Courses Moving to Teacher's Web Host (2017-05-31)

    Mr. Jones' courses will be taught through Teacher's Web Host starting in September. will be phased out. (Nothing lasts forever, you know!)The virtual classroom at Teacher's Web Host for these courses is room 143.

    Recommendations for Final Exam study (2017-05-31)

    Study for the US History 7 and the Global History 9 exams should be done here at the web site. Students should access the special course inside called "Exam Review All Courses". First practice vocabulary, then practice sample questions on each topic we have studied. I will provide 2 classes of whole-group review.Study for the Global 10 Regents is being done in class over 10 class periods, yielding around 7 hours of review, so no after school review sessions will be needed. Students need... Read More

    Regarding Final Exams  (2017-05-31)

    The final examination in my social studies classes is a knowledge test in multiple-choice format. Students who are able to prove that they possess knowledge of the subject to a high degree earn the highest marks. The reasons for using multiple-choice format are the following: (1) it is an objective measure and all students' submissions are treated the same; (2) In-depth studies I have done of other testing formats shows I get the same results from 50 multiple-choice questions as I do from... Read More

    Final Exam Dates (2017-05-17)

    The final exam for grades 7-9 social studies will be 12 June. The Global Regents will serve as the final exam in grade 10.The final examination counts for 11.1% of the GPA in the course.

    Updated Description of the Basic Proficiency Plan (2017-03-30)

    An excerpt from a description of the current Basic Proficiency plan... “Basic Proficiency” is a curriculum that delivers “just enough to pass”. It is designed for students who find the subject difficult for any number or reasons. It is based on extensive research showing that when students focus on learning less they actually learn more. There are a number of things to bear in mind regarding this plan. A good metaphor for the brain’s capacity to retain information is the grocery... Read More

    How to Review for Interims (2017-03-30)

    Students should log in and review the practice sample questions and vocabulary activities inside this website.They will find extensive review activities in the course called "Exam Review All Classes" under their grade level.There is extensive printing capabilities for those without internet at home.

    Announcing New Grading Policy for High School Reading Tasks (2017-03-25)

    The paper: Comparing Workload of Social Studies Class TextbooksStarting 1st April 2017, there will be two changes made to grading policy for topic reading tasks in high school courses.Students choosing the Basic Proficiency curriculum must use the lower level textbook offering. Students choosing the regular curriculum must use the grade level standard textbook.The maximum score available for the lower level reading task will be 76.The reasons for the change are outlined in the paper linked... Read More

    Interim 3 Exam dates (2017-03-21)

    Interim Examination No. 3 dates ... grade 7 ... 3 April... grade 8 ... 5 April... grade 9 ... 3 April... grade 10 ... 6 April

    Qualifying for the Basic Proficiency Plan (2017-03-19)

    For ten years, I have laid a focus on "differentiated instruction" in my classes. The reason to do this was the need to teach the class at the same level of difficulty as the standardized test in my subject so as to increase the number of students passing these examinations. Students with weaker academic abilities needed scaffold support to reach this level. From there was born "Basic Proficiency", a scaled-down curriculum delivering "just enough to pass" so students all have a greater access... Read More

    Web Site Upgrade (2017-03-15)

    Yes, you're in the right place...In an effort to keep up with the changing web, I'm working to update this site so that it is "responsive" to different screen sizes on different devices. Since opening, I don't expect to spend much time on the "inside" design at Many of the apps there cannot really run well on small screens anyway.

    Introduction to the Enduring Issue Essay (2017-01-19)

    New Task: The "350 Research" (2016-11-30)

    The "350 Research" task [rubric] is designed to meet the objectives of New York State Frameworks for Social Studies, Social    Studies Practices Grades 9‐12, A. Gathering, Using, and Interpreting Evidence (page 2) and the Common Core State Standards for Social Studies / History objectives 6-10 (page 64). It is a high school level task intended to be done relatively independently.  The task consists of an expository or persuasive essay based on three good sources. The name... Read More

    Reliability factors and Primary Sources (2016-11-08)

    Training Film: Factors Affecting Reliability of Historical Sources from David Jones on Vimeo.

