sub, your kids, and even you will thank you for it later.