Mrs. Snider’s 2013-2014 US History Student Syllabus
Room 213
School: 209.953.9431; Google Voice: 209.732.6672; Cell: 209.601.9593, LUSD;, GRAPEVINE;;

Course Description:
Mrs. Snider’s 8th Grade Social Science survey course is designed to prepare students for 11th Grade US History. As such, it has several distinct advantages as well as some unique challenges. One advantage is that many Advanced Placement (AP) strategies are used since these activities prepare all students for success as lifelong learners--college and career. Another advantage is that all students are nurtured to achieve at the highest personal level, including participating in the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT). The class’ determined, engaging, interactive structure and pace provides every student a path for future academic success, a competitive edge for college and career endeavors, and potentially time and money savings along the way.

While many students will find Mrs. Snider’s class exciting and extremely enjoyable, the structure and pace of a may be challenging for some students. The 8th Grade Social Science Pacing Guide is fixed, demanding students to take responsibility for their own learning as in a "Flipped Classroom," Each student’s self-motivation, positive attendance, study habits, and prior learning is different; this uniqueness will determine the student’s rate of success. Throughout the year, students will learn to better balance their personal, school, family, and community commitments. As in any learning, students may occasionally struggle and feel stress. Rest assured, there are plenty of built in supports to keep difficulties to a minimum for each and every student IF the student seeks out assistance.

Student Behavior
All students are expected to behave in a manner appropriate to a high school setting. Students are expected to use technology resources in a courteous and responsible manner. Students are expected to pursue honesty and integrity in all aspects of their academic work. No food or drink, except water, may be consumed in the classroom without teacher permission. Academic dishonesty--plagiarism, copyright infringement, cheating, and negative classroom behavior--will be handled according to the discipline procedures of the school, LodiUSD, and California Education Code. Students can expect fair, consistent, and natural disciplinary consequences from Mrs. Snider for any inappropriate actions and attitudes in accordance with the Christa McAuliffe Student Handbook. Mrs. Snider’s typical consequences include but are not limited to: warnings, time-outs (re-directs), detentions, referrals, parent phone calls, behavior contracts, and suspension from class. Consequences may also be remedial and/or community service related, such as: washing all the desks in the classroom if caught writing on a desk; scraping gum off the bottom of desks for one hour if caught chewing gum; working towards assignment completion for one hour; or, tutoring a fellow classmate. Consequences will be documented in eSchool Discipline.

Daily coursework is done and/or recorded in a SINGLE subject composition/notebook. Each student must have and maintain a separate composition/notebook each and every quarter. This means by the end of 4th quarter, the student will have four (4) composition/notebooks. Each of these four (4) composition/notebooks will display only 8th grade Social Science (US History) coursework. Even though technology is heavily used for learning, there is ALWAYS a NO TECH means for a student to be successful. That said, students are expected to complete coursework electronically as part of their preparation for California Smarter Balanced, Common Core Assessments,

Electronic Coursework
Students are expected to use Grapevine Google Docs, Edmodo, Discovery Education, BrainShark, Masher,, regularly. Each student will be given website access information in class. General directions will be posted on Edmodo. When appropriate electronic files should be shared with the teacher's GRAPEVINE email address. Assignment’s file names should be formatted: assignment title-first name-last initial-period#; for example, "ch1-xiaolei snider-p3." Filenames and website links of electronic work must be listed on the last page of the student's composition book.

Letter grades will signify the following: A=”exemplary in many areas;” B=“proficient, but not exemplary;” C=”making progress, but not proficient;” D=”not making progress;” F=”has not met course requirements.”

There are two major categories for grades given in this class. Grades are calculated by the relative weight given to each category and/or assignment, NOT simply adding up a student’s points for the class and dividing by the number possible. The most heavily weighted category is “Assignments.” As a result, students who DO NOT complete daily work and homework typically do not earn A’s. Most students do earn B’s. Some earn C’s. A few may even earn D’s and F’s. Students and their families can track course progress in three ways. Day-to-day classwork and homework should be reflected in the student’s composition/notebook. Students will receive one of three spot checks: a stamp, a sticker, or “+points/Snider/date” (Example: +10 Snider 7/27/2012). At least once prior to the Progress Report, the student’s composition/notebook will be collected and graded in detail, allowing students to complete assignments more extensively and reflect on their coursework; parent/guardians are expected to review and sign the student’s “Evaluation Sheet” prior to the composition/notebook due date so that the student’s family is well aware of the student’s progress. Third, chapter assignments, projects, composition/notebook, and test grades will typically be posted to eSchool within a week of the due date. Due dates will be posted on the whiteboard in Room 213 and reviewed daily so that students can update their planners. Due dates will also be provided via the school callout system. To receive full credit on assignments, students should include a "Works Cited" list in MLA format must be included at the end of the assignment noting from what source(s) you gathered your information. Using or can be helpful.

