• Welcome to Ms. Kristin Martin's webpage.

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    Ms. Kristin Martin
    Teacher, 7th & 8th grade CHOICE Science

    About My Classroom: Frequently Asked Questions

    (1) Am I in the right place?
    Yes!  CHOICE is a community of learners who respect each other and agree to learn from one another as well as from the CHOICE teachers. CHOICE is an environment that encourages creativity and high achievement.  This is a place for questions- some answers come readily while others will require months of work.  Lab space is available for us in the main building, but we will also use the CHOICE building and the outdoors as our classroom: the garden, the courtyard, the campus surrounding us.

    (2) What will we be learning this year? 


    CHOICE students will learn the same key concepts as science students in the main building, but because we are a smaller community we will take a different approach to our work. This will involve outdoor-based science classes, special guest speakers and larger community-minded projects that stem from our curriculum throughout the year.


    (3) What should we expect in science class?
    I intend for our classroom to be an environment where students feel comfortable expressing their ideas and taking risks in thought.  Science class is a place to ask questions, gather evidence, and decide on an answer.  This is a place to actively think and listen to others while reserving judgment. In-depth, reflective conversation and thoughtful work should be the norm.  Furthermore, a science classroom should stay neat and orderly due to safety concerns.

    (4) What materials will we be using and what am I responsible for bringing to class?

    We will use traditional laboratory equipment: microscopes, electronic balances, glassware (beakers, graduated cylinders, etc), thermometers, computer applications and electronic data collection equipment, rain gauges & sling psychrometers- oh my! We also have SmartBoard technology in our classroom as well as computer lab time. 
    Please bring the following items to science class every day:
      -folder or section in a binder for science handouts           
      -pens, pencils, and a highlighter

      -a smile and your curiosity
    In addition you may want to have a calculator and/or colored pencils. I do have some of these in the classroom, however. 

    (5) How do I earn a good grade?
    -Keep your class notes up to date; I will give pop-quizzes from time to time and you will be able to use your notes to help you.
    -Homework will be assigned when necessary.  It could involve a pre-reading assignment that will prepare you for class the next day. Sometimes it will be a worksheet or series of questions about an important concept we learned. It could be a written reaction to a 'hot button' issue or a write-up from a recent lab. Homework could also involve studying for a test or quiz; Tests or quizzes are announced in plenty of time for you to see me for extra help or to have a study group after school. Homework will not always be collected but when it is- effort counts! Always give it your best effort.
    -Classwork will not always be graded, but when it is, effort counts!
    -Tests, quizzes and project deadlines will be announced in advance; CHOICE teachers also work hard to stagger our major projects and tests throughout the year to avoid 'big' assignment deadlines ending up on the same day.
    -You will have a variety of assignments throughout the year: presentations, lab investigations, creative and artistic assignments; math-based, writing-based, technology-based, and research-based assignments... in other words, you will show off your talents & develop new strengths! 
    -Please follow "The Five P's". Always be: Prepared, Productive, Positive, Punctual, & Polite.
    -A note about late work: I expect work to be handed in on time, but know that this may not always happen. In the event that you do not turn in your work on time--
    For 8th Grade: I do not accept late homework for credit. If you do not turn in homework on the day it is due, you will receive a zero. This is not the same policy for labs and graded projects; if a lab or a graded project is late, you will lose 10% per day that it is late.
    For 7th Grade: I will accept late homework work only during the first and second marking periods, and only if we do not discuss the homework in class together. You are allowed three days to turn in an assignment (again, provided we do not discuss it in class together) but you will lose 10% of the value each day it is late. I will not accept a homework assignment for credit after the three days. Beginning in the third marking period, I will not accept late homework for credit. In the third and fourth marking periods,
    if you do not turn in homework on the day it is due, you will receive a zero. This is not the same policy for labs and graded projects; if a lab or a graded project is late, you will lose 10% per day that it is late, regardless of the marking period.

    (6) May I revise my work for a better grade?

    Depending on the type of assignment, you may be able to revise your work. I will give more information about revisions as we begin and close assignments.
     (7) I'm working at night and I have a question, how do I contact you?
    If you're working on homework or another assignment, make sure you use Schoology as your first resource because I post helpful links and notes there. If you still cannot find the answer you seek, Schoology is also a great 'sounding board' to debate and discuss ideas with your classmates.  While you may think to email me or post a direct message to me through Schoology, there are times when I may be unavailable in the evening because of my own family obligations. Rest assured, we will work out any issues together in person so plan to see me before school, during lunch or after school to discuss your questions. 

    (8) Will you stay after school if I need extra help?
    Yes!  After-school time is a fun way to learn about your classmates, me, and most importantly, to delve into what we've been studying. After-school time could be a structured study environment for test/quiz preparation, a movie showing or game to extend understanding, a chance to work in the garden- it could be whatever we want it to be!  I also tend to arrive to school early, so you may plan to catch up then instead.

    (9) What should I do when I am absent during the year?
    If you are absent at any time, you must be resourceful and responsible. This means: Use Schoology to find the work you missed. If you have questions while you are absent, post a clarification question on Schoology or call someone from class; then, when you return, talk to me about what you�ve missed. If you are absent on the day of a test or a quiz, you must take it on the day you return. If you are absent from a group presentation, your grade will be affected.  If you are sick for a long period of time, we will work something out that best benefits all of us.  In the event of a lengthy planned absence, you are responsible for seeing me to get the work ahead of time.

    (10) Who is Mrs. Martin?
    Here are some things about me that you would never guess just by looking:
    -I attended William Smith College and completed a Bachelor of Arts degree with a dual major in Environmental Studies and English Literature, as well as a minor in Studio Art.  Many areas in this program were team-taught with 2 professors each of a different discipline. 

    -I studied abroad, traveling throughout areas of northern India for nearly one year, focusing on one rather controversial issue, the Tehri Dam and its impact on the Ganges River; this was also my  'lens' through which I could learn about other environmental issues, culture, and Hindi spoken dialects as well as the written Sanskrit language.  I have family in India and in South Korea. 

    -I pursued a career in publishing for nearly 5 years, holding a Marketing/Public Relations position which also included some travel throughout parts of the U.S.

    -I couldn't "shake" the idea of teaching so I left marketing and enrolled in the Geological Sciences program at SUNY in New Paltz. I obtained a second bachelor's degree, Bachelor of Science, and teaching certificate for Earth /General Science grades 7-12.  I was able to study geology throughout the Eastern U.S. coast and in Death Valley, CA.  I also completed my Master of Science in Literacy and earned an additional teaching certificate as a Reading Specialist grades 5-12.

    -I take pride in being a well-rounded, high-energy and quite diplomatic person.  I love the outdoors, and anything that sparks my imagination.  I am not a talented dancer but enjoy it; the same goes for my singing and acting abilities-- you'll see!

    -I look forward to conveying my love for learning with both excitement and challenges for us to work through together

    For more information about the CHOICE program, please visit Ms. Parrott's SchoolWires Page.