• Google Classroom: a42lvz                           

    Course Description

    In this course, students will engage in a non-partisan study of U.S. government and the ideals, practices, policies and structures that characterize our constitutional democracy. Students will study our government’s founding documents as well as legislation, regulations and Supreme Court decisions to gain an understanding of our political institutions, their responsibilities, and their relationships.  Students will also use the current election cycle to study U.S. electoral processes and the relationships among voters, candidates and elected officials. Finally, students will explore formal and informal mechanisms for political participation. 

    Students will gain factual knowledge, but more importantly, they will develop the skills of careful reading, critical thinking, effective written and oral communication, and self-advocacy. Students will leave this class prepared to exercise their political rights and responsibilities in an informed, effective manner.

    Class Expectations

    Students should come to class on time and fully-prepared each day. My lessons are built around active, positive classroom citizenship, and I encourage students to share ideas and opinions in a respectful, open-minded manner. 

    I will post slide presentations, assignments, readings and handouts on Google classroom.  Please let me know if you do not have access to a computer or internet service at home so we can make other arrangements. 

    Students will need to take notes on readings, lectures and discussions in a manner that allows them to prepare for summative assessments. I recommend taking notes on loose-leaf paper or in a composition notebook and using a 3-ring binder to organize readings, handouts and notes.

    If you are absent, please check Google classroom, review the posted slide presentation, and complete any assignments if you are able. You will have one week upon your return to school to complete missing work. If you need additional time, please see me during office hours so we can develop a schedule for completing your work.

    I will accept late work until the end of the unit in which it was assigned. Unless you have made an alternate arrangement with me, I will mark missing assignments as “0” in the gradebook.

    Grading Policy

    I will assess student work using a standards-based grading scale. Generally, the grading scale can be described as:

    1 - Beginning Skill/Content Mastery
    2 - Approaching Skill/Content Mastery
    3 - Achieving Skill/Content Mastery
    4 - Exceeding Skill/Content Mastery

    Your grade will consist of the following components: 

    60% Summative Assessments (Papers, Tests, Projects, Presentations)
    30% Formative Assessments (Homework, Quizzes)
    10% Career & College Skills (Preparation, Participation)

    Using this standard-based grading scale and these components, I will post progress report, mid-term and final grades using these grade ranges:

    A 85-100%
    B 70-84.9%
    C 50-69.9%
    D 35-49.9%
    F Below 34.9%

    Do not wait until the end of the progress period to express dissatisfaction with your grades. Please check Q frequently and talk with me about any concerns.  I’m here to help you learn!

    Be Respectful - Be Responsible - Be Resilient - Be an Eagle!

    Students are expected to follow all Big Sky High School policies in this classroom.  In particular, please familiarize yourself with the school’s policies for attendance, academic honesty, cell phone use and appropriate conduct as explained in the Big Sky Student Handbook. I will enforce these policies uniformly and consistently.