Office hours: Mon.-Thurs, 7:45-8:15 AM or by special arrangement
Materials: Texts— Spanish 3--Descubre 3; Spanish 2 – Descubre 1&2 (level one book is only on the vhlcentral supersite); Spanish 1 A—Descubre 1; notebook/binder; pen or pencil; Chromebook.
Bienvenidos a Español. I hope that you gain a lot from this class, and that you'll be able to take some valuable, usable knowledge away from this class. I am excited about sharing this great language with you, because, like with any knowledge you acquire, I believe knowing Spanish will open up many doors for you. You will hear me use the same terms throughout the year, both in English and in Spanish. One of them is:
“Todo es Energía; Everything is Energy” What kind of energy will you bring to this class, to your work? If you bring high energy, I believe you will obtain high results. Another term is this: “Your Thoughts lead to your Actions, which lead to your Results.” Your attitude and how you choose to see things and explore will determine your success. YOU are responsible for your education. I will give you my energy and share with you my knowledge, and I need you to be open and committed to putting forth your energy into doing the best you can in all of your work. I intend for us to bring high energy together to bring about positive results. A level ten is the highest energy you can gather. A level one means you have a pulse, barely. I will give you plenty of repetition of material and we’ll practice our knowledge in a variety of ways. For the best results, you really need to practice outside of class. There will be plenty of speaking, reading, listening to and writing of the language that we practice in class, but you need to spend concentrated time every day, practicing the following: conjugation, memorizing vocabulary, verbally practicing with classmates or friends outside of class. I am available for extra help before school, or can suggest tutoring possibilities with advanced students. I will evaluate you based on the following criteria:
Oral quizzes and tests; written quizzes and tests; participation in class; (a FEW) special projects and your final exams. I rarely give extra credit points, but I might possibly give a couple of extra points, mainly in the area of participation, if you volunteer a lot and give more than I ask. Positive participation is key in this class.
Please obtain the textbooks, Descubre 1 y Descubre 2 (for Spanish 2—We will also use the digital version of Descubre 1, through the vhlcentral supersite for Semester 1) and Descubre 3 (for Spanish 3) as soon as possible. In reality, all the Descubre texts can be found online at vhlcentral.com
Your grade will be broken down in these areas:
1. Formative Assessments: Participation (which includes all in-class work); pop quizzes; written quizzes; and responding when called on (whether in class or online)—60%
2. Summative Assessments: tests (both oral and written); oral quizzes; compositions done during class, and projects; semester final exam—40%
A: 100- 93%; A- 90-92%; B+89-88%; B 83-87%; B- 82-80%;C+ 79-78%; C 77-73%; C- 72-70%; D+69-68%’ D 67-63%; D- 60-62%. IF you happen to be at 89.5%, or 79.5%, or 69.5% or 59.5%, and you have never been late, you have no negative points for participation, I will generally round up.
Participation: Physically in the classroom: This will include being prepared with your textbook/Chrome book and notebook with you for every class, and sitting in your seat when the bell rings. If I call on you to read aloud or to speak and you do not know what we are doing, what exercise we are working on, you will automatically lose points from your total score that day—5 points every day, 25 points per week. I do not give homework. HOWEVER, you should be prepared for me to give 2-3 pop quizzes per week, based on vocabulary or grammar we are studying. I will also ask you to work with other classmates, to move around the room, to take a role in all parts of the lesson. If you are not participating when I need you to, and you disrupt the flow of the lesson, this will hurt your participation grade. If you are finished with your vhl assignment and waiting for me to go over the answers with the whole class, you need to continue to work on Spanish– reviewing vocabulary, conjugations, or reading articles; playing games online can result in losing participation points.
Texting will result in your phone being taken away and given to the office, in addition to loss of participation points.
If you are absent from a class, you can ask your classmates for extra notes, or check with Google Classroom.
Bathroom use: Do not leave the classroom during the first or last 10 minutes of class. IF you use the bathroom for longer than 5 minutes, you will lose participation points and your citizenship status will move to N.
Oral Tests: You will have an oral test every few weeks on material we have covered and you will be evaluated on pronunciation, oral comprehension and aural (listening) comprehension and use of grammar. You will receive a rubric to take home and keep so that you know what is expected of you.
***Assessments: Written and oral quizzes on vocabulary, grammar and writing skills will be given at least once a week. Sometimes you might be asked to write short papers or paragraphs on a particular topic. There will be a test on material covered in a chapter (approximately every 2-3 weeks) and it will include understanding of vocabulary, grammar, listening skills and an oral component. There will be a quarterly exam at the end of every 10 weeks over 2-3 chapters, in addition to a final semester exam over 5-6 chapters. A sample portion of a test is included in this syllabus. I will go over in class what will be on each test. It is up to YOU to take notes/pay attention in class. I will give you sample test questions before each test; sometimes the exact same questions will be from the test, sometimes the questions will be similar to the test questions. Tests include writing, matching, multiple choice, short-answer and orally spelling vocabulary. Spelling is important. One letter or accent can change a word’s meaning. If a word is spelled wrong, even one letter, it’s marked wrong.
Assessments and their review comply with and pertain to current school board policy. If you have further questions, you may talk to me privately.
