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HCHS FRESHMAN TRANSITION PACKET Transition to high school is challenging and exciting. The freshman faculty are dedicated to actively supporting, encouraging, and assisting each of our incoming freshmen to have the most successful transition experience possible. The purpose of this packet is to focus on areas that are pertinent for a successful transition to a college-preparatory high school. Please review each section carefully so that the home, the school, and the student can work together towards the same goal: SUCCESS! Specifically, the transition period for all first-semester freshmen includes:  Creating a structured environment that will model time management and study skills.  Following an accountability format that will not allow a student to “slip.”  Easing the pace and rigor of the curriculum during the first semester.  Increasing communication between freshmen parents and the faculty.  Ensuring the appropriate use of technology in an academic setting.  Supporting and training parents to achieve accountability from home.

TABLE OF CONTENTS Required Supplies

p. 2

Absences

p. 3

Freshmen Notebooks

p. 4

Essential Technology Skills for Freshmen

p. 5

Essential Technology Skills for Parents

p. 8

Acceptable Use of School Technology

p. 10

Tutoring Guidelines and Policies

p. 13

Writing and Reading Labs

p. 14

Assignments

p. 15

Assessment

p. 16

Required First Semester Tutorials

p. 17

Honor Code at HCHS

p. 18

Plagiarism

p. 19

Appendix A: Test Analysis Form

p. 20

Appendix B: 6 + 1 Traits of Writing

p. 22

Appendix C: Course Descriptions

p. 23

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REQUIRED SUPPLIES Purpose:

To equip students with the necessary supplies to enhance their education. To equip students with materials to support them in their education.

Accountability: Specified supplies will be required in class daily for each subject area. Supplies will be checked by teachers in each class. Students unprepared for class can receive 0 daily grades or even detention. Textbooks and Novels: Please refer to the HCHS website on the Academic Life page. General Supplies: (see the following section, “Freshmen Notebooks,” for a further explanation)  Computer  USB Drive- minimum 2 gb  Printer at home  Appropriate textbook(s)  Notebook supplies (See “Freshman Notebooks” sections for a further explanation)  21 divider tabs  3-ring punch (kind that fits inside a 3-ring binder)  Loose-leaf paper (college or regular rule)  Blue or black pens  Red grading pen  Pencils  Daily Planner – All students are required to keep a written (HARD COPY) Daily Planner. Students MUST come prepared to EACH class with writing utensils and paper for taking notes. Notes should be taken on loose-leaf paper so that they can be kept neatly in the appropriate binder. Students should have all general supplies in class and ready by the first A day of school (Monday, August 15th). Class-specific Supplies: Teachers will distribute a list of other required supplies for their individual class the first day of school. Students should have supplies on these lists by the first day of class of the second week of school.

Calculator Requirements: ALL incoming students will need the TI-Nspire CAS Handheld with Touchpad. These will be purchased in bulk by HCHS, at a reduced price of $140. The calculators can be purchased rd online (HC website), in the HC Business Office, or at the May 3 Orientations. They will have programs loaded on them and be ready for distribution the first day of class in the fall.

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ABSENCES If your student is ill or has a Doctor’s appointment, please send an email to attendance@houstonchristianhs.org by 10:00 a.m. Please call the attendance office for last minute Doctor’s appointments. A note MUST be presented to the attendance office receptionist upon return to school. No note ON THE DAY OF RETURN will result in an UNEXCUSED absence. More than three consecutive days absent will require a Doctor’s note for re-admittance to school. Make-up work and tests: All students are responsible to check each teacher’s webpage DURING absences so that upon return they can begin to complete work and will be prepared to take any scheduled tests/quizzes. Upon return, the student should speak with each teacher to avoid any potential incomplete work that may result in a ‘0’. Students normally have the same number of days to make up work missed as the days absent from class. Students must make up any test for which material was not covered in class while the student was absent on the first day the student returns to the missed class. See pages 24-25 of the Student/Parent Handbook for a complete explanation of the make up work/test policy

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FRESHMEN NOTEBOOKS Purpose:

To provide a method of organization and consistency for all freshmen students.

Accountability: Notebook is required in class daily for each subject area. Freshman are required to choose one of the following three organizational methods • Two- 2.5 or 3 inch 3-ring binders to use for class notebooks on A and B days. A white binder will be used for A days and a blue binder will be used for B days. •

Seven 1 inch binders – one for each class. All A day binders should be white and all B day binders should be blue.

Seven accordion folders for use on A days and B days. If possible, the folders should be a different color for A and B days. Each folder must have five different pockets so they meet the organizational requirements below:

Tabs – 7 sets of 5 each Each binder or folder will be labeled with the following divider tabs for each class period:  Notes/Handouts  Minor Assignments (Quizzes, Homework, Participation grades)  Major Assignments (includes Test Analysis forms) The student’s name should also be clearly visible on the outside of each binder or folder. Inserting a page with the student’s name (if the binder has slots) or writing with a sharpie are both acceptable. It is highly recommended that the students use the two binder organizational method. With this method, students will only need to bring one major binder to school each day: the white one on A days and the blue one on B days. However, if student is eligible for mandatory freshmen study hall (see freshmen study hall section of this packet), the appropriate notebook must be brought to study hall. For example, if the student has math on B day, but the math study hall is on an A day, then student is still responsible for coming to study hall with the appropriate notebook.

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ESSENTIAL TECHNOLOGY SKILLS FOR FRESHMEN Purpose:

To clearly define the technology options available for educational use. To explain how HCHS will teach the essential technology skills to freshmen. To provide a reference tool for use of the essential technology. To enhance traditional education by use of available technology.

