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Get all your niggles fixed

From sorting out nit combs to finding useful websites, Sara Bubb has advice for teachers beginning preparation for the new school year

Are you ready for the term ahead? It's going to be long and gruelling, so prepare while things are quiet.

Are you in good physical shape? If there's any bit of you which causes discomfort a verruca, a twinge in the back, a sensitive tooth get it sorted out, or it's likely to get worse when you won't have time to get it treated. If you're fit, it will help you manage long days and stress. You'll be on your feet most of the day, walking the equivalent of a mini-marathon. If you teach children under eight, work on building up a flexible back and strong legs your calves and quadriceps will get lots of use when you're crouching down on tiddly chairs.

Lots of bodies mean plenty of germs, so take vitamin and mineral supplements to help your body fight off the viruses that come into school. What's your medicine cupboard looking like? You're bound to get sore throats, headaches and colds so stock up on the best value products. Get hold of a very fine nit comb, some head lice shampoo and check your hair frequently.

Is everything looking as problem free at home as it can be? Setting up online shopping is a hassle at first, but once it's working it saves you so much time and effort and means you aren't spotted by pupils and parents going round the supermarket.

Is your computer working to maximum efficiency? Give it a spring-clean by checking for viruses and deleting heavy files. Research the most useful websites and save them as favourites. There are untold gems in The TES resource bank (www.tes.co.ukresources). Outlook calendars are a boon, especially for those working with a two-week timetable. And decorate your diary distinctively for when it inevitably gets lost under a pile of books. Day-Glo orange with a memorable picture is perfectly acceptable for your lifelie*

Sara Bubb's Successful Induction for New Teachers is published in September by Paul Chapman

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