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    English 10 Syllabus

    Ms. Vasiliauskas and Ms. Salyer

    avasilia@staunton.k12.va.us     ksalyer@staunton.k12.va.us

    (540) 332-3926

    Class Meeting Time: 10:00-10:45 Tuesday-Friday; Mondays independent

    Office Hours: 2:00-2:30 PM Monday-Friday; by appointment

    Weekly Assignments Posted: Monday at 8:00 AM via Google Classroom

    Weekly Assignments Due: Friday at 5:00 PM via Google Classroom

    Google Classroom Join Code: c2o2tfw

    Course Objectives

    The tenth-grade student will… 

    • become a skilled communicator in small-group learning activities
    • examine, analyze, and produce media messages
    • continue development of vocabulary with attention to connotations, idioms, allusions, and the evolution of language
    • read and analyze literary texts from a variety of eras and cultures
    • analyze nonfiction texts
    • critique the writing of peers and professionals, using analysis to improve writing skills
    • continue to build research skills by crediting sources and presenting information in a format appropriate for content
    • continue to develop grammar skills as the student presents, writes, and edits materials, applying the conventions of languages.


    Mirrors and Windows: Connecting with Literature; Prentice Hall Literature: Timeless Voices, Timeless Themes Platinum; William Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Julius Caesar; Elie Wiesel’s Night; and Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451; supplemental shorter fiction and nonfiction selections

    Classroom Expectations                                 

    • Be present.
    • Be respectful.                                   
    • Be prepared.                                                
    • No electronic devices other than the SCS Chromebook (or your personal device).  After two warnings (including parent or guardian contact), you will receive a referral for unauthorized electronic device (i.e., cell phone) use.                           

    Zoom-Specific Expectations

    • Be courteous and respectful at all times.
    • Be on time.
    • Find a quiet place, if you can.
    • Be prepared.
    • Always keep video turned on. Since this is the expectation, students will need to dress appropriately and follow the same rules of dress expected when they are in class.  If there is an emergency in which a student needs to turn their video off, go ahead and do so and then contact the teachers afterwards.
    • Mute the microphone. Only unmute when the teacher(s) direct you to.
    • Participate! Simply showing up is not enough.
    • Chat responsibly. Sessions will be recorded and posted in order to help those who are absent, and all chat conversations appear in the recorded session.  If sending a message in the chat, be sure to send it to the whole class.  Make sure the message is school-appropriate.
    • When speaking, speak clearly and make eye contact. There is a lot going on in Zoom, however, so just try!

    Grading Scale 

    A+   = 98-100

       A    = 93-97 

          A-   = 90-92

    B+   = 87-89

       B    = 83-86

          B-   = 82-80

    C+   = 77-79

       C    = 73-76

          C-   = 72-70

    D+   = 67-69

       D   =   63-66

          D-   = 60-62



          F     = 59 and below


    Grading Percentages  - The percentages below apply to ALL English 10 Classes

    • Essays/Projects: 50%
    • Tests/Quizzes: 35%
    • Classwork, Participation, and Homework: 15%
    • There will be final exam in the form of a project, but there will be no midterm exam.


    Homework is assigned as a means to practice skills and is generally graded on an effort basis.  We will go over homework during the class period following the assignment; therefore, late homework will not be accepted.  Students will receive a 40 on non-attempted homework assignments.   Upon student request, alternative homework assignments will be provided.  Point deductions for those will follow the “Late/Missing Work” guidelines.  

    See page 14 of the Student Handbook for additional homework information and guidelines. 

    If homework cannot be completed at home, then students are encouraged to meet individually with Ms. V. and/or Ms. Salyer before or after school hours via Zoom.

    Assignments marked "independent" must be completed independently.  Students who do not complete these assignments independently will be subject to the terms of the SHS Honor Code.

    * An important note about assignments for this course: We do not assign busywork; every assignment is meaningful and important.  For this reason, we expect that students complete every assignment to the best of their ability.  The expectation is not perfection but instead effort.  The teachers will help students fill in the gaps!

    Late/Missing Work

    If a student does not attempt or is absent for an assignment, he/she will receive a 0 marked with the code “Missing” for that assignment.  The 0 will remain until the assignment is completed.  Five points will be deducted for each day an assignment is late.  After an assignment is six school days late, the maximum number of points that will be deducted is 25 points. 

