AP Spanish Language
The AP Spanish Language class is the equivalent of a third year college course. In order to achieve proficiency and do well on the AP Exam students are expected to speak Spanish 99% of the time and do extensive study/preparation at home. Please review the information at http://apcentral.collegeboard.com/apc/public/repository/ap08_spanish_coursedesc.pdf for a better understanding of the structure of the exam.
1. Required texts
Abriendo Paso Gramatica
Spanish-English dictionary (optional)
2. Goals of the course
As a student, you need many opportunities to use Spanish as a means of communication. You will begin by developing your ability to interact with your classmates. That is why your teacher will speak only Spanish in class. Try to understand him and to follow instructions. You should take the initiative in pair activities. Ask questions mainly in Spanish. Don't be shy about conversing with your classmates. Be a leader in group debates and mini-dramas.
Emphasis in Intermediate Spanish is placed equally on the four basic language skills: listening, speaking, reading, and writing. In this course you will get a complete review of first, second, and third-year skills as well as new information to help you communicate with others in Spanish and to strengthen your command of grammar and vocabulary (for speaking and reading or listening). You will also be guided to a better understanding of both literary and nonliterary written Spanish and in strengthening your writing ability.
Because this is a review course, it is your responsibility to bring questions about the assignment to class for clarification. Do not expect to receive extensive grammatical explanations in class. Your teacher is going to use the material (not present it) to carry out different activities. Class time will be reserved for these activities, and for discussion of the readings and debates.
*The student who receives an AP grade of 3, 4, or 5 on the AP Spanish Language Exam has mastered -- to a degree commensurate with the AP grade -- the skills and knowledge required to receive credit for an advanced level (fifth- and sixth-semester or the equivalent) college/university Spanish language course.
3. Class attendance and participation
What you do in class generally requires someone else with whom to interact. What you do at home does not. You can't learn Spanish, therefore, unless you are in class. For most of you, the class hour is your only contact with Spanish. You are not only expected to be in class every day but to participate in all activities. You will be graded for your daily contributions and for your willingness to participate. Spanish is the target language and English will not be permitted in class.
Homework includes written assignments and some reading/study. I expect you to come to class prepared. A reading assignment should be read with the care necessary for at least a basic understanding of the material before class. Homework will be assigned daily and may be checked daily and collected periodically. Additional optional and required assignments may be posted on the Internet.
Late homework will not be accepted unless the student was absent, in which case it is the student’s responsibility to show me the homework within two days. Each homework assignment will be posted in the classroom and internet assignments will be available on the internet at from the appropriate class link on my St. John’s web site. When absent, students should check the assignment(s) missed. There will be no advance notice as to which assignments may be collected, and at times a given assignment may be collected and graded as a quiz. Each student will receive a homework grade each term, based on the number of assignments for the term.
You will be tested regularly after every lesson. All tests will include a listening comprehension section, vocabulary, important grammatical structures, reading comprehension. Students absent the day of a test must make-up the test within 2 class days of their return. It is the responsibility of the student to make arrangements to make-up the work. A non-negotiable zero will be given for any tests not taken within this time period.
Due dates for the compositions this term will be announced in class and posted on the web site. The compositions should each be approximately one typed, doubled-spaced page in length at the beginning of the term, and will gradually get longer. Sample topics are given in each lesson of Abriendo Paso: Gramática in the Compositions section. Accent marks are expected to be typed. I will provide a chart with keyboard shortcuts.
The compositions will be handed in twice. The first time they will be marked for errors according to the correction key (Símbolos para la corrección de composiciones) handed out the first day of classes. Occasionally the first set of corrections will be done as a peer editing exercise. Compositions will be returned to you and you will write an improved version of the composition. Your grade will be based on both versions.
The following criteria will be taken into account in grading: organization on the composition, grammatical correctness, spelling, and grammatical complexity (you should try to use structures reviewed in this class; no compositions written in beginner Spanish will be accepted), vocabulary use (variety and logic in use), consistency in the development of ideas, and mastery of the essay style in general. While I appreciate your creativity in these assignments, I expect them to be serious and on topic. Vulgarity will be grounds for a failing grade.
You are expected to maintain a notebook for the class. At a minimum this will be used for class work. I expect class work to be original and well thought out. You may use your text as a reference; however, you may not copy whole sentences from the book. At this level, you should be able to put together complete, original sentences in Spanish.
8. Grading scale
Tests and quizzes will count for 50-60% of your grade, the exact proportion will depend on how many of each are given each quarter. Essays/Projects, homework, and participation will make up the other 40-50%. All personal grade issues will be dealt with on an individual basis outside of class; there is no need to involve the rest of the class.
9. Extra Help
I am available for extra help in room 402 Mondays and Wednesdays after school. Any student comments, concerns, or questions are welcomed. If you need help outside these hours please see me after class or before or after school to arrange a convenient time. Please be prompt for any appointments that you make.
10. Extra Credit
There will be no extra credit. Expectations are such that with consistent effort and study a good grade should be within the reach of all students without extra credit.
11. Internet Access:
I am trying to use the Internet as much as possible for homework.
The internet assignments are corrected as they are done so that if a student initially does not understand the exercise, he will realize this immediately and practice the correct construction for the remainder of the exercise. The assignment also remains available should he wish to practice again as study or review.
On Tuesday, I will give each student a code that can be used to sign up for an account where the student’s scores can be checked at any time. Live ID, Google ID, or Yahoo ID can be used to sign up. It is the parents’ choice whether to have their son sign up using his own id, sign up themselves using their own id, sign up for a throwaway id that can be shared between son and parents, ie. mysonsSpanishGrades2012@live.com and used only for this account, or not to sign up at all. This is the quickest and easiest way for you/your son to access scores. If you are not comfortable with this, you are still welcome to email me for information. All the assignments are available without a login at the address listed on my St. John’s website. It is important that each student access and submit assignments using the appropriate class link so that they are credited correctly.
I have informed my classes that:
Missing assignments can affect their grade substantially because homework counts for between 30-35 % of their total grade.
- All assignments from the textbooks are to be typed, on time, no exceptions.
Language can only be learned through practice, and chronic missed assignments make this impossible. Please sign this form and return with your son to indicate that you are aware of this rule. Parent and/or son will also have access to an online account on where he can check his grades at any time, please take a look at this site with him whenever you want to see how he is progressing in my class.
“ I have read this outline and understand what is required of me/my son in this class.”
Student’s signature: _______________________________ Date: ________________
Parent’s signature: ________________________________ Date: ________________
Parent’s email address: _________________________________________
(Optional, but please print clearly)
If you have any comments related to the class rules, please feel free to include them below.