***CITIZENSHIP: I intend for you to be thoughtful, respectful, courteous people to me, to one another. Occasionally one might lapse into immature, thoughtless behavior. As I said above, your attitude is key to everything. I am committed to a safe learning environment. To me, being in a safe environment means total respect for everyone—for me, for your classmates, and for any visitors. All students will begin the course with an S and that the linked rubric will be used to evaluate citizenship.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: This classroom is committed to LCHS’ culture of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion--(DEI). Throughout the course we will maintain a safe and inclusive classroom, challenge our own biases and preconceived notions, and learn about the many contributions to the world by people of various backgrounds and identities. Critical thinking and open mindedness are key mindsets to be successful and contribute appropriately in this class. There is a zero-tolerance policy for behavior that makes others feel unsafe or excluded.
That means NO racial, homophobic, transphobic, anyphobic comments will be tolerated.
****(A) Deep down, we all want to be treated respectfully. We don’t like to be called names, or physically hurt or bullied. Treat everyone the way you ideally want to be treated. Hint: If you wouldn’t use language or behavior in front of the King of Spain, you don’t say it or do it in my class.* This is your one warning. A one-time event will result in your citizenship going to an “N” (Needs Improvement) and you will have an opportunity to raise it to an “S” if nothing else happens. Disrespectful behavior will result in loss of participation points for the day, and if it happens more than once, you will receive a “U”.
***Academic Honesty: You are expected to demonstrate honesty and integrity while in attendance at La Cañada High School. You are expected to do your own work. The following are some examples of cheating: claiming credit for work that is not the product of one's own honest effort (e.g. copying homework answers from any source; creating a composition and using any online or offline program to translate sentences or the entire piece; copying in the target language a composition and modifying it to fit the assignment's requirements; cutting and pasting any material - translated or not - and submitting it as your own work; answering a test question by directly quoting another portion of the exam or quiz). I will be able to see if something has been copied and pasted, and I will not give credit for the work. If you have copied work from any of my students, regardless of section, those people will be penalized also.
Students who cheat will receive a “0”on the assignment and a “U” on the citizenship grade for the quarter. Consequences of violations will be determined based on the Academic Honesty Policy. Consult the Academic Honesty Policy for further explanations and repercussions.
Students who cheat should expect to be confronted by their teacher or staff member observing this behavior and be subject to the following consequences:
1. Zero on the assignment or test
2. Notification of parents
3. Establishment of a cheating record with the office of Discipline
4. The student may be referred to the Student Honor Court
Academically allowable work includes the following:
1. Use of a dictionary (online or offline) to look up single words within the context of a sentence, which you personally have constructed.
2. Within a composition, referencing ideas from another source. This must be cited (at a very minimum, mentioning the name of the source within your work), and, unless using quotation marks, must be rephrased in your own words (but still cited).
3. Answering a test question by referencing ideas from another source rephrased in your own words.
Departmental Technology Policy:
We, as a faculty, believe that in order to effectively educate students to be critical thinkers, problem solvers, communicators and collaborators in the 21st century, we should require that they use technology responsibly. Recognizing that this modern technology tempts us with more and more compelling distractions, we do see the need for some regulation. The goal, therefore, of our technology policy has to be to encourage students to use technology in the classroom solely as a learning tool. Technology misuse disrupts class goals and will not be tolerated.
The following are examples of ways that technology should/will not be used in the physical classroom:
*** I do not allow the unauthorized use of any electronic devices in class (unauthorized means, I have not specifically instructed you to use your cell phones or laptop for research purposes)--NO cell phones, i-pods, ear pods, etc. shall be used unless I instruct you to use it.
***(C) Consequences: From this point on, if you show disrespect in the classroom (defying of reasonable requests; using inappropriate, obscene language), you will first receive a verbal warning and I will email your parents/guardians. If you persist in negative behavior, you will receive a referral to the Assistant Principal
If you resume consistent courteous, respectful behavior, your citizenship mark will revert to an “S.” Any subsequent detentions will result in a “U” for citizenship...
Sample assessment questions (I will give many more examples the day or days before a test. PAY ATTENTION and TAKE NOTES!)
1. Espero que el chico_______ en la clase. (esté or está)
Use “esté” because we are using the phrase, “Espero que,” which requires that we use the subjunctive.
2. Estoy seguro que ella (es, sea) una persona mala. The answer is es, because “Estoy seguro,” I’m sure, specifies certainty, and therefore is in the indicative.
3. Si yo (fui, fuera) tú, yo (iría, fui) a la fiesta. This is imperfect subjunctive/conditional. Si yo fuera tú (If I were you) yo iría a la fiesta ( I would go). ** We use past subjunctive because I introduced the phrase with “If;” Since I am NOT you, and this is “imaginative,” I use subjunctive. In this type of sentence with the imperfect subjunctive, we use conditional.
1. El chico (sienta; se sienta) en su asiento. If we are speaking about the boy sitting down, this is reflexive, so the correct answer, with the pronoun, is se sienta. Sienta by itself means “seats,” as in a waiter seating people at a table.
2. La chica ve la casa. La chica (la, le) ve. The correct answer is la. La means only it or her. It is a direct object. Le means To or for it, to or for her.
You will be given a picture and will need to describe it, or answer questions about it without using notes (written or on your computer), or you and a partner will have a discussion about the picture of a given topic.
One example of an assessment: You will eventually be asked to spell your name using the Spanish alphabet, and you will be asked to pronounce Spanish place names and spell them using the Spanish alphabet.
Eventually we will learn interrogative words, and you will need to know which one to use properly in particular sentences. Choose cuándo, qué, cómo, dónde, cuál
¿_____________ está sala 114? The answer is Dónde (Where), because we are using está, which indicates where something is.