I once covered a sixth grade class while I was a self-contained 7th and 8th grade teacher. And my! Thankfully I bought my own work because there was none. Even so, it was intense! In the span of forty-five minutes, I shed a layer because I was hot, gained a headache, kicked a disrespectful girl out of class and was hit with an erasure...by accident. Whew!
Fast forward to this school year where I am an ICT sixth grade teacher. I recently taught my sixth graders by myself, all day long! They missed my co-teacher, I missed her and on we went.
I realize all children need consistency. I used to especially notice when my 12:1:1 kids were off because one of their teachers was out or the class paraprofessional was absent. It was like the class just could not function at times. I would always be amazed to hear the reports of disrespect from the classroom para when I was out. Considering they usually respected her, to hear the other extreme was baffling.
I now realize the same goes for my largely general education sixth graders-- they also struggle with transference when one of their teachers is out. I wonder, though, when does it transfer? When do children, or students, learn how to apply what they know regardless of the situation and who is or isn't there? I know middle school isn't it, so I'll have to talk to some high school teachers and find out if that changes.