Agnes, Teacher (Scribe in the House of Life)

1. & 2. Letter to My Students
    Jan 16, 2010, A. Azzolino

Dear Student,

    This letter is how I've chosen to introduce myself to you.  As a graded assignment you will do the same for me.

    Teaching mathematics to people is my vocation. Both mathematics and my students are important to me. I work hard at teaching and expect my students to work hard at learning. I'm a single parent, a full-time teacher, a landlord, an author, USCG Captain, an independent publisher, web master, and an educational consultant. My black pickup truck has 98,000 miles and my home, computer & office window overlook Raritan Bay.

    I enjoy being at home, writing web pages, attending math meetings, watching videos & TV, reading, theatre, and playing with beads. My son, a captain, owns tug boats and works New York Harbor.

    My office phone number is 732-548-6000 x 3952 and it's in room TSC200F. My email is math home

    My home phone number is 732-739-3951 . You may email me at home by using the message box on my semester web page, the class button (at the left), will link to the semester page. The page and my server will forward the message to me.

    Even if you are just stuck on the homework or wish to discuss how you feel in class, phone or email me.

    I consider speaking and writing about mathematics, mental computation, pencil and paper computation, and calculator computation to be important items. I discuss and demonstrate each and encourage you to learn to become proficient with each. You might regularly spend time in my office working on math or need to be in my office to retake a quiz.

    Each class has a home page and graded assignments are required and are linked through these pages.

    In addition to graded assignments, quizzes & tests, a last-day-of-class final exam is required. The graded work is collected in a questionbook and student are expected to print questions from the internet site, answer and hand in work on these revising them until answers are correct. Even quizzes which are not perfect may be retaken (one try per quiz per WEEK) until perfect papers are achieved. The questionbook/graded work also includes a "project" (a short written & oral presentation for on campus courses and a web page/paper for Internet courses. Yes, I do help with this.

    In this class, you will be talking and working with other students. One student called the class she took with me "the most user-friendly, interactive math class" she ever had. IF YOU ARE NOT AMIABLE TO THESE CONCEPTS, DO NOT REMAIN IN THIS SECTION: SWITCH TO ANOTHER SECTION.

    It is your responsibility to learn the material. It is my responsibility to make the learning process as productive as possible. If you miss a class, check the course outline to determine what work you must do, read the material in the text, do the homework, phone if I can help or if I haven't seen you for a week. For many students, math is a review course. Don't think that means it's easy. Homework is important. Do it. Stay with it. Keep current on it and the questionbook questions.

    For many student math is hard. If it is hard for you, working in a group can make it easier.

    Being a student is not an easy job. It is work. Plan time to attend class as well as time to work on the material outside class. If I can be of help, call me or see me in my office or after class.

    Tests are like job interviews made months in advance: Treat them as such. Don't miss a test. If you must miss a test, be sure I know about it as soon as you do. I don't permit makeup tests except in extreme cases so do not plan on taking a makeup for a test or exam you miss. On a 0 to 5 grade range, you'll get the 0.

    The pace of the course is determined by the math department's course outline. If you wish me to slow down, restate what I've just said, write it in symbols, write it in words, explain it in a different way, STOP ME and ask if I would do what you wish! I do have some flexibility in how the material is presented.

    Have a good semester.

Other Announcements

Project Connections:    If you are a student with a learning disability and wish an accommodations or adaptive testing, please contact Project Connections, 732-906-2507, located in Johnson Learning Center, and provide me with the appropriate paperwork.

School Closing & Security:    If you have any questions or safety concerns, call the MCC Police Department at extension 2500 or call 911. To find out if school is closed use the weather phone number: 732-906-2555.

Your Graded Assignment Begins Here

1.     Now it's your turn to introduced yourself to me. Who are you? What are your non-math-class-worlds? Discuss how your roles in these worlds (family, home, work) might effect your performance in this class. Write about your math background. Tell me of your strengths, weaknesses, fears, and goals. Discuss how mathematics might play a role in your future. Tell me what I can do to help you achieve your goals for this class. Perhaps state where you sit in class and the color and length of your hair. If your reply is not complete enough, the grade of "I ," for incomplete, will be assigned and you will have to resubmit your letter with additional information.

2.     Read the "Grading & Cheating Policy" linked through the home page for your course. Include in your letter to me a statement that you "have read and understood the Grading Policy & Cheating Policy."
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