• AP Physics 

    Mr. Dave Walla

    1.    Welcome to AP Physics.  This class is intended to be both informative and interesting.  My overall philosophy of interaction with students is one of mutual respect.  If we can maintain that approach, the atmosphere of our classroom will be relaxed and enjoyable.  Please read the information below that provides some information and guidance about the specifics of appropriate behavior

     2.    You will be given a textbook.  Sign your name, in ink, inside of the front cover and ensure that I have recorded your book number.  Other than your name inside the front cover, do not write or highlight in the book, as you will be responsible for its care for this semester.  If you drop the course, please return it within 5 days.

    3.    Please bring the following materials with you everyday – your textbook, a course notebook (more information below), lab notebook, paper, pencils, a scientific calculator, 2 dry erase markers, and any assignments for the day.

    4.    The course notebook will be kept throughout the semester.  It is to be a 3 ring binder with dividers for the following sections:  notes, handouts/activities, tests/quizzes, and labs.  Each section is to be kept in order, with the most recent data on top.  It is strongly recommended that the note section incorporates a thin spiral notebook within the 3 ring binder to prevent loss of older course notes as the semester progresses.  Since this spiral notebook can be used during most quizzes and some tests, it is critical that it be complete and organized.

    5.    There are some things that should not be brought to class – food, gum, drink (except water) bottles, inappropriate shirts or jewelry, and coats.  Sunglasses or hats are not to be worn in class.  No radios, CD’s, or headphones are permitted in class. Phones are to remain off and in backpacks unless permission to do otherwise is given.

    6.    Backpacks create movement problems.  If brought to class, please take out what is needed for our class, and store the backpacks under/behind your desk or against the outside walls of the classroom, preferably under a table.  They are never to stay in the aisles of this classroom.

    7.    Bathroom passes –Students are permitted to use the bathroom at any appropriate time by having their handbook initialed.  Any student leaving the room without a pass, ostensibly to go to the bathroom, who is found anywhere other than the bathrooms down the hall from Room 401 will be assigned ISS.  Students are asked to please try to use the bathrooms before or after class.  Trips are to be brief and chronic abusers of this privilege will have it revoked.

    8.    This course will cover the following major units:  Science of Physics, Mechanics/Kinematics, Waves, Light, & Sound, Electricity & Magnetism.  The C course will not cover Waves, Light, and Sound.

    9.    All school rules pertaining to attendance will be followed/enforced in this class.  I do not tolerate tardiness/truancy, and will give detentions starting with the third tardy, along with parent notification.

    10. Grades will be based upon a standard scale of

    90    -  100%       = A

    80    -    89          = B

    77    -    79          = C

    70    -    76          = D

    Below 70             = F

    I will round up any grade of 0.5 to 0.9 to the next higher digit.  Progress Grades will be weighted, with tests and labs comprising 70% and quizzes, homework and participation making up the remaining 30%.  Tests count for twice the value of labs. Major quizzes and Homework composites are also doubled in value. If you suspect that an error has been made in calculating your grade, see me for an explanation. 

    11. Classwork/Makeup  It is each absent student’s responsibility confirm the day(s)’ assignment from the class daily calendar and to obtain class notes for the days missed from a classmate.  Provided that you have told me that you intend to do so, experiments, tests, etc. can be made up before or after school by appointment in my room.  Class work from absences of two days or less will be made up by within one week following your return.  Reduced credit for make-up work applies to anything not accomplished within this time frame.   Individual arrangements will be made between student and teacher for longer absences.  Please inform me ahead of time on school field trips, doctor's appointments, or college visitations. 

    12. Homework / Lab Submission Policy:  Assigned homework is to be completed by the beginning of the class period. This homework will be checked for completion and usually a single problem will be spot graded. To earn a 10/10, every problem must show significant effort and the spot problem must be completed successfully.  Since the majority of assigned problems have answers shown in the back of the book, successful completion means that the problem has been solved in a clear series of steps that reflect both the formulas employed and the units of the answer. Deductions will be made for less than the above.  At the end of each 3 week grading period, one assignment (lowest) will be dropped. This means that each 3 week homework grade will reflect 5-7 assignments when allowing for labs or test days. Should a student be absent on the assignment due date(s), the missing homework is due on the next class appearance. There is no late submission opportunity for late homework.

    Labs must be type written in double space and submitted by the due date. Should the student be absent on the due date, the report should be submitted by a classmate or electronically to wallad@georgetownisd.org by the beginning of the due date class period. The only exceptions to this rule are family emergencies or a significant injury/illness. In these events, explanatory notes are required to be signed by the associated 3rd party. (doctor, pastor, law enforcement officer, etc.)   A note from a parent is not sufficient.  This course is taught on an AP level and the above standards reflect those of the majority of the colleges that you will attend.

     13. During this semester, a teacher specific website is available that will, among other items, have posted on it the daily schedule.  The best way to reach me (and also my preference) is to e-mail me.  My e-mail is wallad@georgetownisd.org.  Feel free to e-mail me anytime but understand that I may not read it until the next day.  An alternative method is to call the school during the day and leave a message where I may call you back during my planning period.  This is a poorer alternative due to the possibility for phone tag as I try to make and receive calls during my hour planning period. 

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