"Martha Goes to School"
Season 1, Episode 33a
Production code: 0133a
Original Airdate: April 8, 2009
Vocabulary Words: attendance, substitute, attention, behavior, report, teacher, lesson, student, school, homework
"Martha Takes a Stand"
"T.D. and the Light Bulb of Doom"
Martha Goes to School is the first part of episode 33 of season 1.  It appeared on April 8, 2009.


T.D. thinks it would be funny to put Martha's name on the list for substitute teachers. What started out as a joke, turns into a nightmare for Helen, Alice, and T.D., when Martha gets the job and takes it very seriously.

Recap Edit

It begins at school when Mrs Clusky is reminding her class that their reports on animal behaviour are due the next day. T.D. makes a joke that "that sounds ruff", which his classmates laugh at but Mrs Clusky doesn't. She then announces she has an important announcement and that she needs everyone's attention and starts to define "attention" while T.D. draws mountains. She calls T.D.'s attention and he repeats the definition of "attention" in a more laconic manner. Mrs Clusky then announces that she will be away for the rest of the week so another teacher will be taking her place.

T.D. walks home from school, carrying a picture he drew of the substitute teacher breathing fire. Helen asks T.D. what their sub will be like, to which T.D. says probably weird as they always get the weird ones. The two children then reflect on their weird substitute teachers: one had a loud voice, one kept sniffing her sandwich, one tapped a lot, and another one (Mr Hendance) rapped everything he said. At Helen's house, T.D. does an impression of a robot sub teacher, which makes Helen laugh. Skits then runs up and licks Helen's face, followed by Martha. The dogs then run off to the left. T.D. says Martha would make a good substitute and he and Helen imagine it. Then, T.D. sees the sign-up sheet for sub teachers and writes Martha's name on it. This surprises Helen and T.D. says it's just a joke.

That evening, Martha is eating her soup when the phone rings. She answers it and it's Mrs Clusky, who explains that all the other substitute teachers are sick, so Martha (whom she calls Martha Lorraine) will substitute the next day. Martha defines "substitute" and notes that if you don't have a ball, you can use a stick for a substitute. This distracts her and she wonders if they'll play fetch. Mrs Clusky, frustrated, continues packing and states that no, she's a teacher and Martha will be a substitute teacher. Mrs Clusky's taxi arrives so she hangs up, reassuring Martha that the students are very well-behaved. Martha hangs up and Helen asks if she's okay. Martha says she thinks so and asks what she's studying in Mrs Clusky's class. Helen says she is studying animal behaviour and tries to ask Martha why she asked but by then, Martha is nowhere in sight. Martha, in the kitchen, thinks animal behaviour would be a great thing to teach and is proud to be a teacher. However, she puts her paws on the table, which is not allowed.

Martha is on her way to school, stating that she intuits "respect". When she reaches the school, the janitor, who is mopping the steps, grumpily points out that there are no dogs allowed. Martha states that the dog on the "no dogs" sign doesn't look anything like her. The janitor just shoos her away, threatening to douse her with dirty mop water.

Martha enters through the window and goes into class, where the students are surprised to see her subbing. Helen raises her hand and says to take attendance. Martha doesn't know what that means. Helen defines it but Martha can't read, so she just tells everyone here to say "present" and everyone who's not to say "absent", which, as T.D. points out, doesn't make sense.

In the hallway, the janitor spots dog hair on the floor and dramatically points it out.

In class, Martha asks the student about animal behaviour. Helen says that they did reports and Martha, because she can't read, suggests they read their reports to her. Helen says it's like an oral report. Martha doesn't know what that is and when she's given the definition, Alice steps up to read her report.

The janitor is cleaning up dog hair.

Alice reads her report on chameleons but that just bores Martha. Helen is about to read her report on cats, but Martha is shocked because she thought Helen had written a report about Nelson. Helen thinks it's not fair to give Helen a bad grade just for writing about cats when Martha dislikes one particular cat.

In the hallway, the janitor keeps cleaning dog hair and then Janice comes saying there's an emergency. The janitor asks if it's a "dog emergency" and Janice says that someone threw up in the art room, to which the janitor asks if it's dog throw-up.

Martha asks T.D. to give his report. He forgot to write it but decides to talk about dogs. T.D. says that dogs, with some exceptions, are hairy. Martha says that's true but behaviour isn't what someone looks like, it's how they act. He and Martha then list some dog traits. Everyone applauds, but Martha says that they should bark instead. The class barks and Martha tells them to lick T.D.'s face but is interrupted by the janitor passing the door. The janitor takes Janice (who is still worried about the throw-up) by the hand and leads her into the class.

Martha talks to the class about dogs' hearing and smell. The janitor asks Janice if she sees a problem, but Janice just says she sees the class behaving well. She greets Martha and T.D. and Martha asks T.D. to give his mother the dog greeting. He does it, but not very well. Martha explains she's teaching about animal behaviour. Janice pretends to be a dog, which T.D., for some reason, dislikes but everyone else finds funny.

T.D. and Helen walk home, complaining because T.D., for that aforementioned unknown reason, doesn't like his mother pretending to be a dog and Helen is being blamed for Martha disliking Alice's report as she's her pet.

At home, Martha asks Helen for homework, but Helen is sulking.

Mrs Clusky is in her bed but she has a nightmare.

Martha calls attendance the next day and she notes she saddened someone. Mrs Clusky comes back because of the nightmare and she's surprised to see Martha. She comes home and T.D. impersonates a dog.



attendance, substitute, attention, behavior, report, teacher, lesson, student, school, homework

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