Class Guidelines & Expectations
Class Climate Issues
I expect everyone to be kind, respectful, and have a positive attitude. Try your best and do participate!
Attendance and punctuality do figure in your average! You need to be present to learn and participate. Being prepared, taking notes, listening, etc. are all part of the grade. In other words, it’s not just a paper shuffle. Checkthesite.com every night before class. Make it a habit so you won’t have any surprises. I update it every day.
You will be given a one or more class participation grades per MP. A = attentive, respectful, no cell phone use, enthusiastic and consistent participation; B = mostly attentive, respectful, no cell phone use, participates often; C = may be somewhat inattentive, may use cell phone during class, rare participation; D = may not be attentive or respectful, may use cell phone during class, present but virtually no participation; F = frequently absent and/or disruptive and/or sleeping and/or may use cell phone constantly.
Please note that cell phone use will damage your class participation grade.
Plagiarism Policy: Plagiarism is taking the words or ideas of someone else and presenting them as your own. This will not be tolerated. Copying HW from a peer, copying Internet sources, or any other form of plagiarism will result in an immediate zero for the assignment in question. Repeated plagiarism will be met with more serious penalties. The first offense will result in a zero for the assignment; your parents and grade administrator will be contacted. The second offence (in this class or another) will result in the same consequences, plus (as per The Student Handbook) you may fail the course. In addition, eligibility for the Honors Society or AP English may be damaged. Plagiarism is contra-education.
You can expect many reading quizzes in my class. Reading quizzes are designed to gage if completed the required reading as well as how well you read. You will have a reading quiz at the START of class; latecomers are not guaranteed a make up quiz. Questions are generally worth 5 points. You cannot pass my quizzes by reading online summaries. You have THREE days to make up a quiz if you were absent. See the absence policy. If we have more than 5 quizzes during the semester, I usually drop the lowest score. Any eyes caught wandering get an automatic 0.
Long Term Assignments: Projects / Tests / Essays
Late projects lose half a grade a day points and will not be accepted after one week after due date. Projects are generally are worth 100-200 points. They are submitted to turnitin.com. Extra credit is given to students who utilize the Writing Center. Be sure to have your first draft signed with a time in and time out; hand in this draft with other materials requested. There should be clear revisions for extra credit. Also, write summary of your experience and how/if it helped your writing.
Short Term Assignments: Homework / Classwork
Unless otherwise notes, HW and CW is worth 10 points. √+ (9-10 pts), √ (7-8 pts), √- (5-6 pts), inc (1-4). HW is due the class session after it was assigned unless otherwise noted. It is collected at the START of class. It is not to be completed during class. It’s never okay to copy a friend’s work. Late homework will either not be accepted or will lose points. Be sure that you print before class so you don’t lose ORPs. Late is any time after I collect it at the start of class.
· Homework that is an extension of the day’s lesson may be accepted late but at a one grade loss penalty and will NOT be accepted beyond three days.
Employ ACTIVE READING strategies. Don’t read in bed or while multi-tasking. Take “column notes” or purchase your own copy of the novel to annotate.
Sometimes I assign pair or group work. If I see that not all are putting in the same effort, I will ascribe different grades. So, for example, one student in a group could get 100 and another a 75.
Be mindful of the 85% rule. This means no more than 4 absences per marking period. If you miss 5 or more classes, you will need to schedule make up time.
At all costs, avoid being absent on important days such as peer edit days, presentation dates, and other important due dates. If you must be absent on a peer day, it is expected that you email a copy of your draft to me by the time your class meets so that it can be peer edited.
Check www.checkthesite.com (or www.surfturk.com); I update the site daily. I will not accept that you forgot to check it. Check the door folder for handouts. Contact a friend, too! Keep up to date with the readings, assignments, etc. You are a young adult. Unless there is an extreme illness or other serious problem, you can and are expected to use my site to keep up to date. Do NOT expect one-on-one instructional time during class time.
Ahead of class time, check the door folder. If there were handouts, that’s where to look.
If you want to set a bad impression, try this: be absent, don’t check my site or the door folder or ask a friend, and then show up to class asking, “I was absent on ___. Did I miss anything?” Just kidding: Don’t be that kid.
“I was absent that day” is not an excuse. Class continued and work was completed and discussion was had. You are still responsible for work, quizzes, and notes. Make up the work. Yes, even group work is counted. I may assign you part of an assignment [see door folder or website].
