8th Grade Class Outline - Mrs. Stefanisin's Page

Dear Parents/Guardians,
Welcome to 8th grade! I know this is an exciting time for your child. Middle school is full of new
adventures and I am very hopeful we will have an outstanding year.
As most of you know by now, my name is Mrs. Ashley Stefanisin. I began teaching at Bartelso
Elementary in September 2013. I graduated from Greenville College in Greenville, Illinois with a bachelor’s
degree in Secondary Biology Education. This meant I wanted to teach middle school or high school science. I
fell in love with the middle school age group and knew that was the age group I wanted to teach for my
career. I also have teaching endorsements in language arts, and social studies. I am very passionate for
education and believe you never stop learning. I want to share my passion with my students and teach them
that hard work and desire will help them to achieve anything. I am very excited for the school year. I am
proud to be part of the Bartelso family.
I am looking forward to an exciting year as your child expands their knowledge of education and
learning. My training and experience as an educator has taught me that communication between parents
and school staff is just as important as the learning process. I will need your cooperation in order to make
your child’s transition from home to school successful every day. Please voice your concerns to me as soon as
they arise, and I will be sure to communicate mine with you. I would also like to know of any changes going
on at home which might affect your child’s behavior. I can best help your child adjust if I know why he or she
is feeling out of sorts.
The best way to contact me would be by email at ([email protected]) or
by calling the school. If you would like to speak to me in person, please schedule an appointment either
before or after school. Thank you in advance for your cooperation; our partnership will go a long way in
sending a positive message and ensuring the best academic results for your child. I have also taken this
opportunity to provide you with some important and helpful information for this school year in the
following packet.
Mrs. Ashley Stefanisin
2015-2016 School Year
Instructor: Ashley Stefanisin
Teaching assignment: 5th-8th grade science & 8th grade homeroom
School Phone: 618-765-2164
Email: [email protected]
Office Hours: M-F 8:00-8:20am, 3:15-3:30 or by appointment.
Classroom Policies:
ATTENDANCE & ABSENCES: You should try your best to come to school. However, if you are
ill, we ask that you stay home. If you are absent from school it is YOUR responsibility to see me about
what assignments you missed. If you have a pre-arranged absence (i.e. field trips, orthodontists
appointments, doctor appointments, etc) you are responsible to bring it to your homeroom teacher’s
attention as soon as possible. You should ask for a “homework sheet” from your teacher. You will take
this sheet around to all of your subject teachers to ensure you know what your make up homework will
be. If you are absent your parent/guardian may make arrangements to pick up your homework that same
Please read and follow all directions carefully. All classwork must be done using PENCIL only. Erasable
pens are not acceptable. You are required to put your name and student number on classwork, tests,
quizzes, homework, etc. Students are allowed to complete their assignments using print or cursive. No
frilly edges from paper torn out of notebooks. Your classwork is expected to be neat. If I cannot read it, it
will be wrong.
My late policy is as follows… it is 10% off of the final grade for each day late. So for example
if you turn in a homework assignment 1 day late it will be 10% off the final grade. If you received a 100%
on the assignment the highest grade you could get is a 90% because it was 1 day late! This continues until
you reach a zero.
Everyone makes mistakes and even I forget to do things, with this being said each student will
receive one free late assignment pass.
Additional homework late passes may be given to the students as an incentive. Students also have
an opportunity to use their late pass for a reward. Students may turn in their late pass for 10 points extra
credit on their any grade category at the end of any quarter. Only one homework pass may be accepted per
quarter. 8th grade students are allowed to use this pass as extra credit on any subject.
TESTS AND QUIZZES: Tests and quizzes will be given over each chapter/topic. Please review
your notes and classwork. Do not attempt to cram for a test or quiz the night before it is given. The
assessments in this class will include any of the following types of questions: multiple choice, True/False,
Matching, Listing, Short Answer & Essay Questions, & Diagram Identifications.