Accountability: Students will be responsible for information given to them by websites or email. Some assignments may only be available in electronic form. Problems with technology do not necessitate an extension. Electronic assignments have the same due-date standards as paper-form items. All freshmen students will attend a Technology Boot Camp on August 22, 2011. During that time, the following concepts and skill will be covered with the student and helpful reference tools will be provided. Students will be expected to reference this teaching and materials for a more complete explanation of the following concepts and skills. Additionally, the essential skills are divided by subject area so that the freshmen faculty can reinforce the skills and hold students accountable to learning them. These technology skills will be used in all classes, but reviewed (and tested) in the following classes: • • • • •

Internet Safety & Netiquette Data Storage Word Processing Presentation Options Spreadsheets

Bible English I: Literature and Language English I: Writing and Declamation Ancient Civilization Science

HCHS Student Portal, Email & Calendar Each student is assigned an HCHS email address that also serves as their login to the student portal. The student’s address, in most cases, is their firstname.lastname@hchs-community.org. Student’s assignments, class and school wide information are posted on the student portal and may also be disseminated via email. It is the student's responsibility to check for updates to class pages and email daily. HCHS student email can be accessed by visiting http://mail.hchs-community.org and entering the correct username (firstname.lastname) and password combination. Additionally, HCHS encourages the responsible use of Internet resources including email communication and the student portal. Faculty members generally provide students approximately 5 minutes at the end of each class period to write down homework assignments, check class pages in the student portal and email. All students are encouraged to use the online calendar feature for their daily planners and to update appointments (such as tests, meetings, or study groups):  Click on the Calendar link located on the top of the page  Click on Create an Event  Choose day, week, month, 4 day or agenda views located on the top right of the calendar  Double click on the day or time of the appointment OR click New Appointment  Insert details, notes, time, and reminder settings as desired

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An important part of scheduling wisely is planning ahead. Therefore, there is a Freshmen Test/Major Assignments Calendar, which can also be accessed from inside the calendar system. To access this calendar:  On the left side of the page, select Freshmen Test/Major Assignments Calendar Freshman Test/Major Assignments Calendars will list the upcoming tests and major assignments by subject, allowing students to plan study time appropriately.

Word Processing, Spreadsheets & Presentations Word processing, spreadsheet and presentation tools will be used in various classes throughout the year. Students will be provided with training covering several options during the Technology Boot Camp, and will be held accountable to using the materials and resources given at that training throughout the year. Teachers are also well versed in a variety of applications and are available to help students if students take the initiative to seek assistance well before an assignment is due. Additionally, we have taken a big step in providing a resource to help with the integration of technology. Atomic Learning (http://www.atomiclearning.com) is a key partner in our dedication to providing high quality technology training for faculty, students and parents. Our subscription includes nearly 50,000 step-by-step tutorials on common software, and workshops and technology integration on emerging technology topics, such as blogging and Internet Safety. All students will be provided a log in to the Atomic Learning web site during Technology Boot Camp. Ignorance regarding the use of applications does not provide extensions on assignments requiring their use.

File Storage Every student at HCHS is allocated 1 GB of network storage. This space is for students’ schoolrelated work, and students are to back up their files in order to ensure nothing is lost. This storage is not for music, movies, pictures, and other large media files. All school related files should be stored in the Documents folder, located on the hard drive of the student's machine. Students are responsible for manually backing up their files and are encouraged to do so daily. Backing up regularly protects a student’s files and anything that happens to the computer (accidents, crashing, etc.). If work is not saved in the documents folder and backed up, it can be lost in the event of a computer crash. Therefore, ALL SCHOOL WORK SHOULD BE SAVED INSIDE DOCUMENTS and be backed up regularly. Proper procedures for file storage and back up will be covered with students during the Technology Boot Camp.

Student Printing and Assignment Responsibilities Because all students have access to network file storage (see above), each student is responsible for turning in assignments ON TIME, even in the event of a computer failure. Because of all the above capabilities, all minor work is due in the form requested by the teacher (printed or electronic) at the beginning of class. Work printed during current class for current class will be counted as LATE WORK. For major papers, students must additionally upload the assignment to www.turnitin.com by 4:00 pm of the same day (see p. 16 for further explanation).

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HCHS Technology Information Site http://techinfo.houstonchristianhs.org/Home HCHS uses technology extensively as part of our vision of "inspiring young people to lead: uniting faith, intellect, and gifts to reach their greatest promise." This web site will serve as a source of helpful technology information for the HCHS community. Be sure to review the site as it contains important information regarding how to back up the computer and extend the life of the battery.

Student Portal Instructions (Grades and Assignments) Each student has an online identity, which will include access to the student’s grades and each teacher’s assignments and links. To log in to the portal:  Go to www.houstonchristian.org  Click on “Students” on the top right of the screen  Enter your email address (firstname.lastname@hchs-community.org)  Enter your password If you are unable to log into the portal please contact the HC Tech Office at 713.580.6011. To access grades, simply click the “Grades” link within the portal. This will open the log in screen for Blackbaud. You must use your assigned ID and password, which will be given to you after the school year begins to gain access. To access assignments, you must add classes within the portal:  Click “Add/Remove Classes” located under “My Classes” on the left column  Click the grade level in which you are currently enrolled  Put a check in the box next to each of your classes (in the list that appears)  Scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page and click “Save Changes”  Your classes should then appear under “My Classes”

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ESSENTIAL TECHNOLOGY SKILLS FOR PARENTS http://techinfo.houstonchristianhs.org/Home Purpose:

To clearly explain and define the technology helpful for parents. To provide parents with ways to help and hold accountable their students. To provide parents easy access to information, assignments, and grades.

