• I would like to welcome you to Cross Middle School Math. My name is Bob Shiba and I will be your student’s Algebra 1 teacher for the year.  Success in Algebra 1 will require considerable effort and support.

     To support students’ mathematics learning, Cross is using a curriculum from McGraw Hill Education called the Glencoe High School Math Series.  This curriculum has an online component that provides students and parents with access to student resources and tools, including eBooks, tutorials, animations, and software intended to help all students be successful. In addition, we will be using a software program to assist in student learning and success. The program ALEKS, (Assessment and LEarning in Knowledge Spaces) is a Web-based, artificially intelligent assessment and learning system. My experience has shown that students who put the time in on ALEKS will be successful in the class.  It is my expectation that students will spend approximately 1-2 hours at home working on ALEKS.

    Your child’s textbook is hardcover.  Your child can be issued a textbook that they will be responsible for or they can simply use the online textbook. In addition, it is the expectation that all upper level math students have a graphing calculator. Recommended are the TI-84 series of calculators.  Students can check a TI-84 out from the school if finances are a problem.

    Students will be expected to behave in a responsible, mature manner.  Students will be successful in Algebra 1 by attending class every day, by participating and working hard each day in class, and by diligently completing assignments when they are due. 

    Each of your students have a list of procedures for my math class that will help them to understand what is expected of them and how they can handle issues such as late work or being absent from school.  It is my hope that they will have a clear understanding of what is expected of them and how they can be successful in my class. Remember that this is a high school credit class.  Student’s grades will reflect on their high school transcript.


    Grades will be calculated as follows:

    40%     Tests

    20%     Quizzes

    20%     Final

    20%     Homework/Classwork/ALEKS


    The grading scale is as follows


    A = 90-100      B=80-89          C=70-79          D=60-69          F=below 60



    Rules and Procedures for Mr. Shiba’s Algebra Class

    Teacher Expectations

    In order to achieve success, you will need to:

    • work in class by paying attention, participating, and asking questions whenever they arise, and
    • work outside of class by doing any assigned work, preparing for tests, quizzes, or presentations to the best of your ability, and again, asking any questions whenever they arise.

    The overriding expectation in the class is respect: respect for yourself, respect for other students, respect for the teacher, respect for the school, and respect for any guests we may have in our class.  Though this encompasses all other expectations, I will enumerate several other expectations for the sake of clarity.

    • Everyone should be in his/her seat and ready to work when the class starts. This means getting materials, using the restroom, sharpening pencils, and socializing should be completed before class begins.
    • Bring all materials (books, notebooks, completed assignments, calculators, and pencils) to class each day.
    • No one should disrupt the learning process in any way, shape or form. This includes, but is not limited to, talking out, passing notes, taking others' possessions, and throwing objects.  Basically, if you are courteous there is no problem.
    • If independent work time is given, you are to work on your mathematics assignment.
    • Keep the noise level down when working in pairs or groups. As a general rule, speak so that only those in your group can hear.
    • Do not leave the classroom until you are dismissed by the teacher. I will give you the signal to dismiss you, but please be courteous enough to allow me to finish any sentence or assignment and make sure you have cleaned up around you.
    • If you must use the hall pass, get permission from the teacher first and sign out of the classroom. I will honor reasonable requests to use the hall pass, but will revoke that privilege for students who leave the room without permission or who misuse the hall pass.
    • All written work should be done in pencil, using complete sentences and correct grammar.


    Class Rules

    1. Be respectful
    2. Be responsible
    3.  Be ready


    No cell phones allowed in class, they will be confiscated.

    School rules will be followed, no exceptions.


    Academic Honesty

    It is expected that students will use genuine, sincere, and fair means for the accomplishment of the tests, tasks, or projects from which evaluations of progress shall be determined. Students found plagiarizing, copying or cheating in any way will receive automatic zeros and have phone calls made to their parents. In addition, a write-up of the incident will be given to the student's counselor. Flagrant or repeated offenses will result in a failing grade for the quarter or semester depending on the nature of the incident.


    If a student has an excused absence from class he or she is responsible for the assignments/ homework that missed. The student has as many days as he or she was absent to make up the assignments. It is up to the student to inquire about missed work and tests. Unexcused absences void all make-up privileges.

    Late Work

    Homework assignments may be turned in late with excused absences and prior permission from the teacher. Projects may be turned in late with a penalty of one letter grade for each day late. Students will have two days for every day missed to turn in late work if their absence is excused.

    Tests and Quizzes

    Quizzes and tests will be given periodically. There will be a final cumulative exam each semester. You will be allowed to retake one test each semester.  In order to retake a test you must rework all the incorrect problems on a separate sheet of paper and then submit the corrections to me.  You may be required to do additional work before you are allowed to retake.  It must be completed before the final exam.    


    Grades will be calculated as follows:

    40%     Tests

    20%     Quizzes

    20%     Final

    20%     Homework/Classwork


    The grading scale is as follows


    A = 90-100      B=80-89          C=70-79          D=60-69          F=below 60

    Make-Up Tests

    Quizzes and tests will be made-up through arrangements with the teacher.

    Computer Software

    Students will be assigned computer work to complete during the year.  This is separate from homework and will be expected to be completed by their respective due dates. We will be using ALEKS, (Assessment and LEarning in Knowledge Spaces) a Web-based, artificially intelligent assessment and learning system. ALEKS uses adaptive questioning to quickly and accurately determine exactly what a student knows and doesn't know in a course. ALEKS then instructs the student on the topics she is most ready to learn. As a student works through a course, ALEKS periodically reassesses the student to ensure that topics learned are also retained. ALEKS courses are very complete in their topic coverage and ALEKS avoids multiple-choice questions. My experience has shown that students who put the time in on ALEKS will be successful in the class


    Expect to have some type of homework every day. Some days your homework assignment may be watching a video, or completing an assignment online.  Many assignments can be finished during class as we will be doing a lot of collaborative work. Homework should be completed by the next day.  Homework grades will be primarily for completion of assignment with all work showing. Late homework will not be accepted.  You should attempt to complete all homework as it will help you be successful on quizzes.    

    Collaboration, Participation and Behavior Grade

    Students will be expected to take and keep notes during lesson time. Notes and class work may be checked periodically and are counted as part of your Classwork Grade. Notes should be kept in your math notebook.  Class work also includes the bell work that is expected to be completed at the beginning of class, and the exit ticket that will be required at the end of class. Students who are sent out of the room for behavior will lose points for the day.