WEIGHTED GRADES: Applying weight to grades simply means that some of the work that you
complete will count more than some of your other work. The reason behind weighing grades is that some
work counts more because of its difficulty or its importance. In example, tests and quizzes will weigh
more on their grades than homework and activities. Please see course description for more details and
weight percentages.
Above Average
Below Average
Students are excused
Since we now have a parent portal to our grading system, I do not send home tests to get signed if
the student receives an A or B; however, if the student receives a C or below on the test or quiz I
will still send it home and require it to be signed.
As listed on your class supply list, you are required to keep a 1 ½ inch 3-ring binder with pockets and
clear plastic insert on the front. Students are also required to have tab dividers in their binder as well. It
will be up to you to keep all of your notes, outlines, worksheets, review problems, contracts, and the
syllabus. Each quarter I will do a binder check for a grade. DO NOT throw assignments, notes, etc.
away!!! Your binder checks are worth 5% of your science grade. There will be four checks during the
school year. KEEP EVERYTHING! This is to help you learn how to become organized and to help you
keep your chapter materials in a good order to help you study!
VOCABULARY: A major component of science and literacy is "vocabulary." Understanding words
and concepts is important for young students. You will be confronted with new words in the passages you
read, especially in content areas such as science. Science is a discipline that relies heavily on students'
ability to understand new terms and concepts. A strong focus on vocabulary helps students understand
and communicate using appropriate terminology. Students will continually be quizzed over chapter
vocabulary. Quizzes are worth 20% of your science grade.
Students will have access to Quizlet (www.quizlet.com). Quizlet is an educational website and app that
allows students to utilize study tools for vocabulary. Bartelso has their own account which is used by
some of our teachers within our school. This website is a great resource for your child to study their
subject vocabulary. All of our science vocabulary is available on quizlet for our new textbooks.
Additional 8th grade study sets are added throughout the year for other subjects as well. I do reserve some
class time for students to use this website but I highly recommend students use this outside of the
classroom. Students are able to create their own study sets as well if you would like to use this site for
other subject vocabulary. Please take advantage of these study tools.
Students are allowed to set up times to meet with me outside of class. I am available before school M-F
from 8am-8:20am and after school from 3:15-3:30pm. Others times are available by communication and
appointment. Students may also request to stay in from daily recess or their PE period for additional
classroom assistance or tutoring. Time is available as well during their study hall periods. I am here to
help. Do not hesitate to ask.
1 inch ring view binder with pockets & clear
plastic insert on the front (No Zipper Binder)
1 package of tab dividers for binder
2 packs Loose-leaf paper wide ruled
Pencil case (zipper kind, 8 ½ x 5)
#2 Pencils (regular or mechanical)
Highlighters (any color)
1 variety pack of colored pens (no gel or glitter)
3 spiral bound (on side) theme size notebooks
8 two-pocket folders
2 composition books (wide ruled)
Eraser (white- not pink)
Graph paper (for math)
2 extra fine tip black sharpies
1 glue stick
Colored pencils
1 box crayons (at least 16)
Protractor (for home)
Crayola 12 count watercolor set
1 pack of thick washable markers
Water color art paper
1 large black dry erase marker
3-pack (large boxes) of facial tissues
2 containers of antibacterial wipes (no baby wipes)
USB Flashdrive (optional)
1 can disinfectant spray
Stick deodorant (no spray)
RESPECT EVERYONE AND EVERYTHING. Treat people the way you want to be treated.
Bring all materials to class with you EVERYDAY
Pick up after yourself (throw away trash, keep your desk area clean, push in your chair, etc).
NO FOOD OR DRINK in class unless given permission by your teacher. Always ASK
No chewing gum
No cell phones in the classroom (even if they are turned off, they are not allowed)
No coats, hats, or book bags in the classroom.
Refer to your Student Handbook for a complete list of school rules.
When in doubt, always ask questions!
Verbal Warning
Loss of Recess
Loss of PE
Asked to leave my classroom
Consequence Sheet & Notification to Guardian /Superintendent
In order to be successful in my class each student should TRY THEIR BEST!
