Course Description

The decisions teachers make during the critical first weeks of school set the tone for the entire year.  Through the reading of and interacting with The First Six Weeks of School by Paula Denton and Roxann Kriete you will learn to establish a safe environment where students can take risks and learn how to handle routines and expectations throughout the day.  Your students will demonstrate increased self-discipline and be more engaged in active learning.  In this distance class you will work through the book and assignments at your own pace. Grades K-5.

Learner Outcomes

Participants will learn:

  • How to make their best teaching possible by building a solid foundation for their school year in a slow and focused way. 
  • Fresh and effective ways to guide students through exploring their school environment and establishing meaningful classroom rules and routines. 
  • New ways to build a strong classroom community and encourage increased learning engagement through academic choice. 


Bachelor's Degree or Instructor permission


“I have found The First Six Weeks of School to be an incredibly valuable resource for starting a new school year. This course has presented the start of the school year in a new light. Instead of beginning the year feeling nervous and overwhelmed by all that needs to be done, this text provided a calm and helpful structure to build a strong foundation for the first six weeks of school. The text is clear, easy to follow, and filled with practical and engaging ideas for the classroom. From the ideas presented day by day and week by week in the different sections: Flow of the Day, Teaching Academics and Discipline to the sample schedules and ideas in the appendices, this text was and will be on my desk during the first six weeks of school for years to come.” —TINT Student

“This class has helped me to feel supported on taking a chance on a new school year. I get the beginning of school jitters every year and using The First Six Weeks of School is a fantastic way to build up my courage and excitement for the new year. I have appreciated the deep looks into each chapter and the opportunity this class has given me to also add in some of the other ideas from this book that I hadn’t used in previous years. While only entering my fourth year of teaching, I have already seen how easy it can be to get settled into routines and not learn new ideas. There is so much more that this book has to offer that I am excited to use in my classroom. For example, the Hopes and Dreams strategy is a fantastic way to help students reflect on their learning and set goals for the year. I look forward to encouraging students with a positive tone and reinforcing language. As the year wears on, I want to maintain a positive tone and not get impatience or short with students. This is also why interactive modeling is so important, because it gives students a chance to fully experience the expected behaviors. I am excited to introduce more academic choices to students too. I think that as my confidence as a teacher grows, so too will opportunities for students to learn in my classroom. I appreciate the reflections and learning this course has brought to my teaching practice. Thank you!” —TINT Student

“For the last assignment you've asked that we write a reflection about this course and things that we will implement into our classroom because of it. First I would like to say that I have taken many online classes. My entire graduate program through George Fox University was online. I took some good classes, but was frustrated that a lot of them weren't focused on becoming a better educator. This online class has been amazing! It wasn't terribly difficult and all of the time that I put into it was useful, focused on helping me become a better educator, and 100% applicable to improving my classroom which I am grateful for. I am looking forward to continuing to taking more classes through TINT.” —TINT Student

Enroll Now - Select a section to enroll in
Section Title
Building a Strong Foundation: The First Six Weeks of School
Start Now, you have 365 days to complete this course once enrolled.
Delivery Options
Distance Learning  
Course Fee(s)
Tuition credit (3 units) $690.00
Available for Credit
3 Quarter Credits
Reading List / Textbook

The First Six Weeks of School by Paula Denton and Roxann Kriete

Section Notes

This course is offered in collaboration with The Innovative Northwest Teacher (TINT)

Course is self-paced. Completion time: up to one year from date of enrollment.

Refund Policy: Withdrawals submitted online through SPU within 7 days of enrollment will receive a 95% refund. Withdrawals received after that point will not receive a refund and no withdrawals will be accepted after the completion deadline for the course. Instructions on how to withdraw are located on our website under Students/Withdrawal and Refund Policies.


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