Accountability: Information is much more easily obtained electronically. HCHS believes in the use of technology to enhance traditional education. In particular, technology is an invaluable tool in the process of communication and information dissemination. By making certain technology available to parents, HCHS hopes to create open communication and give parents greater access to important information. Parents should also make sure to be familiar with the students’ essential technology skills (see previous section of this packet). In this way, parents can be aware of what support is given to the students and what is expected of them in return.

HCHS Student Portal, Email & Calendar Each student is assigned an HCHS email address that also serves as their login to the student portal. The student’s address, in most cases, is their firstname.lastname@hchs-community.org. Student’s assignments, class and school wide information are posted on the student portal and may also be disseminated via email. It is the student's responsibility to check for updates to class pages and email daily. HCHS student email can be accessed by visiting http://mail.hchs-community.org and entering the correct username (firstname.lastname) and password combination. Additionally, HCHS encourages the responsible use of Internet resources including email communication and the student portal. Faculty members generally provide students approximately 5 minutes at the end of each class period to write down homework assignments, check class pages in the student portal and email. Each student will have an HCHS email address. The student’s address will be as follows: firstname.lastname@hchscommunity.org. All students are encouraged to use the online calendar feature for their daily planners and to update appointments (such as tests, meetings, or study groups). Click on the Calendar link located on the top of the page.  Click on Create an Event  Choose day, week, month, 4 day or agenda views located on the top right of the calendar  Double click on the day or time of the appointment OR click New Appointment  Insert details, notes, time, and reminder settings as desired An important part of scheduling wisely is planning ahead. Therefore, there is a Freshmen Test Calendar, which can also be accessed from inside the calendar system. To access this calendar: • On the left side of the page, select Freshmen Test Calendar Freshman Calendar will list the upcoming tests by subject, allowing students to plan study time appropriately. More Parent Technology follows on the next page… 8


Student Printing and Assignment Responsibilities: Because all students have access to network file storage (see above), each student is responsible for turning in assignments ON TIME, even in the event of a computer failure. Because of all the above capabilities, all minor work is due in the form requested by the teacher (printed or electronic) at the beginning of class. Work printed during current class for current class will be counted as LATE WORK . For major papers, students must additionally upload the assignment to www.turnitin.com by 4:00 p.m. of the same day (see p. 16 for further explanation).

HCHS Technology Information Site http://techinfo.houstonchristianhs.org/home HCHS uses technology extensively as part of our vision of "inspiring young people to lead: uniting faith, intellect, and gifts to reach their greatest promise." This web site will serve as a source of helpful technology information for the HCHS community. The site contains important information for parents regarding the following areas:  How to back up the MacBook  Parental Monitoring & Best Practices - including a direct link to Safe Eyes monitoring software  Recommendations for extending the life of the laptop battery

Parent Portal Instructions (Grades and Assignments): Each parent has an online identity, which will include access to the student’s grades and each teacher’s assignments and links. To log in to the portal:  Go to www.houstonchristianhs.org  Click on “Parents” in the top right of the screen  Enter the primary email address on file with HC  Enter your password If you are unable to log into the portal please contact the HC Tech Office at 713.580.6011. To access grades, simply click the “Grades” link within the portal. This will open the log in screen for Blackbaud. Parent must use the ID and password, which will be given to students after the school year begins to gain access. To access assignments, you must add the classes your student is enrolled in within the portal (see Freshmen Technology Skills beginning on p. 5). From there, you can access assignments, links, and documents posted by the teachers by clicking on the appropriate class under “My Classes.”

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ACCEPTABLE USE OF SCHOOL TECHNOLOGY • • • • • •

Maintenance and support are provided for current HCHS students only Only school files may be stored on the HCHS network Re-imaging: $75.00 per event Accidental Damage Claim: $250.00 fee per event Loss/Theft Coverage: refer to #21 below Loaner Computers: refer to policy below

1. The laptops, desktops, network, email and Internet are provided for educational purposes. Users shall not use the technology resources for any purpose other than those in compliance with Houston Christian High School’s Mission Statement and educational philosophy. 2. Users shall not copy/download or install software without a license. Users may install legal software programs and may be required to produce a license at the request of the Technology Director. In the event that the software interferes with the HCHS load, a fee of $75 may be charged to re-imaging the laptop. Additionally, a fee of $75 will be accessed to re-image a laptop at the user's request. 3. Users shall not sell, trade, download or install illegal software or media of any format. Users shall comply with U.S. copyright laws. 4. Users may not play games or access chat clients during the school day (8:30 a.m. – 3:15 p.m.), unless specified by an instructor. Additionally, the installation of games is discouraged as it can interfere with other software. 5. Student users are expected to have their laptops in class everyday. 6. Student users are responsible for keeping their laptop in their possession or storing their laptops in the designated areas at appropriate times. Students will be held accountable for damages done to or messages sent from their laptop. 7. Student users must only store school files on the school network and should backup regularly. Storage is limited to 1 GB per user. 8. Users shall not use anyone else’s name, logon, password or files for any reason, nor let other persons (except technology staff) use their name, logon, password or files. Students will be held accountable for all files and programs on their laptop. 9. Users shall not attempt to introduce any computer code designed to self-replicate, damage, or otherwise hinder the performance of any computer (e.g. bug, virus, worm or Trojan Horse). 10. Users shall not disclose any personal information about another user; however, student’s names and pictures will be used on the HCHS website. If a parent/student does not want to appear on the website, they need to provide written notification to the technology office. 11. Users shall not tamper with computers, networks, printers, or other associated equipment. 12. Users shall not intentionally damage the network system or misuse system resources, including but not limited to partitioning the hard drive, ADHOC Networks, bypassing network security, etc. 13. Users shall not deliberately access or create any obscene or objectionable information, language or images. This includes information on web pages, blogs, myspace.com, facebook.com, or other publicly accessible sites. 14. Users shall not hack or attempt to access another user’s file on any computer or the network. 15. Student users may decorate their laptops with stickers only. Any other materials (paint, etc.) will void the warranty. 16. Network storage areas and email systems are treated like school lockers. Without prior notice, school administration may review files and communications to maintain system integrity and ensure responsible usage. 17. Internet use is monitored and logged by username. Users are responsible for closing any Internet session upon completion. 18. Users shall not send out any mass emails unless they relate directly to HCHS and then only with permission from the Dean of Students. 19. Users shall not bring computers that have not been purchased through the school to campus. Students may connect smartphones and iPads to the Public wireless network. 20. The possession of wireless broadband cards or Wi-Fi devices on campus is prohibited.

