Class Focus

The focus in my class is simple:  We are all here to become better readers, writers, speakers, and listeners.  Think about it.  Every day you use all of these skills in some way.  Whether you're texting a friend, reading an email, watching the news, listening to your auntie's best story, or trying to explain exactly why it is that you did not take out the trash yesterday, you are practicing these skills.  In many ways, you are already experts.

In every job you can envision for yourself, however, you will need to take the specific skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening to a more advanced level.  You will need to know how to read more challenging non-fiction texts, write letters and reports of all sorts, speak articulately to all kinds of people, and listen carefully to the messages of those around you. 

Whether you think you know what you want to do when you graduate or not, my job is to fill up your "toolbox" with a variety of skills that you can pull out whenever the opportunity arises, no matter what path in life you choose.  An incomplete toolbox is kind of like showing up to work without your shoes on or only knowing how to turn right on your bike.  With an incomplete toolbox, you will be limited.  

So if my job is to give you the tools, your job is to make sure that your toolbox is full.  How do you do this?  
  1. Complete and turn in ALL work.
  2. Make sure that all of your work is completed at a quality level.
  3. Take opportunities to revise and retake when you don't get it right the first time.
  4. Be an active participant in your own learning---participate in class and ask questions.

#1 Class Rule

All of this leads up perfectly now to the most important thing you will learn about my classroom and our team.  The #1 rule is:  Everyone does all of their work!  Let me repeat that again. Everyone does all of their work!  There's no choosing to get a zero on an assignment.  There's no being the kid who never does anything.  In my class, in order to pass, you must complete ALL projects/tests at a quality that either meets or exceeds the standard.  

Think about it.  If you make a D on a project and I say "Okay, I guess that's good enough." then what I'm really doing is saying that it's okay for you to put a broken hammer in your toolbox.  And guess what?  Some day very soon you may find that you need that hammer. . .and it will be broken.  I'm not okay with that and you shouldn't be either.  
Expect this craziness if you don't show up with your work. :)