I was just hired several days ago and it was honestly quite unexpected. I'm actually suppose to be student teaching this fall and then I was going to graduate with my Masters this December. Because I live in a rural area, and we have a bit of a teacher shortage I always knew I'd be able to get a job easily. But I didn't think that they'd hire me before I'd even student teach. So this job offer for a teaching position in first grade was completely unexpected and now I have about a month to figure everything out. *Note: I know it's taboo to teach before you student teach, but I have reasons for taking this route. Please be helpful and not criticize my decision. With there being only a month to prepare for everything, I'm a bit anxious. There will be a new teacher academy which will help familiarize me with things. I also have been assigned several mentors that will assist me throughout this year (one of which my university will pay a stipend for). My husband is a technician within the system and will help me set up my classroom. I am familiar with this school as both of my kids attend it. So far I: have created a classroom management plan (rules, procedures, how to review them, logical consequences, and behavioral system as well as classroom jobs). I know to spend the first several weeks really focusing on this and practicing them until they are perfected. have begun to think about what is needed for open house (back to school night) like behavioral contracts and letters to parents. Is there anything else I should include? have also been reading about what to expect from first graders (I've worked with Pre-K, 4th, and 5th, but not first grade). am beginning to figure out what to do for morning meetings. I'm a huge fan of responsive classroom even though our school district doesn't use it. have obtained the pacing guides and previewed what the first few weeks will consist of. have read that I need at least two weeks of lesson plans. It's best to over plan. I will begin planning these soon and hopefully I will have an idea of what my schedule will look like soon too. I'm just worried that I am going to over look something and then everything will blow up. So is there anything else I can think of to prepare for? What do I need to focus on for these first few weeks? Give me all your advice, whether it is for what to do for back to school or advice for a new teacher. I know I'm at a disadvantage here because I didn't do the student teaching (I have completed four practicums though). I really want to ensure that my first graders have a wonderful year. I know I'm bound to make mistakes and I know this will be a challenge. But I want to make sure I'm prepare for as much as I need to be. Thank you guys so much for any advice and tips you throw my way. I"m greatly appreciative.