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ANDOVER HIGH SCHOOL

Classroom Contract    2008 -- 2009

COURSE  Twentieth Century America and the World   LEVEL ONE, TWO & THREE

DEPARTMENT SOCIAL STUDIES               TEACHER            CRAIG SIMPSON

 

When entering any course at Andover High School, you enter into an agreement between your instructor, the school and yourself on what you should expect from one another.  This contract lets you know what will be offered to you, and what will be expected from you.  Your signing this indicates you are willing to abide by the academic standards of this course and this instructor.

 

Mission Statement

The mission of Andover High School is to provide an environment in which every student learns to use his or her mind well to become personally responsible for his or her academic, social, and civic growth.

 

Vision Statement

The goals of this class center around the following assumptions;

 

      1.  teaching should enable people to develop skills that will assist them as they encounter and interpret the world in which they live

      2.  the world that will confront this year's class will increasingly revolve around information (both development and interpretation)

      3.  access to and the ability to use this information will determine the depth of each individual's experience throughout his or her life.

      4.  When a student completes this class it is expected that he or she will have begun this process of skill development and will recognize both what they have learned and what they have yet to learn.

 

Goals and Objectives

By the end of this course, all students should be able to:

1.       create a logical hypothesis explaining causes and consequences of a historical event or period.

2.      demonstrate how that hypothesis contains relevance to the world in which we live today.

3.      substantiate those ideas with multiple source data and understand the relative strength and weakness of each substantiation.

4.   communicate those ideas in various media using both formal and informal structures.

 

By the end of this course, all students should be able to:

1.   describe the matrix of time and place in order to set themselves and others from both the present and the past into a larger world  context.

2.   contribute to completion of group tasks.

3.   gain a better understanding of their strengths and weakness

*       seeking to enhance areas of weakness when possible

*      developing coping strategies when needed

*      exploiting strengths where ever possible.

 

Key Questions for the term

1.       How have people responded to change throughout history?

2.      What role has race, gender, ethnicity played in history?

3.      What assumptions have we made that can be challenged?  Examples of such assumptions might include:

*      time is linear

*      progress is inevitable and good

*      power comes from politics, money, physical strength, intelligence

 

CLASSROOM DISCIPLINE POLICIES

  1. All students will be expected to follow the rules set out in the student handbook.

  2. All students will be treated with respect and will, in turn, respect all others.

  3. Any rule that applies to students will also be applied to the teacher.

  4. PLAGIARISM: while the definition of this is becoming ever more murky, in this classroom it is expected that any data that you did not know before you got to this class should include a citation to the source of that data.  If you use substantially the same words as the author (even just a few), quotation marks are required with a citation that follows the quotation.  If you use the ideas or statistics of another but place these ideas into your own words, no quotation marks are required but the citation is required.  Failure to follow these guidelines will be considered plagiarism and will result in a grade of ZERO for the assignment.  In addition, the assignment will need to be reworked to overcome the plagiarism problems and will be given a notation that it was completed but the grade of ZERO will remain for that assignment.  Failure to rework the assignment will receive a second grade of ZERO that will be reflected on that term.

 

GRADING POLICY

      1.  The first term of the course will contain FOUR unit exams (multiple choice taken from the book) and THREE essays.  They will each receive equal weight for the term grade.  (NOTE : the third essay will probably count on Term two.

      2.  The second term will contain SIX unit exams (multiple choice taken from the book) and ONE research essay.  The research essay will receive five times the weight of any single exam.

      3.  Both terms MAY include additional grades taken from classroom projects.  The number and  "weight" of these projects will LIKELY be one per term and will PROBABLY receive a weight equal to a unit exam.

      4.  The exams are machine scored.  The machine is very sensitive.  If you make heavy initial marks and cannot erase changes completely the machine assumes you were giving two answers and will mark your answer incorrect.  This is a difficult lesson to learn but it is better to learn it here (where you will know about it) than on the college boards where you will lose points and never know that it was because of an incomplete erasure.  Be careful and mark each answer with a light touch.  DO NOT ask me to fix it--there is nothing to fix.  If you cannot erase completely, you got it wrong!

      5.  Late work will always be accepted (any grade is better than a zero).  Late work will be penalized ONE LETTER GRADE PER DAY UP TO 50 POINTS OFF.  Work is considered late if it is not turned in at the BEGINNING of the class in which it is due.  See also the make up policy,   section 2.

     6.  If a student chooses to rewrite an essay, he or she must

  1. read every comment on the returned essay,

  2. create a list of questions regarding comments that are unclear,

  3. set up and attend a rewrite conference with the teacher and

  4. THEN may rewrite the essay. 

  5. The grade for the second essay will be averaged with the grade for the first essay.

      7.  All essays will be blind graded.  For this to happen you must leave a blank first page and place your name ONLY on the back cover of the essay.

      8.  Any student may ask for a second reading of an essay.  Whatever grade is received for the second reading will be averaged with the grade from the first reading.

     9.  Extra-credit does not exist.  Do well on the assignments that are assigned.

 

MAKE UP POLICY

      1.  In the event of an absence on an exam day, the student will be expected to make up the exam on the day of his or her return to school.

     2.  In the event of an absence on the day an essay is due, the student will be expected to make arrangements to turn in the essay (either to my hand or to my mailbox in the main office OR emailed as an attachment) on the day the essay is due BEFORE the class period begins.  By the way, be sure your email works.  If it arrives garbled (i.e., our computers only read documents saved in a Word format [.doc]) then it has NOT arrived.  If you have questions regarding your word processing software you should ask before you trust.

      3.  If an absence is of a long term nature, arrangements should be made to set up a schedule to complete exams and turn in essays in a timely manner.

      4.  The teacher reserves the right to alter this under extenuating circumstances.

 

HOMEWORK POLICY

      1.  Homework consists primarily of reading and research.  It is the responsibility of each student to develop an organizational plan that will prepare him or her for each class.

      2.  If reading and research are not completed in a timely manner the student will find the classroom dialogue difficult (or impossible) to follow and contributions will be either superficial or absent.

      3.  No quizzes will be given.  Each student is expected to take responsibility for his or her own gathering of the content of the course.  Class time will be spent exploring the implications of various interpretations of that data.

 

REMEDIAL WORK AND TEACHER OFFICE HOURS

    1.  Help is always available before or after school by appointment.

    2.  Help is usually available during the instructor's preparation period or his lunch period, again by appointment.

    3.  It is the responsibility of the student to seek out these sessions.

 

 

 

TEACHER'S SIGNATURE _Craig Simpson_______ 

STUDENT'S SIGNATURE ________________________

PARENT'S SIGNATURE   _________________________