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  • ELD Department Syllabus

    Barry Goldwater High School, A+ School of Excellence

    2023-2024 School Year

    Teachers’ Names:  Marianne Durell and Suzy Palmer    Name of Course: SEI Reading and Writing


    Teachers’ Emails:marianne.durell@dvusd.org; suzy.palmer@dvusd.org  


      Teachers’ phone numbers: Mrs. Durell: 623 445-3121;  Mrs. Palmer: 623 445-3123

    *Email is the preferred method and all emails  will be returned within 48 hours.  A phone call or Zoom call  can be arranged. 

    Cultural vision- BGHS is committed to providing continuous opportunities to demonstrate achievement and personal growth in a collaborative student-centered community of diversity and kindness.   


    SUPPLIES LIST-  Here’s What You Will Need for Success in Class! 

    • Chromebook and charging cord provided by the School District 
    • Pencils and blue/black pens
    • Loose leaf notebook paper and folder with pockets for each of the 6 classes
    • Agenda/ Calendar – Use app on chromebook or a paper version
    • Colored  highlighters (at least 3 colors) & / or colored pencils
    • Composition/or notebook for journal writing/bell work



    BGHS students will develop their reading, writing, speaking and listening skills by utilizing analysis, organization, production and language skills in innovative and creative ways.  These skills will be assessed individually and collectively multiple times throughout the semester in order to determine student growth and achievement.  Students are encouraged to work toward the highest level of achievement and to challenge themselves to grow and learn to their highest ability.  

    There are state standards, district curriculum expectations and a scope and sequence to ensure students are learning alongside their peers. At  Goldwater we also focus heavily on critical thinking skills, communication skills, life skills, and habits of mind. Canvas, Power Schools, and/or the BGHS course website each provide specifics related to the Content Standards, Performance Objectives and Rubrics for grading.


    COURSE OUTLINE of Units and Expected Time Frames*

    Fall Semester SEI Reading and Writing

    Unit Title & Resources Utilized

    Essential Standards

    Department and District Assessments

    Expected Timeframe

    All About Me/Think Again/Choices

    *A Long Walk to Water

    *One Hundred Dresses

    *Amina’s Voice

    * Edge: Reading, Writing, and Language

    • EL.9-12.S1 
    • Construct meaning from oral presentations and literary and informational text
    • EL.9-12.S3 Speak and Write about literary and informational texts
    • RI/PSI/PI
    • ELLA/District
    • Edge Placement
    • Narrative Writing
    • Edge Unit Assessment

    Weeks 2-6

    Wisdom of the Ages/Family Matters/The Art of Expression

      • EL.9-12.S1.1 and 4 Analyze central idea, determine text structure.
      • EL.9-12S3.3 Compose informational texts
      • EL.9-12.S9.1 and 2 Develop an informational topic and develop a sequence of events.
    • EL.9-12.S1.1-4 Find theme, summarize a text, cite evidence, and determine text structures: Reading Narratives
    • EL.9-12.S4.1-4 Persuasive Writing
    • Critical Thinking Skills-Inferences
    • Expository Writing Skills
    • EDGE Unit Assessment
    • Research Skills
    • Collaboration Skills
    • Communication Skills
    • Persuasive Writing Assessment 
    • ELLA/District


    Weeks 7-18

    Spring Semester SEI Reading and Writing 

    Unit Title & Resources Utilized

    Essential Standards

    Department and  

    District Assessments

    Expected Timeframe

    How We See Things/Give

    and Take/Opening Doors

    Number of the Stars

    *Edge: Reading, Writing, and Language

    • EL.9-12.S1.1 and 4 Analyze central idea, determine text structure.
    • EL.9-12S3.3 Compose informational texts
    • EL.9-12.S9.1 and 2 Develop an informational topic and develop a sequence of events.
    • Creative and Critical Thinking Skills
    • Social Skills 
    • Argument Assessment
    • ELLA/District


    Weeks 7-12

    Absolute Power/Fair Play/Fear This


    *Amina’s Voice

    *Prisoner B-3087

    • EL.9-12.S1.1-4 Find theme, summarize a text, cite evidence, and determine text structures: Reading Narratives
    • EL.9-12.S3.2 Writing Narratives
    • Literary Analysis
    • Research Skills
    • AZMerit State Testing 
    • 2021 AZELLA
    • RI Testing 

    Weeks 7-12

    Hard-Won Liberty/Coming of Age/Are You Buying it?