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21. Loss/Theft: Each student is provided coverage through a policy underwritten for the school. In the event of loss/theft, the student MUST report the incident to local authorities and obtain a report, including a case number. The report and a check for $250 MUST be brought to the Technology Office to initiate the claim. Once the claim is processed by the insurance company a replacement computer, equivalent to the one lost, will be given to the student. Regarding theft, please make note of the following: On Campus In the event that an unattended or unsecured laptop (e.g. not locked in a locker, not in a locked classroom) is lost or stolen: • • • • • • • •

A $250 processing fee will be accessed A loaner computer may not be provided. Loaner availability is prioritized dependent upon documentation of student’s adherence to policies regarding security of laptop. A $500 security deposit will be held until the loaner computer is returned Parents/guardians are responsible to file a police report Parents/guardians submit the police report to the Technology Department at HCHS The Technology Department at HCHS will then file the appropriate claim with the insurance company Estimated turnaround time is 6-8 weeks minimum The student(s) may use the computers in the library and may suffer academic consequences due to negligence

In the event that a secured laptop (e.g. locked in a locker, locked in a classroom) is lost or stolen: • • • • • • •

A $250 processing fee will be accessed A loaner computer will be provided A $500 security deposit will be held until the loaner computer is returned The technology department at HCHS will file a police report The technology department at HCHS will file the appropriate claim with the Insurance Company Estimated turnaround time is 6-8 weeks minimum There will be no academic consequences

Off Campus In the event loss/theft occurs off campus, HC assumes no responsibility. • • • • • • •

Parents/guardians are responsible to file a police report Parents/guardians submit the police report to the Technology Department at HCHS A $250 processing fee will be accessed A loaner computer will be provided A $500 security deposit will be held until the loaner computer is returned The Technology Department at HC will then file the appropriate claim with the insurance company Estimated turnaround time is 6-8 weeks minimum

The use of technology at HC is a privilege and not a right. Violations of the Houston Christian High School policies and procedures concerning the use of computers and networks will result in disciplinary actions consistent with other code and conduct violations. Social Networking Students who use social networking sites including, but not limited to, Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, YouTube, etc... should act responsibly, bearing in mind that online information is public 11


not private. Students should demonstrate utmost respect for the rights and feelings of others. Therefore, gossip, insults or any negative comments are highly discouraged as are demeaning or derogatory pictures about others, especially those in the HCHS community are strictly prohibited. Threatening or harassing statements, any actions which qualify as bullying, are also strictly prohibited. We offer the following guidelines: • • • • • •

behavior on social networking sites may result in disciplinary action exercise care with privacy settings and profile content - pictures are most effective when tasteful refrain from listing complete birthdays, home addresses or phone numbers if you associate with social networking groups make sure they are consistent with the mission and reputation of the school the most effective use of communication with college representatives is through their email address and not through social networking sites students are discouraged from asking faculty to be friends on Facebook

Laptop Loaner Agreement The student agrees to make NO changes to the loaner laptop. 1) no changes to the desktop, icons, fonts, sounds, etc… 2) no files copied or changed 3) no software installed HCHS will reconfigure/re-image the loaner laptop if the above restrictions are violated at the student’s expense and will be collected prior to the return of the individual’s laptop. Student Costs Re-Imaging $75.00 processing fee per event Accidental Damage Claim $250.00 processing fee per event $500.00 security deposit required In the event the loaner is damaged, lost, or stolen the $500.00 security deposit will not be returned Loss or Theft $250.00 processing fee per event $500.00 security deposit required In the event the loaner is damaged, lost or stolen the $500.00 security deposit will not be returned. Must be accompanied by an official police report Damage to Loaner Outside of normal wear and tear, any damage to loaner computer components must be paid for by the student at the current cost to HCHS before having his personal computer returned to him.

