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Class Syllabus

Urban Assembly School for Design and Construction

Mr. Willoughby, Principal

Course Name: 9th Grade English Language Arts

Teacher: Ms. Arias

Email: sheilla.arias@uasdc.org

Room: 429                                                                            

Time: 8:15 to 9:05

Course Description: Welcome to Ms. Arias’ 9th Grade English Language Arts class! This year should be a very exiting year as we embark on a journey to develop and understand language.  We will discover a selection of texts and explore our creativity and thoughts through writing, reading, and various projects.


The instructional activities for this year are (in no particular order):

Grammar: knowledge of correct written and oral Standard American English will improve the speaking and writing skills of a student. We will continuously work on grammar throughout the year thru various exercises and apply the new knowledge to our speaking and writing skills.

Vocabulary development: The knowledge of vocabulary is important for everyone. We will learn everyday and SAT vocabulary that not only will help with reading comprehension but will also increase students speaking, reading and writing skills. Students will have weekly quizzes to test their knowledge of vocabulary.

Traits of writing: Writing is an everyday learning process. In this class, students will learn how to improve their writing by using organizers, peer editing, grammar rules, drafts, journal writing etc. Students will have several written assignments that may include: short answer, and short and long essays.

Literary Elements: Students will understand the importance of being able to recognize basic literary elements used by different writers. Students will analyze and evaluate how literary elements such as character, plot, setting, theme, to name a few, contribute to the unity and effectiveness of a literary work.

Short Stories: Students will read and interpret several short stories in class (to be selected by teacher) and will create their own short story.

Literary works to be studied: Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, and Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, Poetry, selected book excerpts about the Holocaust and selected short stories.

Independent Reading: Students will be able to choose their own reading material throughout the school year from the classroom library, the Public Library, school library, book stores etc.

Poetry: Students will be introduced to poetry

Literature through Film: As a class we will view two Holocaust films and analyze them using the tools we have learned in class using literary elements.
Grading Policy:

Attendance 10%

Attendance is important every day. If you are absent twice a week on a regular basis there is a good chance you WILL NOT PASS MY CLASS!  If you miss my class, you will miss out on daily work points, quiz grades and even POWER EXPECTATION grades. If you know you will be absent, please email me.

Homework 20%

Homework is not an optional assignment; therefore, it is expected to be done.   All homework assignments are due when they are due. If an assignment is turned in late, points will be taken off each day late up to one week. After a week, the assignment is given a 0.

You can expect homework daily, unless otherwise stated. Hand written homework will be handed in with the correct spelling, neat handwriting with clean, straight edges. Ripped or crumbled assignments will not be accepted!

Participation and classwork 25%

You have the chance to gain up to 20 participation points in class everyday. This is made up from the POWER Expectations and your participation during class (includes classwork). If you are absent no points will be awarded. Being late to class will result in points taken away. Respecting the POWER expectations will result in full credit. Any missing classwork can be made up to gain full credit if absent.

Tests and Quizzes 20%

Some quizzes will be announced or will be a pop quiz. Please

There will be at least one test per unit. Notice about a test will be given in advance which will allow you time to prepare. I expect that students will be responsible for contacting me if any questions should arise prior to the day of the test. Keep all handouts, study guides and notes as they will help you prepare for tests.

Projects and papers 25%

There will be at least ONE project or paper per unit. Some papers must be TYPED, double spaced in 12 point Times New Roman font with 1” margins on all sides. Papers will be turned in already printed in person. Papers should be on a clean sheet of paper. Ripped or crumbled papers will not be accepted!

But what if I do not have a computer at home?

Computer and printer access is available at New York Public Libraries, including the New York Public Library Columbus branch located on 10th Ave. between 50th and 51st streets. If you need help finding another library location near your home, please see Ms. Arias for assistance.  Our school library is also available to you during lunch to type assignments

*Grades online

Ms. Arias publishes all grades online using www.jupitergrades.com   You and your parents/guardians will be able to log on to the website and check for grades, missing homework assignments and future assignments. You will receive a log in account in the next few weeks.


Work make up guidelines

1. If you have an excused absence, you will have 2 days to complete the missing work (classwork/homework/project etc) that was missed without penalty.

2. Make sure to bring a note not only to the office but also to Ms. Arias!

3. YOU are expected to look at the daily work folders for handouts, see Ms. Arias or talk to a friend from class.

4. YOU MUST see Ms. Arias immediately if you have missed a test/quiz day for a tutoring session (depending on assignment!).


Homework/Essay Correction Policy

Students will be allowed to correct graded assignments in which they received a low grade for.

  • You must see Ms. Arias after school to know how you can improve
  • Work must be corrected within 5 days from results day

In order to ensure your success in class, I will make myself available to you in any way that I can. I can be reached by calling the school 212-856-0981, or you can email me at sheilla.arias@uasdc.org  I will also be available after school.


In class, we will rise to our potential by using the POWER expectations.

P:  I will be _____________________________________________

O:  I will _______________________________________________

W: I will _______________________________________________

E:  I will bring____________________________________________

R:  I will  _______________________________________________

There will be no food, candy or drinks (except for water) in class.  This rule will be strictly enforced!

Power Pledge


“I will achieve power in ELA class by meeting our POWER expectations”


By signing this agreement, I promise to rise to my fullest potential and respect the rules of the class. A disregard for the POWER expectations will result in consequences.




Student Name: ___________________________     Student Signature:_________________________


Teacher Signature: ________________________     Date: _____________________