Read the assigned readings before coming to class.
Stay organized and come prepared every day.
Keep all your assignments, notes, tests, and quizzes to assist you in your studying.
Do not cram or wait until the last minute.
Take time to study!
Use your resources
Always ask questions.
8th Grade Science
General Course Description:
Students will develop a background in Science. They will develop skills using a wide variety of
science equipment. Student will learn how to collect, organize, and interpret data. Students will be able to
work in groups using the scientific method to answer research questions.
Course Objectives:
The student will:
● Learn the basic concepts of Life, Physical, and Earth Sciences.
● Develop an appreciation for science as an integrated whole.
● Identify and use the process skills of science
Students will receive grades in five categories:
● Test 35%
● Activities/Labs: 15%
● Homework: 25%
● Quiz: 20%
● Binder Checks 5%
8th grade science fair
participation is voluntary.
Extra Credit will be given.
You must participate in the
science fair to be applicable for
the science subject award at
Textbook Topical Outline:
 Motion and Energy
o Chapter 1 Describing Motion
o Chapter 2 The Laws of Motion
o Chapter 3 Energy, Work, and Simple Machines
o Chapter 4 Sound and Light
Individual projects only
 Interactions of Matter
No partner projects
o Chapter 5 Thermal Energy
o Chapter 6 States of Matter
o Chapter 7 Understanding the Atom
o Chapter 8 Elements and Chemical Bonds
o Chapter 9 Chemical Reactions and Equations
o Chapter 10 Mixtures, Solubility, and Acid/Base Solutions
 Understanding the Universe
o Chapter 11 The Solar System
o Chapter 12 Stars and Galaxies
 Earth and Geologic Changes
o Chapter 13 Minerals and Rocks
o Chapter 14 Plate Tectonics
o Chapter 15 Earthquakes and Volcanoes
o Chapter 16 Clues to Earth’s Past
o Chapter 17 Geologic Time
 Exploring Ecology
o Chapter 18 Interactions within Ecosystems
o Chapter 19 Biomes and Ecosystems
o Chapter 20 Environmental Impacts
 Heredity and Human Body Systems
o Chapter 21 Interactions of Human Body Systems
o Chapter 22 Heredity and How Traits Change
8th Grade Reading
General Course Description:
Students will develop a background in Literature. Students will learn to appreciate different genres
of literature such short stories, drama, nonfiction, poetry, American folk tradition, and novels.
Course Objectives:
The student will:
● Learn about six different genres of literature
● Develop an appreciation for Literature as an integrated whole
● Develop an understanding of numerous literacy elements
Students will receive grades in three categories:
● Tests: 40%
● Homework: 40%
● Activities 20%
Topical Outline:
Short Stories
Students will also have weekly reading
Silent reading checks
These are worksheets that the students
fill out each week to respond to their
current silent reading book they are
Silent reading at home is highly
Personal accounts
Narrative Poetry
Figurative Language
Lyric Poetry
The American Folk Tradition
Heroes and Legends
Tall Tale
That Was Then, This Is Now
Hunger Games
Catching Fire
Memories of Anne Frank
Various films will be watched:
That Was Then, This is Now
Hunger Games
Catching Fire
Freedom Writers
Memories of Anne Frank
MockingJay Part 1
Informational sheets and permission slips
will be sent home prior to each viewing
8th Grade Spelling
General Course Description:
Students will develop a broader vocabulary range and become more advanced spellers.
Students will receive grades in two categories:
● Test 60%
● Homework: 40%
8th Grade Art
General Course Description:
This course introduces 8th grade students to the Elements (Line, Form, Color, Value, Texture) and
Principles (Balance, Rhythm, Variety, Harmony, Emphasis) of Design. Students will learn good art
practices and learn art vocabulary. The purpose of this course is to prepare students for High-School level
art courses. And to draw art interests out in each individual student.
