Course Overview and Syllabus

  • Mrs. Shin

    Exploratory Languages:  Spanish




    3 Simple Steps to Success


    I do my best to make the class an environment that is well-organized, challenging, and conducive to success for all students.  I ask that students take the following three steps to meet me in the effort to succeed.

    1. Show up to class prepared
    2. Have a good attitude
    3. Do the work

    Students who can honestly say that they do these three things, and ask for help when they find difficulty in doing the work, will succeed in my class.

    I am available for help before school, after school, and during my planning period as necessary.  I will be glad to answer any questions and provide any help as long as my time is requested and scheduled beforehand.  Both parents and students may request extra help outside of class time, as long as it is scheduled in advance for a time I’m available.



    Respect is the Rule


    My rules boil down to Respect.  Students in my classes must:

    Respect yourself

    Know you can succeed and value yourself enough to ask for help.

    Respect others

    Respect classmates and teacher by being kind and courteous and by listening attentively when they are speaking.  Do what the teacher asks you to do the first time she asks.

    Respect the classroom

    Treat the classroom objects kindly (desks, markers, tables, etc.), and leave the classroom cleaner than you found it.



    Course Syllabus


    There are 7 main units in Exploratory Spanish.  They are:

    World Awareness – geography of Spanish-speaking world, introductions, cognates

    Calendar – days, months, numbers, seasons

    Flags and Colors – Colors, Spanish-speaking flag identification

    Foods – Food words, typical Spanish foods, table manners in Spanish-speaking countries

    Animals – Animals, animal issues in Spanish-speaking countries

    Descriptions – Describing oneself and others using correct grammar

    Final Synthesis – An integration of previous topics into a final presentation


    Additional cultural activities will be scattered throughout the quarter, which vary from season to season so we can explore and experience the holiday traditions of Spanish-speaking nations.



    Grading is done using a points-based system, and includes homework, in-class work, class participation, projects, presentations, and quizzes.  Bonus opportunities are rare, if they exist.



    Required Supplies


    Students do NOT need to purchase any dictionaries or books.  I will supply these materials when necessary.  Textbooks will be assigned to each student during the first few days of the term.  Unless I have specified otherwise, the textbook must be brought to class for use during each class session.  All students are expected to have their book in class every day.

    To be prepared for classroom demands, each student is required to bring the following items to class every day:

                            Paper (loose-leaf or in a notebook)

                            Folder for handouts (a folder with pockets or a 3-ring binder)

                            Pencil (preferred over pens because we all make mistakes)

    Occasionally students will be required to bring note cards, so I recommend keeping a pack in a locker or backpack instead of waiting until I request them for the next day.  Please do not put yourself in the position of needing an emergency run to the store for a supply you know you will need from day one.



    Homework and Handouts


    The purpose of homework is to provide extra practice for students.  Often, the homework assignment will become part of the next day’s lesson or activity, so completing homework is necessary to fully participate and learn from classroom instruction.  Points will be awarded for completion of homework, and completed homework will affect your class participation grade when that homework is used the day it is due.  The main benefit of homework will be the mastery gained from the practice of concepts learned in class.  I expect all students to complete all homework assignments.  Students will find that their participation in classroom activities will be easier if they have completed the practice homework that has been assigned.


    The course will use many notes and readings found in the textbook, but will quite often be supplemented by handouts.  Each student will receive one, and only one, copy of each handout.  I expect my students to keep a notebook containing all handouts and class notes. 

    It is each student’s responsibility to collect handouts and assignments from any absence, whether the absence is excused or not.



    Tests and Quizzes


    If present, students must take all tests and quizzes on the date it is scheduled if they were in class when the test or quiz was announced.

    If a student has an excused absence for the day of a test or quiz, they will complete the quiz the day they return to class.

    It is each student’s responsibility to know when a quiz has been announced, and request to make up the quiz when they return from an absence.  Therefore, it is very important to write it down when a quiz is announced.