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TUTORING GUIDELINES & POLICIES Assumptions  All HC students have the opportunity to meet with their teachers before & after school for tutorials.  All HC students have access to the Writing Lab where they can work with trained peer tutors.  A peer tutor lab will also be available for all other subjects.  The best tutor for HC students is the classroom teacher.  The purpose of tutoring is to build students’ confidence to actively participate in their own education and to gain mastery of the subject area.  It is highly encouraged that students first access tutoring with their teachers and peer tutors before any consideration is given to hiring outside tutors. The HC teachers and peer tutors best understand the content and assignment given in class. Expectations  All HC students are expected to take advantage of tutorials offered within the school day.  All HC students have access to online classroom assignments/updates when absent. Guidelines for Outside Tutoring in Writing If parents make the decision to hire outside academic tutors, the following guidelines should be understood and followed:  The tutor should contact the subject area teacher to coordinate instructional focus  The tutor’s role centers on the following: o Creating and encouraging dialogue. o Asking open-ended questions. o Helping the student identify and evaluate resources. o Addressing ideas first, organization second & sentence-level concerns last. o Suggesting activities or exercises to improve the student’s writing. o Encouraging the student to take advantage of the classroom teacher tutorials. o Commenting on clarity and logic of textual analysis. o Encouraging the student to take ownership of his own writing. o Challenging the student to think for himself.  The tutor’s role is not to: o Write the paper for the student. o Proofread or edit the paper for the student before it is submitted to the English teacher. o Type the paper for the student. o Correct errors in grammar or punctuation. o Make corrections on any English paper before submission. o Rewrite sentences for the student (may ask student to explain a thought and then have student write what they shared). The purpose of using a tutor other than the classroom teacher should be to improve the student’s understanding of mechanics and other writing skills by offering critical feedback on work done, suggesting research strategies, and providing responses that will help the student writer advance his/her writing with the ultimate goal of self-sufficiency on the student’s part. “When an outside tutor enables a student to write a research paper that far exceeds the student’s own abilities, then plagiarism has occurred.” Department of Rhetoric, Language, and Culture

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WRITING CENTER SERVICES HCHS provides additional support to students through a student-staffed writing center. The center is open to all students before and after school and is under the direction of the English Department. There is no cost associated with this service. The center’s goal is to increase student proficiency on discipline-specific writing tasks, working closely with content-area teachers to establish standards for student performance.

READING LAB (Invitation Only) (Fee assessed for this service) Invitation is based on reading assessment scores. A literacy lab is offered for freshman students whose reading skills indicate a need for a more comprehensive foundation for reading strategies that will foster personal academic improvement. Reading comprehension leads to academic success and ultimately allows the successful student to perform well in the classroom and on standardized tests such as the SAT and ACT. The program will be offered during pre-block. Enrollment is by invitation only and is limited to 15 students. The lab is only offered first semester.

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ASSIGNMENTS EVALUATION: Evaluation for most freshmen courses:  Major assessments = 50%  Minor assessments = 30%  Daily grades or participation = 20%

HEADING: Purpose:

To organize and identify student’s work.

Accountability: Points will be taken off for assignments without the proper heading. All submitted assignments should have the following heading in the top, left corner: Student Name Teacher Name Class (Period) Date Due

Ex:

Jane Doe Mrs. Smith Algebra 1 (A2) August 30, 2011

HOMEWORK: Purpose:

To reinforce concepts taught in class. To prepare students for exams or the next class period. To help students take ownership of their education.

Accountability: Graded for completion or content, depending on assignment. Generally, students will not be given time in class to work on homework. Homework will need to be completed at home, and students will have homework in most classes most nights, according to the following guidelines:  Approximately 40 minutes per class each night.  Explained in class and marked in student’s Outlook tasks and calendar or planner.  Posted on the class pages within the student portal (see p. 8).  Due at the beginning of the class period.  Due the next class day for 50% (no credit given after that). Additionally, for the first semester, the lowest daily grade will be dropped each quarter (in every class).

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ASSESSMENT TEST SCHEDULES AND ANALYSIS: Purpose:

To allow students adequate time to build proper study habits. To strengthen student’s ability to assess test performance and make corrections.

Accountability: Incorporated into the major assessments percentage of the final averages. th

9 Grade teachers will coordinate to schedule major tests as follows (excluding PAP classes)*:  no more than 2 tests per day.  no more than 4 tests per week. *Note: This only includes exam grades, and does not apply to major speeches, quizzes, or other minor grades. A Test Analysis Form should be given after tests given during the first quarter to analyze the grade received. Teachers have the option to require test analysis past the first quarter. Completion of each form by the due date results in one daily grade. Non-completion of each form results in a zero for a daily grade. See appendix A for an example of a Test Analysis Form.

WRITING ASSESSMENT: Purpose:

To provide positive framework for students to apply to their writing. To provide objective principles for students to apply to their writing. To foster academic integrity in the students.

Accountability: Essay rubrics will be created according to the 6 Traits. Papers not submitted both to www.turnitin.com and to the teacher by the due date will be considered late. Papers and Essays will be graded according to the 6 Traits of Writing method. See appendix B for a description of those traits. All major student papers must be submitted in two forms: 1. A hard copy must be turned in on the appropriate date to the teacher. 2. An electronic form must be uploaded to www.turnitin.com by 4:00 on the due date (students will be taught how to do this). TurnItIn.com is an academic resource that checks student work for originality. This system will be used for all major written assignments to encourage students to pursue academic integrity. Students will also be instructed concerning how to avoid plagiarism when using outside sources in their writing. (See the Honor Code section of this packet for a definition of plagiarism).

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REQUIRED FIRST-SEMESTER Study Hall Purpose:

To provide increased accountability. To open lines of communication between teachers & students. To assist in organization and study skills. To encourage students to reach their potential.

