I have been out of teaching high school for about 10 years and recently got a position where I will be teaching all 4 grade levels for about 40 students. These students are mostly higher level or that's what the principal says anyway. The leaving teacher has left me all her teaching material, including quizzes and tests (though no answer keys), calendar schedules, syllabai and weekly schedules for each grade, books, and students' files from previous years with their papers still intact so I could look to see what is expected of me. The question is cause I'm overwhelmed: where do I start? I've been pouring through the books (novels and short stories), looking at all the teacher's manuals, except for 12th, and trying to make sense of the teacher's schedules for each class. I feel more prepared now for the three grades as far as materials. The principal and the Jewish spiritual advisor want to see every lesson plan, any materials--papers, magazines, books--before I present it to the students. I bought a teacher planner and have the first day completed for most grades, but now what? Do I just block the time for novel studies, block off days for that, or do I go deeper and write more specific questions, materials that I'll need, vocab words for each work? Then how much time do I block for say a Helen Keller unit which would include: Her autobiography, the play Miracle Worker, two scenes from that play, and an excerpt from Light in the Darkness? School begins on Aug 26th with new teachers returning the week before. A very sincere thanks for any and all responses to these questions. You are all the best.