Our Classroom Website

:::Desktop:DownloadedFile.jpegCurriculum This Year

This year the 8th grade ELA classes will primarily use the Expeditionary Learning curriculum. However, please be aware that independent reading is an integral part of our work.

 

Please know ahead of time that 8th grade report cards, attendance, and state exams are what high schools analyze for admittance. Familiarize yourself with the grading policy on page 5 and work hard to ensure a high grade.

 

ELA Materials…

  • 2 notebooks
  • 1 pencil case with pencils, blue or black pens, and highlighters
  • 1 folder
  • 1 box of tissues

 

Classroom Expectations:

In addition to beginning our curriculum, September will also focus on creating the individual and class habits I know are 100% necessary for a successful year:

Procedural Mastery: see pages 2-3 for a more detailed list

Efficiency is the key to maximizing instructional time. You’ll have to re-learn how to enter the room, where to put your backpack, how to sit, how to turn in your homework, and absolutely everything else you need to know to maximize our time and make sure you’re successful. By the end of September, you should follow all of the expected procedures without even thinking. 

Establishing a Positive Culture

A positive classroom is a place where anything is possible. In my classroom, students are “minds on” all of the time. This means you’re thinking and your mind is totally focused on the task at hand. As you can probably infer by now, I do not tolerate anything that takes away from how much you learn. This can sometimes include the attitude you have in class. Bullying, a lack of effort, a negative attitude toward collaboration, or a negative attitude toward any adult in the room significantly takes away from how open all students are to learning. It is not tolerated. A student who expects rewards or a good grade in class will come in with a positive attitude daily.

 

 

CLASS POLICIES

 

What do I expect of you?

I expect the world from you, mostly because I know you can do it. Our classroom is a place where doctors, astronauts, lawyers, dancers, artists, and writers begin their training. I do not tolerate distractions from learning. I will not tolerate anything less than your best. Anything else is an insult to me, this school, and to you. In order to be respectful to me, to your classmates, and to yourself, several things must happen:

 

Take yourself seriously. We both want you to learn a lot and have fun in English this year. Follow directions, do your class work and homework, and you will be successful. If you ever have a question or need extra help, do not hesitate to ask me. If you do not want to talk to me in person, you may leave me a note or write me an email.

 

Come to class ready to learn. Arrive with materials, ready to work. Quietly take your assigned seat and immediately begin your designated task. Remain in your seat unless told otherwise. There will be times when you do not know something or have a question about an activity. In school, we learn – we are not supposed to know everything. Be engaged and attentive and your questions will be answered. This will ensure that you will make high grades!

 

Allow others to learn. Follow the rules and the classroom expectations posted on the wall. Remember that you are not the only one to use school property, so please treat it with care. Also, I will not tolerate name-calling, rudeness, or fighting in my class, no excuses.

 

Consequences. If you choose to break a rule, you will be given a reminder and a warning. If your misbehavior is serious or does not stop, you have shown me that you do not know how to act appropriately. You will stay after school for two hours. Your parents will get to know me well. The CONSEQUENCES chart on the wall outlines punishments clearly.

 

Rewards. I am also eager to notice excellent work. Learning, completing projects, and earning good grades are huge rewards in themselves, but outstanding behavior and achievement deserves praise. I will explain my rewards system to you and the chart of the wall outlines it clearly.

 

What are other policies?  

Where do I sit? A seating chart will be arranged in the beginning of the year and is subject to change according to the behavior that I see or the needs of that day’s lesson. Failure to immediately comply with seating policy is an automatic 2-hour detention.  

 

What do I do if I am late? You are responsible for your learning and grade in this class. You must do whatever possible to get to this class on time. If you need to handle a personal problem or speak with another teacher, this is not the time. When you enter the room, silently enter and hand me your pass. Look around the room to see where other students are in the lesson and catch up. If you enter during the mini-lesson, guided practice, or independent practice you must catch up on the beginning of class procedures at the end of the school day. If you do not have a pass or cause any type of disruption upon entering the room, you will have a silent lunch.

 

What if I don’t have my supplies? You will bring your independent reading notebook, module packet, independent reading book, and writing utensils each day. Failing to bring one of these items will result in a 50% for daily classwork. Consistently forgetting materials will result in a low grade and loss of behavior points.  If you misplace supplies, nonverbally ask a classmate to borrow what you need. However, do not count on others for your preparation. You may raise two fingers and I will allow you to go to the supply section and get a golf pencil. Warning: it’s really hard to write with a tiny pencil AND they don’t have erasers. It’s better just to bring your own!

 

What do I do if I have to sharpen my pencil?  If you need to sharpen your pencil, raise 2 fingers in the air. I will acknowledge it and give you permission to use the pencil sharpener, located in the supplies section of the classroom. You must ask permission before getting up.  

 

What do I do with my garbage?  Stay in your seat.  Place any garbage on the corner of your desk.  MR. SCHULTZ will collect it or you will throw it out when you are dismissed. Do not get up during class to throw out trash.