Study Hall is designed to create another level of accountability for the student. It DOES NOT replace the help a student is about to receive when they meet with their teacher for tutorials before and after school. It is STRONGLY recommended that any student who meets the requirements for mandatory study hall also schedule time for tutorials with their teacher for that subject Accountability: Required attendance for those with a 74 or below at the end of any reporting period. Parents will be notified. Notebook for that subject must be brought to study hall. Detentions will be given for absences. Student MUST BRING A BROWN-BAG LUNCH for tutorial days. Student DOES NOT HAVE TIME TO PURCHASE A LUNCH. Student MUST BRING APPROPRIATE BINDER AND OTHER MATERIALS. First-semester freshmen WILL BE REQUIRED to attend a LUNCH study hall in the subject(s) in which their grade is a 74 or below for all three weeks of a reporting period. Example:  Progress Report: 74 or below goes to study hall in that subject until the next grade report  At-Risk Report: 74 or below goes to study hall in that subject until the next grade report  Report Card: 74 or below goes to study hall in that subject until the next grade report Subject area study hall will be held once a week, every week during lunch.  Mondays Foreign Language  Tuesdays Math (Algebra I & Geometry)  Wednesdays English I: Writing & Declamation English I: Language & Literature  Thursdays History (Bible teacher will assist)  Fridays Science Students ONLY attend the subject study hall in which they have a grade of 74 or below. Failure to attend will result in one detention for each absence from study hall. Students MUST BRING A BROWN-BAG LUNCH & DRINK THE DAY OF THEIR study hall. If the student fails to bring their lunch, they may purchase their lunch but MUST be in their study hall classroom by 11:40 or will be counted tardy which may result in a detention. STUDENTS WILL BE NOTIFIED BY THEIR SUBJECT-AREA TEACHER IF THEY MUST ATTEND study hall BASED ON THEIR REPORTING PERIOD GRADES. This policy is designed to support the transitioning freshmen and to assist them in acquiring skills and individual instruction for their academic success. It also provides an open line of communication between freshmen students and their teachers.

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HCHS HONOR CODE Purpose:

To clearly define and communicate expectations for honor & integrity. To provide a venue to students to choose honor & integrity. To educate students & parents on issues of academic honor & integrity.

Accountability: Issues of cheating and plagiarism will bring immediate disciplinary results. Please refer to the pages 61 & 62 of the Student Handbook. As a private, Christian, college preparatory high school, HCHS’s community of parents, students and administration must agree wholeheartedly with the mission and philosophy of the school. HONOR and integrity are valued highly at HCHS. HONOR is one of the four CORE VALUES on which we build our vision and curriculum; HONOR is defined as demonstrating integrity through ethical decision-making. Every student and parent is asked to sign the front page of the Student Handbook acknowledging their understanding, support and agreement to abide by the HCHS LEADERSHIP HONOR CODE. Please review the Code (below) with your student. “I understand that Houston Christian High School takes an open stand for the Lord Jesus Christ and encourages students to grow in grace and in knowledge of Christ. As a leader, I pledge to live according to the Code of Conduct (pgs. 59 & 60 in the Student Handbook), which has been established for my own good and for the good of the entire school community. I further understand that if I violate or witness other members of the Houston Christian High School community violating any of the Code’s standards, I am obliged to immediately report such violations to the Honor Council.”

HCHS Testing Affirmation When taking an exam, to promote and encourage academic integrity, each student will sign his or her name to a statement with the following intent: I have neither given nor received help on this assignment.

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PLAGIARISM Plagiarism is a serious issue, both ethically and academically, and will be treated as such. For details on the consequences of plagiarism, see pages 61 & 62 of the Student Handbook. HCHS refers to MLA (the Modern Language Association) for a definition of plagiarism, which will be defined as follows: “the false assumption of authorship: the wrongful act of [intentionally or unintentionally] taking the product of another person’s mind and presenting it as one’s own” (qtd. in MLA Handbook.) Students will be taught how to give proper credit to sources using MLA format. Therefore, intentional and unintentional “false assumption of authorship” will be treated as plagiarism. For a further explanation of plagiarism, see MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, section 2 in your English teacher’s classroom.

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Appendix A: TEST ANALYSIS FORM This is an example of a Test Analysis Form, taken from the Ancient Civilization course.

Type of Error Made Scantron Marking Errors: “I knew the answer, but I marked the wrong answer.”

Misread Questions: “I knew these answers, but I didn’t read these questions properly.” A. B.

C. D. E.

B. C.

TOTAL:_______ List the questions that you missed by #:

Absence - I was absent for that part. Unresolved Questions - I totally missed the explanation in class, and never really tried to understand it. Selective Studying - I choose to simply skip studying some terms and concepts. Poor Organization – I don’t keep my notes/notebook well. Poor Note-taking - My notes on this part were very incomplete – I missed VERY important information.

Ineffective Studying: “I remember seeing that information, but I still didn’t get the question right.” A.

TOTAL:_______ List the questions that you missed by #:

Reading Comprehension - I have trouble understanding test questions. Carelessness - I comprehend reading well, but I read too hastily and carelessly.

Missing Information: “I didn’t study that information at all.” A. B.

#’s of Questions missed List the questions that you missed by #:

TOTAL:_______ List the questions that you missed by #:

Carelessness – I studied for this question, but not thoroughly enough. Lack of Memorization – I didn’t make any effort to memorize, I just read over my notes (phrase, acronyms, visuals). Lack of Understanding – I didn’t make the effort to understand certain key concepts and terms stressed in class.

TOTAL:_______

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Study Habits Survey: 1. I would say, I mostly miss test questions because…. A. Passive Learning - I do not take the time to make memory devices that would help me like: flash cards, acronyms, visuals, read out loud, study/review sheets, retyping my notes etc. B. Deliberate “Zoning Out” - I never really pay attention in class. C. Superficial Learning - I just don’t make the effort to really carefully understand things. I do my reading assignment notes, but I don’t really learn anything from them. I just go through the motions. I write down definitions, but I don’t try to understand new words and ideas. D. Time Constraint Issues - I know how to study and get good grades, but I do not spend enough time studying. E. Reading Comprehension - I have trouble with reading comprehension. F. Listening Comprehension - I have trouble with listening comprehension. When teachers are talking, I really don’t understand what they are saying. G. Trouble Focusing - I want to pay attention in class, but it is very difficult for me to do so. H. Ineffective Studying - I seem to always study the wrong things. I study a lot, but my efforts don’t seem to pay off. I over-study too much material that is not on tests. I. Other Reasons – Explain:___________________________________________ 2. My academic goal for the class is to……. A. B. C. D.

