1st & 2nd Periods
September 2017

Dear Parents & Students:
I’m Mrs. Coats, and I’d like to welcome you to my 8th grade English Language Arts (ELA) class! I am very excited about this year, as it’s a new opportunity for me to work with students in a new space. This is my fourteenth year as a teacher and my seventh year at Ligon.
Classroom lessons will be based on the Common Core State Standards and focus on reading literature and informational texts, writing, language/grammar, and speaking and listening skills. Students who participate actively in class and do their best on all work assigned will leave my class better readers, writers, and most importantly, learners. We will follow the ELA curriculum outlined by the district, which organizes units around five themes: Journeys, Rights & Responsibilities, Risking it All, The Power of Language, and Social Justice. Students will work on applying reading and learning strategies to various types of texts, vocabulary, grammar, writing, and effectively exchanging ideas.

I will provide students with assignment-specific requirements and expectations as needed. To encourage student responsibility and independence, I expect them to be a reliable source of information for you regarding their work and what is required of them. However, I will post overviews of what we’re doing in class and major deadlines online. While there are plans to transition to a larger platform, for now you may find class information at http://coatsela.wikispaces.com. Also, please sign up for text reminders: Remind.com | Class Code: coatsela .

Civilizations & Cultures (C&C)
This is the second year that Ligon has offered C&C to our 8th graders, and it is an evolving course. Mr. Misuraca and I have worked to further develop the curriculum and instruction that is a blend of our language arts and social studies courses. In addition to the standard language arts and social studies content summarized above, we will regularly collaborate to provide students with learning opportunities that include projects, presentations, Socratic seminars, service-learning experiences, and current events-based small group activities.

Parents, I look forward to partnering with you to support our students as they become stronger, more capable and independent learners. Please read the following page (on back) regarding policies and expectations and sign and return the attached sheet stating you have read this information.


Sincerely,
Mrs. Coats
dcoats2@wcpss.net


1st & 2nd Periods


EXPECTATIONS FOR CONDUCT:

At Ligon, we ROAR...
Respect yourself and others.
Own your actions.
Apply positive leadership.
Respect our school.

All students will:

1. Be respectful of themselves, others, and property.

2. Bring all necessary materials, including textbooks and agendas, to class daily.

3. Be seated and working when the bell rings.

4. Respect the limited time we have in class by addressing personal needs before or after class.

5. Complete assignments and homework on time, especially when returning from an absence.

6. Respect the learning environment by ensuring food, electronic devices, and ear buds are stored during class.

7. Achieve success as active learners working to the best of their ability.

8. Model positive behavior by following school policies and classroom procedures.

9. Refrain from behaviors that disrupt the learning environment and/or hinder others’ ability to learn.

MATERIALS:

  • Writing utensils (pencils, pens, highlighters, colored pencils)
  • One (1) spiral notebook
  • Three (3) Dividers (sharing binder w/social studies)
  • One (1) pack of sticky notes (preferred but not required)

INDEPENDENT READING:

Students should have book for silent reading with them in class every day. Students are expected to read one (1) book of choice, fiction or nonfiction, per quarter for the first semester. The books should be at least 100 pages long and of a reasonably challenging reading level. For each of the two books, students will be required to complete reflection work. Information about required outside reading for the second semester is will be provided at that time.




GRADING

Grading Scale:
A: 90-100%
B: 80-89%
C: 70-79%
D: 60-69%
F: Below 60%
Grading Categories:
Tests/Projects/Major Asssignments: 40%
Quizzes: 30%
Classwork: 20%
Homework: 10%

*PLEASE READ THE COMPLETE GRADING POLICY (included) and NOTE:

All work, on time or late (accepted based on school’s late work policy), included in a given quarter’s final grade must be submitted at least five days prior to the end of that quarter.**