9th Grade Literature and Composition Walnut Grove High School Spring 2012 Instructor: Room: Sunny Vidrine

A246 Email: sunny.vidrine@walton.k12.ga.us Phone: 678-507-3911 Website: msvidrinesclass.blogspot.com

Course Description and Goals
This course is designed to prepare our Ninth Grade students for maximum achievement on the EOCT, along with skills in literature comprehension and analysis, critical thinking, and writing ability. Our goals will help foster an appreciation for literature and writing and to prepare students for related problems faced every day in society. We do this through curriculum discovery, creative activities, practice problems, and real-life examples. Students will be given all of the tools for success; it is up to you to use them. Ninth Grade Literature and Composition. This course is designed to take the mystery and loathing out of reading and writing. It is my hope that you will leave this course not only appreciating how much fun a good book can be, but also knowing how great books help us better understand the world in which we live. To that end, we will be reading and responding to reading through writing and discussion. You will have opportunities to respond to reading in informal and engaging ways and to use writing as a tool for discovery and for deeper thinking. You will also have opportunities to engage texts in a formal manner and with a fundamental understanding of literary elements, presentational styles, and literary connections encouraged by the Georgia Performance Standards. Parents, I encourage you to be involved in your child¶s education, as you are their foundation for success. If you have an email address, please list it at the end of this letter with the Student Information Sheet. I do check my email throughout the day, and this is the best way to contact me. Also, I will routinely update my website to help keep you and your child informed about what is going on in the classroom. Please take a moment to read through this syllabus with your child so that we can all start the semester off on the same page. At the end of the syllabus, you will find a section for you to fill out and leave comments and concerns. I look forward to working with you and your child this semester!

Conduct and Discipline
Please carefully read and sign the attached document ³Guide to Good Behavior.´ It lists my expectations for behavior in the classroom and the consequences for failure to observe these guidelines.

Daily Grades Major Grades Reading Response Journal End of Course Test (EOCT): 20% 40% 20% 20% 100%

*Daily grades consist of quizzes, homework, participation, and in-class assignments while major grades consist of exams, projects, and presentations. Non-exam grades are given as A+ (100), A (95), A- (90), B+ (85), B (80), C+ (75), C (70), F (60), and 0 for failure to attempt. Participation grades are given daily out of 10 (50 pts. a week) and are ¥+ (10), ¥ (8.5), ¥- (70), or 0. *Reading Response Journal is a series of timed reading and writing practice. Each entry is worth 10 points. *Opportunities for extra credit will be provided throughout the semester. * Any instance of cheating/plagiarism will result in a ³0´ grade for that assignment, and the student will be written up. *STUDENTS SHOULD HOLD ON TO GRADED WORK UNTIL THE GRADE APPEARS CORRECTLY IN I-CAMPUS.

Late Work/Make-Up Work In my class, students have a minimum of daily homework. However, I do assign long term out of class assignments that students should work on daily. Because students are given ample opportunity to complete out of class assignments, I have a strict late work policy. Students will be given one late work pass per semester. All other assignments turned in after the deadline will be automatically graded as half credit. For example, a 100-point assignment cannot score higher than a 50 if it is turned in late. Moreover, technology failure is not an excuse for late work. Consistently working on projects before the day that they are due will eliminate potential technology failures. In addition, to accommodate students with limited at-home technology, all out of class assignments have the option to be completed without the aid of technology.

Students are responsible for their own make-up work and have three class days after a missed day to make up in-class assignments. If a student is absent on the day that major out of class assignment is due, unless a doctor¶s note is provided or parent contact is made, arrangements must be made to have the assignment turned in, otherwise it will be considered late and subject to late work penalties. A major exam must be made up immediately upon return. Work missed after a prolonged absence will have a due date commiserate with time missed and the nature of the absence. All missed work will result in a grade of ³missing´ until it is made up. Infinite Campus assigns a value of zero to all grades marked as ³missing.´ All work coded as ³missing´ is available to be made up. However, if the work is not made up during the grace period after an absence, the grade will be converted to a zero that will stand.

Students are required to keep a notebook to help them stay organized. The following materials are required for my class: y 1-1/2´ - 2´ 3-ring binder y Dividers y 1 subject notebook y College ruled loose leaf paper y Pencil and a blue or black pen y One ream of typing paper (teacher request not required)
* If students arrive unprepared for class and disturb others by borrowing materials, they will receive a warning for a minor disturbance.

Classroom Library In order to maximize the potential for all of my students¶ enjoyment of reading, I have provided an extensive library of books that can be checked out of my classroom at any time. Because I have students of varying levels and tastes, my library consists of books of varying levels and tastes. Students are encouraged to select books accordingly. Please understand that books deemed suitable by some parents might not be suitable according to other parents¶ estimations. Therefore, I encourage parents to take an active role in helping their child decide what kind of books he or she is allowed to read in his or her household. Whenever possible and to aid parents in this process, I have included a content rating on the inside cover of each book. The rating is similar to movie ratings. Books that I am unfamiliar with will not have a rating. You are also welcome to visit my classroom and familiarize yourself with my library. I will be happy to answer any questions that you might have about my growing collection. Also, I welcome book donations!!!!! In addition, I expect all students to respect the books in my library. If a student is caught writing in, tearing, or otherwise destructing a book, he or she will lose the privilege of using the classroom library and will be responsible for replacing the book. Failure to replace a lost or damaged book will result in a hold on the student¶s record. In-class Films Periodically, we will watch films and/or clips of a film or television show that serve as a visual medium to accompany a written text. No film shown will have a rating above PG-13, and all films have been pre-screened to ensure content appropriateness for the classroom. However, not all individuals share the same threshold of tolerance for film content. If you feel that your child might be subjected to a film that is outside his or her comfort level, please do not hesitate to contact me to discuss the details of and the rationale for the film or to provide an alternate assignment for your child. Texts and Curriculum include but are not limited to Prentice-Hall¶s 9th Grade Grammar Prentice-Hall¶s 9th Grade Literature (Gold Edition) ($53.00 to replace) Selected Poetry Selected Short Stories Selected Non-Fiction The Odyssey (text and film) Romeo and Juliet (text and both versions of the film ± Zeffirelli and Luhrman) A Raisin in the Sun To Kill a Mockingbird (text and film) Reduced Shakespeare Company clips

Students and parents, so that I can ensure that you have read the syllabus, please sign (and initial where indicated) the attached sheet.

Dear Ms. Vidrine, I have carefully read your syllabus and understand the basic outline of your class. If I have any questions, I will feel free to contact you.

__________________________________ Student print name

_____________________________________ Student signature

__________ Date

__________________________________ Parent/Guardian print name

_________________________________ Parent/Guardian signature

_________ Date

_____________________________________________ Preferred method of contact **Parent/Guardian please initial the following: _____ I have read and understand the classroom library policy. _____My child has permission to watch film/clips of film in class. _____ I have read the list of materials that my child needs for this class, including the teacher requested (not required) ream of white typing/computer paper. Parents/Guardians, please leave comments or concerns here:

If there is something specific that you would like for your child to learn in English class this semester, please feel free to indicate that here:

Thank you! Sunny Vidrine

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