This is half-rant/half-looking for advice - so it's long, and if you can't help, that's ok! I just want to write this out somewhere! I got hired for my first teaching job about 3-4 weeks ago. I've been to the school twice; once to interview, once to sign contracts. I've been given the textbook (student edition though) and a CD with textbook resources. I was briefly shown the room I will probably be in, and I know that staff development begins 8/25. Other than that, I feel totally clueless. These are the things I know: - It's a smaller performing arts charter high school, so all of the kids will have super long days and have to balance a regular academic load with their extracurricular arts program. - We are moving into a new building in Oct-Nov, so for the first couple months, I will be sharing a classroom. - I'll have 4 block periods a day, and my schedule could be anytime between 7am-6pm while we are piggybacking classrooms. These are the things I don't know: - If I'll be working mornings/afternoons/midday. - If I'm teaching all Algebra I classes, or if some of them will be 1A or 1B or the whole book, or a remedial Algebra. - What supplies my classroom has, if we have a supply room, if I should purchase scissors, rulers, colored pencils, etc. just to have something, or if the students are required to bring some of this stuff. - What paperwork, if any, I'm required to turn in? Lesson plans, syllabuses, implementation plans, etc? The principal said we didn't need to turn in lesson plans, but I can't imagine not having to be accountable for something. - If I'll have a mentor teacher, or team, or anyone else I could/should start contacting over the summer. - What kind of computer access we have in the classrooms. I saw a couple computers in the classroom I saw, but will I be allowed to download games/programs? Will the students be able to save their work on there? - I really like the idea of doing of doing an adventure-type math journal (like here: http://www.mathsquad.com/mathjournal.html), and I've priced the individual journal/sketchbooks, but I don't know if the school will purchase these, or if I'm supposed to, or if the students can repay me, or how this works. (I don't believe I'm at a high poverty school; so I *think* I can request that students purchase things). - We're going to have SMARTboards, but I haven't used one before. I was told there would be additional trainings over the summer (I missed the first one), but I haven't heard anything yet. I just feel so directionless and I'm a little afraid to throw myself into planning and typing lessons and things, when I feel like everything might change once I have access to and knowledge about more things. I sent an email to my principal asking about a few of these questions, but I haven't heard back yet. Should I have even emailed the principal? I don't know anyone else at the school yet. Is this how it always is over the summer before school starts? I just feel like I have no idea what I'm supposed to be doing! And really, this is a huge posting, if anyone can reply to even a small section of it, it'd probably help make me feel a little better!