    • EL.9-12.S1.1-4 Find theme, summarize a text, cite evidence, and determine text structures: Reading Narratives
    • EL.9-12.S9.1 and 2 Develop an informational topic and develop a sequence of events.
    • RI Testing
    • Critical Thinking Skills
    • Social Skills
    • ELLA/District
    • Edge Unit Assessment

    Weeks 11-19

    + All titles subject to change at the discretion of the teaching team

    The following resources and videos or clips are used:  To be determined

    ++The student or parent may request a meeting with the teacher if there are questions regarding the resources or to request alternative assignments 

    At Barry Goldwater High School, we believe that a positive attitude, strong work ethic driven by the goal of continuous improvement is essential for student success both in high school and in life.  Each piece of student work is crucial as it provides an opportunity for feedback to foster improvement and growth academically, socially, and emotionally. All coursework, both summative (assessments) and formative (practice), is of value and influences a teacher’s understanding of student learning and growth.  In order to ensure that teachers provide feedback based on student learning, BGHS uses levels of proficiency based upon a student demonstrating what they know and can do relative to the IB Middle Years Program (MYP) Criteria, IB Diploma Criteria and Arizona content standards. 

     Valuable feedback of student work will be provided through the use of rubrics and grading scales.  Feedback may be verbal or in writing and is intended to be timely and clear to provide the necessary support for a student to reach the next level of proficiency. Final grades are determined by my professional analysis of student work. This includes both the most recent work as well as consistent evidence of levels of proficiency using state standards and exit outcomes. Please do not hesitate to inquire about how levels of achievement are determined by contacting me.


    Proficiency-Based Grade

    Proficiency-Based Descriptor

    Percentage Range

    GPA Point

    MYP/IB Criteria

    Honors/AP/IB  GPA Point



    Evidence demonstrates a high level of proficiency of the learning standard(s)











    Evidence demonstrates proficiency of the learning standard(s)











    Evidence demonstrates partial proficiency of the learning standard(s)











    Evidence demonstrates minimal proficiency of the learning standard(s)


         (no credit)









    No evidence of proficiency of the learning standard(s)


         (no credit)







    In order to provide better communication of student progress, an up-to-date progress report will be available on the dates listed below. Progress reports indicate where a student is with regard to achieving proficiency with the content standards and process skills at that point in time.  A final grade will be given at the end of each semester.  Students have many opportunities in each class to continue their learning, reassess, and grow.


    Fall Semester 

    “Snapshots,” Progress Report,  and End of Semester Mark Reporting Dates

     (Grading is reported in Power Schools) 

    Spring Semester

     “Snapshots,” Progress Report, and End of Semester Mark Reporting Dates

    (Grading is reported in Power Schools)

    August 19th  

    September 9th 

    September 30th 

    October 28th  

    November 18th   

    December 16th  

    January 3rd *- End of Semester in PowerSchools

    January 20st 

    February 10th

    March 10th*

    April 7st 

    April 28th 

    May 19st  

    May 20th - End of Semester in PowerSchools

    Your final grade will be determined by assessment of your proficiency in the standards for the course. Work will be assigned and should be completed in order to gain proficiency in skills and develop a thorough understanding of the concepts. Each piece of work is crucial as it provides an opportunity for feedback, improvement and demonstration of growth. Students that do not develop, practice and demonstrate skills through the assessments (whether they are formative or summative) are not likely to pass this course. 


    Be prompt, prepared, respectful, and committed to the class, the instructor, and to one another.  In the event that any of us are not prompt, prepared, respectful, and committed, we must take responsibility and make amends while accepting the consequences of our actions.

