IMPORTANT COURSE DOCUMENTS
WHERE TO FIND WHAT . . .
Course Overview and Syllabus PAGE 1
Course Overview and Syllabus PAGES 2 and 3
Parent Information and Syllabus Signature Form
UNIT 1: WHAT IS GOVERNMENT, AND HOW DO WE KNOW WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT IT?
MAJOR ASSESSMENTS IN THE UNIT:
This is an introductory unit, but we are currently scheduled to write a baseline Reading Assessment either in this intro unit, or in the one immediately following.
Interest Groups, Media & Political Parties (starts mid-to-late September)
COMPLETELY CURRENT LETTER GRADE: Check JupiterEd. Not sure what JupiterEd is? See the section about it immediately below this section.
SCORES & COMMENTS ON INDIVIDUAL ASSESSMENTS AND ASSIGNMENTS: Check JupiterEd
Don't have a JupiterEd account? Temporary passcodes for parents were sent home the first day of school (or the first day of 2nd semester, if your student is new to my class). If you missed it, or changed your mind and would now like an account, just send me an email request and I'll send a one-click access link with a temporary passcode. It's a quick and easy process.
RECENT OVERALL LETTER GRADE: Check Synergy StudentVUE or ParentVUE
Reminder: JupiterEd is your most accurate and complete source of grade information for my classes. Also, remember that the grading scale for this class is different than a traditional scale, and this is because it uses a standards-based grading system, as described in the Course Overview and Syllabus, which you can access by clicking here.
HOMEWORK CALENDAR: Check JupiterEd. Also: Check the web page on this site for the current unit and scroll down to the most recent assignments for due date information.
NOTE: Students will not have homework every night in this class. Depending upon the unit, they may have between 1 or 2 and perhaps 3 or 4 homework assignments in a unit. We do not check out textbooks for students to take home. We use them, as needed, during class time. Students may need to finish classwork not completed during class time, from time to time.
ACCESS TO INDIVIDUAL UNIT PAGES AND LESSONS ON THIS WEB SITE: Students already have the password (If you forgot, send me an email request)
WHAT IS JUPITER ED?
JupiterEd is the online grade book - and learning management system (LMS) - for this class.
JupiterEd has two main functions in our classroom: 1) It is a highly convenient and capable LMS (learning management system), and 2) it is an efficient and easy to use grading program. This means that students can write documents in Jupiter, or submit documents from other services (such as Google Docs) or applications (such as Word) for scoring. It also means that unit tests can be written in it and students can take them right on the Chrome Book in class, with the order of questions and the order of possible answers automatically randomized. One of the main reasons why I use JupiterEd is to be able to leverage the fact that each student has a Chrome Book in class (making work submission much smoother and more organized).
Other benefits of Jupiter that have made it useful in my classroom include:
* It can proactively communicate with parents and students under conditions that they set up when they create an account (more information on this below)
* It automatically communicates grades and messages in Spanish for parents who select that option when they set up an account
* It allows more immediate entry of some assignments (thanks to its faster and easier user interface) because I can enter some of them quickly on an iPad during class, as presentations or discussions are happening
* It automatically creates a homework calendar for students whenever I enter assignments (with no extra work required on my part)
* Students and parents can visually see how much impact a missing assignment or low assessment grade is affecting the overall grade with the red or green bars that are longer the more effect they are have on the grade
* It can be checked by parents and students on all major mobile AND computer-based browsers (including Safari and Chrome)
You don't need to go to JupiterEd to check grades; you can set it up to bring you the information you need, when you want it.
As a parent who has to do this type of tracking for my own children, I am aware that it could be a pain when teachers post grades to more than one online grade program and I apologize for that inconvenience. But I think the inconvenience is greatly minimized by some of the service's ability to proactively communicate with you when (every Wednesday? When your son or daughter's grade falls below a certain grade?) and where (via email? Or perhaps through a text to a cell phone number?) you want it. In fact, this feature may actually be more convenient for many students and parents, as it is possible you could simply set it up and forget it. However, if you do want or need to check grades by logging in, you'll find it works well on any type of Internet-connected device with a major web browser (such as Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Internet Explorer).
How to set up STUDENT and PARENT accounts on JupiterEd.
On the first day of class, students received temporary passwords to create their own student accounts (in class) and to bring home for the creation of parent accounts. On that handout, you will find directions for both students and parents to create an account, along with temporary passwords. You will be prompted to change the password as you create the account. If you were absent when these temporary passwords were handed out, please contact me before or after class, or by email, and I will print them for you. If you are a parent who never received this information, you can send me a quick email request by clicking here, and I will send you a temporary passcode via email that will get you started very quickly.