History Syllabus

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7th Grade World History/8th Grade United States History Syllabus

Mr. Martin


E-Mail: [email protected]

Website: https://norcoint.cnusd.k12.ca.us/cms/One.aspx?portalId=221092&pageId=2133859                                                                

Classroom Expectations:

Be on time!

  • Tardies will only be excused when accompanied by an excuse note from a teacher or the office.

    Be Prepared!

  • This means you must arrive in the classroom prior to the tardy bell with all required materials, class work, project materials, paper and pencil, etc.

    Be Respectful!

  • This covers the classroom (cleanliness, materials, etc..) as well as other students, the teacher, and yourself. Treat others the way you want to be treated.

Show Effort and Communicate!

  • You need to try! If you need help, ask! If you have an idea, share it! I don’t expect perfection but I do expect your best efforts.

Your Responsibilities

1. Have your Interactive Student Notebook(ISN) / Packet here every day.

2. Have your class supplies every day.

3. Have your work completed, on time.

4. Study for tests.

5. Work neatly and with a positive attitude.


Teacher/parent communication is a key ingredient to your student’s success. The best way to contact me is through e-mail - [email protected]

You may visit my website at:

Google: cnusd martin  (This is the fastest way to find me!)

You may also access my site by going to the school’s main page at https://norcoint.cnusd.k12.ca.us/home and locating my name under the staff directory.

On my site you will find projects, resources, materials, and other useful information. I also use Parent Connect, an on-line software which allows you to view your child’s grades. Grades are updated frequently, often on the same day an assignment or test was turned in. It is expected that students and parents use Parent Connect. With over 200 students, and only 47 minutes of class time, teachers are unable to go over grades with each individual student with any regularity. Students are reminded of missing grades, and grade reports are posted every few weeks. Be sure to look up grades frequently so there are no surprises! Feel free to e-mail me with any questions or concerns as they arise.

Absence from Class-

Students are responsible for completing all missed work due to an absence from class. Students are told when the test and classwork will be due two or more weeks before they are due. Students are given the notebook answers in class through instruction, discussion, and teamwork. Students are expected to have their notebooks completed and turned in on the due date.  If a student is absent on test day, I require students to turn in missing work and to make up tests as soon as they get back. This grade acts as a “place holder” until they make up their work, study for the test, and do a retake. Since retakes are given, scores can be changed through the retake process. This provides time to review and get caught up. This also keeps students from having a “0” in the grade book until they make up the test.


During the course of our studies, we will learn about magnificent locations, cultures, and inventions. It is very difficult to indicate the magnificence, beauty, and sheer creativity and intelligence of our nation with post card size images and brief descriptions. We cannot journey to these places, so a video helps transport students to the amazing locations we are learning about. These videos expand and enhance the instruction in the class and provide, scale, connections, and clearer understanding of the people, inventions, and creations studied. In order to keep the students focused and ensure that learning is happening, students are required to fill in notes on the video. A set of notes is provided to the students prior to the start of the video. Sometimes the videos may take multiple class periods. Students may be marked as “excused” in the grade book due to their absence.


Each lesson is read together in class. During the reading students have the opportunity to discuss, ask and answer questions, and build the foundation for the lesson. A variety of reading methods are used in class. Students take turns reading, partner read, and I read to them at times as well. Depending on the amount of time we have in class, students may be required to read independently for homework. Students are required to not only read but comprehend the material.  It is important for students to read for understanding- not completion. If parts are unclear, or difficult to understand, students should ask for clarification or reread the material to ensure success. The entire textbook is available through Google Classroom for portable reading on mobile devices, or to access away from home.


Utilizing notes, I present the information required to the students, expand and explain, and go into further detail about the lesson. Video clips, pictures, maps, illustrations, and graphs help take the lesson further than what is presented in the text. The students copy the information I give them onto their provided notes. The notes are designed to help summarize and make the information easier to recall for the students. Assessments are created using information from the notes, textbook, and lecture. Attendance and the completion of the notes are imperative keys to success.

