Grades are updated on Canvas as soon as items are graded (normally within a week). You can check canvas online or through the canvas app. If you don't think a grade is posted that should be there, please email me.
Canvas says I have a missing assignment but I turned it in, did you grade it?
Canvas doesn't handle missing assignments well but it has gotten better. If an assignment is due to be submitted on canvas but you haven't hit the submit button it will be automatically marked as missing. If the assignment is one that is turned in on paper then I have to go in and manually enter a missing notification. This might not happen for a couple days as it takes time for me to get to the grading of all your assignments. If the grade book says "-" then the assignment hasn't been graded. Either I haven't graded it yet or it isn't due yet. Canvas has a new system for grading assignments so at the beginning of the year please be patient while we work out the kinks in the new system.
What can I do to improve my grade?
The big grade items are tests, projects, and your notebook. Tests happen about every month and a half. There are normally 1-2 projects per quarter. The notebook checks happen right after tests. The notebook is the easiest way to improve your grade because homework assignments in the notebook can be improved until the test. Everyone that is willing to put in the work on their notebook can get a 100%. You can even ask in advance if your assignment is worth a 4.
Tests and projects are harder to improve on. However, in standard biology you can use your notebook on the tests. This means if your notebook is organized and you know where to find things in your notebook you will be able to use it as a resource on the tests. In Honors Biology it is a little harder because you cannot use your notebook on the tests. However, for both classes there are will be canvas quizzes prior to each test that will allow you to check your understanding. You should always go over this quizzes before each test (the answers are on canvas once you have taken it). In some cases you will be allowed to take the Canvas quiz multiple times in order to improve your grade. If given the opportunity to retake something you should ALWAYS take me up on the offer.
What do I have to do to get a 4?
A 4 means you exceeded standard on the assignment. There are lots of ways you can earn a 4 but the idea is that you do something that helps you learn. For example, perhaps you make flashcards of vocabulary. You can also write a summary of what you learned in your own words. You could do extra research or reading on the subject and then summarize what you found out. If you choose to watch one of the videos from www.hcrowder.com you can write about what in the video was covered in class and what was new information, or you could write about what visuals or animations made it easier for you to understand the subject. If the assignment was to write, then you could earn a 4 by drawing a diagram to represent the concepts.
Do you round grades?
Yes. I will round grades to the nearest whole number. This means that I will round up if you are within 0.5% of the grade band. I use the grade boundaries that are suggested by the school district. The bottom of the range for an A=93%, A-=90%, B+=87%, B=83, B-=80%...D=60%. Below 60% is an F. This means that if you get a 92.5% I will round it up to a 93%, which is an A. Grades also get rounded down. If you earn a 90.2% it will be rounded to the nearest whole number - 90%. Grades rounded down always stay in the same grade boundary.
I don't think I will be able to get the assignment done on time. What should I do?
Email me. If you ask for an extension in advance you will probably get it. If you let me know on the day of I will have very little sympathy for you. When you email me, use your full name, tell me why you will not have the work done on time, let me know when you think you will be able to get the assignment completed, and be polite. I am more likely to be generous if you are polite. If the assignment is a daily homework assignment for a stamp then you will probably not get an extension for the stamp. However, the work should still be completed in time for the notebook check so you can still earn full credit on the notebook check.
I missed class because of sports, the play, a field trip, etc., can't I still get the stamp?
It is your responsibility to stay on top of your work even if you have school events to participate in. This means getting the assignments done on time even if you were not in school. You will need to check with me in advance of being absent in order to get all of the work you will miss. If you aren't sure what the assignments are you can email me, ask a friend, or check the online calendar (on the website or canvas). If you are only missing my class then you can also come in and take a picture of the homework board before you leave school. If something is due through Canvas you must submit by the deadline or it will be automatically marked late and will lose points. This rule in in affect even if you were not in class when the assignment was assigned. Things submitted to Canvas are mostly due at 11:59pm.
Stamps are earned in class on the day paper assignments are due. If you aren't in class you cannot get the stamp. If you know you are going to miss school you can complete the work in advance and get the stamp in advance. If you have an excused absence you can get the stamp the day you return to school but not after that point. Stamps count toward class participation because they mean you were prepared to engage in class when the bell rang.
I missed a lab, can I make it up?
Short answer, no. Many of the labs for the class will have borrowed equipment from Fred Hutch. As a result I have limited supplies and I can only keep the equipment for a set number of days. If you miss the class you miss the lab. However, you are still expected to understand the concepts in the lab which might mean you need to perform a virtual lab or get data from a lab mate.
Is there extra credit?
Short answer is NO. Rarely, as in once a semester, there may be a small amount of extra credit available. This happens when I have a good idea about something extra I would like you to do but when I have already given out the assignment. Don't count on there being extra credit and don't ask for extra credit. Focus on completing all the work to the best of your ability. Extra credit cannot make up for not completing the normally assigned work.
Is there a final?
Yes, at the end of each semester there is a final that covers all of the material from the current semester. That means that the 2nd semester final covers content from 2nd semester. The final will be multiple choice. You will not get a study guide but I will provide other ways to study that are normally more useful to students.
Are Canvas Quizzes real quizzes?
This one is tricky. Sometimes there will be a Canvas quiz and it will be treated like a test (no notes, no retakes, etc.). When an online quiz is treated like a test it will be in the test category. Sometimes you will have a Canvas quiz where you are allowed to retake the quiz for either full credit, the highest earned score, or the average score. These will also be put into the test and quiz category of your grade. However, sometimes you will have a practice quiz on Canvas. Practice quizzes can be retaken for more points and they are put into the class participation portion of the grade.
Can I use a notecard on tests?
In standard biology you will be allowed to use your notebook on tests first semester. You will be taught how to make a notecard for tests and we will slowly move toward using a notecard.
In honors biology you will only be allowed to use a notecard on the final semester exams. Tests and quizzes are closed book and no notecard.
Will there be pop quizzes
Sometimes. But they will be put into the class participation part of the grade. Tests and quizzes are announced a week in advance.
I don't understand something. Can I get help?
Yes. Come to SAS or after school on Mondays and Thursdays. I am also available before school and during lunch if you schedule those times in advance. Check this website first though as there are a lot of resources here to help you learn. If that doesn't work and you have tried your best to find the answer please come get help!