Here are some questions that parents typically have. I did my best to answer them as completely as I could here. After reading through these, fell free to contact me with any questions you may still have!
- Do you offer extra credit?
- How do you handle missing or late assignments?
- Do you tutor?
- Can I visit your classorom?
- What if my child does not finish their work at their zone?
- Should my child be in Pre-AP?
- My child typically hasn't had behavior problems. Why are we hearing of them now?
- What should my child do if he/she is absent?
I do not offer separate assignments for Extra Credit use only. I build extra credit into my classroom tests, and expect students to at least try for the extra points. I also drop the lowest daily grade each grading period (don't tell them this!), thereby offering a boost equal to extra credit. Students are also allowed to CORRECT a test with a score below 70 (highest grade attainable = 70).
Late papers are accepted, but will have points deducted according to the MISD grading policy. (-15 points per school day)
Students will be notified of missing work. "Comments" are also added to grades in Skyward, indicating missing or late work. If a paper is MORE than 3 days late, it IS NOT accepted.
I am available BY APPOINTMENT (At the beginning of the year, I provide a pass to ALL students to use when needed) to help students each day. I have a sheet posted outside my door for students to sign up for tutoring. I offer 8 slots to make sure the group does not grow too big. If slots are full, they need to sign up for a different day. They will already have a pass in hand, so they will use that to get access upstairs when coming in. As a team, we ALWAYS have Study Hall from 8am - 8:30am where it is the STUDENT'S responsibility to sign up and ask a teacher for help. I have time built into the day to work with students in class, and will pull students according to what I am seeing with their work. However, if students need to come in to use the computers, or need a quiet place to work on HW, or would like to have me available to help if they are struggling with something, I am typically here each morning around 7:30am. BY APPOINTMENT :)
I have an open door policy. If you want to come watch your child, please remember a child will act differently in class with a parent present than if you were not there. Coming to visit class to watch for behaviors may not give you very good feedback. However, If a parent would like to visit to see how our class runs, I welcome the opportunity. Please clear any visits with the Office and Administration, then schedule an appointed time with me to come by. I would hate for you to drop by during a test or something where you would not be able to see much happening!
In general, this should not be a problem. Students are given 25 minutes to complete the work. I do not assign much at zones, as I want them to focus on digging deeper, working together and discussing reasoning behind problems, etc. This takes more time than just jotting down answers. If students follow policy for zone work, even if they spend all their time on one problem, I will be able to see that and make accommodations. In "most cases," not finishing work in zones means the student is not staying on task during work time at that zone. I discuss this with them in class, and they may need to stay indoors during recess from time to time to complete the work they should have finished in zones. We will get it taken care of.
Pre-AP is an ADVANCED Math class with higher academic expectations. Students will have more projects, and their learning will be pushed to higher levels of critical thinking.
Pre-AP may not be the best placement if:
* Your child typically struggles in Math
* Your child is a slower worker
* Your child is not good at turning in papers.
* Your child lacks motivation or struggles with responsibility
Pre-AP placement IS a good idea if:
* Your child is good with responsibility and organization (and can work mostly independently, tracking deadlines, etc.)
* Your child is a solid Math student
* Your child works at a medium to fast pace
* Your childs is good about turning in his/her work.
I am more than happy to discuss this with you should you have more questions.
This is a typical course for many students. Depending on their teachers in lower grades, they may not have been expected to hold the behavior standards we expect at this level. They are growing up, and more is expected of them. Our job over the 5th and 6th grade years is to prepare them for middle school, where there is a zero tolerance philosophy. Therefore, we are STRICT and expect for rules and procedures to be followed. We will remind students of behavior expectations, and at that point, consequences will apply to any behavior that is outside of expectations. At times, you may need to step in and help them adjust to new expectations, talking about how to handle things, and ways to meet those expectations in the future. Please remember that a child does not always have the full story regarding a situation. PLEASE discuss signings with your child's teacher, and take the whole bit of information in to account when discussing with your child. If we are "really" having difficulty with your child, we will contact you via email or phone, or call a parent conference. Just be available as a support system to both your child and their teachers.
In our classroom, I have an area for absent work. Each student has been reminded several times that if he/she is absent, he/she should check the wall for the folders containing work from the days he/she was absent. Remember, teachers now have over 100 students to track. It is the STUDENT'S responsibility to grab their makeup work after an absence. Please remind your child to take care of this their FIRST day back. The absent folder will have the work your child missed. The student should bring the papers to me, so I can mark due dates (1 day per day of absence) on the papers. At that point, it is his/her responsibility to turn in the work by the due dates indicated. I will not chase him/her around for it. If the absent work is turned in after the due date on the paper, standard late policy applies.