Mr. Germanis' Class Website

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The purpose of this page is to provide students, parents and administrators with the information on the running of the classroom. With periodic updates, this webpage is intended to help clarify the operations of Mr. Germanis' classroom. The syllabus contains information about the grading and content of each course with some overview of the operations. This page differs because it provides a more comprehensively overview of the day-to-day operations. If any two documents published by Mr. Germanis contradict themselves, please contact Mr. Germanis to clarify.

Syllabuses

Algebra Syllabus
Geometry Syllabus


Procedures

Entering Class

Students should arrive on time in their assigned seat with the following items: (1) pencil, (2) blue or black pen (3) homework notebook, (4) reflection journal, and (5) additional class materials as posted. Students who are not at their seat with these items, working on the entry task are not using class time productively. Since tardiness results in loss of instructional time, students accumulating three (4) or more tardy slips will result in a detention. Each additional tardy will result in lunch detention, excessive tardiness will result in parent contact or more severe consequences.

Exiting Class

Mr. Germanis or any other teacher (including guest teachers) will dismiss students from class. The bell does not dismiss students. Upon leaving class, students will return any borrowed materials. All books or class supplies should be stacked or organized better than the way they were found.

Food/Drink in Class

No! During class time, students may not consume ANY food or drink in the class with the exception of water. This includes gum, soda and coffee. Students found consuming any edible product in class will be complete the appropriate discipline task.

There are three exceptions to this rule:

  1. If a student has a medical condition, a doctors note or other school documentation may allow a student to consume food or drinks in class.
  2. Our class is having a party or reward as a celebration.
  3. Mr. Germanis provides food, candy or other for in class consumption, possibly as part of a lesson.

Cell Phones

Mobile phones are very useful tools, but are often distracting when used during learning times. Research suggests each moment you look at your phone it takes 10 additional seconds to refocus on the learning task. As a result, phones should be silenced and away during class time to preserve the learning environment. On the first violation, students will be asked to silence and store their cell phones, further infractions will result in more severe consequences including confiscation and/or call to parents/guardians.

Sometimes cell phones may be used during class as a learning tool. Students will be instructed by Mr. Germanis (or other guest) when it is okay to use a cell phone for educational purposes only (calculator, timer, stop-watch, survey, etc.). Unless explicitly stated, cell phones should be silent and away. Students will not be required to have a cell phone to complete learning tasks, but may volunteer to use of their own device.

Students (and staff) should bring electronic devices to school at their own risk. Students are responsible for their own electronics, the district, school, staff, teacher or other students are not responsible for lost or stolen items, even if they are confiscated from the student by a staff member. The best way to keep your phone is to keep it silenced and away.

The use or ringing of a cell phone during a test/quiz is considered cheating and the exam will receive a score of "incomplete" or "zero". Cell phones may not be used in any way during a test, quiz or exam, even to listen to music.

Journal Writing Expectations

This class is designed so that each session concludes with a "reflection" to be addressed in you journal. You may purchase a hardbound theme book (no spiral notebooks) or one will be provided to you. Please contact Mr. Germanis if you need a composition notebook. Your responses connect, summarize and/or extend the day's lesson. Journal Responses (JRs) contribute to your class grade as a formative assessment and will be read several times during the quarter. Obtain your journal at the beginning of class and neatly deposit it in the appropriate space at the end of class.

Journal entries must conform to the following:

It is highly recommended and encouraged that you personalize the cover of your journal by drawing coloring, using stickers, stencils, etc. to easily identify your journal. However, please don't deface your journal to make it unusable.

Homework Expectations

Under no circumstances will a paper with nothing but answers be accepted. Homework should be organized in your notebook in the following way:

  1. Be written in chronological order according to date.
  2. Include assignment date (when assigned, not when due or when completed)
  3. Describe the assignment (page, problem numbers, etc.)
  4. Legible writing (typed is okay) in a color other than red (pen or pencils okay, for homework and classwork. Journals must be completed in permanent ink).
  5. Be an honest representation of your understanding, plagiarism is prohibited!

Work is "late" if submitted for scoring any time after papers have been checked or collected. This includes journals not available when they are scored. Late work will be reduced by 40% (for example, a project originally worth 100 points will earn at most 60 points). It is to your benefit to submit incomplete work rather than no work! The purpose for the reduction is to reduce plagiarism by penalizing late work without significantly impacting a student's homework grade.

All late work must be submitted by the date of the in-class unit test. No late work will be accepted during the last five (5) school days of a grading period. Consult the "Attendance" section for details concerning excused and pre-arranged absences. Assignments will not be accepted from days you have an unexcused absence!

