Teaching and Learning Resources

First Day of Class

The first day of class sets the tone for the entire course. The key is in the planning. A well designed, informative course syllabus which outlines not only the expectations of the course, readings and due dates, but also outlines your expectations of students will set the tone for a positive class environment

On that first day, consider an activity for students to get to know one another, such as introducing themselves to another student and then introducing that student to the rest of the class. An activity will not only allow students to get to know one another, it also gives you the opportunity to begin to get to know your students. 
A wealth of information and ideas for preparation of the first day of class can be found below.

Related Resources

The McMaster New Faculty Handbook also outlines important information on preparing to teach, course syllabus checklist, the first day and classroom management. http://cll.mcmaster.ca/resources/pdf/NewFacultyHandbook_2010.pdf

CLL at McMaster University has a prepared more information on preparing for the First Day of Class.

The Carl Wieman Science Education Initiative at the University of British Columbia has many Recommendations for Instructors (PDF)

Barbara Gross Davis offers more tips for the first day in Tools for Teaching, created by the University of California, Berkley.

Penn State Teacher pdf file. See Chapter I, page 23 for a discussion on the first day of class.

First Time Teaching  is an excellent site with valuable tips for a new instructor.

McKeachie, Wilber J., “ McKeachie’s Teaching Tips” Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company. 2002, has an entire chapter about what to expect and how to prepare for the first day of class. There are numerous copies in the CLL Library, Mills Library, 504.