Welcome to the Grades 7 English Language Arts page for students enrolled in ELA classes with Mr. Abrams! 
 
Hello!  
 
MOST ALL INFORMATION YOU NEED SPECIFIC TO THE DAILY OPERATION OF YOUR OR YOUR CHILD'S CLASS IS NOW LIVE ON YOUR SCHOOLOGY ACCOUNTS.  SEE YOUR CLASS SECTION PAGE FOR ASSIGNMENTS, ABSENCE INFORMATION AND UPCOMING EVENTS!
 
BELOW IS GENERAL COURSE POLICY INFORMATION: 
 
As technology is taking on an ever increasing role in both life and education, your child will have his/her own laptop device this year and will make use of it regularly throughout the year.  While that is so, much of what we read and write in class will still be on good old-fashioned paper. 

One of the best things about this tech initiative though, will be an ever increasing ability for students to access course materials when absent or if they have lost copies of materials handed out in class.  Many regular items such as Vocabulary Lists and Monthly Reading Sheets will be available to students 24/7 through their Schoology Accounts. 

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GRADE PORTAL:  If you have not already done so, you can access the Grade Portal from the main Middle School web page.  Call the middle school office if you need to acquire or re-acquire a log-on code.  Parents are welcome to, and encouraged to, log on to the portal to check their child's progress.  But, even more important, I highly recommend students have the log-in information as well, as this tool is best used by KIDS in so that they can learn to monitor their grades and be proactive about issues they find with them.
 
GRADE POLICY: For most homework and written responses the minimum grade I will award is a 31 if the assignment was attempted or at least partially done.  A 30 will be entered for any such assignment that was not done at all, not turned in, etc.  Think of a 30 as being the equivalent of a zero/not turned in.  Tests and quizzes will be still graded normally; a student scoring a 15 will earn exactly that. 

All late assignments must be made up within three days of their due date.  Late assignments will receive partial credit only.  The only assignments eligible to be made up beyond the three day window are test and quiz scores, which may be made up through week nine of the quarter.  Students should not be arriving on the last couple days of a quarter to make up multiple assignments unless the assignments are extremely recent.  Stay on top of your grades!

Late vocabulary worksheets will earn partial credit and MUST BE COMPLETED IN MY ROOM DURING NINTH PERIOD UNLESS I MAKE A SPECIFIC EXCEPTION FOR YOU.  Do not arrive for ninth with the assignment “pre-completed.”  You will not get credit.

 
DOES THERE APPEAR TO BE A PROBLEM IN THE GRADE BOOK?   

Students that see a grade that is potentially incorrect in the grade portal should first and foremost see me in person to discuss the grade.  If it's a mistake, we'll get it fixed immediately.  If it's not, I can discuss why with the student at that time.  If there are still questions after that, parents are certainly invited to call or email me to discuss the issue.  This teaches children to be accountable for themselves, and the vast majority of the time these are easily fixed, very minor issues.

NINTH PERIOD:   Students are expected to make use of ninth period to rectify failing or poor course averages as best as can be accommodated by their teachers.

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Vacations Taken Within the School Year:
 

Upon request, I can and will provide for students any work that I have available for completion while on vacation.  Keep a few things in mind...

 
1.  I will likely not be able to send ALL the work you will miss with you.
 
2.  You are 100% expected to complete any work I take the time to gather and send along.
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Outside Reading:

Students are expected to read about 120 minutes a week "recreationally."  They will have a great deal of latitude regarding what they choose to read but whatever they wish to read MUST BE APPROVED BY THEIR PARENT(S) ahead of time.  Each month students will keep track of their reading on a sheet handed out by Mr. Abrams and then must get it signed by their parents at the end of each month for submission in class.  Student grade will be determined based on whether or not they met their reading goal and/or by how much they fell short.  Students should read narrative works generally, but are free to read biographies & autobiographies in addition to fiction.  Students wishing to stray from any of the above genres should bring in the book in question before reading it for approval from me.  Please note that… 

1.  The book must be approved by a parent prior to the student starting it.

 
2.  The book should be narrative in nature.  Fiction, Biographies & Autobiographies are  good examples.  Therefore, things like Almanacs, How To books, and such are not appropriate for this project. Understand that there is nothing wrong with reading books like that; they just don't work well for this particular project. 
 
3.   Books read for this project should be being read for the FIRST TIME.  Do NOT re-read books previously read either for leisure OR in a classroom.  Parents, I might need your help with this one.  If you see your child picking up Twilight for the third time in hopes of counting it toward this year's ELA reading, please give your child a friendly reminder regarding this policy.
 
4.   Books must be grade level appropriate.  We have moved beyond Goosebumps by Seventh Grade.  I will veto books that are significantly below grade level.  If you have doubt over whether a book is high enough level, check the inside cover for the RL and/or bring it in for me to look at.

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General Classroom Rules:

 

1. Do not be disruptive to instruction.

2. Keep bathroom visits during class to a minimum.  These should be rare. 

3. Bring what you are required to for class...   pen, pencil, ELA binder (including loose-leaf paper), and a highlighter.  Once the bell rings to start class, what is in your locker is no longer available to you.

4. Meet deadlines!  If there are special circumstances contributing to your being late with an assignment you should get a parent note.  A special circumstance WOULD be, for example, a death in the family.  A special circumstance would NOT be an aunt's birthday party. 

5. Please do not come around at the five week or quarter ending point and try to hand in a pile of back work or to ask for extra credit.  While no one is perfect, in general you should be turning in your work on time throughout the marking period.  I will offer extra credit opportunities very occasionally throughout the year.  Make sure you make use of them when I do. 

 

Hopefully, you will agree that these rules are rooted very much in common sense.  Do your work on time, be generally responsible for your academics and your behavior, and things will go quite well for you all year! 

 

 

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