Ah, memories. That moment when you walked into the classroom and realized the teacher who's normally there is out for the day. This usually meant more shenanigans than usual, for me. Nothing crazy but I knew I was going to get away with more having the complete stranger running the show. The point? My students are feeling the same way. And so are yours. So, as I come back to school today from a day staying home with my own sick children I try to have perspective. And I shared this perspective today with my students. It went a little something like this: "Those of you getting your name written down by the substitute teacher are playing the game of 'student with sub present' very poorly. I was a student recently and remember the experience quite well. You are doing things to gain attention in a negative way which is why you are now dealing with me the day after. We have a quarter left of school...really?" The vast majority of students did a great job but sharing this perspective is important for me as someone contemplating teacher credibility so much. Taking time to share this with students allows them to see my perspective. It allows me to get ALL students to understand what's REALLY happening when I'm not there and most importantly, it allows them to see me as someone that trying to help them vs. someone that's wanting them to make a decision that benefits me. I can't make my students act a certain way when I'm out of the building. However, I can help them become more aware of the situation and how their choices impact their reputation as a student (if they care at that moment). And throughout the whole process, I'm handling it in a way that allows my students to view me as someone that cares about them and the community we've created. To me, that's teacher credibility at it's finest.