English IV

Welcome to English IV. Here’s our syllabus: https://sites.google.com/view/englishiv/home 

Mr. Sullivan’s goals for his students during the 2019-2020 academic year:

  • Appreciate the writing process.
  • Improve your critical thinking skills so that you are ready for college, your career(s), and “a lifetime of learning, leadership, and active citizenship” (Suffield Academy Mission Statement).

Mr. Sullivan’s unconditional rules:

  • Arrive promptly in SA Dress Code with your text book, notebook, and other required materials for the day (computer, etc); manage your cell phone in class and leave it on your chair (turned off) when you go to the bathroom; bring only water, eat nourishing food in other appropriate places;
  • Value each other and participate in one conversation. In the words of his Holiness, the 14th Dali Lama, one should, before participating, consider one’s contribution to be sure it is “useful and kind;”
  • Appreciate the privilege of your laptop and use it only for learning purposes in class. Multitasking is bad for your learning and creates distractions for your neighbor’s academic progress; those discovered falling into this temptation will be ask to do extra reading and writing on this important topic.

Supplies: one section of a notebook, or a single subject notebook. Pens and pencils as well as one working laptop (as mentioned in the handbook) with a working battery. You must have a working battery to compose your exam on your laptop. I do not required small sticky notes, but students over the years have found these helpful for marking the text during writing projects.

Grading System:
The following grading weights are an approximate percentage at the beginning of any term. Weights may change due to unforeseen class cancellations or unexpected trends. For example, if students in a particular section are not keeping up with the reading assignments, they may encounter a large number of reading quizzes, and the subsequent weight for these quizzes may alter. Alternatively, if the class has executed a unit or an evaluation well, then weight might increase to reward the positive work.

Surprise Reading Quizzes 10%
Vocabulary Quizzes 15%
Announced and Unannounced Graded Homework 15%
Engagement in class discussions 8%
Test and Papers 25%
Learning Through Technology 7%
Trimester Exam 20%

Planbook: Students don’t plan to fail; they only fail to plan. Students must bring their Planbook to class and write down current and future assignments. Keeping a Planbook not only helps students but also helps teachers and advisors when they sit down with a student to work on time management skills and other academic strategies.

Due Dates: students should submit papers at the beginning of class on the day that the paper was due. Papers and assignments will suffer point deductions each time the student crosses the threshold of the classroom. Students should plan to incorporate time to print out their paper.

Class Absences. Know that Mr. Sullivan has to send the Dean of Students office an email if you are not in class on a particular day. It is up to the student to learn about the missing work from a classmate or to send an email to Mr. Sullivan; in either case, do send Mr. Sullivan an email to update him about the nature of your absence. If a student misses a Pop Quizduring when he/she is absent, that student may be given a special Pop Quiz at another time in order to create a fair environment for evaluation that occurred for his/her peers.

Notebook: Implicit in every reading assignment is the task of taking notes. Thus, student notebooks will begin to organize observations of patterns and trends as well as questions prior to the day’s discussion. Specifically, students should be reading actively and should be underlining and annotating significant passages in their personal copy of the text. Students who actively read and make notes enliven and enrich our class discussion and more importantly create good work habits for working in a college seminar environment. During a large literary test, students may be asked to bring their notebooks for closer examination and evaluation. Each student can tailor his or her note taking system to his or her learning style.

Engagement: Your participation grade begins a conversation about what I observe about your learning productivity in class. Sometimes the best time to discuss your engagement grade is after class or at another mutually convenient time for both of us. This is 5% of your overall grade. The B level engagement range is an above average rating. This is a good score. This range suggests that you are engaged, listening, showing some signs of incorporating previously stated material into class discussion. To improve upon a B range engagement grade, some students will need to contribute to discussion more while others may need to listen and incorporate and build upon other ideas from classmates. An A level engaged student enhances our class discussion. The frequency of comments is optimal. Often this is a sign of emotional intelligence. These students contribute just the right amount: neither too frequent so as to dominate, nor so little that there is no contribution. Below a B range grade usually stems from student contributions that do not follow the guidelines of his Holiness, the 14th Holy Dali Lama: be useful and kind.

Effort Grades: At midterm and the end of term, students receive effort grades. In order to supply students with a sense of their approximate effort grade, students will receive effort grades as well as letter grades on various assignments, such as keeping an organized notebook for class. In fact, some homework assignments or classroom tasks may be graded entirely on the reflected effort. See the Student & Parent Handbook for the delineations of excellentgoodadequate, insufficient and poor.

Excellent: The student exhibits an outstanding commitment to all academic endeavors. Work is completed regularly and with great attention to detail. The student is a balanced leader in discussions and is on topic and insightful.

Good: The student exhibits a solid effort. The student is prepared for class discussions, quizzes, tests, and written assignments with few exceptions. Homework is regularly completed, deadlines are met and the student strives to improve.

Adequate: The student exhibits an inconsistent effort. Work is sometime missed, or hastily completed. The student occasionally participates in class, and behavior is generally good. Effort is made, though more can be applied. Assessments show effort, but more review can be done.

Insufficient: The student often misses assignments and is reluctant to seek extra help. Assessments suggest a lack of effort rather than a lack of understanding. Mistakes of the same variety continue to be made.

Poor: The student is not prepared for class and is making little or no effort to meet the minimal requirements of the course. Classroom attitude, or behavior, is unsatisfactory. The student’s effort may put them in danger of not completing the course successfully.


Suffield Academy English Department Academic Integrity Statement 2015

The English Department at Suffield Academy is committed to academic honesty. We honor and respect original thought and original work. We want to encourage all students to push through challenges and learn the skills necessary to read analytically and to write clearly. To this end, we are committed to honest scholarship.

As part of college preparation, we feel it is necessary for students to develop a sound understanding of academic honesty. Plagiarism in any form has dire consequences in the collegiate world and beyond; it is also, quite simply, immoral.

In order to educate all students about academic honesty, we require everyone to read this thoroughly then sign the paper, submitting that you have read and understood our expectations. You will receive a copy of this page, along with your signature, later in the week. Your teacher will keep the original.

If you have any questions about academic honesty, please talk with your teacher. We are committed to your understanding of this important issue.

This is the act of representing someone else’s ideas or work as your own.

This includes (but is not limited to) the following:

Anything found online. Unless you are stating a commonly known fact (the number of

states in the US, for example, or Suffield Academy’s address), even something like an online encyclopedia needs to be cited. It is not difficult, and it is important.

An idea that comes from another source. Reading Sparknotes, for example, then using the ideas in class discussion is actually plagiarism. You did not come up with the ideas yourself, but you are pretending that you did: that is plagiarism. If you write an essay yourself, but you get the topic from an unauthorized source, that is plagiarism. It was not your idea, but you are pretending that it was.

A summary or paraphrase of someone else’s idea or research. That is correct – even if you summarize something using your own words, you still need to give credit to the original source. Changing the order of the words or omitting words does not eliminate the need to cite.

Exact words from any source, whether that source is printed or spoken, or comes from an individual, or it comes from a website with no apparent author. Essentially, if you did not come up with the exact words first, you need to give credit to the person or entity that did.

Additional examples of academic dishonesty

Using work that has been used previously for another class, unless otherwise approved by your teacher. While this is not plagiarism in the traditional sense, it does constitute academic dishonesty.

Accessing notes or other sources of information during an assessment, even if they are your own, unless you have been given explicit permission to do so. Using phones to look up vocabulary words while taking a quiz, for example, is dishonest.

Submitting a paper that is heavily edited by someone other than you. Be careful – if you are getting help with a paper from a parent, a peer, or even another Suffield teacher, significant editing and rewriting and subsequent submission as your own work is dishonest. We want to help you become a better writer: when we grade a paper partially written by your dad or your tutor, we are not getting a correct understanding of your skills, so we cannot help you improve.

Using or submitting work that has been completed by someone else. Copying a peer’s work and submitting it as your own work is dishonest. If group work or group study is allowed, students often come away with the same understanding of a topic. However, this does not mean that identical responses are appropriate. Articulate your own understanding in your own way. If you cannot, it is possible that you do not really understand the answer.

Consequences for Academic Dishonesty

First and foremost, we want you to understand what academic dishonesty is, and we want to ensure that you will not make the same mistake again. A conversation with your teacher, the department chair, and/or the class dean should be expected. In addition, your advisor will be notified.

There will be an impact on the grade of the assignment. In most cases, a zero will be the assigned grade with no chance for reparation. You may be required to rewrite an essay or retake a quiz in order to ensure the skills are learned, but the initial grade of zero will likely remain.

Should the infraction be severe or repetitive, you will be required to meet with the Academic Dean, the Academic Committee, and possibly the Discipline Committee. In this case, a letter will go into your academic file and a copy will be sent home. Your commitment to your education at Suffield Academy will be in question.

Your Commitment

By signing your name, you attest to the fact that you have read this entirely and understand the commitment we have made to you, and the commitment you have made to your own development as a scholar. You understand our expectations, and you understand the likely consequences of academic dishonesty.

___________________________ PRINT your name

___________________________ your teacher’s name

_________________________ ____________ SIGN your name date

________ class period

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