For homework to be marked as "complete" all of the following conditions must be met:

Scoring for a paper will be deferred and marked incomplete if it reveals conceptual misunderstanding. No substantial deduction will be assessed to papers that are completed in a timely manner. Errors are considered a normal part of extending one's knowledge. Remember if you are not making mistakes you aren't trying hard enough! All thoughts, calculations, ideas, solutions possibilities, etc. should remain (although crossed out) to provide the opportunity to see previous ideas. Who knows, you might even learn something!

Classwork Expectations

Our class time is essential for learning new materials and working with one another. Please adhere to the following guidelines to optimize our class time together.

  1. Be on time. Students are expected to be in their assigned seats and ready to start class when the bell rings. The school tardy policy will be followed; see MTHS policy for additional guidelines for tardiness.
  2. Prepare all materials for class. Each day you must have your homework notebook, reflection journal (kept in class), one pen, pencil, and eraser. You are accountable for obtaining all required materials for class.
  3. Actively participate. Our class depends heavily on the contribution of others in class, be involved in class discussions, activities, and group work by helping others and asking questions.
  4. Respect the community. Mount Tahoma High School has a culture designed for learning. Our classroom is also a community of mathematics learning, mistakes are growing opportunities, provide support to those who need your help. Your support matters!

Hall passes will be given at the start of each semester to each student with five "punches" each. At the end of the semester, you may redeem each punch on your card for 2 extra credit "assignment points" for each punch, maximum of 20 homework points.

Microsoft Word - PandPRubric.docx

Review for Test/Exams (no review for quizzes)

Prior to all unit tests or final exams, Mr. Germanis will publish a list of all of the topics and concepts that will appear on the test. Students are encouraged to study these materials several days before the summative assessment. To help student prepare, at least one day of class will be dedicated for reviewing content on the final exam. The teacher will not plan a lesson or instruction, students should come prepared to ask specific questions from classwork, homework, journal reflections or other related questions. The teacher will demonstrate problems or help devise a study plan for students to best prepare for the exam. This review does not necessarily apply for regular quizzes.

Outside of class, students should be studying independently, with partners, in the tutoring center or with a family member. "Studying" involves review of materials without the express intent of completing assigned work. Here are some suggestions that make studying more meaningful:

Assessment Procedures

There are four types of assessments to measure students progress and provide regular feedback; Quizzes, Tests, Exams and Projects. Quizzes will be administered no more than once per week and are formative in nature. Since rapid feedback is essential for improved learning, a quiz may be made up within ONE (1) day of its administration. See missed assessments section if you miss a quiz.

Chapter tests cover more course material and are meant to incorporate knowledge required for long-term application. Tests are administrated at the end of each chapter (or unit) and are given approximately once per month. For missed tests, one day is allowed for each day of excused absence up to three (3) days from the test date. See missed assessments section if you miss a test.

Exams are comprehensive assessments, covering content taught over the entire semester. These will be administered once at the end of each semester. For exams, follow the same missed assessment guidelines as chapter tests.

Leaving one’s seat, using (or the ringing of) your cell phone, texting, talking to another student, or looking at another person’s paper during an assessment results in a zero for all parties involved (yes, this means for allowing someone to see your paper!) and will be referred as appropriate. Cheating and other related transgressions are serious!

Assessments in this class are written to be authentic – representative of real world situations. Because of this, you may use a 3x5 notecard, drawing materials and YOUR calculator unless otherwise specified. Note the content of summative evaluations will be posted on the class website before the assessment.

Projects will be announced periodically and will receive regular feedback throughout. Students should submit projects as a final product and expect for the assigned grade based on the guidelines published for the specific design of the project. Projects are long-term demonstrations of understanding and will NOT be allowed to be redone or edited.

The use of music devices during assessments

Recent research suggests performance is often enhanced when the test-taker listens to (certain) music or in conditions similar to those those where tested information was learned. Students may listen to sound-reproducing devices during assessments only if the device: only plays music (no cell phones, computers, etc.); is kept in sign (e.g. on the table) during the assessment; cannot be heard by anyone else; allows the user to hear alerts & announcements; and, is put away when the assessment is finished. The test proctor has the right to listen to the headset to ensure the music does not violate any other testing policies.

Missed Assessments

To make up an assessment, you MUST fill out the "Missed Assessment" form after agreeing upon a test date. You must keep this appointment. Failure to submit missed assessment form on your return to class nullifies your opportunity to make up the assessment. Assessment dates are posted in advance on the class webpage, please prepare and make advanced arrangements.