Do the minimum to just pass and get by. I’m really not interested in doing more than that. Do MY OWN very best – whatever that might be. Make an A, period! Other:___________________________________________________________

3. What would most help me improve my grade in this and other classes? A. B. C. D. E. F. G. H.

Study with the stronger students. Learn better note-taking techniques. Learn memorization techniques. Learn to recognize the important material more effectively. Find strategies to understand reading material better. Visit the teacher or ask more questions. Participate more in class. I learn better when I discuss things. Other – Explain:___________________________________________________

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Appendix B: 6 (+1) TRAITS OF WRITING The Six Traits of Writing is a writing system that teaches students the most important aspects of writing in a sequential manner. There are six (plus one) important characteristics or traits of writing for students to become familiar with at the ninth grade level: Conventions:

Appropriate and correct spelling, grammar, mechanics, and usage

Ideas:

Originality and creativity of thought and expression

Organization:

Structure and clarity of ideas, paragraph structure and transitions

Voice:

Writer’s thumbprint and unique way of writing about any particular subject (similar to Tone)

Word Choice:

Distinct, appropriate, and descriptive language

Sentence Fluency:

Flow and musicality of the piece, variations in sentence length and beginnings

(+1/Presentation):

Appearance of the piece on the actual typed or written page

The students will be taught each of these traits explicitly, and be given tools to achieve excellence in each of the areas. By the end of the first semester, the students should be familiar with all 6 traits, and an example of a rubric for an “A” paper would be as follows: o

Conventions: Free from distracting spelling, mechanics, or grammar errors

o

Ideas: Beautifully original thesis with convincing and compelling supporting points

o

Organization: Clear transitions and paragraph structure, logical argument

o

Voice: Appropriate, original, and powerful

o

Word Choice: Appropriate, descriptive, non-cliché, and vivid words

o

Sentence Fluency: Musical, varied, and enhancing to the reading of the paper

o

Presentation: ____ nicely typed pages (depending on the assignment) in MLA format

Giving credit to any and all sources will also be taken into account in the grading of all papers. This should be done in MLA format (which will be taught explicitly), and accuracy is necessary to avoid plagiarism, which is a serious offence. Please see the Honor Code section of this packet and the Student Handbook for more information.

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Appendix C: COURSE DESCRIPTIONS FOR FRESHMEN CORE CLASSES MATH Algebra I and PAP Algebra I In both courses, students learn about simple linear functions, which can be used to model situations in their world. Algebra 1 is a course that studies equations and inequalities in greater depth than in elementary and middle school. The concept of proportional reasoning, developed in middle school, is expanded to include direct and inverse variation. Linear, quadratic, and exponential functions are introduced, and students are asked to solve real-world applications involving them. PAP Algebra I will increase rigor, pace and level of independent learning using a more advanced textbook. Geometry This course will emphasize the understanding and appreciation for basic geometric structures and procedures. The course objective is for students to gain an understanding of geometric concepts and how to apply them to solve problems. Students will study lines, planes, angles, triangle properties, polygons, proofs, triangle congruence, parallel lines, parallelograms and special parallelograms, similarity, circles, areas, volumes, vectors, slope, distance, and linear equations. Pre-AP Geometry This course will involve extensive use of algebraic concepts for solutions to geometry problems. The course objective is for students to gain an understanding of geometric concepts and how to use their critical thinking skills to solve complex geometry problems. Students will learn the concepts of points, lines, planes, angles, and parallel and perpendicular lines. They will learn how to plan and complete geometric proofs and they will learn and understand how to solve complex problems involving triangles, polygons, quadrilaterals, and areas and volumes of polygons. Students will learn to use a compass, protractor, triangle, and straightedges to solve construction problems. Students will finish the course by completing an in-class, major project applying geometry concepts. Pre-AP Algebra II Students taking Pre-AP Algebra 2 will study linear, quadratic, exponential, logarithmic, higher-degree polynomial, and trigonometric functions. The focus is on the behavior of their graphs and the situations in which each of these functions can be used to model real-world situations. Topics to be studied also include an introduction to sequences and series, with concentration on arithmetic and geometric sequences and partial sums of infinite series using notation. Circular functions based on coordinates of the unit circle are also introduced, and students are expected to memorize the degree/radian equivalents and the sine, cosine, and tangent function values for the unit circle angles based on 0, 30, 45, 60 and 90 degrees.

SCIENCE Biology This course provides a study of living things through laboratory experiences and investigative processes. Students use scientific methods during investigations and make informed decisions using critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Areas of study will include cell biology, microbiology, biotechnology, botany, taxonomy, evolution, genetics, and ecology. Laboratory procedures and reporting skills will emphasize the key concepts studied in classes. Pre-AP Biology This course provides a study of living things through laboratory experiences and investigative processes. Students use scientific methods during investigations and make informed decisions using critical thinking and problem solving skills. Areas of study will include cell biology, microbiology, biotechnology, botany, taxonomy, evolution, genetics, animals, and ecology. Laboratory procedures and reporting skills will be emphasized. As an honors course, the concepts are similar to the Biology 1 course but are taught on a higher level, in greater detail, and at a faster pace. Outside reading and research are expected. Students should be self-motivated to complete assignments.

