Maternity Leave

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  • #10309
    nafmeadmin
    Keymaster

    I am expecting my first child in October and I’m beginning to think about my long term sub and what music will look like for my students while I’m out. I don’t know if the sub will be a certified music teacher or not, but he/she will be a certified teacher. I have a few ideas about where to begin with planning, but I would love some input from experienced forum members. 🙂

    #10317
    nafmeadmin
    Keymaster

    Being a male, I don’t quite have the maternity thing. But I once traveled to a conference and was gone for a week. I video taped some lessons for the sub to play. I made sure that I included games that were instructional and accessible but engaging. I don’t know if you’d be up for that or not but its a thought. Plus then, your students will “know” you, what you look like and what to expect when you return. Congrats and good luck!.

    #10866
    nafmeadmin
    Keymaster

    CDs! Lots of dancing music and songs on CDs! Leave worksheets with song lyrics on one side (so they can listen to a recording of the song and sing it) and on the other side put background on the song, music theory concepts or whatever you want them to learn with that song. You might leave illustrations of the concept on poster paper for the sub to put on the board. Have the kids play games and fun activities which they already know, with which to break it up.

    For your older kids why not assign a research project, which is not so directly music knowledge-related. Easiest option is a report about given composers. Biographical info and info about styles is in encyclopedias (man do they still print those??) and in books – let alone the internet. Talk with the librarian about resources to which the teacher and librarian could direct the students. Make a list of acceptable websites which the students can use. Some ideas off the top of my head are dsokids.org (Dallas Symphony) and nyphilkids.org (New York Philharmonic. There’s also a PBS kids site with great music info, which I’m forgetting.

    #11302
    nafmeadmin
    Keymaster

    I’ve had three kids and every time I was very lucky to get music teachers. You will not be paid during this time, and it is the school’s responsibility to find a suitable sub. You should not be making sub plans for this time, but will be able to say to the sub, “cover these topics.” Contact the music ed depts. at the colleges in your state and let them know about the position so they can pass on the info to their recent graduates who did not yet get positions. Its a GREAT resume builder.
    And a HUGE congrats on your baby! Life will never be the same 🙂

    #11523
    nafmeadmin
    Keymaster

    My district expected 2 weeks (10 days) worth of lesson plans, because then after that, the sub gets extra pay for being “long term” which includes them writing their own plans for that time. Our union/district also offered a “sick bank,” so that during my leave I used sick bank days and got paid during that time that the doctor approves. To pull from sick bank, I just had to donate one of my sick days and then I was “in” but I had to do this at the beginning of the school year to qualify. Beyond my 6 weeks, I did not get paid, but since mine was at the end of the year only missed out on about 8 or 9 days worth of pay.

    Music learning games, anything with instruments, and a few group projects for the older grades are good bets. My sub did a composer project for 5th, in that they chose a composer (could be contemporary, many of mine chose John Williams because they’re all about Star Wars 😉 ) and they had to create a Promethean flipchart with information about the composer. You could do the same thing in Power Point, or create some kind of template for them to make a mini-book (with drawings, bullets, and all that) if you don’t have access to computers. Mallet Madness is one of my kids’ faves, and I have some of the best behavior when we do those lessons; as well as drum circle things. With younger ones, hand clapping/singing games, anything in which they can practice social skills like finding and working with a partner or a group is so good for them.

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