A quiz may be made up within ONE (1) day of its administration, for tests and exams, one day is allowed for each day of excused absence up to three (3) days from the test date.

Test Corrections

Occasionally, student's scores are not as high as expected. In this class, you can improve your score by performing "test corrections" (available only on chapter tests) at one of the posted sessions (at least one will be before school, and one after. Class time may also be used). From these sessions, you may gain up to 50% of the points missed on the test. The procedure for corrections is:

  1. View your test and prepare by studying for the corrections before the test correction session. This will be announced on the class website and in class before the sessions.
  2. Appear for one of the offered test correction sessions (one will be before school, one after).
  3. Work each non-extra credit problem (in its entirety) for which you which you want to attempt a score increase on separate loose leaf paper. DO NOT ALTER YOUR ORIGINAL ANSWERS! For multiple choice problems, you must show work for ALL problems.
  4. Paraphrase the question (including facts), show relevant process, and give the correct solution.
  5. Staple corrections BEHIND original test and hand in together.
  6. Copying from another student is not allowed – No computers or extraneous notes allowed!!!

Extra Credit Appointments

There is only one opportunity to earn extra credit, and the opportunities are extremely limited. You will be given two bathroom passes each semester. At the end of the semester, you may redeem each bathroom pass for 10 extra credit homework points each. There will be one opportunity each quarter to receive only one additional bathroom pass by appearing for an "EC Appointment" within the first five (5) weeks of the quarter. See the "EC appointment" form linked HERE for more information about how to schedule an appointment.

A strict limit of 20 extra credit homework points will be awarded each semester as not to heavily skew student's grades.

Leaving Class (with note)

If you have received a note from the office or other teacher to leave, please let Mr. Germanis know at the beginning of class. When it is your designated time to leave, quietly pack up your belongings, wave goodbye to Mr. Germanis so he knows you're leaving and exit to the destination on your note. Be sure to keep the note with you as you are passing through the halls, this is required.

Leaving Class (bathroom, drink of water, nurse, etc.)

At the beginning of the semester you will receive a hall pass which is valid for five (5) trips to the restroom, drink of water or to access your locker. To redeem this voucher, simply fill out the time and date and give the slip to Mr. Germanis who will sign it. You may not use this pass during the first or last ten (10) minutes of class according to school policy. Using the pass at an inappropriate time will invalidate your opportunity to use the pass.

When using the bathroom or getting a drink of water, be sensible about the time in which you choose to go. It is not appropriate to leave in the middle of a lesson or while Mr. G is addressing the whole class.

Going to the nurses office is reserved strictly for emergencies only, (i.e. blood, vomit, unconsciousness). Students needing to go to the nurse will be allowed to go with a partner of Mr. G's choosing who will escort the student to the nurse and return promptly. Having a partner go to the nurse ensures student safety while en route.

Attendance or Leaves (Excused Absences)

Make sure your absence is EXCUSED according to the school policy within five days of return to school. An excused absence is anything that is unexpected in nature and the student is unable to plan for earlier arrangements. Excusable absences are defined by district policy in the MTHS handbook. This means that your parent or guardian has written a note including:

Without an excused note, your absence will be marked as unexcused and you will be ineligible for credit on due homework, class participation points and even tests and quizzes.

Upon your return, check the website and your online grade account to ensure you have not missed important class work. See the missed assessment section for details about the restrictions for making up an assessment in the appropriate time frame.

Prearranged Absences

Prearranged absences are defined as days in which a student misses class and knows about the absence before being gone. Examples of expected or prearranged absences include but are not limited to, vacation, dental appointments, field-trips, school related events (i.e. assemblies, club events), and religious holidays.

It is YOUR RESPONSIBILITY to make arrangements before you leave. For prearranged absences, all quizzes, tests, exams, homework, assignments and projects are due on the originally assigned due date. You may take a clear photograph of your homework and email it to rgerman@tacoma.k12.wa.us prior to the due date.

For longer-term absences, please communicate with Mr. Germanis, reasonable arrangements will be made in extenuating circumstances. Circumstances may alter the arrangement of these policies.

Letter of Recommendation

Please allow at least two weeks from the first request to write a letter for you. These take a lot of time to write, please be respectful of my time when requesting a letter. I will be honest about my experiences with you. There are other requirements, see the Letters of Recommendation document for specific requirements needed to complete a letter of recommendation.


Important Documents

Please take advantage of additional resources for your success: