Archive for August 5th, 2007

Hints for a successful year

Here are some useful hints to help orient you for the upcoming year:

1. Use the website that accompanies the text as well as this one, which you should check several times a week. We will cover 42 chapters in about 33 weeks, so we have to stay on schedule.

2. DO YOUR READING! You will only cheat yourself, not to mention hurt your grade, if you don’t allot time to read the chapter (and assigned readings on this blog) slowly enough to understand the material.
There really are no shortcuts. When it comes right down to it, learning is far more dependent upon the effort and responsibility you demonstrate, rather than any other factor. You will get out of this class what you put into it. That can be good– or bad.

3. Stay organized! Use a calendar or day planner to keep track of assignments– I will hand you the reading schedule on the first day of school, and then you are expected to know when the deadlines and quizzes are.

4. Study! This class is cumulative– you are expected to learn the information and retain it so that you may demonstrate your knowledge and understanding on the AP exam at the end of the year. Quizzes will contain review questions form previous chapters. Don’t wait until a week before the AP exam to begin reviewing.

5. Always come to class prepared. Have a question or observation ready so that you can participate in the discussion.

6. Always date and label your notes so that you know what they are later when you need them for review. I would suggest that you put this information at the top of the page: Date, Chapter, Specific Topic. (Frankly, I would suggest strongly that you do this for ALL of your classes!)

REMEMBER: Your optional-but-highly-valuable extra credit terms and questions over the first four chapters are due on August 15 and are good for 100 points of extra credit. Bring them with you on August 15, and make sure they are your own work and not copied from somewhere.

Suggested supplies for APUSH

Well, since the school sales started practically back in June, I thought that it might be a good idea to suggest a few things for you to make your life easier in APUSH.

Suggested supply list:
1 binder, at least 2 inches thick, to organize and hold papers

notebook filler paper, either college or wide ruled (whatever suits you, but I prefer college ruled myself)

4 dividers for binder, to create sections for in-class notes, text notes + chapter terms defintions, skills development (vocabulary and writing), and handouts

pink or yellow highlighter

black or blue ink pens– no funky colors or gel, please!

# 2 pencils, which you must have with you at all times (Note: I do not stock mechanical pencil lead, so make sure you’ve got enough for yourself if this is what you like to use)

I would also strongly suggest that you have a GOOD dictionary and thesaurus on hand for when you are reading or writing– for any class.

Roget’s Thesaurus is the classic thesaurus, and I have found that Merriam-Webster’s Tenth Collegiate Dictionary is an excellent dictionary that you will be able to use all the way through college– don’t just depend upon a website, because, you know, sometimes these go down.

— Then you know, actually USE the dictionary when you encounter a word you do not know. Vocabulary development is CRUCIAL to success, but especially in this class and other college-level classes, –not to mention on the ACT and SAT, and so on.

We will be taking notes over European exploration and colonization (Chapters 1-4) on the first day of class, so come ready to go on August 15! Don’t forget your extra credit summer assignment is due on that day, as well!