Substitute Teaching in an Online Class

The challenges in being a substitute in an online class are different than in a traditional class. Ok – some are the same, they are still kids, after all. Here are some tips to help increase your success.

  1. Go early. Ok – so this is the same as if you were teaching in a bricks and mortar school. However, the reason you want to get into the meeting early is in case there are technical difficulties. It gives you a chance to call IT to work them out, if needed.
  2. Wear professional clothes (at least from the waist up). Ok – so this is also the same. We are not right next to the students, and so it is a good idea to look like you are in authority (you are, BTW). Button down shirts and blazers help. Once you know the students, feel free to break our your Hawaiian shirts!
  3. Providing IT support is part of the job. Finally – something that’s different from IRL classes! The younger the students, the more support they will need with their computer. If you are not sure what to do, ask the other students (and again – back to the same as in-person classes).
  4. Expect everything to take longer. You know everything takes twice as long as you think it should when you teacher kindergarten? Ditto for online classes. Computers lag and glitch. You have to wait for things to load. It takes longer, and you get less done and this is ok.
  5. Do your best and have fun. Ok – so it seems most things are the same in an online class… The teachers will have very low expectations of what will be done. If their students have fun and get a couple of things done, the teacher will be thrilled! Crack some jokes, tells some riddles, and help the students as much as possible. There – you’ve done a great job!!


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