|AP AMERICAN GOVERNMENT & POLITICS
This is essentially a college course that is rather demanding, and is one that requires you to put forth your best effort on a DAILY basis. Due to the challenging nature of this course, an extra grade point will be added to the grade you earn here (if you have a B or and A). You will have ample opportunity to demonstrate that you are academically competent learners, effective communicators, productive individuals, culturally aware individuals, and involved citizens.
American Government. Keep your copy at home, and pick up a copy of the class set before class begins each day. Return it before class ends each day.
III Course of Study
A Constitutional Underpinnings (ch 1-3, Federalist 51)
B Political Beliefs/Political Behaviors (ch 4,7,8,10)
C Interest Groups, Political Parties, Media (ch 9,11, Federalist 10)
D Institutions (ch 13-16, Federalist 78)
E Public Policy (ch 17-21)
F Civil Liberties/Civil Rights (ch 5,6)
A Regular attendance is ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL in this class.
B I will strictly enforce the school attendance policy.
C If you have a truancy or an unexcused tardy, you will not be able to take the daily quiz, and will therefore earn a
zero on that quiz.
V Classroom Management
A I CANNOT OVERSTATE THE IMPORTANCE OF TAKING EXCELLENT CLASS NOTES. THEY WILL BE OF
GREAT HOPE NOT ONLY FOR TEST PREPARATION THIS SEMESTER, BUT ALSO FOR REVIEWING FOR THE
AP TEST IN MAY.
B Each one of you is expected to take an active part in class on a daily bases.
When you enter this room, be prepared to think, ask questions, and make comments.
C DO NOT BRING FOOD OR DRINK TO CLASS.
I do not want to either SEE or HEAR electronic devices such as cell phones or pagers. If I either SEE or HEAR them, I will confiscate them and turn them in to the office. I do not need to HEAR such devises to confiscate them. Merely SEEING students check messages, send text messages, play games, or otherwise fiddling around with them will result in confiscation.
E If you have difficulties with this class, feel free to drop by for extra help.
F If special problems arise, see me as soon as possible so that we can work things out.
G If you are having a bad day, let me know before class begins so that I can make allowances accordingly.
A Expect nightly reading assignments. TAKE THESE SERIOUSLY! You will be “in the dark” during the lectures and
discussions if you do a poor job of reading or (gulp!) do not do the reading at all! You will also bomb the daily quiz that is
based upon the previous night’s reading.
B Late work is not accepted, except in case of excused absence.
This is defined as gaining an unfair advantage, or trying to do so. Consequences: I will strictly adhere to the school policy on cheating, and you will not only my respect, but of your other teachers as well. (Word does get out.) Anyone caught cheating will not be eligible for extra credit opportunities.
VIII My conference period is period 4 (11:29-12:27) or by appointment.
XIX Grades I use the following grading scale:
A 90-100 = A
80-89 = B
70-79 = C
60-69 = D
below 60 = F
B Your semester grade will be based upon the following factors:
Daily quizzes (30%)
Chapter vocabulary quizzes (15%)
6 unit tests (3 per semester) (55%)
Semester Final Exams (weighted as THREE tests)
Each daily quiz will be based upon the previous night’s reading assignment. You may use any notes that you have taken by hand. These quizzes are cumulatively work many points, so your grade will suffer if you consistently do poorly on them. If you miss a quiz due to excused absence, you are to turn in a handwritten, DETAILED outline (using Cornell Notes format) of the reading assignment upon which the quiz was based.
There will be a vocabulary quiz after each chapter. When you come to the end of a chapter in your nightly readings, just expect to take a quiz on the terms in bold print on the following day. If you miss a vocabulary quiz due to excused absence, the makeup must be made within 5 class days.
Most unit tests will consist of a multiple-choice section (50%) and a free response section (50%). If you miss a unit test due to excused absence in a quarter, you may make up the test within 5 class days.
The final exams will be comprehensive, i.e., will cover material from the entire semester.
“The peculiar evil of silencing the expression of opinion, is that it is robbing the human race… If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth; if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth.” -John Stuart Mill, Essay on Liberty, 1859. What implications do you suppose this famous quotation has for classroom discussion and demeanor?
I’ve been looking forward to teaching this course this year. I hope that it will be as meaningful for you to take as it has been for me to prepare for and to teach.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
(Please return signed portion below to teacher)
PARENT SIGNATURE AND ACKNOWLEDGEMNT OF RECEIPT OF THIS DOCUMENT:
I have read and discussed this Course Syllabus and Classroom Guidelines with my student,
Name of Student (PRINT NAME)
Signed: _______________________________________________ Date: _________________________
Parent/Guardian (PLEASE PRINT NAME)