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Algebra 1A Course Syllabus and Expectations Mr. McDermott email@example.com 652-7200 ext. 52227 Welcome to Algebra! In this course, you will have the chance to uncover the mathematics that runs much of our everyday world. This document outlines the policies, procedures and expectations that will guide our mathematical journey this year. Please read it carefully, review it with your parents and keep it in the front of your Algebra notebook. Class Expectations Respect – This word is a succinct summary of my expectations for this class. I expect that you will have respect for the course material and subject matter, for myself and the other students in this class, and for yourself as a student. The following are areas in which you can demonstrate respect: Absences Please do your best to minimize absences from class. The benefits of attending and participating in class are unsurpassed. If you are absent, please complete the homework that was due on the day you were absent for the day you return. Make-ups for tests or quizzes should be completed within a week of your return during a free period (in Math Lab) or after school. Please see the GHS Attendance Policy for additional information. Punctuality / Preparedness In order for our class to accomplish our goals, it is important that we utilize all of our class time. Please arrive before the bell and be prepared to begin class when the bell rings. You will be considered tardy if you are not in your seat at the time the bell rings, and three instances of tardiness will result in an after-school detention. Participation Perhaps the most important step you can take towards ensuring your success in mathematics is participation. I expect that you will have enough respect for yourself as a student to ask questions when anything is unclear and to participate in class discussions so that you are an active part of the learning community. Although this is not a graded component of this class, I can not stress the importance of actively participating enough! In-Class Activity So that you can make the most of your time in class, it is important you remain in your seat and focused on the class activities. Please use the restroom, gather supplies, sharpen pencils, and perform other tasks before class begins. If you need to be excused from class, please raise your hand at an appropriate time. Electronic Devices While I understand the desire to have cell phones, IPods, etc. with you, you are not respecting the learning process by using these devices in the classroom. Please refrain from using them while you are in class. Please read the GHS Policy Handbook for more information on the consequences of using these devices. Materials for Class Please bring the following materials with you to class everyday: o Notebook – 3 Ring Binder divided into at least 3 sections (Notes/Classwork, Homework, Assessments) o Calculator (TI-83 Plus or TI-84) o Pens and Pencils (and erasers) Grading Policy Your grade will be determined using a point system. The following are the types of assessments you can expect to see and the approximate percentage of your grade they will count towards. Tests – Tests will be given at the conclusion of a unit of study and will focus on the major topics of the given unit. They will be announced in advance and will generally be worth between 80 and 110 points. o Notebook – Your notebook will be graded once each quarter. It will be worth approximately the value of a test. The date of the notebook check will be unannounced, so it is in your best interest to maintain a neat and organized notebook. On the day of the notebook check, I will post a list of 3-5 items that you will need to pass in from your notebook to be graded. These items will be class notes, assessments, homework or handouts. Since I recognize each person has their own organizational style, I will not require you set up your notebook in any particular way, but you need to create a system that will allow you to find anything in your notebook quickly and easily. A more specific rubric will be provided for notebook checks. Quizzes – Quizzes can be given at any point in a unit, and will serve to reinforce recent concepts and provide you with an opportunity to evaluate your understanding of the concepts. Formal quizzes will be announced and will be worth between 20 and 60 points. o Homework Quizzes – Homework quizzes will consist of a small number of questions very similar to homework problems from the previous night. They will be given after the class has reviewed the homework, but will be unannounced. These quizzes will be worth between 5 and 15 points. o Guiding Question Responses – At the start of each unit, I will present a set of questions that will guide our exploration of the upcoming topics. Near the conclusion of the unit, you will be asked to respond to a selected number of questions. Your responses will be graded using a rubric that will be provided in advance and will be worth approximately the value of a quiz. o Projects – Algebra extends far beyond pencil and paper! There will be several opportunities for you to demonstrate your understanding through more hands-on projects. Rubrics will be provided, and projects will be worth approximately the value of a quiz. Homework – Homework will be assigned and graded daily. Homework is your chance to practice and review the concepts we are exploring, so I will not penalize you for incorrect answers. Your homework will be graded based on completeness. The following point values will be used for daily homework grades: 2 – Homework is completed well; nearly every problem or every problem has been attempted. Work is shown as appropriate. 1 – Homework is somewhat incomplete or is lacking the necessary work. Many problems are incomplete or not attempted. 0 – Homework is not completed or no work is shown. The following represents the approximate percentage that each component will be worth in your quarter grade. Please note that depending on the unit of study, these percentages may vary. 1st and 3rd Quarters 2nd and 4th Quarters Tests – 45% Tests – 65% Quizzes – 15% Quizzes – 20% Homework – 15% Homework – 15% Midterm/Final – 25% I encourage both students and parents to contact me with any questions or concerns you have. My contact information is listed at the beginning of this document. Although you may call at any time, email will likely reach me sooner. So that I can be in touch with you, please provide your contact information below and return this portion of the document to school with your son or daughter. I have read this document and understand the policies and procedures of Mr. McDermott’s class. _____________________________________ ______________________________________ Student Name Student Signature _____________________________________ ______________________________________ Parent/Guardian Name Parent/Guardian Signature _____________________________________ ______________________________________ Parent/Guardian Daytime Phone # Parent/Guardian Evening Phone # _____________________________________ ______________________________________ Parent/Guardian Email Address Best time / Best contact method Thank you – I’m looking forward to a great year!