Dear Parent or Guardian:


Welcome to a new school year!  As your student’s language arts teacher, we are looking forward to meeting and working with each of you to help make your student’s experience in his or her language arts class positive, successful, and rewarding.


Seventh grade language arts is a survey course which includes critical writing, critical reading, research, speaking and listening, vocabulary, and language.  We will be following the Arizona Common Core Standards for English Language Arts.  You can find these standards at the Arizona Department of Education website at  The standards are designed to improve student readiness for post-high school pursuits at universities, colleges, technical schools, or armed services.  Methods and tools used to help students meet these standards are critical and creative thinking skills, critical reading strategies, classroom discussion forums such as Socratic Discussions and Philosophical Chairs, Cooperative Learning, 6 Traits of Writing, the writing process, and technology.  This course is challenging and requires students to be responsible and actively participate.  Students should expect nightly homework which could be reading, writing, vocabulary exercises, language practice, research, or a multimedia project or presentation. 


Please take a few moments to become familiar with our classroom standards, procedures, and required materials which are outlined on the following pages. These are designed to improve student success. When you finish, please sign and date the back page and return it. Communication is essential for student success. In order to take care of common issues the preferred method of contact is email, as we check it several times per day, and there will not be any phone tag involved.  If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to call us before or after school or during our preparation period (1:57 - 2:51 P.M).  Also, please use the web page at as a reference tool to access information about assignments, due dates, and policies. 


Thank you,



Mrs. L. Cory Miller      Mrs. Cathy Metz         Mrs. Shelly Riccolo      Mrs. Katie Garcia

480-472-2721           480-472-2716           480-472-2720             480-472-2779





Stapley Junior High School has adopted four attitudes for success:  TRUTH, TRUST, RESPECT, and RESPONSIBILITY.  The following school rules and standards will apply in this classroom.  These standards will be more fully defined, discussed, and demonstrated in class.



1.  Be on time.

2.   Be prepared to study and learn.                                                                     

3.   Participate positively and work to learn.                                                     

4.   Follow teacher directions, class rules, and procedures.

5.   Show respect to the teacher, other students, and yourself.

6.   Follow all other school rules.



Choosing to follow the above rules will result in positive consequences; whereas, an infraction of any of the above standards will result in one or a combination of the following consequences:


  • Verbal reminder of the standard
  • Conference with the teacher
  • Parent involvement
  • Isolation from the class
  • Teacher-assigned detention
  • Behavior/Academic contract
  • Work duty
  • Consultation with a counselor
  • Referral to administration


SEVERE CLAUSE:  Any offense deemed serious enough by me will result in immediate referral to administration.






Grades are weighted according to the following categories:


20%     Daily Assignments (i.e. study guides, graded discussions, notes, journals, DOLs, calendars, signed grade reports, self-assessments/reflections)


30%     Product Assessments (i.e. essays, research, projects, speeches/presentations, tests, quizzes)


10%     Vocabulary (i.e. exercises and tests)


10%     Quarterly Exam/Final Exams


30%     Interactive Notebook/Portfolios  




Each nine-week grade is assigned as follows:  90% - 100% = A; 80% - 89% = B; 70% - 79% = C; 60% - 69% = D; 59% and below = F.  The semester grade is the average of the two quarters. 



Grades are available online through the parent/student portal by accessing Mesa’s, Stapley’s, or my web page. We encourage you to frequently use the grade portal to access your child’s progress.   We update grades about every two weeks. When students are given a printed copy of their grades, parent or guardian signatures on these grade reports are required and will count as a grade.  These signed grade reports must be returned the following Monday. We encourage you to use this as an opportunity to discuss progress on current goals and set new goals for the future.



Students will receive late work passes. After the late work passes are used then

no late work will be accepted. If there is an extenuating circumstance please contact the teacher; these will be handled on an individual basis.



If the student has an excused absence, she or he will have one day for each missed day to complete the missing work.  It is the student’s responsibility to find out what was missed before or after class, NOT DURING CLASS TIME.  There is a make-up calendar in the classroom that students may refer to on their return.  Missed tests or quizzes must be made up before or after school within the same time period of the length of the absence (i.e. If a student is absent one day, the test or quiz must be made up the day of return).  If the test or quiz is not made up in this time period, the score will be a 0 and the student will not be allowed to make up the test or quiz.


Students will complete a calendar of daily class activities and homework at the beginning of class each day in their Stapley Planner.  Please refer to this planner or the one on our web page to keep updated on assignments, homework, due dates, test dates, etc.



We are usually available before or after school for extra help.  To ensure our presence, please make an appointment beforehand.



Students must bring the following materials to class every day:



  • A 3-subject spiral or bound notebook with pockets, (college ruled) *Most durable brand- Five Star notebooks
  • A pen (blue or black ink only) and a pencil (sharpened before class)
  • A colored pen (other than blue or black)
  • 8 ½” x 11” white paper (college ruled; no spiral paper)
  • 3-5 glue sticks or mini stapler and staples
  • Stapley Student Handbook/Planner
  • Dry erase marker
  • Homework (ready to turn in before class begins)