The American Chemical Society (ACS) has some great resources when it comes to lab safety. Here you will find answers to the questions "What could happen if I am working by myself?" and "Why do we bother with Risk Assessment?". They are super short and fun, and definitely worth a watch.
Further down are some helpful tips for the labs.
Why we do Chemical Risk Assessments
You might have noticed that both of the above videos include the acronym RAMP. Lucky for you, we have a page for the RAMP concept where you can read all about it.
Cleaning Your Lab Bench Top Station
Before starting any experiment in a laboratory or even just standing or sitting at a lab bench top waiting for the professor to get started before lab begins, it's important to clean your station as soon as you arrive. This will prevent you from coming into contact with hazardous chemicals if the person before you wasn't quite as clean as they should have been. Perhaps just as importantly, it will help prevent experiment contamination so your experiment results aren't influenced negatively - which can help your grade!
Just as important as cleaning up before you start, clean up after yourself as well, even though you may be very tired after a long lab period. Wipe down your lab bench top again at the end of lab work before you leave for the day so that someone else isn't hurt by the mess on the bench top you didn't know you made.
Washing Glassware in Freshman Chemistry Lab
Cleaning laboratory glassware isn't quite the same nor as simple as washing the dishes like you might do at home. Much of the time, using soap and tap water for washing are neither required nor desirable as both can contaminate your experiments and give you unexpected results. If just washing acid or base solutions, you can rinse the glassware with 2 to 3 full rinses of deionized water, then let air dry.
If you must use soap because the deionized water isn't getting everything out, there's a better way to wash your lab glassware so that you won't ruin your chemical solutions or your laboratory experiment. This video shows you how to do so in a way that minimizes the possibility of future contamination.