Posted in Class Life

Be Ready to Have a Great School Year!

Want your child to have a great school year?  Then start with the basics.  The following items are needed EVERY DAY for a student to do his/her best at school:

  • Sleep. Check out this article on sleep.  Sleep is incredibly important for a kid to be successful in school.  I have seen students many times too tired to concentrate.  It is crucial students and parents create a sleep schedule and STICK to it!
  • A regular time and place to do homework.  Homework is serious business.  In some classes, homework can account for as much as 50% of a student’s grade.  Be sure your student creates a routine to get homework done, EVERY DAY.  And where ever that homework spot is, make sure it is a quiet, TV and radio free zone.
  • Help.  Sussman offers so many different programs to help students who need it.  Comment below or call me for all the places your student can get help before, during, or after the school day.
  • A full stomach.  Healthy Breakfasts and lunches are served at Sussman.  Be sure your student does not skip meals.  School is a lot of work and kids need all of the energy they can get.
  • Three-way Communication with a parent, student, and teacher. Working together we can achieve a lot.

Please feel free to email me for help or more ideas and suggestions! at

Get more ideas here!

Posted in Class Life, Technology

Espeseth Room 11 Technology Policy


  1. Students are expected to take out their work WHILE signing-in as soon as the tardy bell rings.
  2. When Mrs. Espeseth is talking students are expected to put the computer screen down and/or make eye contact. Do not work on a computer unless requested to do so.
  3. Occasionally phones will be used in class, please silence them before coming into class.
  4. Respect the computers at all times. Do not write on them, deface them, or destroy them in any way.  Please come to me if you notice anything wrong with the computer.
  5. Be sure to log out at the end of every class period. Be nice and help out a fellow student who has forgotten to log out.
  6. Plagiarism is wrong and against the law. Please be sure to do your own work at all times.

What to Do When You Get Stuck

If, at any time, you have an issue with the computer do not exchange it for another one.  If there is something wrong with the computer I need to know.  If you run into a fixable glitch you need to know how to fix it.

  • When dealing with Wi-Fi issues it is best to be patient.  Sometimes resetting the Wi-Fi is helpful.  If you do not know how to do that, ask for help.
  • If a computer freezes then force close, wait 30 seconds, then restart the computer.
  • Most computer problems are operator error, be patient, try again, ask the people sitting next to you. If all of you do not know the problem then raise your hand and ask me.

What to do when you are finished with an Assignment

Go to and read an article.  Then comment on the article, be sure to include what you learned and what you found interesting.

If any computer rule is broken the following will be enforced:

  1. First Infraction-Warning
  2. Second Infraction-Loss of the computer for the rest of the day/session, contact with the Dean, and a note home.
  3. Third Infraction-No computer for a week, contact with the Dean, and a note home.
  4. Fourth Infraction-Placement in another class.
Posted in Class Life

What Grade Will You Deserve?

A Student

  • DOES ALL work assigned perfectly
  • Studies before a test
  • Pays attention in class
  • Asks questions
  • Does not cheat or plagiarize on ANY assignment
  • Is organized
  • Uses class time wisely
  • Writes neatly and completes thoughts in full sentences
  • Reads and follows directions
  • Has a positive attitude and LIKES school
  • Does not use absences as an excuse not to work

B Student

  • Does MOST work assigned perfectly
  • Turns in EVERY assignment
  • Pays attention in class
  • Asks questions
  • Studies before a test
  • Does not cheat or plagiarize on ANY assignment
  • Is organized
  • Uses class time wisely
  • Writes neatly and completes thoughts in full sentences
  • Reads and follows directions
  • Has a good attitude and LIKES school
  • Does not use absences as an excuse not to work

C Student

  • Pays attention in class
  • Turns in MOST assignments
  • Asks questions
  • Studies before a test
  • Is organized
  • Uses class time wisely
  • Writes neatly and completes thoughts in full sentences
  • Does not use absences as an excuse not to work

D Student

  • Pays attention in class
  • Asks questions
  • Uses class time wisely
Posted in Class Life

What Grade Will You Receive?

Grade Distribution

Collaboration-tutorials 40%

Technique-binder checks, Cornell Notes, learning logs, etc. 30%

Participation-Grade checks, presentations, etc. 30%

Types of Assignments
Below are listed the types of assignments I give and how many points they are worth.  When making up missing assignments a student would be wise to make-up the assignments worth the most points first.

