I know there may have been some threads on this topic, but I couldn't find any. I'm hoping that we can exchange ideas and brainstorm, as not every classroom / school is the same, and not one thing will work for everyone. So: what should we do on the first day of school? So far, what I've heard and read: present expectations, rules, procedures, some icebreakers. I have always been in favor of spending the majority of that class time in communicating expectations, rules, consequences, rewards, basically everything students need to know. I always thought that if I skip this, or make shortcuts, I'd be sorry later. Since then I've read here that some teachers prefer to go over all this, but not in great details, while others spend about 2-3 minutes and go straight to the first lesson. Others do a lot of ice breakers. Here's my situation: -classes are 48 minutes - I'll have 6 classes, but 2 of those are the same kids from the other 4 classes. - a lot / or some students will be the same from last year. We don't know yet, but repeating students could be as little as 30 % of the population, or as much as 60 % (they're not repeating grades, they just stay with us, as the classes are mixed grades, 9-12) - most of my procedures, rules, expectations, rewards, etc. will be the same from last year - we don't need icebreakers for the students to get to know each other, because they already know each other (from previous school year, other schools, been locked up together, or from the same neighborhood), or we we don't want them to socialize because they're rival gang members, or there are other conflicts. As far as icebreakers, I want to get to know them myself, so I think it's enough if I have them write me a letter, answering specific questions. I did this last year, and it worked out great. But I'm not sure about the expectations. I normally do a Powerpoint, explain and have them take notes. The repeating students would find it boring. If I don't do it at all, a lot of them will not know what to do, and I really don't to stop all the time to explain. I've heard that it would be best to go right into the first lesson, because all other teachers will be go over expectations, so might as well make it different. I think that sounds good, but I think students are not really into school on the first day (at least not our students) So what can I / should I do?