Welcome to the forum. You came to the right place to learn the smoking craft. When I joined, I started following the advice of other members and instantly became a better cook. I guess it was because I really didn't know anything about smoking so I didn't have any bad habits.
You will find out from the members that there are lots of ways to get the results you want from your smoker. It will be up to you to decide what would work best for you within the limitations of your smoker, and what you like. For example; in the area where I grew up, BBQ'ed pork gets a vinegar based sauce. Sweet pork just tastes weird because of what I'm used to, so I stay away from the sweet rubs and sauce recipes.....for now. I do like to experiment, so who knows, I may evolve to sweeter rubs and sauces. We'll see.
There are also several modifications that you can make to your smoker that will make it work better and more efficiently. Just type in "Brinkman offset smoker mods" in the search box and see what pops up.
Don't forget, this isn't just a learning forum, it's also a teaching forum. If you have any knowledge or skill that can help other members, please share it. But, that doesn't mean (since you're a teacher now), that you should correct our grammar and punctuation. I'm talking about smoking knowledge/skill.