    What to do immediately upon entering this classroom:

    1. Look at the White Board or View Board to determine learning goals.
    2. Find your assigned seat or identified learning space.
    3. Turn all electronic devices off and place in backpack or pocket*  (Needs to be out of sight)
    4. Take out your Chromebook and all necessary materials and put your backpack away. 
    5. Begin bellwork and/or join your team to actively engage in learning.  
    6. Contribute to the learning and work hard to demonstrate your abilities. 



    Consequences of Positive Choices- Leading the Way with Kindness

    Increased Learning

    Positive feelings

    Positive attention 

    Higher achievement levels

    Increased confidence

    Positive Peer relationships

    More/ higher  level skills

    Increased success

    Positive Relationships with staff

    Scholarships, better jobs

    Increased respect 

    Internships and Opportunities

    Consequences of Poor Choices- Leading by Growing in Kindess


    Minor Offences

    Major Offences


    Restate expectations, Redirect,  Task change, Seat change, Conference, Replacement choices 

    Referral to Administration 

    Consequences issued in line with  student handbook


    Buddy Teacher w/reflection, Conference, email communication to parent


    Phone call home, In person conference w/parent, Thinking center, Detention


    A referral to the administration/office

    BGHS ELECTRONICS PROCEDURES- Use Technology to Enhance Learning

    At BGHS  we want students to learn how to leverage technology and its applications to make life easier and to enhance their performance now and in the future. We know that integrating tech into our classrooms is one way to expose students to the potential benefits of technologies while at the same time helping them learn how to use these powerful tools responsibly. ALL students will receive a Chromebook they can use to complete their schoolwork. Since ALL students have access to a computing device, they will not need to use personal electronics during class time. As a courtesy and to ensure we focus on academic pursuits, we ask students to silence their phones and put away all personal electronics during instructional time.


    Our school motto is “Attend Today, Achieve Tomorrow.” This motto is an extension of our belief that regular attendance will equate to the attainment of excellence later in life. Remember, the benefit of lectures, discussion and participation is lost forever to those who are absent. Every Day Counts!  Students who miss more than 10% of the class or school year are at risk of losing credit.  


    Being punctual or being respectful of another’s time is an important part of a culture of kindness.


    1. If you struggle to be on time… BE EARLY.
    2. Once you arrive, don’t leave… ENTER CLASS ONCE
    3. No hall passes during the first and last…10 MINUTES of class.
    4. All students who are not in class can be approached by… FACULTY and STAFF.



    Your Teachers Need Time With You -Make it a priority to be in class! 

    At BGHS, teaching and learning time is a priority.  When a student is out of class, they are often not directly supervised and miss out on instruction.  We limit the number of passes students use in a semester and students are taught to utilize the 5-minute passing periods and the 30-minute lunch hour to check messages, use the restroom or to get a drink.   Students are asked to make every effort to be in class from bell to bell.   If students need to leave class, they will fill out an e-Hallpass.

    GOLD and Advisory periods                                                                                                  

    At BGHS, learning is the constant expectation and the time and support provided is what varies.  Student mastery of content and each student's social and emotional well-being are equally important. Advisory time on Mondays helps to ensure we  develop a sense of belonging and connectivity at Goldwater. GOLD time (Get Our Learning Done) is provided Tuesday through Thursdays. During GOLD time, teachers work with students who need additional support or time to become proficient. It is imperative that students check Flex Time Manager during Advisory to see if they have been requested by a teacher or to choose a session to work toward the next level of proficiency, whether it be content knowledge or a related skill. The student will report to that location during GOLD time. Attendance is taken.



    I have received the ELD Course Syllabus and I am aware that a copy of this, and the course Exit Outcomes are on the school website and on Canvas.   

    I understand that written materials such as articles, stories and the novels indicated on the syllabus, as well as videos and technology used in the classroom will be used to support the teaching of the state standards. 

    *Novel descriptions available at: Amazon.com or GoodReads.com.  If there are any questions or concerns, please contact the teacher via email.

    I understand the teachers and counselors are available to provide information and support and can be reached by email or I can leave a voicemail message.   

    *A signature indicates that you have reviewed the syllabi in this class and indicated if further communication is necessary.  A lack of a signature does not indicate that your student will not participate in the curriculum.



    My child’s name is: ____________________________________________________________________