SUBSTITUTE’S SUITCASE: Don’t Leave Home Without It!


[semester equivalent = 2.00 credits]



Julie Bora



Learn insider information to support your role as a top-notch K-12 Substitute Teacher, one who is in demand by administrators, teachers and of course, students. Whether just starting out or a veteran, you will tap into whimsical ways, helpful hints, and proven practices to support your subbing day. Investigate effective strategies and collect carefully chosen activities and ideas that activate learning. By the conclusion of this course you will be able to enjoy and manage any class with the confidence and polished sureness of an efficient and loving teacher. You will know what to do in any situation.

LEARNING OUTCOMES: Upon completion of this course, participants will have:

  1. Prepared to substitute teach at any grade level, in any content area, for any length of time.
  2. Assessed environmental learning spaces from the viewpoint of a learner.
  3. Developed their very own Entry Routine for use on subbing assignments.
  4. Expanded their personal repertoire of effective strategies and activities for the substitute teaching trade.
  5. Examined and reflected upon their style and increased their ability to manage any classroom, anywhere, anytime.
  6. Applied the learning acquired as a sub on site.

Completion of all specified assignments is required for issuance of hours or credit.  The Heritage Institute does not award partial credit. 


Completing the basic assignments (Section A. Information Acquisition) for this course automatically earns participant’s their choice of CEUs (Continuing Education Units), or Washington State Clock Hours or Oregon PDUs. The Heritage Institute offers CEUs and is an approved provider of Washington State Clock Hours and Oregon PDUs.



Continuing Education Quarter credits are awarded by Antioch University Seattle (AUS). AUS requires 75% or better for credit at the 400 level and 85% or better to issue credit at the 500 level. These criteria refer both to the amount and quality of work submitted.

  1. Completion of Information Acquisition assignments 30%
  2. Completion of Learning Application assignments 40%
  3. Completion of Integration Paper assignment 30%


CREDIT/NO CREDIT (No Letter Grades or Numeric Equivalents on Transcripts)
Antioch University Seattle (AUS) Continuing Education Quarter credit is offered on a Credit/No Credit basis; neither letter grades nor numeric equivalents are on a transcript. 400 level credit is equal to a "C" or better, 500 level credit is equal to a "B" or better. This information is on the back of the transcript.

AUS Continuing Education quarter credits may or may not be accepted into degree programs. Prior to registering determine with your district personnel, department head or state education office the acceptability of these credits for your purpose.



Choose a book from the Bibliography OR select a relevant book on your own.
The Bibliography is located at the end of the syllabus.
Textbooks may be ordered on-line or through bookstores. 

None. All reading is online.


Material costs will depend on the book you select from the Bibliography OR one of your own choosing which addresses substitute- teaching strengths and issues.


Julie Bora, M.S.T.  B.S. Biology/Pharmacology   *    M.S.T. Elementary Education - Pre-K, Kindergarten and Grades 1- 6 .

Since 2006 Julie has been composing and designing interactive syllabi for teachers desiring to develop their practice and themselves. Julie has taught a variety of subjects in Elementary, Middle and High Schools in rural, city and inner city environments. With this vertical view she joyously supports professional and personal development both her own and that of others. We are all learning together, every day. Are you ready to try on something new now? Let's jump in and let the magic happen.




SUBSTITUTE’S SUITCASE: Don’t Leave Home Without It!

