I am also knitting with circ needles for the first time, a sweater, and I have cast on and done 2 rows and notice the end is connected.
"To knit on circular needles without producing a big tube, all you have to do is to CO like normal, then turn and knit the first row like you would with straight needles (put the needle part of the circ that is in your right hand in your left hand and the part of the needle that was in your left hand in your right hand). Knit to the end of the row and turn again. It's just like knitting with straight needles, only now you have a long cord connecting the ends of them."
My question about circular knitting is once you have finished your peice do you have to cut that cord that connects the ends? Won't that unravel the sweater?