Sunday, September 20, 2015

Sub Tub Sneak Peak!

It's 4 a.m., and you (or your child) wake up sick.  You have to call in for a substitute....

Isn't that the worst feeling ever?  I've dreaded this for years, but not anymore!  I FINALLY took the time this year to set up a sub tub that literally ANY substitute can use in a pinch!  It's in a plastic container on a table in the back of my room.  I can call in sick, and not worry about what lessons to leave ever again!  Certainly, there was some preparation on my part to get it set up, but now that it's ready I won't feel stressed when the time comes.  This is truly an EMERGENCY sub tub!  I don't have to think about a thing.  EVERYTHING that is needed is right there when the time comes.  Certainly, it can be used for those planned days that you will be out, too!

  1. First, I chose several different activities that my students enjoy and require absolutely NO musical knowledge at all!  I know that we still want students learning music while the substitute is teaching, but I wanted to make it pain free for the substitute.  Examples of things I included are a book and coloring sheets, several different games, and rhythm coloring sheets.  (I will list everything included in my Sub Tub at the bottom of this blog, but honestly, you can choose whatever you want to put in the tub.  The most important thing is to make sure that anyone can teach it.)
  2. Next, I printed and laminated all games so that they can be used more than one time.  I printed enough coloring sheets for one day but left the originals in there if someone needs to make copies.  (Hint:  Did you know you can write with a yellow highlighter on the original and still make copies?  I wrote "ORIGINAL" on them to make sure they do not get passed out and colored on).  
  3. I made folders for every lesson and labeled the outside of the folder with the appropriate grade levels and title of the lesson.

  4. I made an excel spreadsheet that gives a basic description of each lesson in the sub tub.  I also included a check off list for the substitute to use so that I know which activity was completed with which classes.  This can be used over and over for each substitute and lessons won't be repeated with the same class.
  5. I then made a notebook with basic information that I think the substitute should know:  School contact information, class schedules, emergency information, and a communication form for input back from the substitute.  I chose to handwrite most of the information in because I felt it was easier.  You could definitely type everything up!  You can see that I also placed everything in plastic pages to keep it neater and make it last longer.

  6. Finally, I placed all of the lesson folders, the information notebook, bean bag, and bingo chips in the sub tub.  I left a smaller container with crayons in it next to the tub.  I placed the finished Sub Tub on a table in the back of my room that is obvious to see when someone walks in.

    What exactly is in my Sub Tub?  Find the items at the following links:


  1. Super smart! I'm in the process of making my own SubTub as well. I'm totally done with creating more work for me when I have an absence. It's for the birds. Sub Tubs rock!

  2. I LOVED my sub tub, but it was tricky to put together. That's why I loved add games like the ones you mention. It's so helpful to have non-musical subs just be able to walk in and start the game, without needing to read through detailed lesson plans. Thanks for sharing! #fermatafridays

  3. This is such a phenomenal idea! I'm going to be working on my sub tub this weekend. Thanks for all the great suggestions and ideas! #fermatafridays

  4. I'm in the middle of FINALLY putting a sub tub/binder together after talking about it for, like, 4 years. Thanks for all of the helpful tips and ideas for what to put in it! #fermatafridays

  5. Ginny, this is amazing. Whenever I teach/lead sessions, I always encourage my participants to check out your page. Thank you for sharing your creativity for others to learn from!!

  6. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  7. I'm finally getting ready to make my sub tub! Wonderful ideas! Thank you!