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Future perfect

So how do you prepare yourself for your new working life? Advance planning is crucial. Judith Judd offers tips to get you started

1. Lesson information

This should include details of schemes of work and, in a secondary school, a handbook for the subject you are teaching - if there is one. Some schools also supply a long-term plan of the topics you will be covering, so you can plan in advance.

2. What happens when

All new teachers should receive a copy of their timetable showing lessons and breaks. This should include a description of the ability levels of the different classes or sets. You will also need a school calendar showing training dates and term times, plus a plan of the building.

You should be told what time you will be expected to arrive and what time you should expect to leave each day.

3. Who's who

You should acquire a contact list of school staff showing their responsibilities, titles, telephone extensions and room numbers.

4. Facts and figures

You will need general information about the school and a map to help you find your way round.

5. Basics

These include what to do about tea, coffee and lunch, where the toilets are, where to find keys for the toilets if they are locked and the dress code if there is one.

You might also like to pick up textbooks from school before you start and have a trial run of your journey if you are travelling by car or by public transport.

You won't remember it all, but at least you will have started to absorb some of the information you need before you are swept away by the daily demands of your first term.

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