8th Grade Civics

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8th Grade cIVICS - Mr. Kerns


Welcome:Welcome to 8th grade Civics. This year we will be learning about the government of the United States of America. We will look at foundations of the government both historically and ideologically, the ways that the U.S. Constitution is set up and how it runs, the rights and responsibilities of American citizens, the American Economy, and how the United States interacts with the rest of the world. In the Social Studies environment we will look at the material through five different aspects: Historically, Geographically, Economically, Socially, and Politically. The class will include major standards in reading, writing, and math as well, to make for a more rounded student. The main skills students will look to acquire will include: Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, Inferencing, Projecting, Compare/Contrast, Analyzing, and Interpreting. Following are rules for the class, assignment procedures/late work procedures, the grading scale, and a tentative schedule for the year. 


1. There is absolutely no talking while the teacher is instructing or while peers are speaking in the classroom setting. Be respectful for those around you and not a disruption.

2. Be to class on time every day. Three tardies will result in a half hour detention. Don't get a habit of being late that will cost you your job later in life.

3. Be respectful of the classroom and all school materials. If you damage something or lose it you will be paying for it. This includes anything in the classroom such as books, desks, and walls. Book damage sheets will be filled out when students receive their textbooks. Students will be charged for any new damages at the end of the year. All Text books must have book covers.

4. While the teacher is instructing on subject material you have to be taking notes. There is no sleeping, doodling, reading, or messing around allowed.

5. No horseplay!!! When people are messing around and getting rowdy is when things usually get broken or people get hurt.

6. When you come in the classroom you come in quietly, sit down, and get your materials out that you will need for class. Students must bring their textbook and a writing utensil to class each day.

7. Class does not end until I dismiss you, not when the bell rings, you will leave class calmly as well.

8. You will be allowed 3 hall passes for the nine weeks. These passes are used anytime you need to use the restroom, go to your locker, get a drink, or go to speak to someone out of class. At the end of the quarter you will receive 5 extra credit points for each pass that you do not use. No Student will be allowed out of the classroom during instruction time.

9. There is no obscene language to be used in the classroom and all students will treat their peers and myself with respect.

10. I will confiscate all cell phones that I see or hear within class and they will be turned into the office (See Handbook).

11. Any picking on, making fun of, or putting classmates down will result in an automatic disciplinary referral and a visit with the guidance councilor.

12. No Food or Gum in the classroom ever. Drinks are allowed in as long as they do not become a disruption and they do not interfere with rule number three.

13. Cheating on homework, tests, or quiz's will receive an automatic ‘zero', a disciplinary referral, detention, and possible other disciplinary actions.

14. Electronic devices are not allowed in the classroom (IPODs).

15. You will have a planner.  You must bring it to class everyday.  Periodic grades will be given for random planner checks.

16. The Testing Day for 7th Grade Social Studies will always be on Fridays. The day will change to the following Monday if school is cancelled. If a student misses the day of the test they will make the test up on the next day that they are at school. Some tests will be held on Thursdays during weeks where there is no school on Friday.

17. Assignments are to be handed in at the beginning of class on the day they are due, unless the teacher has otherwise stated. The student will lose 50% of the total worth of the assignment if it is not turned in on time. They can turn it in the next day for half credit. After that the assignment will be counted as a Zero (0) and is no longer worth any points. Office approved excused absences will get extra time. Tests must be taken the next day of attendance.

18,  All Students will be keeping a Portfolio this year this is worth a substantial grade.  They will keep study materials, assignments, tests, grade sheets, and reflections in this. 

Grade Criteria:50% ----- homework, in class work, quizzes, projects, and papers. (Every point is vital within my class)30%------ Chapter Tests or Cumalitive Projects for the Chapter.10%------Portfolio (checked at the end of quarter-- due during Semester Finals week-EacH  Semester)10% ----- Midterm (1st semester), Final (2nd semester).

 Grading Scale:90-100 A80-89 B70-79 C60-69 D0-60 F

Tentative Schedule: 

1st Quarter:
Foundations of the Government/ConstitutionRights and Responsibilities Federal Government
2nd Quarter:
State and Local GovernmentsCitizenship
3rd Quarter:
The American EconomyCareer Choices
4th Quarter:

The United States and the WorldMeeting Future Challenges

 Supplies Needed For Class:--3 Highlighters and 2 Dry-Erase Markers --2-single subject college ruled notebooks.--A 2 1/2 to 3 inch 3 Ring Binder (Social Studies Portfolio). --5 Divider Pages with labes for the 3-ring Binder (Social Studies Portfolio).--200 Notecards Parent/Guardian Signature_______________________________________                                      Date:_____________________________ 

Student Signature             _______________________________________                                        Date:_________