Each chapter test is based off of the notes, textbook, and lecture. These notes are designed to help each student narrow down what will be on the test. These notes are divided up by section and use language that is very similar to what the students will see on the test.  Each question for the test is answered in the reading, lecture, and notebooks / packets that we complete in class. Students are also given a study guide that has the concepts that will be tested for them. In many cases, the questions are written exactly as they are on the test. Nothing is hidden!!! Students are required to review the information in their notes and understand the concepts from the study guide for the test. The information is written how the test is written, so understanding is critical. If a student does not understand the concept and the language used in the notes, confusion and difficulty will occur when the test is given. This will lead to lower test scores and poor performance.


Student grades are comprised of three main parts:

Tests-The scores from tests account for 65% of the total grade in class (55% of the total grade for Honors classes). The goal is for each child to learn the required content. The tests represent what was learned in the chapter and therefore make up the majority of the total grade in class. Tests occur about once every one or two weeks. Students know when tests are coming weeks in advance. The upcoming test is posted on the board as a reminder. Tests are usually 20 questions long. 

Notebooks - This area makes up 35% of the total grade. Each chapter students are given their work in their Interactive Student Notebooks (ISN) / Packets. Each assignment needs to be completed correctly and in its entirety to receive be able to score well on the notebook checks. Since assignments have been completed in class, and ample time has been allotted for students to make up any of the assignments, it is expected that all work is finished. I cannot collect 200 notebooks, score them, and be ready to instruct in just one day. Therefore, work is graded using a notebook check on Google Classroom. Students will be asked 10 specific multiple choice questions from their notebooks that will be easy to answer if they completed the work and wrote out the answers that were given in class fully. Students will be using their notebooks on the notebook checks. The notebook check is given on test day. Once the notebook check is done, the grade is final. 

Honors Projects- Honors students will have a project for every quarter. These projects count for 10% of the total grade for Honors classes. These assignments have specific steps to follow, a written response, and require some research. Honors students will be given ample time to complete these projects (the entire quarter). The projects can be made with regular supplies and do not require extra expenses. Projects will be explained in class and students will also be given a hard copy of the requirements.



When- Wednesdays- Before school- 7:00-7:45 AM or at lunch time.


How- Students are allowed one retake per test.


Remember, if a student is absent they will be required to take any test they missed the day they get back. This score will act as a place holder until they are ready to retake the test. The higher of the two scores will be kept. If a student does not retake the test, then the original score will remain.

Once the retake is completed, the higher of the two test scores will be kept in the grade book. 

Study Guides:

Study guides contain questions that will be required to know for the chapter test. The answer for each question can be found in the textbook or the Interactive Student Notebook (ISN) / Packet. Students will need to use their textbooks and notebooks for each section to find the correct answer.  This study guide is to help guide students with studies for the upcoming test. Students should copy the entire answer, or review the entire answer, word for word, on their study guide. To help them study, it is important to review the academic language that will be used on the test. Summarizing, shortening, or paraphrasing answers will cause errors on the test and is not given credit. If students complete, study, and know the information, their overall performance on the test should be high. Google is NOT a good source to find answers! In today's modern age, many students try to use Google to find the answers without looking them up in the textbook or their notebooks. Depending on what we are studying, answers can vary greatly! For example, Abraham Lincoln originally sought to stop the spread of slavery to the west. After time passed his views on slavery changed and he wanted to end it completely. Using Google for this answer could make students miss a question about Lincoln's policies and views on slavery depending on what time period we are studying.

Student Planners:

Planners are used to help students become better organized and as a means of parent/teacher communication. In the planners, students are required to write what we did in class for that day and homework assignments if applicable. Therefore, your student should have something written in each box, every single day. Planners will be checked daily in their Success or AVID class.

Class Materials List:

The following items are required each day in class:

Interactive Student Notebook (School supplied)

Pencil or pen (traditional blue or black ink only)

Colored pencils


Planner (School supplied)

Format for the Course:

The format for this course will combine lecture, student research, group and/or individual projects/presentations, debates, and active in-class discussions. Students are expected to participate in all course activities to the fullest and best of their abilities.

Special information:

Plagiarism/Cheating: Intentionally or unintentionally using someone else’s information, ideas, or words without providing proper credit is not tolerated and will result in a zero (0) grade.