CLASS DESCRIPTION AND EXPECTATIONS
I. WHAT IS THIS CLASS ABOUT?:
This is the introduction to Spanish. You do not need to know any Spanish at the beginning of the year, although knowing a few things in Spanish is helpful. If you work hard, by the end of the year, you should be able to have a basic 5 minute conversation with a Spanish speaker about things you do, things you like, your plans for the future, and describe your friends and family. You will also be able to write a letter to a Spanish speaker about the same information. We will also work on reading and listening skills. By the end of the school year, you will have memorized approximately 350 words in Spanish. We will also learn about the history of Spanish in Arizona and the United States, which countries speak Spanish, and the Mexican holiday of Día de los Muertos.
Note: if you already speak some Spanish, this is not the correct class for you. For example, if you can describe in Spanish something that happened last weekend or last summer, you must be placed into either Native Spanish 1, French 1, or American Sign Language 1.
II. WHY SHOULD I TAKE THIS CLASS?
As discuss in class personal motivation, or deciding for yourself why you’re taking Spanish, is crucial for learning Spanish, (this is true for anything you want to learn.) Ultimately it is up to each student to decide why he or she wishes to do well in this class and learn or improve on his or her own Spanish. The following are some typical reasons why many choose to put effort into learning Spanish.
Spanish has and continues to be spoken by many people in Arizona and the United States. It is by far the 2nd most spoken and used language here. It is also the 4th most spoken language worldwide.
Neuroscientists have seen results that learning any 2nd language results in the increased levels of grey matter in parts of the brain that are responsible for executive function (aka cognitive control.) This increase in grey matter results in improved concentration and task performance. Research also shows learning a 2nd language increases brain plasticity and emotional empathy.
Business, trade, and retail between Arizona and Mexico accounts for hundreds of millions of dollars in Arizona’s economy. Being bilingual, regardless of languages, has shown to give individuals an advantage when competing for jobs and promotions.
Students who wish to transfer directly from Amphi to a Four Year University (University of Arizona, NAU, GCU, ASU?, Out-of-State Universities) after graduation must complete two years of the same World or Native Language course with at least a C average.
III. TOPICS COVERED:
A detailed Pacing Guide and Calendar can be provided upon request. I also recommend reading through the course "ACTFL Top 10 Can-Do Statements."
Students will be able to:
Introduce themselves, and describe themselves and state where they are from.
Identify key details of the history and current contribution of the Spanish in Arizona and the US.
Talk about their school, what classes they have, and describe them briefly.
Identify diversity within Mexico, comparing and contrasting different Mexican regions.
Talk about what they do, describing a typical afternoon or weekend, and ask questions of others.
Order food in a restaurant, describe foods they like.
Identify all Spanish speaking countries and territories, along with comparing & contrasting them.
Talk about their family, home, and chores.
Talk about what sports, clubs, activities, and hobbies they do.
IV. WHAT DO I, SEÑOR HARPER, BELIEVE:
I respect you. You deserve respect. Your opinion matters
Learning a new language requires hard work, but the results are priceless.
It is important for me that everyone earns a high grade in my class, therefore I will work hard to make sure everyone in the class has a fair opportunity to excel.
This class should be meaningful to every student.
I am here to support you academically, I want to see you graduate.
I will not bring my personal problems to class.
V. WHAT DO I EXPECT FROM YOU ON HOW TO CONDUCT YOURSELF:
Follow the A List
Be Respectful, Be Responsible, Be a Team Player.
Focus on your work and let others focus on their work; don’t be distracting.
Do your own work; don’t copy, cheat, or plagiarize.
Be yourself, and be your best self.
As well, students must adhere to Amphitheater Public Schools Code of Conduct & other AHS rules.
