Skip to Content

2nd Grade Emergency Sub Plans

We have recently updated this post while writing emergency sub plans for all grades, pre-k through 6.  You will find our new 2nd grade plans here:  UPDATED 2nd Grade Emergency Sub Plans

It has happened to all of us.  We’re getting ready for school when our child wakes up and we discover he or she is sick.  It’s always a rush to get sub plans together quickly.  We know the feeling so we have created these activities for you to you use in an emergency.  We have included the Common Core standard each lesson meets.  We hope they help!


2.RL.1  Ask and Answer questions to demonstrate understanding of key details in text. 

Story Map  Any book can be used for this activity but we like using  Miss Nelson is Missing! (Click on the blue, underlined-title to purchase the book from Amazon.)   because it’s about a teacher being away.  Have the substitute read aloud the book and then students can complete the story map to show understanding.  This story map might also be used for an independent reading activity.  We suggest leaving a completed story map to guide your substitute.   We have provided blank boxes so you may choose to have your students use words, pictures or both.

2.RFS.3 Know and apply grade-level phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words  

Fry Word Boggle     3rd Hundred Focus     4th Hundred Focus  Students search for words by using only connecting letters.   While other words will be found, we used the Fry words as a focus.

Short & Long Vowel Hunt   Students read the short passage to find long and short vowel sounds.  They record five of each in the correct column.  They also identify what vowel sound the word makes.

2.W.1  Write opinion pieces by stating an opinion and giving reasons for their opinion  We Know What to Do!    Encourage great behavior writing!   Have students write a paragraph explaining why it is important to follow classroom procedures when the teacher is absent.  This will be a chance for students to meet a standard and think about displaying positive behavior.


2.NBT.1 Place value   Build the Biggest Number Game   Allow students to work in pairs or have your guest teacher roll a die.  After each roll of the die, the number is announced.  Students have to record the number in a box.  The dice will be rolled twice for the 2-digit numbers and three times for the 3-digit numbers.  The goal is to make the biggest number possible from the rolls.   This is also an indirect lesson in probabilty as students quickly learn what is the smartest place to record each number.

2.OA.3  Odd & even numbers  Odd & Even Maze  Students complete the maze to help the owl get from the start to the tree.   Children color in the even numbers as they follow the path.

Science  Living/ Non-Living Objects (Here you will find 12 colorful pictures for sorting into living and non-living categories.)   We have created an  Anchor Chart to be used with the beginning mini-lesson.  Then, students cut apart and sort these objects.  You can have students work on the sort as a class and talk about why each item fits into the living or non-living category or you might have students work in small groups.  As a follow up, you might have students practice writing a paragraph explaining why they know one of their objects is living or non-living.   We have created a guide for this here:  Why I Know.

What else should we include?  Please share your suggestions below!   We are trying to think of some great science and social studies lessons that are more than just a worksheet.  Do you have an idea we could create?  Also, is there a way we can make this post more teacher friendly?  Tell us what would make this idea more beneficial to you!

You will find a substitute planning sheet in our teacher planning binder in the lesson planning section:


Sunday 4th of October 2015

The is great! Thank you.

C. Johnson

Saturday 8th of November 2014

What a life saver! I just started a new job ( late October) and I really have a lot of new things to learn since I'm moving from kindergarten to 2nd grade. I haven't accumulated 2nd grade resources in 10 years!

Janet Norton

Tuesday 12th of August 2014

These plans are awesome for my sub notebook, as well as, the first week of school for fillers during testing. Thank you so much for posting them!


Thursday 9th of January 2014

Thanks for sharing these great ideas! Does anyone have 1st Grade Emergency Sub Plans?


Wednesday 8th of January 2014

THANK YOU! I found this today as I needed sub plans for tomorrow. Great resource!!!