Tutorials – 25 points
Essays – 20 points
Projects – 20 points
Binder Checks/Pioneer Passport Checks – 10 points
Cornell Notes- 5 points
Learning Logs- 5 points
Grade Checks-5 points

Grading Scale
A = Outstanding Level of Performance (90-100%)

  • Indicates that the pupil has done excellent work and has mastered the course and/or assignment objectives, consistently does excellent work with skill and thoroughness; and consistently has applied knowledge gained to new situations.

B = High Level of Performance (80-89%)

  • Indicates that the pupil has done above average work, mastered almost all of the course and/or assignment objectives; and has applied knowledge gained to new situations.

C = Satisfactory Level of Performance (70-79%)

  • Indicates that the pupil has done average work and has mastered many of the objectives of the course and/or assignment.

D = Needs Improvement in Performance (60-69%)

  • Indicates that the pupil has done below average work and has mastered few of the objectives of the course and/or assignment.

F = Unsatisfactory Level of Performance (59% and below)

  • Indicates that the pupil’s work fell below a level of acceptance for the course and/or assignment and was unsatisfactory.
Posted in Class Life

How To Do Well In School

There are many different ways to do well in school.  Here are a few suggestions.

    1. Before the School Year/Semester/Trimester Starts Create Goals.  Ask yourself what types of grades you want and be clear on what you are willing to do to get them.  Be realistic.  If you say to yourself you want A’s but you are not willing to do homework than you must understand that you will not receive A’s.  Other goals you may want to set are Better citizenship grades, Student of the Month, Scholarship, and/or CJSF.
    2. Use You Pioneer Passport.  Not only should you write your homework in your Pioneer Passport you should also include tests and projects.  It is also a good idea to add extra events like play practice, club events, field trips, and sports practice so that you can manage your time better.  It is possible to do homework before it is due especially when you have practice and will be unable to complete it the night before it is due.
    3. Create Habits.  Do your homework in the same place at the same time every day.  Study your worst subject 5 minutes every day once you complete your homework.  Clean your binder out once a week on the same day.  Hole punch your papers and file them as soon as you get them.  Create good habits and practice them every single day.
    4. Do Every Single Assignment.  Grades are about the accumulation of points.  Be sure to do every assignment so that you can get the most points possible.  It is never okay not to do an assignment even the extra-credit.
    5. Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute to Do you Work.  Be sure to do work as soon as you get it.  Waiting until the last minute makes turning in assignments more difficult.
    6. Find a Study Buddy.  Be sure to write the names and phone numbers of at least two people in each of your classes.  If you are absent, get confused, need to talk about class assignments, or recopy notes you can ask your study buddy.  It is okay to pick your friends but be sure they are people you can rely on.
    7. Take Advantage of Sussman.  There are many opportunities at Sussman for students who need extra help.  After-Math is offered Mondays, Tuesday, and Thursdays.  Many teachers open their classrooms before-school, after-school and at lunch.  Mrs. Espeseth is in her room almost every day before school starting at 7:00 am, lunch, and after-school until at least 3:00 pm.  And Saturday School is always a great option to get extra help.

Can you think of other suggestions?  Write them in the comment section.


Posted in Awesome Articles, Class Life, Getting to College, Help Yourself

Getting Ready to Take the SAT

Khan Academy has one mission–To provide a free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere.

The newest way Khan Academy is trying to help others is with a free SAT prep.

The SAT is a test that 11th and 12th graders take.  The results of that test are used by colleges to gauge how well a student will do in college.  Some colleges require a certain score on the SAT to be accepted to that school.

8th-grade AVID students are incredibly lucky, they get to take a practice version, called the PSAT, this April.  Khan Academy has teamed up with the company that gives the practice version of the SAT to help students practice for the real test.

By creating a partnership with the College Board, Khan Academy can get access to students’ PSAT test scores to help create a learning program exclusively for the student and it is all free.  If students take advantage of lessons it is possible to raise SAT scores.  Those raised SAT scores may help students get into college.

Kahn Academy hopes that this program will make getting into college more fair for everyone.  Click here to start your SAT practice lessons.