    Interim Exams (2016-10-27)
    Home Support Guide, Basic Proficiency (2016-10-21)
    Summary Average Length (2016-10-18)

    Some students are consistently losing a few points on the summary tasks because of minor errors selecting details to include. Often times, this is because students left out important top level main ideas.One way to address this is to consider the length of your summary in the number of words. The average size of a summary, according to research, should be about 10% of the size of the original.See chapter 3 on Summarizing and Note Taking from Marzano, R. J., Pickering, D., & Pollock, J.... Read More

    Survey Results on Planning (2016-10-12)

    A few students noted that they would like me to consider scheduling the reading periods all together in a row instead of mixed with teacher presentation days. They felt there would be better continuity to do all the reading first, then have all the presentations in a row.I have been scheduling only 2 reading days in a row and mixing in teacher presentations to break up the reading time and offer more variety. The majority of students (61% of 75) prefer this, so we'll keep it this way.Thank you... Read More

    Criteria for Independent reading task badge (2016-10-04)

    94 or above score on last topic reading tasktask was turned in on timeStudents without this badge cannot earn credit completing this test outside class. Notes must remain in teacher custody throughout the days for completing it.

    Time Budget (2016-10-03)

    Budgeting time for lessons is always challenging because people work at different speeds and because there are always interruptions in our daily routine like snow days and school picture day.I regard class time as the most important time where the real work gets done for students aged 11 to 16. This is a contrast to upper high school and college level academic work where more and more learning is done outside the class independently.Generally, the following formulas apply to budgeting time in... Read More

    Update to Cornell Note Taking rubric (2016-09-27)

    CHANGE:The Cornell note taking rubric will include now an open-notes test to assess how well students selected the important ideas from the source text.LINK TO NEW RUBRICStudents should NOT take this to mean that they need to take down every detail from the text! The score on this test is not a grade in itself that counts. Rather, it is part of the grade for Cornell note taking. Scores of 85, 94, and 100 are reserved to those who can use their notes to score at least 85% on an open-notes test.... Read More

    First Day Slide Show (2016-09-03)
    Homework Expectations (2016-09-02)

    Social Studies Homework Expectations Grade 7: Do not do any homework for this class. Homework is not allowed except in special situations until the last topic.Grade 8: One summary per week most, but not all, weeks.Grade 9: One summary per week.Grade 10: One summary per week plus one other task of your choice from topic task list.

    Historical Sources Reliability Factors (2016-08-30)
    Class Policy Update for 2016-17 (2016-08-25)
    NEW in 2016-17: Badges (2016-08-07)

    BadgesLike merit badges earned by boy and girl scouts students can earn badges in their classes with Mr. Jones. Badges are awarded for achievement or to give the student special permission.There will be badges for elementary students taking the Google Apps class. Those who master the word processing skill sets, for example, earn the word processing badge.High schoolers who qualify for the license to listen to music during working time in class get a license badge.Seventh graders who earn the... Read More

    Grade 4-5-6 Google Apps Syllabus (2016-08-07)
    Robotics Programming Syllabus 2016-17 (2016-08-07)
    Grade 10 Social Studies Syllabus 2016-17 (2016-08-07)
    Grade 9 Social Studies Syllabus 2016-17 (2016-08-07)
    Grade 8 Social Studies Syllabus 2016-17 (2016-08-07)
    Grade 7 Social Studies Syllabus 2016-17 (2016-08-07)
    Productivity Computing Class Syllabus 2016-17 (2016-08-02)
    Rubric for new task type: The short answer constructed-response (2016-07-18)

    The new Global History and Geography Regents examinations for grade 10 starting in 2018 will have anew type of test item: the short answer constructed-response. To help students get ready for this new format, such questions will be integrated into each topic of study beginning in academic year 2016-2017 in grades seven through ten.The new rubric outlines performance levels in the standard way for this class.The source information for developing this rubric is at EngageNY.A sample of what this... Read More

    September: New Standard Format for Papers (2016-06-10)

    Starting September 2016, this will be the standard format for mini-research papers and essays:1" marginspage numbers upper rightheading upper leftHeading:NameTask NumberDateSAMPLE

    APA Format Primer (2016-04-21)
    New Package "Primary Source" (2016-04-05)

    At the request of several students, I will experiment with a "primary source standard package". Students doing this package will do:the regular reading taskthe regular primary sourcethe standard multiple-choice (NOT basic)Separate primary sources in place of the standard inquiry composition quizzes. These count as high order tasks, not low order tasks.the multiple-choice end taskFor topic 8.7, those primary sources... Read More

    Announcing New Research Package (2016-03-13)

    Announcing New Research PackageThis is offered purely on an experimental basis in March-May 2016.Starting in the next topic of study, students may choose a research package to to the standard inquiry level. Students choosing this package will complete the standard set of assignments in the usual way except for two differences: the standard inquiry questions will be done as research compositions in MLA format and the final task of the topic will be multiple-choice. Students choosing this option... Read More

    Application Music License (2016-01-03)
    Announcing a Change in Policy - Listening to Music while Studying (2015-12-26)
    Training Film: How to Take an Installment Quiz (2015-06-11)
    Training Film for "5&3" Summary Tasks (2015-04-30)