Art Sub Plans? HELP!

I always dread it when I have to be away from work. Since most of us have a honeymoon only once and we never know when the stomach bug will hit... we might as well be prepared. 

UPDATE: Check out my pinterest board here for sub plans I've pinned! 

Normal game plan for my subs for an unprepared absence:

Assignment: Because of the time and preparation it takes for most art lessons, I like my sub plans to be simpler!
Students may “Free Draw” with no more than 2 pieces of paper front and back (located on the free draw shelf under TV). Students may use their pencil and crayons only! No scissors or gluing! They will try to use them.

NOTE: (I have student helpers in each class and they know who they are)

Procedure: Ask the Helper #1s to get a basket of crayons and Helper #2 to get paper for their table. Then call one table at a time to come to the shelf to get one material. (to avoid a traffic jam)
Instruction: As they work, they may get another drawing material after they are finished with the other. They do not have to draw. They may read or write. Be sure to go around the room and look at their work!! They may want to draw things they shouldn’t. Ask them questions about their work. They love to talk about it! All papers may be taken home.
Closing: With 5 minutes left at the end of class, ring the Bell 2x and ask Helper #1 to put away crayons and ask the students to give their materials to the Helper #2 to put away. Choose quiet tables to line up.
At line go over the “Art Marks” chart on the door. If they had a good Art day color in the next square by the teacher’s name GREEN, Okay day gets YELLOW, and bad day gets RED. Then grades K – 3rd may sing you the “ART SONG” and the older grades like to play line-up games.

"Free draw" is my go to for those sick days I don't plan to miss. Like the other day (I had strep). 
During the week I missed for my honeymoon, my sub plans were much more detailed. The sub I had was wonderful because I had the chance to meet with her and go over my plans so all my students could stay on track. Which made all the difference. I would always suggest that if you are able to meet with your sub, do so. And request a specific sub (if you are able) to be the one they call first to sub for you. Though they may not always be able to get that person. But, my ultimate goal is to have a folder full of exciting one day "easy" art projects with simple materials for any sub to do. 
Unfortunately I have to be gone for some inservices this coming week and am not looking forward to having my students fall behind. So here is my plea:

What are some good sub plans you have used that went well for both substitute and students?


    Art Project Girl said...

    Design a sneaker. I have outlines of sneakers and students have to make a designer shoe.
    Design your perfect playground.
    I usually do a drawing prompt of some sort. Pencils and crayons only.

    I usually start the prompt with Imagine you could. . .

    tishalou said...

    I use crazy hair day - K,1,2 gets a handout with the face pre-printed and 3,4,5 has to draw the face. They divide the upper portion into sections and fill with patterns. If it is a planned day - I try to start a lesson and then day 2 with the sub is easy since they already know what to do - needs to be something with just crayons or markers.

    kszwahl said...

    I love to leave things that have alot of room for creativity. A couple of week ago I left lessons including these:
    Second grade are you sleeping? Draw a picture of yourself sleeping. What helps you sleep? Where do you fall asleep? etc--
    Pass out circles of all sizes and let K-1 trace and make a picture with only circles.
    Incredible Art Dept. had a lesson I leave all the time where you roll a dye for each part of the body- 2 heads, 6-eyes, 3- arms etc. The kids love it!
    I can't wait to see what else people post! It is always a worry when I am gone. I have had the same sub the last three times I was gone. She really knows me and the kids so it is a lot easier!

    Mrs. Hahn said...

    How about designing the alphabet with a theme... Candy corn, turkeys and so on. I may blog about that soon, I have a sub box that is ready to go when ever I go:) It has many ideas for subs if I can't do a plan.

    Anonymous said...

    I have kids make their names using Egyptian Hierogylphics. There should be a website that has the alphabet translated into Hierogylphics. They then draw a tablet shape or use "mosaic-like" paper squares to decorate around the letters. You can buy the paper squares in a large quantity from Dick Blick. This saves time.

    Becca Ruth said...

    Wow ladies! Thanks for all the good ideas!

    Phyl said...

    I don't recommend "free draw" for a sub. You come back the next day and the recycle box is full of scribbled wasted paper, or airplanes. We are all required to have a sub handbook in the office with "Emergency Plans". I have a selection of easy plan ideas for the sub to pick from, all which can be done with paper and pencil, crayons, colored pencils, or markers. In other words, nothing messy! They are mostly just drawing prompts:

    "through the keyhole" - what do you see when you look through a keyhole?
    "night and day" - a outdoor scene rendered 1/2 night, 1/2 day. (Or the same thing with 4 seasons.)
    "imagine the perfect pet"
    "design a future vehicle"

    Anonymous said...

    Miss Becca, I know you! I love your blog by the way! This is Abbey Rutherford-Logan, fellow MTSU grad! I have difficulty with sub plans too, but I have come up with a few things. I do the Crazy Hair Day, as well as Where the Wild Things Are. The sub reads the story and the kids draw their wild thing. While it works well for the younger folks, I do not usually leave it for 3rd-up. I also have a few projects that I start on and never finish that do not require paint or glue-usually an op art or shading project. While I feel like the kids do not always do the best work with a sub, it is better than nothing.

    Becca Ruth said...

    Thanks ladies! I am set for this Wed and Thursday now!!
    Amazing ideas!

    Becca Ruth said...

    Hey Abbey! I remember you too! Glad to know that you're doing well. I'm glad you like the blog! I am using the Wild and Wacky hair lesson for a sub tomorrow! Yesterday, I had 2nd graders design a stamp. The ideas the kids came up with were so cool! I can't wait to see the Wild Wacky Hair!

    Ms. R said...

    Try the anti-doodle books! They make students creative "solve" the rest of the picture... or the Doodle Book for Boys and the Doodle Book for Girls....
    Or read Ish, by Peter H Reynolds, and have them create their own ish drawings...

    Ms. R said...

    Look up the Anti-Coloring Book or the Doodle Book for Boys or the Doodle Book for Girls. Or read Ish, by Peter H Reynolds, and have students draw their own ish drawings.

    artteachergirl said...

    One plan I use for subs is very simple. It's not really *free draw*, it gives students a direction to go in, but it also gives them freedom. I call it, "Give Me 5". I list 5 things and the students have to include the 5 items. However, they can add as many of them as they please and may add other things also. I usually get a bit silly with the items and the kids love that.
    Ex. house, tree, owl, fence and flying elephant. These have to be in the drawing, but they can add extra details. It's fun and easy for a sub.

    jessica Johnston said...

    I like to choose a few books and have the sub read the book and then kids do a project based on the book. Some of my favorites are Elmer the Elephant and Tar Beach. Sometimes I create a stencil for kids to use in conjuction with the book, like with Elmer. Tar Beach I usually have them draw someplace they would like to visit. It also works well to have them draw their favorite part of the story. I understand the whole preparing for a sub thing. I would rather be a work than get ready for a sub. Right now I am out with a broken leg and it is driving me crazy. Hope these ideas help.-jessica
    Check out my blog at smartypantsjohnston.blogspot.com

    Anonymous said...

    I have the students become Illustrators for a sub plan. I have the sub read a Shel Silverstein poem, such as "The Homework Machine" and then the students have to illustrate the actual machine. The results are always quite interesting and creative! Free draw is a bad idea. The students, without a clear objective for the entire class period, will get off task and then become a problem for the sub.

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