• My son says his notebook is in your classroom and he cannot bring it home.

    Posted by:

    This is NOT true.  I provide a location for storage, however, I do not in any way require students to store notebooks in my room.  I DO require he has his notebook EVERYDAY.  If the only way he can accomplish this is to leave it here, then he should!

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  • My daughter says she doesn't have homework. Is this true?

    Posted by:

    Hmmm...Yes and no.  We do not always give "homework" in the sense that something will be collected and graded.  However, every teacher on our team has expectations for nightly review of vocabulary, or concepts that she can be working on.  The ability to know there is work to be done at home, even when it is not assigned "homework" is difficult, but necessary!

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  • My child says he NEEDS his phone for class activities, can he function in class without a phone?

    Posted by:

    YES!  This is a scam!  I am a parent and know the importance of leverage!  If you need to use a device as leverage, by all means, do what you need to do!  Typically, in a class we only have 50% of students that have a working device, so I always have a plan for working around some not having one! Anything he uses a phone for in my class can also be found on my website!

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  • I am not happy with my child's grades? What can she do?

    Posted by:

    1.  Discuss with your student your opinions on acceptable grades!  Perhaps you just have different ideas of "acceptable"!

    2.  Parents AND students should monitor Powerschool together.  

    3.  Look at which grades are low; often students keep repeating the same mistakes over and over.  Perhaps she keeps losing points for not being on-time with assignments, or maybe she needs to prepare more for tests.

    4.  Attendance!  Attendance!  Much of the Science curriculum is new information for students and is full of new vocabulary, etc..  Students will get the most out of class by being present for class!  Students must do what they can to learn materials from days they missed...it's not going to go away just because he/she was sick!

    5.  Ask to see your student's notebook.  Organization continues to be a struggle for many eighth grade students.  Look at his/her Science notebook, organization makes good grades easier!

    6.  By eighth grade, students really need to be monitoring themselves and working with teachers if there seem to be errors or miscommunication.  Such an important life skill!  I teach my kids to monitor grades like they should a bank account!  Encourage her to work out any discrepencies immediately, (rather than waiting ? weeks).  Even have them send an email if she would rather!

    7.  Teacher's policies on this vary, but for my class, the best way to improve a grade is to ask for an opportunity to re-do an assignment/test.   I very rarely offer "extra" credit opportunities.

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  • I just discovered my child has missing work. Will you accept it late?

    Posted by:

    I WILL accept late work UNTIL the date the students take our benchmark for the unit.  This means that approximately once a month there is a cut-off date for work for that unit.  Dates are posted on my website and on the board in the classroom.

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  • My son needs some extra help, could we get a book?

    Posted by:

    I wish I could say, "yes!"; although we technically have books, they are old and are not aligned with our current curriculum, so are not necessarily the first stop for supplementing our classroom activities.  I recommend students use my website.  I have links to videos, vocabulary, and games that stay there all year AND I add extra's throughotut the year on my daily blog.  Also, I am available any day after-school.  Alternately, we do have a Techbook (online textbook) students can access online to supplement our class materials.

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  • My daughter is going to be (on vacation, sick, or suspended) for _____days. Can we get work?

    Posted by:

    I update my website EVERYDAY!  He/she can check the website for a description of what was done in class, some links to online resources and upcoming dates/assignments.  Additionally I maintain an absentee folder.  Upon his/her return, they can get copies they need, etc.

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