Hi all. I work at a tiny school (100 or so kids) and am starting my third year of teaching. My coworker resigned last year, making me the senior teacher of my department. However, we really don't have "departments" here. We had no collaboration so I've put together everything I have on my own. At workshops, she played on her iPad while I mapped out our curriculum. I am making headway but it's been a slow process. Fast forward to this year and the new hire (a retired English teacher/long-term substitute) has 20+ years of experience on me. When she was hired, I was able to sit down and show her a syllabus for each class, as well as a list of available books to teach. In my three years, I've taught every grade level within my certification except one. That's about it, though. I told her there is a lot of freedom here, which makes her very uncomfortable. She wants me to tell her when, where, and how to teach vocabulary. The same goes for grammar and spelling. She has asked about a department grading policy and recommended reading lists. We have none of these things. I completely understand that she is just trying to be respectful and treat me like the senior teacher, but the truth is: I have no say in what you do in your classroom. You want to teach that book? Teach it. I do not have a curriculum to share with you besides my own. You create your own grading policy, though I shared with her how I do it. I do not teach vocabulary/spelling/grammar individually, but instead we explore these within other units. I tried the 'Monday-grammar-Tuesday-spelling-Wednesday-words' thing and it just didn't work for me. She seems a little lost without me handing down the law and now I'm thinking I need to start crafting these policies. What do you think? What do you (if you're the senior teacher) take upon yourself to have mapped out when it comes to your subject? I've told her things like: Well, I would like all grades to read at least one Shakespeare play. Should I be more specific than this?