There are a lot of ways to read tarot cards and just as many ways to spread them.
Every card has a meaning that is based on the symbolic images, numerology of the card number, color properties, meaning of the suit, placement of items in the image and over all composition. Every deck though is going to be a bit different which means reading all you can on traditional card meanings is a good place to start.
You will also realize that some cards are reversed (upside down) after turning cards while you cut the deck as you shuffle. These then give those cards a new meaning. Some will say it makes the card mean the exact opposite of what it normally means while others will say it means a lesser or more extreme version of the original meaning of the card. This seems to be based on personal choice as some do not even reverse cards.
To deal them out, you can leave them in a stack at the end of shuffling and pull from the top for a spread. Or as I prefer to do, spread them out face down in a line. Then I pick cards as I see fit for a question based on intuition. I've also seen those who cut the deck into three piles and pull from the different piles for past, present and future readings. The main thing is to find what works and feels right for you.
As for what spreads to put the cards into, that can depend on what type of reading you are wanting to do, how many cards you want to read at a time (too many and a reading gets confusing), and what spread you have memorized. The celtic cross is a popular spread as is the three card spread for past, present and future. The internet is filled with all kinds of spreads and how to use them.
But the best advice I can give you is to read some books on tarot. Your public library might be a good place to start as I know mine has several on learning tarot. And of course there are some great tarot sites online like http://www.aeclectic.net/tarot/ which is my favorite. And others like http://www.free-tarot-reading.net/learn/ have a good lessons section for beginngers. The more you learn the better your tarot skills will become. You can also look into the free online tarot readings that are computer generated just to see how it is done and get some ideas. These can sometimes show you new spreads and details on exactly how to use them which is useful.
Good luck on your journey into tarot!