VI. THE FINAL EXAM!!!:
The final exams are district mandated. The final exams are divided into three parts: ∗You must be able to have a 5 minute conversation with another student in Spanish, ∗ you must be able to write at least 2 paragraphs in Spanish. ∗ There will also be a multiple choice section. DON’T PANIC! Most students are able to do this by the end of the year. HOWEVER, if you want an A or B, you’ll need to prepare for these exams FOR AT LEAST 30 MINUTES A WEEK EVERY WEEK BETWEEN NOW AND MAY. Any material we learn in class is subject to appear on the final exams.
VII. WHAT IF I’M ONLY TAKING THIS CLASS FOR COLLEGE REQUIREMENTS?:
I understand, but please note: Most universities will not consider classes that you have earned a grade below 70% (C) when determining acceptance. You need to do the work in order to get that C. Regardless of whether you plan on attending college after high school, I strongly recommend that you earn at least a C, in order to be ready for Spanish 2.
VIII. WHAT IF I’M ABSENT?
There are extra copies of papers I give out on the Assignment Wall. You can make up all of the homework and classwork. I will wait 1 week before entering missing assignments as 0s. Bellwork cannot be made up. I will also post assignments and notes on the class website: https://www.amphi.com/Page/4909
IX. WHAT IF I’M ABSENT FOR A TEST?
Under normal circumstances, you must talk to me to schedule time outside of class to make up missed quizzes and tests; this must be done within three days from the first day back. Quizzes and tests that are not made up within the scheduled time will be entered in the gradebook as 0%. You will have until 17th week of each semester to make up late quizzes and tests.
X. WHAT DO I NEED TO BRING WITH ME TO CLASS?:
1. A three ring binder. (1 inch)
Six Binder Divider Tabs
2. Paper: either loose leaf or in a notebook.
3. A pencil & a blue or black pen
4. 350 3" X 5" INDEX CARDS (to turn in)
Please talk to me if you need help getting supplies
XI. IS THERE A TEXTBOOK?
There is, but we will not be working in it much. You do not need to get one. If you want one to study with, you can check one out from the bookstore. You will not need to bring it with you to class.
GRADING, HOMEWORK, AND STUDYING
I. HOW WILL I BE GRADED?:
Semester Finals: 20% (See CLASS DESCRIPTION AND EXPECTATIONS for details)
Tests and Quizzes: 10% you should expect a quiz every other week. You will have an opportunity to correct errors on writing portions on tests and quizzes for partial credit.
Speaking & Writing Formal Tasks/Projects: 30% there will be at least one project (skit, mini essay, presentation, etc) per chapter, each will include a grading rubric.
Reading & Listening Comprehension: 10% In each chapter we will have at least two reading and two listening activities. Some of these activities will be informal practice and some will be in assessment format.
Homework, Classwork Practice Assignments: 10% all completed assignments in this category will receive 100%. It will be your responsibility as the student to correct your own errors when we review these assignments in class. Bellwork assignments cannot be made up. I will not "restamp" days you missed or did not participate.
Culture Curriculum and Class Participation: 16%
We will have cultural projects twice a semester and informal activities throughout the year.
Participation is mostly based on attendance, but it will also include your ability to focus on your work, and let other focus on work. You will start with at least 90 participation points for each quarter; these points will not "roll-over" to other quarters. You can lose points in the following ways:
∗Excessive excused class absences (4 or more a month): minus 2 point each
∗2 or more unexcused tardies a quarter, less than 10 minutes late: minus 2 point each
∗Any unexcused tardy, over 10 minutes late: minus 3 ½ point each
∗Unexcused class absence: minus 3 ½ points each
∗Persistent violations of class/school rules: minimum of minus 3 ½ points each
∗Serious classroom disruption: minimum of minus 3 ½ points each
You will not lose attendance points for school activities such as sports, or field trips. Emergencies will be taken into consideration. IF YOU WILL BE ABSENT, PLEASE MAKE SURE YOUR PARENTS OR GUARDIANS CALL ATTENDANCE TO HAVE IT EXCUSED. Students will have an opportunity to earn participation points.
