• United States History & the Constitution

    Mr. Bruton
    Room: 401
    Website: www.brutonteaches.com
    Contact: mbruton@dorchester2.k12.sc.us

    My name is Michael Bruton and I will be your or your child’s United States History teacher this year. I am excited to get to know each of my students and have some exciting things planned as we explore the history of the United States from colonial times to modern day.

    U.S. History and the Constitution is an upper-level course offering a comprehensive view of the foundation and development of the United States. The course covers four hundred years of American history in a relatively small amount of time. It is fast-paced and, as a requirement for graduation, an important part of your or your child’s high-school career. If at any time you have any questions about classwork, grades, or missing work, do not hesitate to contact me at mbruton@dorchestr2.k12.sc.us or peruse www.brutonteaches.com for things like missing work, notes or presentations from class, and information on assignments and due dates.

    Please view the following procedures, rules, and expectations below for more information on a successful year!

    Classroom Policies and Procedures
    Classroom procedures are an important part of our classroom. Being on time, prepared, and cognizant of what is going on every day is paramount. Following classroom procedures will help ensure a smooth, fun school year. Below you will find procedures for daily work in our classroom.

    Cellphones and other electronic devices
    Cell phones are an incredible distraction. To prevent any misunderstandings, it is expected that cell phones, headphones, or any other electronic devices be placed on silent and out of sight BEFORE entering the classroom.

    Attendance and Tardiness
    Attendance is taken at the beginning of each class. Students not in the classroom before the tardy bell will be marked absent. Students who enter the classroom after the tardy bell must place their tardy pass in my hand or in the tardy pass box at the front of the room. Students lacking tardy passes (which are available in room 409) will not be admitted. Students who fail to turn in their pass to the tardy box will remain marked absent.

    Turning in Work
    All work is due at the beginning of class. As students enter the room, they will turn in their assignment to the plastic bin corresponding with their class. Any work turned in more than five days after it is assigned will not be accepted. All work must be properly formatted or risk losing points. More on formatting below.

    Making Up Missing Work
    Students who miss days of class, including those serving both in-school and out-of-school suspensions, are responsible for getting the work they missed.

    Absent students or parents wishing to see what is happening in class are invited to go to www.brutonteaches.com. There, you will be able to access class assignments, instructions, directions, review materials, Powerpoint presentations, and due dates. Assignments will be available there for printing. This is your first resource when coming back after missing time in class.

    Students with excused absences are permitted the number of days they missed to make up the work. Absences left unexcused are considered cuts and are not eligible for late turn-in. Students who missed major tests due to absence have no more than five school days from when the test was administered to make it up.

    Students should use the bathroom in passing time. The teacher will not issue bathroom passes during the first or last ten minutes of class. Only one student is permitted to use the bathroom at a time.

    Students should show up to class prepared to work every single day. To help keep you organized, I suggest the following materials*:

    1. A sturdy three-ring binder
    2. A spiral notebook devoted exclusively to this class
    3. Writing utensils
    4. Dividers for organization


    If you are unable to procure some or all of these items, I do have a limited supply. First come, first serve!

    Grading Policies
    Grades will be determined through a combination of class and homework, quizzes, and tests.

    Class/Home Work:     30%
    Quizzes:                      20%
    Tests:                           50%    

    All students are eligible to make test corrections, regardless of grade on the test. Test corrections must meet the following criteria.

    1. All formatting guidelines for the class apply.
    2. Each question marked incorrect must be rewritten.
    3. The student must rewrite the correct answer.
    4. The student must display that understanding by writing no less than 2-3 sentences explaining why that is the correct answer. (saying that it is correct because “that is the way it happened” will not be accepted as a legitimate answer).

    For each question that is redone by the above criterion the student will receive half credit back. By this system, students can turn a 50% into a 75%, or a 20% into a 60%.

    Formatting assignments is important as it helps to keep both teacher and student organized. Neat, properly formatted papers should include the following:

    Name:                                                                                                  Date assigned
    Class Period/Assignment                                                                    Date turned in

    All assignments must meet the following requirements:

    1. The above heading
    2. Turned in on a full, clean sheet of paper with the fringes removed if torn out of a notebook (no scraps, reused, or crumpled papers please)
    3. All questions have been copied before being answered or answered in complete sentences
    4. Handwriting is neat and easily legible. (If you want to make Mr. Bruton really happy, typing an assignment is always welcome).

    Every instance of a formatting error will result in 2 points subtracted from the final grade up to one full letter grade (ten points).

    I look forward to getting to know you over the course of this year. We will be exploring some interesting stuff this year in our U.S. History class. If you have any questions about what you have read above, please do not hesitate to contact me.

    Thanks and welcome back!