Various Ideas/Activities:
Introduction to Art History
Introduction to the color wheel
Pencil drawing/shading techniques
Line drawing
Pop art
Self Portraits
Recycled fish craft
Ornament making
Acrylic Painting
Water coloring painting
Colored pencil drawing
Crayon drawing
Pattern usage
Famous artists to be studied:
Jackson Pollock
Van Gogh
Leonardo Davinci
Warm/Cool Colors
Primary Colors
Secondary Colors
Tessellations (Geometry)
3D art
Complementary Colors
Action Painting
Miscellaneous Craft Projects
Collaborative projects
Color – Paint mixing
Scale Drawing/Painting
…and more if time allows
Edvard Munch
Georges Seurat
Georgia O’Keeffe
Roy Lichtenstein
…and more if time allows
Students will have a final project where they pick and research one famous artist. A 1-page paper will
be written and a replica painting/drawing will be created of the artist’s work. A short class presentation
is required to be completed as well.
Grading: Students will receive grades in two categories:
o Projects 80%
o Homework 20%
8th Grade Physical Education
General Course Description:
Physical Education is an integral part of the total education program. Students will be given the
opportunity to develop physical, mental, and social skills that will enable them to meet the challenges
of life. It is my goal to empower students to sustain regular, lifelong physical activity as a foundation
for a healthy, productive and fulfilling life.
Course Objectives:
The student will:
● Demonstrate competency in motor skills and movement patterns need to perform a
variety of physical activities.
● Demonstrate understanding of movement concepts, principles, strategies, and tactics
as they apply to learning and performing of physical activity.
● Exhibit responsible personal and social behavior that respects self and others in
physical activity settings.
●Value physical activity for health, enjoyment, challenge, and social interaction.
Topical Outline:
General Sports
Game Strategies
Grading: Students will receive a pass or fail grade
Additional Remarks:
As listed on the school supply list. Students are expected to keep deodorant in their locker all
times. No spray deodorant is allowed (example: AX body spray).
Students are allowed to bring a large towel or beach towel from home. We will complete
stretch routines regularly; The towels can be used for those students who do not want to sit on
the gym floor.
8th grade HEALTH
General Course Description:
The 8th grade health curriculum is designed to provide students with the information needed
to make good health decisions. The units covered in this course will focus on motivating each student
to voluntarily take a role in protecting, maintaining, and improving their health through responsible
actions and decisions. While learning that decision-making is the single most important aspect of your
overall health as an individual.
Course Objectives:
The student will:
● Learn the knowledge and resources they need to make responsible and wellinformed decisions about their health.
● Learn examples of how they can apply the knowledge to their physical,
emotional/mental, and social health in order to lead a happy healthy life while
maintaining their quality of living through a lifetime.
Students will receive grades in three categories:
● Tests: 40%
● Homework: 40%
● Activities 20%
Topical Outline
Mental & Emotional Health
Family & Social Health
Personal Health & Physical Activity
Violence & Injury Prevention
Alcohol, Tobacco, and Drugs
Environmental Health
Bartelso Elementary #57
Mrs. Stefanisin’s Syllabus Agreement
Students: By signing below, you have agreed to Mrs. Stefanisin’s Classroom Syllabus
and all of the policies contained within. You also understand that your teacher wants
nothing but the best possible education for you, and that you agree to help with that
process by always putting forth your best effort, knowing that failing to do so will have
consequences. That you will always try your best!
Student Printed Name: _______________________________________________________________
Student Signature: ___________________________________________________________________
Parents/Guardians: By signing below, you have read and agreed to Mrs. Stefanisin’s
Classroom Syllabus and all of the policies contained within as they apply to your
student. You also understand that the teacher wants nothing but the best possible
education for your child, and that your child has agreed to always put in their best
effort, and has accepted the consequences of failing to do so. That they should always
try their best. By signing below, you are also agreeing to be a partner in your child’s
Parent/Guardian Printed Name(s): ______________________________________________________
Parent/Guardian Signature: ____________________________________________________________
Date: __________________________
Please return this back to school to Mrs. Stefanisin’s classroom. Thank you