Make up quizzes need not be scheduled. They are in a folder on my desk in the English Office labeled “Make Up Quizzes.” If I am not there, you follow the honor system and take the quiz at my desk. NO CELL PHONE USE WHATSOEVER IS PERMITTED. You have THREE days to make up a quiz upon your return to school or it gets entered as a 0.
I can see you. Cell phones must be put away. PLEASE BE RESPECTFUL. I do not want to see your phone or see you on your phone. Using a cell phone during class hurts your participation grade. And, I will take away the extra credit points cited below. In addition, using cell phones during class can raise questions about your integrity. Never use a cell phone during or after a quiz.
ORPs Extra Credit Incentive Program
It matters to me that you are in class, prepared, and stay in the room and stay on task. As an incentive, I have an extra credit system that can significantly bump your final MP grade.
You will receive FIVE out-of-room passes (ORPs) per marking period. These are EXTRA points, or, out of zero.
· You use them by leaving the room. I sign you out for that date [you have approximately 5 minutes to attend to your business whatever that is].
· You lose them by being tardy. Being late [arriving to class after the bell rings – even if your backpack is in the room] will lose you an ORP as well as earn time in the tank, so be on time!
· Cutting even once will automatically lose all ORPs. Students who do not meet the 85% rule will lose ORPs.
· Plagiarizing loses you all your ORPs. Cheating on a quiz also loses you all your ORPs. Copying HW also loses you ORPs.
· Out of Room via technology. I need you focused and respectful. Having to be asked repeatedly to put away your cell phone will lose you ORPs. If I see you on your phone, I may not say anything, but may simply mark it in my book. You lose points this way as well.
· You lose all ORPs if you miss more than 4 classes per marking period.
Definition of Late: Late is arriving any time AFTER the bell rings. Three “Lates” = one hour in the tank. Each “Late” loses you an ORP.
You will need to set up a turnitin.com account. The class ID and password are on your course description. Please register with an email you check daily/frequently. While I do not send email frequently, when I do, it is usually important (reminders, class cancellations, etc.).
You will have access to your grades on Aspen, meaning that you and your parents can keep track of grades. Please understand certain parameters:
1. Please do not expect instantaneous postings. It takes time to grade and to enter.
2. Please DO NOT email me or text me with questions about grades. Always discuss any concerns in person during my office hours. I will not discuss grades via email or text.
3. Please DO NOT ask me about grades during class time. I know it’s on your mind, but this detracts from class instruction. See me on your own time.
4. If you see an “M” in a grade slot, this means that I marked it missing and you still can make it up. Once assignments have been graded/returned/updated, you may not make up the work. A zero is a zero.
5. Missed quizzes have only THREE days from the day given to be made up.
6. Again, if you see a “0” in a grade slot, this cannot be made up.
7. There is no extra credit other than that which I already offer. Your grade will already be “fluffed up” with the following: I drop the lowest quiz once we have more than five quizzes, I offer you the ORPs system, and I provide ec points for things like using the Writing Center or the Vocab on quizzes. I expect you to complete the work assigned. There is no extra credit.
8. Grades are fluid and change as more assignments are entered. You should not obsess about your grade. If you focus on your education, the grade will follow.
9. Please do not ask if I will bump your grade. As stated, I already offer many opportunities. I reserve the right to reflect on your grade [which I do], and grade grubbing does not help you. In fact, it hurts you! Reflect on your behavior and work. If your grade reads as a borderline .5 (like 89.5), Aspen will bump it. Other than that, I want you to truly reflect on YOUR class behavior (discussion, attentiveness, preparedness, efforts, cell phone use) and work (writing, assignments, reading). Look forward to how to bump your grade yourself in the next MP.
Please do not rely on instantaneous replies from me. Also remember that I am your teacher, and you should write emails with formality – and please, no texting abbreviations. Also, please do not use email as a place for extra help or to discuss a grade. If you need help, please see me! If you aren’t sure why you have a grade, ask me in person! Eye to eye is best J And, the worst offense, please do not grade grub, beg or threaten through email!
Remind & Texting
You will sign up to Remind and I normally allow students to text me. That said, please remember that I am your teacher and not your pal.
1. Do not text after 9 PM.
2. Do not text questions that you could have easily found on my website or through a pal.
3. Do not text me about grades.
4. Do not expect an immediate response.
See number 7 and 9 under Aspen.
Please see me in the English Office for extra help!