 

What do I do if I have to use the restroom?  If it is an emergency, then you are allowed to use a bathroom pass to exit the room.  To ask permission for the restroom, hold up your bathroom pass. Please do this only during independent practice. Our time together is valuable and limited. As a result, you will only receive 3 bathroom passes per quarter, unless you have a doctor’s note. Bathroom passes may be turned in at the end of the quarter for a treat.

 

Can I chew gum, eat or drink?  There will be absolutely no food or gum in this classroom. If I catch you with either, it will be thrown in the garbage and you will be punished accordingly. You may have water in a clear water bottle.

 

How do I know if MR. SCHULTZ needs the class’ attention? When I need your attention as a class, I will begin counting down from 5 to 1. By the time I reach 1 you must be silent and your eyes must be on me. You must no longer be holding any materials in your hands. If you are not quiet by 1, you will lose a point OFF YOUR CLASSROOM AVERAGE.

 

How do I get help with homework? First, call a classmate! Then you may call, email or text me if you still need help. I am very fast with email and text messages, but I rarely check my voice messages. Please do not call, text, or email me after 9:00 PM. For more information about homework, please see the homework policy below.

 

How do I get an independent reading book? There are a few options for getting an independent reading book. You may borrow a book from someone you know, go to the public library, or purchase a book on your own. However, be mindful that these are school appropriate. If you make the choice to bring in an inappropriate book, it will be confiscated and given to Ms. Sanchez. Your parents will also be notified of your chosen reading material. If you do not like these options, you may use the classroom library. I have spent a significant amount of time and personal money developing this library so I expect it to be treated with respect. Please be aware that the NYS expectation is that each student in grade 8 reads 30 independent reading books throughout the course of the year. In order to make sure each student is on track to meet this standard; students will be independently reading each evening. Please see the homework policy and directions for further information.  

 

What do I do if I am absent? All students are expected to be in class every day.  It is a privilege to learn, and you should want to be a part of every moment of the school day. If you are unfortunately absent, you must come to class with the assignment that was due on the first day that you were absent. In the days following your return to school, you must make up all missing homework. If you missed a test, you will also make it up within the days following your return to school by scheduling a time before or after school with MR.SCHULTZ.

 

Can I do extra credit? I expect that you will do all of the work assigned and that there should be little reason you need extra credit. However, if you would like to raise your grade slightly there will be various opportunities for extra credit. These assignments will be rigorous and will not be accepted in the last week of the quarter.

 

Your body language in class is a reflection of your investment and attentiveness. Correct body language in class is a sign of respect to me and to your classmates. Not following the correct body language will result in consequences.

    • Listening Position – when you’re in your seat, but the teacher is speaking.
      • Turn your body around with your knees and shoulders facing the front of the room.
      • Make sure nothing is in your hands.
      • Put your eyes on the teacher.
      • You are silent.
    • Instruction Position – the teacher is presenting the lesson and you are taking notes/working.
      • You have your notebooks open with the correct heading on top of the page.
      • Eyes and attention move back and forth between the teacher and your notes.
      • You have a blue or black pen or pencil out.  
      • You are silent.
    • Independent Position – when you’re trying something on your own.
      • You are silent.
      • Your body is facing your table.
      • Your eyes are on your work. You are not making eye contact with anyone else.
      • None of your work is touching the work of the person next to you.
    • Partner or Group Position – you’re working with someone else.
      • You’re talking using the 2-foot rule. If you can be heard from more than 2 feet away, you are too loud and will be receiving a consequence.
      • You may lean towards your partner, but do not get out off your chair.
      • Your conversation is on task and you are using accountable talk.

 

You can be exceptional.

 

 

 

 

Criteria

Percent

Rationale

What this looks like

Independent Reading

10%

Students are expected to be reading independently in class and at home.

 

-Silently reading for the full 10 minutes of independent reading.

-Consistently bringing in the same book and reading at a rigorous pace and level.

-Books being read are at students reading level.

-Student is able to correctly follow library procedures.

-Student reads at least 6 books independently per quarter.

Collaboration

15%

Students spend approximately five hours in ELA each week. This is where the majority of learning occurs. No student will receive an A or B in class if they are not consistently meeting classroom expectations and producing their best work.   

-Students are paying attention and following classroom expectations.

-Students positively contribute to classroom discussions.

-Classwork is complete and shows evidence of thought and carefulness.

-Classwork reflects the students’ best work.

Homework

10%

Students will do independent reading, summarizing, and vocabulary each night. A written response based on their book is due each Monday. Additional homework may be assigned some evenings.

-Homework is…

  • Complete
  • Reflective of students’ best work
  • Handed in on time
  • Neat

-Late homework will automatically receive half credit and will not be accepted unless it reflects the students’ best work.

Interim Assessments

15%

It is important for both the teacher and the students that learning is monitored frequently. Students are expected to keep up with mastering the daily objectives.

-Quizzes

-Exit Slips

-Independent Reading Projects

Post Assessments

25%

Students overall grade must reflect not only their effort, but that they are performing on grade level.

 

-Multiple choice exams

-Reading level assessments

 

CLASSROOM BEHAVIOR

25%