San Ramon Valley High School

Stevens, Tim » Geogrpahy


World Geography
Instructor: Mr. Stevens Room:R44

Course Description: The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the study of world geography. Roughly divided between physical and cultural geography, the course will provide the opportunity to learn about the earth and its people. Students will develop a keen interest in the world around them, the desire to think critically about the world and the skills to develop answers to their questions. This required semester-long 9th grade course constructs a foundation for 10th, 11th, and 12th grade social science curricula.

Units of Study: This course will be broken down into the following themed units. Each unit following the first will focus on specific continents of the world, and the physical and cultural geography of the continent will be explored and analyzed.
1. Introduction to Geography
2. North America
3. South America
4. Europe
5. Africa
6. Asia and Australia

Course Standards: In this course, the following power standards will be met by the students.
1. Students will practice mapping skills that include the global grid system, and identify
2. major continents, bodies of water, and the location of many countries of the world.
3. Students will identify geographic physical features, climate, and natural disasters including earthquakes, hurricanes, tsunamis, floods, fires, and drought.
4. Students will analyze statistics and country demographics to help define and assess the human condition in a variety of populations
5. Students will be exposed to a wide range of world cultures, some very different than their own. Students will examine culture and cultural differences via study and presentations from a variety of global perspectives.
6. Students will demonstrate basic skills including note-taking, paragraph-building, writing, presentation skills, and building persuasive arguments.
7. Students will investigate current issues related to geography, including, but not limited to: Climate change, overpopulation, health care, species endangerment, prejudice, and current events as they unfold.
8. Students will employ technology including the internet, modern apps, library resources, PowerPoint presentations and Google Earth, to aid in their understanding of planet earth.

District Statement: District policy states that harassment in or out of the classroom is not to be tolerated. Harassment based on race, ethnicity, able-bodiedness, sexuality, perceived sexuality, gender, gender expression, monetary standing, religion or faith-base, or any other factor will be reported to the administration and dealt with accordingly. This includes slang such as “that’s so gay” or “that’s retarded.” Both are considered hate speech.

Course Policies: Mr. Stevens’ policies are unique to his class. Though some policies may be identical to other teachers’ policies, or completely different from another, students are expected to meet the expectations for Mr. Stevens when in his class. NO QUESTIONS OR EXCEPTIONS!
1. Grading: Grades are earned in this class, not given. The amount of effort given is not enough to earn an A. It is the quality of one’s work that will be rewarded. Grades will be awarded based on the following grade scale.
a. Grading Scale
100-93=A 89-87%=B+ 79-77=C+ 69-67=D+ 59 and
92-90%=A- 86-83%=B 76-73=C 66-63=D Below=F
82-80%=B- 72-70=C- 62-60=D-
b. What will be graded and how does it count towards my grade? All assignments are given a point value and one’s grade is a cumulative running point total.
i. Homework—Homework will be assigned throughout the semester. There will be various types of homework assignments such as note taking, reading, research assignments, and map work. Homework assignments will be worth 5-20 points
ii. Projects—Students will have several different projects throughout the semester. Some of these projects will be individual, while others will involve partners or groups. They will vary in style and complexity. They will carry weights of 25-100 points
iii. Quizzes—There will be a weekly map quiz every Friday, as well as questions from that week’s current event reports, lectures, and reading assignments. These will vary in size from 15-30 points
iv. Tests—Each unit will conclude with a comprehensive unit exam covering all aspects of the region we have just completed studying. Tests will range from 50-75 points.
v. Final exam—At the conclusion of the semester, students will take a comprehensive final exam that will cover all topics for the semester. This will carry a value of 100-200 points.
vi. Class participation—Each week students may earn up to 10 points in class participation. Students may earn two points per day for being engaged in all aspects of the course. Positive class participation includes joining in class discussion, listening actively to fellow students and/or Mr. Stevens, being on task during individual or group work periods, having all materials when necessary, and assisting Mr. Stevens and/or fellow students when asked. Participation points may be taken away for NOT doing any of the previously mentioned activities.
c. Homework Packets
i. Homework assignments will be checked on the day they are due. Students will keep them in their required binders until the day of the unit exam. All homework assignments will be turned in on the day of the unit exam in the proper order provided by Mr. Stevens.
d. Miscellaneous Grading Items:
i. Grades will be rounded to the nearest whole percent
ii. All grades will be published on SchoolLoop

2. Makeups: It is inevitable that students will have to miss class for various reasons throughout the semester. Students are allowed to and should make up work/quizzes/tests as soon as possible. Please consult the following if you miss class:
a. Homework—If a student is absent when homework is assigned, check, or text a friend. You should never have an excuse for not knowing something was assigned. If you are absent when something is due, it is due the day you return. NO EXCEPTIONS! (There is no mandatory three day rule for makeup work. Sorry )
b. Tests/Quizzes—If you are absent the day of a test/quiz, it better be excused. If a student cuts the day of a test or quiz, they will be given a 0 for the grade. If you have an excused absence, the test/quiz must be made up the day you return, NO EXCEPTIONS! (I don’t care how many other tests you have to make up, get it done.)
c. Projects—If you are absent when a project is due, it should be turned in or presented the day you return. NO EXCEPTIONS! (See above if you cut.)
3. Attendance: Students are to be in their seat when the bell rings for the start of class. If not, they will be given a tardy. Tardiness is unacceptable and students with excessive tardiness are subject to school discipline. One tardy will result in a warning for the student, with any subsequent tardy resulting in detention.
4. Technology: There is a time and place for technology to be used in the classroom. Having an in depth texting conversation during one of Mr. Stevens’ thrilling lectures is not one of them. If a student is caught texting or using their phone or other electronic device at an inappropriate time in class, it will be taken away by Mr. Stevens for the rest of the period. All subsequent times a student is caught, it goes to the attendance office.
5. Food/Drink: Water only!!! Other than water? None. Period. Don’t ask!
6. Cheating/Plagiarism: First offense, 0 for the assignment/test. Second offense, zero plus other disciplinary action, including possible removal from course. Then you have to take this class again next semester, and no one wants that now do we.

Course Materials: The following materials will be necessary for this course.
1. Arreola, Daniel D., Marci S. Deal, James F. Petersen, and Rickie Sanders. McDougal Littell World Geography. Evanston, IL: McDougal Littell, 2005. Print.
2. 3 ring binder divided into the following sections: Homework, class notes, maps, lectures, tests/quizzes, projects.
3. Pens and Pencils
4. Things you might like but not required: Graph paper, rulers, colored pencils, markers

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