    Example: An essay is due on Monday, October 3.  The student turns the essay in on Wednesday, October 12.  Although the assignment is seven days late only 25 points will be deducted.   The due date will be calculated according to the Student Handbook & Code of Conduct policy: “… the number of school days absent plus one to a maximum of 10 days.”

    Please also remember, however, that this means that the starting grade for the assignment will be a 75 (C).  The actual grade will be calculated using the assignment rubric, adjusted for the late deduction.

    Late and missing work will be accepted until the Friday before progress or report card distribution. 

    Missing Work Reports will be distributed; however, after initial contact from the teachers, it is the student’s responsibility to initiate make-up work. 

    Use of Technology

    All students taking English at Staunton High have access to their Chromebooks while in English class. We will be relying on these devices daily, so it is necessary that all students bring their Chromebooks with them to class every day. All assignments, projects, essays, and assessments will be given and collected using Google Classroom. By using this powerful tool, students will always know whether or not they have missing assignment. There will be no exceptions when it comes to collecting assignments: anything not turned in using Google Classroom will NOT be graded. Students automatically have a G-Mail account given to them by Staunton City Schools. In order to use the computers, all students must complete a Technology Use Agreement. If a student loses computer privileges because of misuse of technology, he or she will be responsible for getting assignments. 

    Parent Portal and Chromebook Issues

    Grades will be posted to PowerSchool on a weekly basis.  Please be diligent and check grades often.  PowerSchool can be accessed here: http://scps.powerschool.com.  If a student or parent is having trouble logging in or forgets their access codes, please reach out to the assigned guidance counselor.

    Having access to Chromebooks is a necessity for success in both online and face-to-face learning.  If a student has any issues with a Chromebook, use the following form to report those issues: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScisWA1mKzwcDzH9BISdhRAmSxv8W_bVVheBaii8V0E8v89pg/viewform?vc=0&c=0&w=1&flr=0.  The link to this form is also located in the “Report Technology Issues” section of the “Parents and Students” tab on the SHS website.

    Daily Routine

    1. Bell Work: grammar, short passages, vocabulary, and SOL practice
    2. SOL Activities: reading and writing
    3. Lessons: grammar; vocabulary; writing; and responding to fiction, nonfiction, and poetry
    4. Closure

    * Note: Students are expected to engage in Independent Reading on a weekly basis.  During online learning, not all of these activities will be completed during a single      scheduled session every day; however, we will complete many of them daily.

    General Course Outline

     Standards Covered Throughout the Semester

    • Sentence Structure & Vocabulary  – 10.3, 10.7
      • Parts of a Sentence/Clauses, Punctuation (Commas, Semi-colons, etc…) 
      • Weekly Quizzes on Grammar and Vocabulary
      • Application of knowledge of roots, affixes, synonyms, antonyms, etc.
    • Writing – 10.6, 10.7
      • Bi-Weekly persuasive essays using the writing process: brainstorming, outlining, rough draft, teacher/peer/self edit, final draft
      • Writings utilizing self- and peer-editing for grammar, capitalization, punctuation, spelling, sentence structure, and paragraphing
      • Reflection Journals & product-based assessment
    • Media Literacy – 10.1, 10.2
      • Analyze and evaluate auditory, visual, and written media messages
      • Produce media messages with a planned, purposeful effect on the audience
      • Work in small groups to evaluate media messages
    • Literature – 10.4
      • Literary texts from different cultures and eras – Short Stories, Novel, Drama
      • Make predictions, draw inferences, and connect prior knowledge to support reading comprehension
      • Character development in various types of literature; archetypes
      • Themes present in fiction to be supported by nonfiction texts
    • Non-Fiction Unit – 10.5
      • Analysis of non-fiction texts relating to the various themes
      • Assessment of Silent Sustained Reading to include essays and planned oral project/product presentations, project-based assessments
    • Research Unit – 10.8
      • Use of print, electronic databases, online resources, and other media to access information to create a research product
      • Review of Plagiarism, MLA citation, and website evaluation
      • Formal presentations and/or formal research paper using MLA format

    First Nine-Weeks Focus 

    • All assignments and instruction will be based around themes and will focus on self-reflection 
    • Essay topics from released SOL prompts
    • Short stories unit
    • Novel Units – Fahrenheit 451 and Night
    • Nonfiction selections

    Second Nine-Weeks Focus

    • All assignments and instruction will be based around themes and will focus on society
    • Students will participate in a formal research unit
    • Drama Unit – The Tragedy of Julius Caesar
    • Nonfiction selections