What do I do when I'm out of the classroom and my kids go nuts? I worked pretty hard to leave decent plans, but I know that the day was a waste because of disrespectful behaviors towards the sub.

This week is a crazy week. I'm out three days: Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. Monday and Tuesday are district training days and Thursday I am taking two students on a field trip. I think this is the most that I've ever been out in a month. Ever.

The kids I've got this year are so much fun! They have loads of energy and the boys always want to play and draw. They're a great group of kids and most of them are really close friends with each other, so every day is like a hang sesh. I'll have to admit, the first few weeks were a little tough, and I'd go home thinking about what little we accomplished and became frustrated about what we did not.

And since my first day out this year resulted in the "UNRULY" note left by the substitute, I worked hard trying to find activities for the class to do. This is what I planned, let me know where I went wrong.

Daily Routines I kept all of the daily routines, minus our at home reading check (which requires the Promethean Board and my laptop), so the kids did their language arts warm up in the morning, their quickwrite before lunch and their math fact quiz in the afternoon. These all take about two minutes each and students work on them independently.

Reading I used a whole group read aloud lesson to model the parts of a narrative text. During the read aloud, the teacher would stop and identify characters, setting and plot and keep track of them throughout the story. After this, students would move into their independent read time (they are up to twenty minutes of on task independent reading) thinking about the parts of their stories.

Social Studies Ended the chapter last week, so the students were given their chapter assessment, which has three parts. Multiple Choice, Social Studies Skills, and Show You Know. The students are able to use the notes that they took during the chapter readings and activities, and a few of the kids were allowed to use their textbooks.

Math The class would review and spend time playing a multiplication card game in pairs while completing a recording sheet independently. Then, halfway through, they would transition to playing a division card game, also keeping a record sheet.

Writing We would share a different style of writing with the class by reading a book out loud. After hearing the style of the text, the students would create their own stories modeled after the book.

So yeah, came back to the classroom to find that not much was produced by the class. How unfortunate. I want everyone else to see how wonderful and hard-working these kids are. For some reason, it appears that they only do that when I am there.

I'm searching for ways inspire them to be responsible for their own learning, rather than to simply please someone else.