This year I decided to do something different on the first day of art class with my high school students. Since the kids' schedules changed a lot the first week of school, I saved the important info. until I knew my class was set. So instead of rules and information I did a directed drawing lesson using pastels.
I consider directed drawing lessons as swimming in the "shallow end" of the pool and figure I need to gain their trust before I send them to the "deep end" later.
(Note- When we do directed drawing lessons, I tell students they're free to make their own changes if they're inspired to do so.)
Right now I've been blessed with an adorable 8th Grade teacher's assistant. She's in my room 3 times/week helping me prep for lessons and putting up artwork, and she's a wonderful artist! She made the sign above:)