Syllabus and Classroom Expectations

Welcome to the 2021-22 school year at North Buncombe Middle School.  I’m excited to welcome you to what will surely be an awesome year on Team Legendary.

Course Objective

As a class, our objectives are to improve our knowledge and enjoyment of informational and literary texts across several different genres, focus on writing, acquire better communication skills, gain a grasp of grammar, achieve higher reading abilities, and improve our comprehension of literary text.

In 8th grade ELA we will be focusing on THEME and ANALYSIS in both our reading and writing.  We will be reading fictional stories, novels, non-fiction articles, and poetry.  Students will use the CER format (Claim, Evidence, and Reasoning) to structure their written paragraphs as well as essays.  I hope to see growth in abilities and confidence as students learn to select their best evidence and explain their thinking.  

I believe reading is a tool for reflection.  When we read, we should seek to make connections and  gain insight to our lives and the world around us.  The curriculum for 8th grade ELA is organized by theme, and we will begin by exploring texts based around the theme of Identity.  Although we will explore other themes throughout the year, the concept of Identity is an ongoing connection in all of our units
Classroom Rules and Expectations

Be Prompt:  In your seat when the bell rings; follow directions the first time they are given; take the most direct path; turn in assignments on time

Be Prepared: Charge your laptop EVERY night; have all materials before class starts; go the the restroom between classes

Be Productive: check the smartboard for instructions; read the sideboard for agenda and due dates; begin your work right away; work the entire time; use your laptop appropriately

Be Polite: No phones in class; be kind to everyone; laptops closed when I am teaching or we are having a discussion; no swearing, teasing, or talking back; bullying will not be tolerated!

Be Patient: Wait calmly for your turn; ask permission to get out of your seat; do not interrupt others

Behavior Consequences I am a believer in natural consequences as a first defense to behavior issues.  If a natural consequence is either not being effective or is not appropriate for the situation, students will be given lunch detention and/or a parent will be contacted.  If necessary, a major referral will be turned in to the office.  Please refer to the student handbook for details regarding major referrals.

Grading Policy

*All classwork is scored on the 100 point scale

*Tests and Projects will count double in the gradebook

*Missing assignments will show a score of 40/100 in Powerschool.  It will ALWAYS be labeled as “Missing”

*Work that has been turned in but is unfinished will be labeled as “Incomplete” in Powerschool.  

*Students may redo any assignment (including incomplete work).  Work that is redone may earn back up to half (½) of the points previously deducted.

*Late work is accepted.  See details of policy below.

Late Work  I recognize that not every student works at the same pace, and some need time to complete work outside of class.  Therefore, late work will be accepted up until the following Monday with no penalty.  

Work turned in any time after that Monday will be accepted through the end of the grading period; however, these tardy assignments will be given a 30 point deduction (maximum score of 70). 
Homework Expectations 

Students will be expected to read a text of their choosing at home.  Although I will not be requiring students to fill out a reading log, I will be tracking their progress during our SSR time in class on Fridays.  Each student will set a personal reading goal and we will occasionally have classwork that is connected to their independent reading book.  

The best way to encourage your student to read at home is to simply have a conversation with them about their books.  If you would like more guidance I will be happy to supply you with some suggested questions and conversation starters.
Contact

The fastest and most effective way to reach me is via email:  aubrey.cooper@bcsemail.org   

Please remember to check PowerSchool regularly.  If you do not have a parent login you may ask in the office for instructions, or simply ask your child to login to their student account on their school devices.