• Introduction:

    Welcome to my classroom! This will be my ninth year teaching. I hold a Bachelor of Science from University of Texas at San Antonio Honors College with a degree in molecular genetics. I also have a Masters in STEM Curriculum and Policy Advocacy. I will work hard to foster the life skills of asking questions, finding alternative avenues to solve problems, never giving up, and academic independence as we master content.

    Topic Coverage:

     

    ·    Lab Safety & Nature of Science

    ·    Matter

    ·    Periodic table

    ·    Periodic Trends

    ·    Scientific methodology

    ·    Nuclear chemistry

    ·    Atomic Structure

    ·    Bonding

    ·    Chemical Reactions

    ·    Nature of Gases

    ·    Thermochemistry

    ·    Energy changes

    ·    Solution

    ·    Acids and Bases

    Electrochemistry

     

    Classroom Culture:

    • Be courteous to others.
    • Be prepared with all needed supplies and work.
    • Be on time and on task. On time is defined as seated at your desk before the tardy bell rings. (You will be counted tardy if not seated by the bell.). Cell phones placed in assigned pocket on the wall.
    • Always ask if something is not clear.
    • Leave the room the way you found it (Leave No Trace).

     

    Consequences: Any/all of steps 1-4 may be skipped; dependent on the severity of the incident.

    1) Verbal warning.

    2) Personal conference with teacher.

    3) Lunch detention and parent(s) are contacted.

    4) Parent/teacher/student conference.

    5) Referral to Administration.

     

    Supplies:

    • Composition notebook – 2 notebooks, each at least 100 sheets, size 9-3/4” x 7-1/2” , student should write page numbers on the top corners of each page of one notebook (NO SPIRAL)
    • Pencils, pens (standard blue and/or black, red ONLY), markers, and colored pencils
    • Glue sticks
    • Index cards – one pack of 100, size 3” x 5”
    • Highlighter (any color)
    • A box of tissues
    • Box of gloves

    Grading Policy:

    60%    Tests / Projects – Unit exams, grading cycle projects, etc.                                                   

    30%    Labs/ In-Class Activities – Lab reports, conclusion questions, lab skills, etc., Quizzes – Reading quizzes for textbook chapters (extension of reading assignments)                    

    15%    All Other – Homework and all other uncategorized items    

     

    It is vital that you follow instructions for submitting homework and class work. Houston ISD emphasizes not only the TEKS but also the Texas College and Career Readiness Standards (TCCRS). These standards are based on cognitive skills that will increase students’ college preparedness. Every assignment should have a complete header (full name and date), be completed in blue or black ink (unless otherwise instructed), have ALL questions attempted, show ALL work, and have correct spelling and capitalization. I can’t grade what I can’t see and we cannot find where a student has gone off-track if work is not shown.

     

    Headings:  Headings:  All papers turned in must include the correct MLA Header

    EXAMPLE

    John Doe

    Mr. Garcia

    Pre-AP Chemistry, P4 (or Period 4)

    25 Aug 2016 (or 25 August 2016, but no numbers for month or slash marks separating date items)

     

    They must also include a proper and appropriate title or it will earn a “0”.

     

    Composition Notebooks: Notebooks are an important tool for organizing information and your thoughts. Composition Notebooks may be graded at least once during the nine weeks period, and there may be several spot checks. Your notebook will be organized using the provided instructions.

     

    Assignment Calendar:  A Month-At-A-Glance printout will be taped on the class whiteboard. This calendar will have all assignments, projects, daily objectives, and tests for the month clearly outlined. Quizzes are unannounced so they will not be on the posted calendar. You should take a photo with your phone to use as a reference when outside of class.

     

    Textbook:  HISD has transitioned to all online textbooks for Biology. You will assigned an e-textbook by HISD and given instructions on how to access it during the first week of school.

     

    Labs:  When you are involved in a lab, you MUST act accordingly. Participating in lab is a privilege, one that can be taken away if the proper procedures are not followed. If you do not follow the rules of the lab then you will not be allowed to participate and will receive a zero for that lab as well as a zero for your lab skills grade. In order to participate in lab you must make at least an 80% on the safety test and turn in a signed safety contract.

     

    Absences: You are expected to attend class every day. If you are absent, it is your responsibility to promptly gather the assignments that you missed. I will not remind you of missed assignments, you must take the initiative to find out what you missed. If you miss a test YOU must schedule a retest, but keep in mind that the format of the retest is at the teacher’s discretion. It is your responsibility to reschedule your missed test in a timely manner. Any assignments not made up from an absence will result in a zero. Please do not disturb the teacher during class to get missed assignments, wait for a quiet time or come by outside of class time.