HISTORY Ancient Civilization This course is designed to introduce students to the social, economic, and cultural conditions in which the Old Testament was written. While the course mainly focuses on the earliest accomplishments of humanity in antiquity and universal human patterns, it also involves an overview of the development and history of world religions. This course concludes with the fall of Rome and the rise of Islam and the Byzantine Empire.

LANGUAGE ARTS English I: Writing and Declamation Due to the extensive language-arts skills vital to every student’s academic success, the freshmen language-arts curriculum has been spread between two core classes. This course is designed to complement the English I: Literature and Language course. Students will focus on developing their writing, speaking, and technological skills. Students will also study the major components of grammar and apply them to their writing and speaking. In the second semester, students will write a research paper. English I: Writing and Declamation, working with other core subjects, will integrate a variety of structured and impromptu writing and speaking prompts and technology.

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English I: Language and Literature This course, an introduction to the diversity of literature, is designed to complement the English I: Writing and Declamation course. In addition to the study of authors from multiple time periods and cultures, the course will focus on the understanding of different literary genres. Biblical teachings and the links to social contexts are applied to the literature studied. With each piece of literature, the students will study a selection of literary elements and begin to identify and analyze those elements in the literature. Moreover, students will respond to literature through writing, including a literaryanalysis essay, which incorporates the use of quotations to support assertions about literature. Pre-AP English I: Language and Literature This course, also providing a study of major literary genres and designed to complement English I: Writing and Declamation, focuses on an analytical approach to literature. Students achieve mastery of foundational writing skills and use evaluative measures to analyze literature through verbal and written responses. Students become more skillful at handling SAT/PSAT/ACT-type questions through training in vocabulary recognition and mechanics application through supplementary and more intensive preparation. Moreover, students will write several literary-analysis essays. Because this course is preparing students for the AP English courses of the junior and senior years, the pace and expectations will be increased compared to English I: Language and Literature. Note: If a student is in PAP English I they will automatically be enrolled in Advanced Writing and Declamation. DSP Writing and Declamation This course provides a study of the methods and concepts of both written and spoken communication. Students learn how to analyze and produce particular styles of written and spoken works. Woven within these works are vocabulary words that are learned throughout other courses. As a Distinguished Scholars Program course, the concepts extend to acquiring the skills necessary to identify a research problem statement, search for scholarly works in order to produce a written review of related literature that includes proper research citations and references, and present a summary of written review of related literature to peers. Distinguished Scholars will apply the themes and teachings of Proverbs and the Passport to Lead Personal Dimension as they examine their personal views via weekly journal exercises and seminar discussions.

BIBLE Bible 9: Old Testament Students will engage the Old Testament books by: 1) examining the basic content of each book in canonical order, 2) considering the contemporary situations that are touched by these ancient Hebrew books, 3) contemplating the spiritual themes and personal applications to be found in them, and 4) seeing how each of these books points to the Messiah, Jesus Christ. This course of Old Testament study will involve intellectually stimulating and personally invigorating activities with the primary goal of increasing the students’ love for Jesus Christ.

FOREIGN LANGUAGES Chinese (Mandarin) I This course will provide introductory instruction of Mandarin Chinese in the language skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. The students will be introduced to the pinyin spelling system and also the simplified and traditional character writing systems. The Chinese culture will also be examined for formal study of language. Latin I The first year course introduces students to the Latin language while developing skills in the areas of reading, writing, and understanding of the Latin language, stressing noun and verb formation. Through daily written and reading practices, students begin to comprehend the origin of the languages that stemmed from the Latin language. In addition, students do research projects focusing on the development of the Latin language and its effect on today’s world. Cultural information is woven throughout the course with special emphasis placed on Pompeii, Roman Britain, and Egypt. Latin II The second year course continues the thorough grammar presentation and stresses participles, gerunds, and forms and uses of the subjunctive. Students continue with daily reading and writing practices with the goal of achieving greater proficiency in sight-reading and translation. Students are introduced to Classical Latin poetry and begin to develop skills with Latin meter. Cultural emphasis is placed on Imperial Rome. Spanish I The first-year course introduces students to the Spanish language and to the cultures of Spanish-speaking countries while developing skills in the areas of aural comprehension, speaking, reading, writing, and cultural and geographical awareness. Through daily oral and written practice students learn to integrate the basic vocabulary and grammatical structures they have learned. The result is that they come to understand short utterances, to respond orally with learned material, and ultimately to engage in basic conversations and to understand simple texts. In addition, students do research projects focusing on daily life in Spanish-speaking countries.

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Spanish II The second year course reviews and enhances the basic skills acquired in Spanish I. Students engage in frequent oral and written exchanges of learned material. In order to increase accuracy of expression, special emphasis is given to the components of language, including proper grammar and a wider vocabulary. Students learn the Preterit, Imperfect, and Progressive verb tenses as well as the use of reflexive verbs. In addition, students do research projects focusing on daily life in Spanish-speaking countries. Pre-AP Spanish II Honors Spanish II is for highly motivated and capable students who are up to the challenge of learning Spanish II material at a faster pace and in greater depth. There will be continued emphasis on the four basic skills. Grammar topics are extended to cover the Preterit, Imperfect, Future, Conditional, Present Participle, and Past Participle verb tenses as well as the continued use of reflexive verbs. Students are also required to write bilingual storybooks, bilingual crossword puzzle books (both of which are created as a service to area hospitals), and power point presentations using their knowledge of the components of the Spanish language. Proper grammar and vocabulary are reinforced to increase accuracy in oral and written expression. Students who demonstrate a high level of proficiency will be eligible to advance to Pre-AP Spanish III.

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