Binder checks: 4% Students must maintain a well organized binder throughout the entire year. A separate handout will be provided on how the binder should be organized. There will be 2 scheduled checks and 1 random check during the 1st Semester; there will be 3 random checks during 2nd Semester. Each notebook check is worth 35 points.
II. TYPICAL GRADING SCALE - SYMBOLS ON TYLER
A+ 100% - Quality of work is superior; it meets of exceeds expectations.
A 90% - Quality of work is great, and nearly meets full expectations.
B 85% - Quality of work is good/ acceptable completion of expectations.
C 75% - Quality of work is ok/ adequate / most of the minimal expectations are met.
D 60% - Quality of work is poor, inadequate, but minimal expectations are met.
F 50% - Quality of work is poor, inadequate, minimal expectations are NOT met.
F 40% - Work is incomplete, and/or quality of work is far below expectations.
M 0% - Work is missing, it has not been submitted or turned in.
! - Assignment not yet entered into gradebook by teacher.
III. IS THERE A LOT OF HOMEWORK IN THIS CLASS?:
Students are expected to practice memorizing vocabulary, pronouncing words and phrases, reviewing conversation questions and written drafts, as well as conjugations on a weekly basis. I recommend you review vocabulary and conjugations for at least 30 minutes a week. A+ Students study 15 minutes every day. There are resources on my class website: https://www.amphi.com/Page/4909 This page can be accessed through the Amphi High website.
Most of the work will be done in class. Sometimes, but not often, I will give a take home assignment, which should take an average student 10 minutes to complete. Students are expected to work on missing or incomplete assignments as homework too.
IV. CAN I TURN IN WORK LATE?
I normally accept late work, however I grade it after I have entered on-time work. Some assignments will not be accepted late regardless of excuse. Details on whether an assignment will not be accepted late will be written explicitly in their instructions. Here are the deadlines for late work for each quarter:
Q1: Friday October 6th
Q2: Tuesday Dec 5th
Q3: Thursday March 8th
Q4: Tuesday May 8th
V. HOW TO STUDY
You will be given vocabulary sheets on a regular basis, and in class we will review a variety of vocabulary strategies. In general follow these steps:
Decide on one day and a time each week to set aside 20 to 30 minutes of uninterrupted vocab practice, speaking practice, a review of your written work, and to scan through grammar notes.
Quiz yourself! Once you have correctly identified a vocab word more than about 6 times, including with correct spelling, you have learned it! Place it off to the side and focus on words you are not identifying.
It is ok to practice with others, even if they don’t speak Spanish.
Remember to review the speaking questions (practice questions for oral final) along with the vocabulary.
VI. WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I NEED HELP?
∗ TALK TO ME! I am in my classroom during most lunches. I am usually in my classroom after school from 3:30pm to 4:30pm. You can also call my classroom phone number 696-5380, or send me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org
∗ Check the class website for study resources: https://www.amphi.com/Page/4909
∗ Ask a Spanish speaker to check your work, or help you practice vocabulary.
VII. CAMPUS RESOURCES
∗ After school tutoring in the library Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday starting Tuesday September 5th. See me for details.
∗ Counseling department phone: 696-5357 counseling website
VIII. WHAT DOESN’T HELP?
∗ Google Translate doesn’t help you learn Spanish.
∗ Having a Spanish speaker write your entire assignment doesn’t help you learn Spanish.
∗ Not studying, or waiting till the night before a quiz to study does not help.
Typical times: 1:30pm to 2pm (except half days,) 3:45pm to 5pm
Phone number: 696-5380, Email: email@example.com
I also encourage you and your parent/guardian to sign up for reminders and announcements about the class via the Remind App. Instructions will be given on a separate sheet as well they are available on the class website.
I am aware that for most students being immersed in Spanish is difficult. Please talk to me if you need help or if you are confused.
¡Qué nos pasemos un año excelente!
Let’s have an excellent year!