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    Routines and procedures
    By Tammy

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    You have probably thought of most of these but this is what I cover on the first day. We start out by taking care of where to store our materials. We go through each textbook and arrange things neatly in our desks. Then we assign and put the rest of our things in lockers. By now they have had some time to be social with their friends and I usually need to quiet them down. This is where I move on to rules, rewards, and consequences. I explain my system to them and show them the items in the Treasure Box that they can earn. I also explain the consequence steps for misbehavior. Then I take time to show them the room. Point out the things that they will need to use throughout the year, the centers, my library, the game shelf, where the extra supplies are, cleaning materials, etc. Make sure they are very familiar with the room setup or you will spend a lot of time answering "where is..." questions. We have a Wednesday Folder system for sending things home so I then explain that. Most of the kids are already familiar with it (I teach 5th grade) but there is usually 1 or 2 new ones. The other thing that is different for the 5th grade is the Treasure Chest Packet I send home each week. This is a packet of the kids papers from the previous week. I send it home with a slip on front that summarizes the child's behavior for the week, tells the parent if the child had any late work, if the child has any work missing, etc. The parent has to sign the slip and send it back. I have found that this ensures that the parents see the papers before the garbage can does and it keeps them current on their child's progress without the constant phone calls and note writing. I have routines for turning in papers and lining up, job boards, etc. Make sure the students understand all of these small things also. This sounds like a lot for the first day but I have it a bit easier because I teach in a Catholic school and most of these kids have been together since pre-K so we don't have to do the "get to know you" things. The most important things to remember are to be organized and stick to your discipline plan. If you bend to much the kids will push until you break. If I think of anything else I post it. Good luck and if you have any questions, e-mail me.

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