Baker, Nicholson, Substitute: Going to School With a Thousand Kids,  Blue Rider Press: New York, NY.  2016.
ISBN-13: 978-0399160981.  Just open up to any of the 28 days that Mr. Baker subbed and you will feel right at home!
Dehan,C and S. Rasmussen, Super Sub: A Must-Have Handbook for Substitute Teachers,  Goodyear Books: Tucson, AZ.  2007.
ISBN-13: 978-1596471160.  Here we find a collection of standards-based activities and lesson plans for nearly every subject and every elementary grade including ESL/ELL. A handy reference book for when an absent teacher leaves no instructions. Also features a section laying out the dos and don'ts of subbing, provides ideas for classroom management, and in the final chapter offers time-fillers for navigating those remaining minutes between the end of a lesson and transition or dismissal.
Gilden, May​, ​Successful Substitute Teaching in the Elementary Classroom​, May Gilden: San Bernadino, CA. 2019. ISBN: 9781089900184. "Overall, this resource is quick to read, accessible, and has several go to activities that can be easily adapted to any classroom situation. One of the best tips the author reminded me of is that experience is the best teacher."- Marjorie McAndews, course participant.
Johnson, LouAnne, Teaching Outside the Box: How to Grab Your Students By Their Brains, Jossey-Bass: San Francisco, CA.  2015.
ISBN-13: 978-1119089278.  The 3rd edition is a must read for substitute teachers because topics include project-based learning, brain-based teaching, integrating standards, and creating smooth transitions. There also are reflection questions to inspire dialogue in teacher education classes and professional development courses, so an apt read for collaborative groups as well as H.S. teachers.
Kelly, Melissa, 180 Tips and Tricks for New Teachers, Adams Media: Avon, MA.  2008.
ISBN-13: 978-1598696561.  “This was a book I was given when I graduated from College.  I have gone thru it and its pretty dog eared from use.  There are 180 tips for teachers.  The first and foremost tips for success is being fair, consistent, flexible, have a positive attitude, high expectations for myself and students and have a sense of humor.  It’s divided into chapters under the above tips and a great chapter on how to communicate with your students.  The tips are pretty straightforward and easy to use.  I felt comfortable reading this text.  And it has been a great help to me in the classrooms that I visit.”  – Patricia K. Shepherd, course participant
Plevin, Rob, Classroom Management Success in 7 Days or Less, Rob Plevin Life Raft Media Ltd. 2019.
The author proposes that fulfilling three basic needs of students will lead to classroom management success.  These three needs are: 1) to be empowered though recognition.  2) to nurture curiosity: include some fun, adventure, and variety in the learning.  3) students want to feel accepted, valued, and connected.  The author promises to present ways to help satisfy all three areas.  He lastly suggests that a positive attitude ( a growth mindset) ought to be the foundation on which these three needs are built.
"I found the activities the author supplied at the end of the book to be really great. The activities are a bunch of “quick hitters” that can be fun and active.  They were free to copy and I put a bunch of them in my suitcase."- course participant.
Pressman, Barbara, Substitute Teaching from A to Z, McGraw-Hill: New York, NY.  2008.
ISBN-13: 978-0071496322.  Appropriate for Kindergarten through Grade 8- preferred text for Elementary and M.S. teachers enrolled in this course.
Rubinstein, Gary, Reluctant Disciplinarian, Cottonwood Press: Fort Collins, CO.  2010.
ISBN-13: 978-1936162154.  This book is a riveting tale from incompetence to success, of a very funny guy. It is light reading that walks down the many mistaken paths subs take as we find our way out of the woods.
Springer,S. and Persiani,K., The Organized Teacher's Guide to Substitute Teaching, McGraw-Hill Education; 1 edition (August 21, 2012,) 274 pages.
ISBN-13: 978-0071745468  "There is a great first chapter on building your survival kit:  Supplies, Activities, Reading Strategies, Story Writing, Games and Activities, and Plans...each of these topics has a CD icon beside them in the book that correlates to the CD Rom in the back with all the blackline master copies are located.  The CD worked perfectly in my computer and I had a great supply of reproducible copies.  The graphics were simple and appropriate." --- Lindsay LeBreton, course participant.
Tulley,G. and J. Spiegler, Fifty Dangerous Things, NAL Trade: New York, NY.  2011.ISBN-13: 978-0451234193.  A book chock full of exciting ways for learners to explore the world around them, both at school and at home.
Wilson, Kenneth L., Tools for Energized Teaching: Revitalize Instruction With Ease, Teacher Ideas Press: Westport, CT.  2008.
ISBN-13: 978-0325007700.  The book title says it all! Usable for teachers of any discipline and any age learner.