LEAP 7/8

Waynesville Middle School

Course Syllabus


Teacher: Joanna VanBelkum


Course Title and Grade: LEAP 7/8

Team: 7th grade/RED


Course Objectives: 

I can research and apply knowledge and skills associated with Space, Astrology, Astronomy, and Greece.

I can use the engineering process to design different types of rockets and telescopes. 

I can communicate with others using effective written, listening and oral communication skills.

I can work efficiently and effectively in an individual or group setting. 

I can use critical/creative thinking and logical reasoning skills to solve problems.

I can make an impact on our world today making a difference in future generations. 

I can set realistic goals to positively impact my future. 

I can develop a plan for my college and career path.  

Classwork, Tests, Projects: 

Your student will study various thinking skills and apply them to the content areas for the year.  He/she will have homework, quizzes, writing assignments, and projects to complete throughout the year.  Concepts will be assessed at the end of each unit. Several assignments require online research and the students will be allowed to use the school computers whenever possible.  I will follow the Student Handbook for any abuse of computer privileges. 


Classroom expectations: 

Be Respectful. Be Responsible. Be a Learner. 

Students must be in the classroom before the tardy bell rings, prepared with the textbook, paper and a pencil.  Students must raise their hands to speak and be respectful of the teacher and their peers at all times. If the student doesn’t abide by the basic rules above for all minor offenses, the teacher will: (1) talk to the student privately,  2) contact the parent, (3) submit an office referral. All major offenses will be referred to a principal. Students must turn in all completed assignments legibly and correctly on or before the due date. It is the student’s responsibility to ask the teacher for assignments when absent. Students have two days to make up those assignments. Students should check their grades in eSchool weekly to ensure that all work is submitted. If the student needs academic assistance, he must inform the teacher (and his/her parent) that he/she will be staying after school for help. The student must also arrange transportation home at 4:00pm or ride the WIN bus at 5:15pm if he stays for academic assistance.


Homework Procedures: 

When homework is assigned it will be due at the beginning of the class on the assigned due date.  All work will be turned into a basket labeled by class. If the student was absent label your work ABSENT.  

It is the student's responsibility to collect any missed assignments due to an absence. 


Grading Policy: 


At the end of the year, all students will receive written evaluations in three areas: attitudinal (affective), academic work (achievement), and overall LEAP objectives. A conference will be held with the parents/students to discuss the evaluations, progress and placement for the next school year



Please refer to Canvas regularly to monitor student progress.  Grades will be updated at least once per week. It is imperative that your child’s progress be closely monitored, as this will directly lead to their success.  If you are unable or have difficulties accessing Canvas please contact the guidance office for further assistance.


Grading/ Re-Testing Policy for 2019-20 School Year


50% of the semester grade comes from summative exams and/or summative projects.

50% of the semester grade will be derived from homework, projects, quizzes,

and formative assessments.

All teachers will allow students to turn in work up to the summative exam.

After the original due date, late work can only earn a max of 70% credit.

(All information regarding grading must be found on the collaborative syllabus)

*No work may be turned in for credit after the summative exam.

Allowing retesting on summative exams:

  1. All students may re-test 1 time per unit earning the higher of the two grades if:
  2. the student has turned in all missing assignments on the day of the retest
  3. attended at least one academic assistance/HERO Intervention
  4. students have 1 week after they receive their summative assessment score, to


  1. Project-based classes may allow students to fix or re-do summative

projects, if turned in on the due date.

  1. All re-take exams must be a different form of the original assessments.



Students must be in attendance every day. A student may only have 5 unexcused absences a semester. Upon returning from an absence, students must submit a written excuse to the attendance secretary. On the 4th tardy students receive a warning. The 5th tardy is detention. Detention is held on Wednesday after school.



No textbook


Additional Supplies:


1 Subject Spiral Notebook



*Colored Pencils


* These items will also be provided.  


Online Resources: 

Students will be using Google Classroom and Google student accounts for various projects/assignments.