8th Grade Language Arts & Reading
Mrs. Forisha, Room 903
/ (972) 878-4522
COURSE OBJECTIVES.LANGUAGE ARTS and READINGoffers scholars an opportunity to read and write with competence, confidence, and understanding through instruction in comprehension strategies, word recognition, and vocabulary. Scholars read, write, listen, speak, and view to learn more about the world around them and to create, clarify, critique, and appreciate ideas and responses.
Eight (8) UNITS OF STUDY.
- Understanding Literary Nonfiction & Poetry
- Understanding Fiction & Drama
- Understanding Informational Texts
- Understanding Persuasive Text and Media
- Formulating Connections Across Literary Texts
- Formulating Connections Across Informational Texts
- Formulating Connections Across All Genres
- Generating Research
TEXTBOOK.We will be using the Holt McDougal LITERATURE textbook, the WRITE SOURCE textbook, and the GRAMMAR AND COMPOSITION HANDBOOK.In addition, scholars will have access to ACHIEVE 3000, anonline reading program. Supplementary materials will also be used to integratereading and writing into our class.
SUPPLIES. Each scholar must be prepared each day with the following materials. If there are any financial constraints that would prevent students from purchasing materials, please let me know.
Composition books (the first will be provided but students are responsible for new composition books when the first book runs out of pages)
Pencils, erasers, and pens
Lined notebook paper
Markers, colored pencils, or crayons
Glue sticks or tape
GRADING.Benjamin Franklin Middle Schoolutilizes the following Grade Conversion Chart to assess student performance.IB Achievement Level / Percentage Grade / Rubric Descriptor
“With sample command statements”
8 / 100% / Exceeds
“Student exceeded in applying…”
7 / 93% / Advanced High
“Student demonstrates highly advanced understanding”
6 / 86% / Advanced
“Student’s descriptions were advanced.”
5 / 80% / Mastery
“Student’s evaluation shows mastery of…”
4 / 72% / Satisfactory
“Student’s explanation provides satisfactory examples … ”
3 / 65% / Progressing
“Student’s application is progressing with…”
2 / 58% / Limited
“Student gives limited samples…”
1 / 51% / Minimal
“Student shows minimal analysis”
0 / M / Missing
“Evidence of…is missing”
Each six (6) weeks, grades will be determined by the percentage of total points earned in the weighted assessment categories below.Category / Weight
Classwork and/or Homework / 45%
SummativeAssessments / 20%
Formative Assessments / 20%
Six weeks test grade / 15%
The Semester Grade is calculated at 30% (Grading Period 1) + 30% (Grading Period 2) +30% (Grading Period 3) + 10% Semester Exam/ACP Test score. The yearly grade is an average of the two semester grades.
SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENTS.A summative assessment measures a scholar’s level of mastery of the knowledge and skills acquired over a given unit. In order to demonstrate understanding of the unit’s objectives, students will complete a summative assessment at the end of each unit, to include but not limited to major projects, labs, and/or unit tests. Unittests may be combinations of vocabulary, multiple choice, short-answer, problem-solving and application of knowledge. Projects will have multiple components and may also be interdisciplinary. Assessment dates will be given at the beginning of each unit.
FORMATIVE ASSESSMENTS.A formative assessment is a measure of a scholar’s progress throughout a unit in order to identify what adjustments to teaching need to be made to ensure every scholar reaches a mastery level of the knowledge and skills being acquired. In order to ensure that learning is taking place with every scholar formative assessments will be performed often and many diverse ways. Examples of different approaches to assess scholars may include, but are not limited to, journal entries, quizzes, exit tickets, Do Nows, and check for understandings.
HOMEWORK.Homework is a type of course activity that is completed outside of the classroomand may include, but is not limited to: a review of material covered in class; reading in preparation of the next day’s activities; preparation of class notes; journaling; test review; test corrections; or any number of other activities. Assignments are collected at the beginning of class on the due date.
- If your absence is excused, you will have two (2) school days for every day missed in order to make-up any assignment given during your absence without a grade reduction. If your absence is unexcused, you will have one (1) school day for every day missed in order to make-up any assignment given during your absence without a grade reduction.
- Assignments given prior to the absence are due upon your return.
- An unexcused absence is one in which no note or phone call from the parent to the school is provided giving a reason for the scholar’s absence.
MISSINGAND LATE WORK. Assignments turned in at the beginning of class and up to one day late are reduced by 25 points; assignments turned in two or moredays late through the end of the grading period, are reduced by 50 points; and assignments not turned in will receive a zero. Extra credit will not be available for any student with outstanding assignments.Number of Class Days Late / Maximum Grade Possible
1 / 75%
2+ / 50%
Not turned in / 0%
ACADEMIC HONESTY.Students are expected to undertake and submit their own work. Plagiarizing is academic dishonesty. If discovered, plagiarizing will result in a grade of zero for the assignment AND may result in the student being taken before the Honor Council. Benjamin Franklin Middle School has a zero-tolerance policy for students turning in assignments that are not their own work.
STUDENT DISCIPLINE.Mature behavior is expected by all scholars. Disruptive behavior and activities that interfere with teaching and/or learning will not be tolerated, and may result in an administrative action, detention, or consequences assigned by the grade level Assistant Principal.