A good teacher will always be prepared for anything that may
come up. That is why having an emergency lesson plan folder is
a good idea. The folder is suited for a substitute that has to
take over your class in the case of an emergency that calls you
out of the classroom. The key to having an emergency lesson plan
folder is that the information will be relevant to your curriculum,
but does not necessarily have to be related to the lessons you
are currently teaching.
Some schools require emergency lesson plan folders to be kept
in the main office, while other schools do not have regulations
regarding this type of information. Be sure you check with your
school administration to know what is the case for your particular
school. Prepare your emergency lesson plan folder early in the
year, and you won't be caught off-guard if or when an emergency
should happen to you.
Here are some ideas of things that you should include in your
emergency lesson plan folder. Make sure you make enough copies
for your entire class ahead of time, so the substitute will not
run out of materials. They will not be able to leave the classroom,
so think ahead while you are creating the folder.
- Include in your folder a list of books that the students
can read independently during your absence. Prepare small
quizzes for the books that the students can answer after
- Include short stories or copies of current event articles
in the folder, along with exercises pertaining to the
information for the students to complete.
- Kids like activities where they can use their calculator.
Leave a worksheet that lets them solve problems using
a calculator. If your students are not required to have
a calculator, consider leaving word problems that are
fun and contain riddles.
- This is a great time to break out those review sheets
and puzzles that review the skills you are working on.
Language Arts Time
- Include games for kids to play, such as "Mad Libs" or
something similar. This will let them practice their use
of adjectives, adverbs, nouns, pronouns, etc. while they
are having fun.
- You might also consider letting them write their own
story about something they enjoy as a hobby. Use this
exercise to help them learn punctuation, capitalization,
and wordage skills.
Social Studies Time
- Mapping activities are usually something that most students
are interested in completing. Consider leaving some type
of mapping activity in your folder.
- In the same vein, let students make a map of their neighborhood
and track the route that they would take to get to their
- Write an outline where students can fill in an invention
that they would like to create. Have places for them to
put the materials they would need, steps for completing
the invention, and how they would advertise it.
- Have the students read a science article from a magazine
or newspaper. Give them questions to answer about the
article. They can pinpoint the science method used in
the article, and create plans for a laboratory activity
that has to do with the article.
- Have questions from a textbook that cover material you
would not normally cover during the year.
- Include word searches, mazes, and other puzzle worksheets
that pertain to your lessons.
- Have essay outline worksheets for kids to write on a
subject that they have learned about and enjoyed.
Be sure to clearly mark your Emergency Lesson Plan folder so
that anyone coming in to take over your class will know where
to find it. Since this substitute will not be prepared with any
materials of their own, the more you can provide to help keep
the students busy, the better it will be for all. And above all,
included educational lessons and materials in your folder will
be a benefit as well.