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Civics Syllabus 2012-13

Civics Syllabus 2012-13

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Published by: José Eduardo Valenzuela on Sep 10, 2012
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INB p.


Course Syllabus 2011-2012
Teacher: Mr. Valenzuela Subject: Civics in Action (8th Grade) Textbook: Civics: Government and Economics in Action (Prentice Hall) Textbook Replacement Cost: $58.00 Course Description: In this course, students will study about Civics, which are the rights and responsibilities of citizens. In this class we will be studying some essential topics: what it means to be an "American"; voting; the Constitution and the Bill of Rights; the desegregation of public schools in the 1960s and 1970s; the legal system; and the United States and the world. We will also focus much of our work on a yearlong Civics in Action Project, where students will get the choice to decide what changes they would like to see made in our community, and then take action! Instructional Objectives Major topics covered throughout this course: Identity and the roots of American democracy The voting system The Constitution The Bill of Rights Choices in Little Rock The American Legal System The United States and the World Some of the key questions/writing prompts that will be covered: Who am I? What does it mean to be an American? How does my vote matter in a democracy? How are shared powers essential to the Constitution? When should the Constitution be changed? What rights are citizens guaranteed in the Bill of Rights? How do the choices people make, individually and collectively, shape a society? Does the United States promote peace in the world? What is our responsibility as members of our community? Required Student Products For every unit, students will take a test and complete a project. This ensures that students have two opportunities in each unit to maintain their grade. Students will also complete daily homework and classwork assignments, all of which will be kept in their Interactive Student Notebook. Students will need to bring their Interactive Student Notebook with them to class everyday. All assignments (including classwork and homework) are expected to “live” within the notebook. I will periodically collect the notebook to check for organization, accuracy, and understanding. Other check-ins will include various quizzes.
Mr. Valenzuela Office Hours: Tuesdays, 2:30-3:30pm or by appointment Email: jvalenzuela@techboston.org Phone: 617-942-1312 Website: www.mrvalenzuela.com


INB p. F

Assessment and Grading Policy Student work is graded in the following way: Assessments  (Tests 25%, Projects/Portfolio 25%) 50% Notebook  (Classwork 30% - includes various quizzes and notebook checks, Homework 20%) 50% Students that do not complete all of their homework and classwork assignment or do not pass their tests or complete projects cannot mathematically pass this course! Final grade for the year will be based on: Average of (4) term grades 80%, and Final Exam/Portfolio 20% Instructional Strategies Students will find that this course is expressly designed to motivate multiple learning styles in the classroom. Students will have the opportunity to participate in lectures, discussions, and debates, all inclass. Students will also read, write, and create original historical research projects, both independently and in small groups. Students, on occasion, will be asked to give presentations of their work. Technology Integration Students will learn how to use Microsoft PowerPoint, as part of certification in Microsoft Office Suite. Student will also have opportunities to use other technologies, such as Adobe Photoshop and Acrobat, Microsoft Word, as well as others. The teacher incorporates the use of a SmartBoard, projector, and laptop on a daily basis. Students will also have access to this equipment most of the time. Classroom materials and assignments will be posted online (at www.mrvalenzuela.com) when needed. Student and Parent Signatures I understand the objectives, expectations, and other information included in this syllabus. Student Signature: ______________________________________ Date: ________________ Parent/Guardian: _______________________________________ Date: ________________

Teacher Signature: ______________________________________ Date: ________________
I pledge to do my best to ensure that your child succeeds this year and to prepare them for high school and college.

*This must be signed and returned to Mr. Valenzuela

Mr. Valenzuela Office Hours: Tuesdays, 2:30-3:30pm or by appointment Email: jvalenzuela@techboston.org Phone: 617-942-1312 Website: www.mrvalenzuela.com


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