Assignments = 60% = Daily Classwork + Homework + Projects
Homework is required for course success and is expected to be done outside of daily class time. Any “Extra Credit” assignments will be reflected in eSchool under the ASSIGNMENTS category. NOTE! Students, who do extra credit and NOT the assigned coursework, CAN STILL FAIL the course.
Projects assigned are multi-step assignments that will require one or more weeks to complete. A project may be individual or group. Students will be provided overview of the project as well as directions for each step of the project with clear expectations and due dates for success. Every student is expected to complete 10 hours of community service hours each quarter; students enrolled in the Leadership class are expected to do 20 hours, 10 hours for each class.

Exams = 40% = Quizzes + Tests + Benchmarks
Exams include tests, quizzes, and benchmark assessments. Exams are designed to be a snapshot of what the student has learned at any given point of the course. Most Exams are quarter, unit, chapter, or lesson specific. Each quarter the student will take a Social Science Benchmark Exam; except 4th quarter, the grade for this Exam is part of the following quarter grade. During 4th quarter, students take the Social Science California State Test (CST) which includes 6th, 7th, and 8th grade course material; students review 6th and 7th grade content prior to the Exam; this Exam is part of the student’s permanent record yet not a graded portion of the course. Usually Exams are announced, yet that’s not to say there won’t be a pop quiz or test to check for class or homework understanding. An Exam can include any combination of these format types: multiple choice, fill-in the blank, short answer (sentence), essay, and project-based problem solving. Most Exams will be taken in class; yet, occasionally, an Exam will be assigned as Homework. An Exam may also be computer-based, taken on the Internet, or completed using a personally owned electronic device.

mechanical pencils and pens (Blue/Black Ink for Writing Assignments ONLY. Thank you)
1 – 70-100 page composition/notebook, replaced EACH quarter (Total for Year = 4)
2 – highlighter pens
1 set – colored pencils (8-12 colors is plenty)
1 – pair school scissors (rounded ends preferable)
1 - gluestick
1 - ruler (6-12 inches)

While Mrs. Snider will have course related supplies on hand, the student IS responsible for providing class materials and replacing such on an as needed basis for academic success. The same is true Project materials.

Educational Videos
Most video material that students view in class and via online course websites such as Edmodo,, and school subscription sites, Discovery Education, and Brainpop, Students will also view video clips; these videos are all reviewed by educators unlike the general site. Each quarter students will have the opportunity to see at least one video that directly ties to the course curriculum. To keep with the pacing guide and finish each quarter on time, the Social Science Department may elect to show the quarter’s film after school.

The titles that may be shown this year include:
1776, The Patriot, Last of the Mohicans, Mr. Smith Goes To Washington, Wild Wild West, O Pioneers, One Man’s Hero, Into the West, GLORY!, Lincoln, Cold Mountain, Conspirator, Amistad, North and South, Roots, Dances with Wolves, Far and Away, The Lone Ranger, Newsies, Son of the Morning Star, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, 12 Years A Slave.

As a film date approaches, you will be reminded of this portion of the syllabus. If you see any titles herein that you do NOT want your student to view this year, please list the title(s) in the space provided on the return portion of this syllabus. Thank you in advance for reviewing this list of titles and giving your consent for your student to view this material in conjunction with other coursework.

x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-DETACH and Return-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x

SNIDER - Room 213

Student Name:


My student and I have read and understand Mrs. Snider’s Syllabus: Course Description, Student Behavior, Composition/Notebook, Grading, Homework, Projects, Exams, Classwork, and Class Materials. We further comprehend that while technology is heavily used throughout the year, a student can successfully complete any required assignment without technology. We are aware that Mrs. Snider assigns homework Sunday through Thursday and that she expects said homework to be done at home. We have noted the means to gain class help from Mrs. Snider.

Parent Phone Number:

Parent/Guardian Name (Please Print):

Parent/Guardian Signature:

Education Videos I DO NOT want my student to view are (Please List):