    Late Work/Missing Assignments:  Late Work/Missing Assignments:  All assignments are due ON TIME. Late work will be accepted up to one day late and no later. An academic grade on late work is up to a 70% for one day late and 50% till the end of the unit.  

    If you are on campus the day an assignment is due, then you are required to turn it in, even if you miss your Chemistry period. Late work must be submitted directly to me, not placed in the homework drawers. If at all possible notify instructor of unforeseen circumstances.

     

    Tutorials:  I am available to help you better understand information in a small group or individually. Tutoring is available by appointment at lunch and during SSEP. The National Honor Society also offers peer tutoring and can be requested online. If you are having difficulty in this class ask for help early!

     

    Retakes: The policy for my class is outlined below. Please review it carefully.

    • Maximum of 2 retakes per grading cycle
    • Maximum retake score is 70 (score of 70 to 100 = 70); highest grade between original/retake counted
    • Student must request the retake within 24 hours of the grade posting on Gradespeed and complete the retake within one week of grade posted.
    • Retakes are for tests only. A reading quiz is an extension of homework and not eligible.
    • The student, not the parent, must request the retake through this google form: https://goo.gl/forms/4J8kiZN92fWJmKkP2  
    • Retakes are typically held during the long SSEP (Wednesday) or at the beginning of lunch on Thursday following the date of the completed retake request. If you have multiple retakes on the same day, it is your responsibility to reschedule in advance.
    • “No show” counts as a taken retake. You will be considered a “no show” if you arrive 15 minutes or later from the start of lunch.
    • Final Exams are not eligible
    • Missing assignments fall under my late policy not the retake policy.

     

    Extra Credit:  I do not offer extra credit.

     

    Assignment Resubmission:  Resubmissions are permitted at my discretion. Any assignments allowed resubmission will provide students an opportunity to recover half of the credit lost. The following are general guidelines for resubmissions and are subject to additional requirements:

    • Original assignment must have been turned in on time.
    • You must show all work and explain how you came to the new answer/conclusion.

     

    Academic Integrity:  Cheating, copying, and plagiarizing will not be tolerated at CVHS. Any student displaying academic dishonesty will be reported and referred to the Assistant Principal. The student will receive grade of “0” on the assignment and there will not be an opportunity to make up the assignment. This includes exams and quizzes. Any disruptions, intentional or unintentional, during a test or quiz will be perceived as a violation of academic integrity in the classroom and will be reported.

     


     

    Cell Phones: Cell phones are not permitted for use in class unless directed by the teacher. All cell phones will be placed in the provided cell phone pocket chart hanging at the front of the classroom before class starts and will be “parked” there until class is over. Students caught with a cell phone will have their phone taken up and given to the Assistant Principal. A parent must then come to pick up the phone and will be charged $15 for recovery.

     

    Conduct Grades: Conduct grades are a reflection of the students’ positive and negative behavior. To earn an “E” the student must participate on a regular basis and follow class procedures. Participation is necessary for class. Participation should be meaningful and add to discussion, not detract.

     

    STANDARD CLASSROOM PROCEDURES:

    • Come into class quietly, place your cell phone in your assigned pocket on the wall, sit in your seat before the tardy bell rings, and prepare for class. Tardiness is not acceptable and you will be counted tardy if you are not in your seat before the bell rings!

     

     

    • You may not eat or drink anything but water during class without my permission.

     

    • You may use a pencil or pen for your notes section, but all work that is to be turned in must be done in standard blue or black pen. Please try to write neatly and legibly. Work that cannot be read cannot be graded and will be returned as incomplete.

     

    • All major projects are due before 8:25 AM on the due date. You will be told in advance which projects are due at the beginning of the day. If your bus is late, please bring the project to me then proceed to 1st You must show me a late pass from the office in order to submit your work.

     

    • Talking or distracting other students, intentionally or unintentionally, during a class assignment, test, or quiz is not tolerated. You are now in high school and should conduct yourself as such. Disrupting a test or quiz will be considered a violation of academic integrity and will be reported.

     

     

    Study Techniques:
    Studying for classes involves more than just "cramming the night before a test." The following are suggestions to improve your grade in biology:

     

    1. Write all assignment due dates in your planner.
    2. Read over your notes soon after you have written them.
    3. Review the vocabulary list as you go.
    4. Do all warm-ups, homework, worksheets, study questions, etc.
    5. Keep your handouts, lecture summaries, and study questions organized in your composition notebook.
    6. Always read assigned material and make a graphic organizer to help you summarize main ideas.
    7. Participate in class.
    8. Study frequently and in small doses. 
    9. Set up a study group and study with friends.
    10. If you are having trouble with the material, get help early. Do not wait until the end of the grading period and/or test day!!!