Degrees and Certifications:
BA English from UT Arlington 7-12 ELAR
Greetings! My name is James Gaynor and I teach 7th Grade ELA here at AJHS. I am excited for this year and all the possibilities it holds.
I graduated from UT Arlington with a BA in English and this will be my 2nd year here at Azle and this is where I was meant to be! GO HORNETS!
I live in Burleson, South of Fort Worth and have been married for 16 years to my amazing wife who is a trauma nurse at JPS. We have three children that span the different age ranges of schools. My 19 year old son who graduated in 2020, my daughter who is in the 8th grade, and my other son who is a 5th grader. We also have a lot of dogs as we live in the country on some acres and your students can probably tell you I really like dogs due to some of the stuff I have in my room.
My Teaching Philosophy:
I want to try and treat the students as if they are my own children. That they are more than just a number in a gradebook but a person as well. I want them to begin to learn to take accountability and advocate for themselves. I believe a bad grade is not the end result of some mistakes, but an opportunity to learn how to prevent future incidents from happening. This goes for behaviors as well.
If you ever have and questions or concerns please don't hesitate to reach out to me through my email address below. I look forward to our partnership this year.
In 7th grade English Language Arts we learn the foundational aspects of English that continue forward into High School and beyond. I emphasize that you need to be a strong reader in order to become a stronger writer and vice versa. I hope to instill not only a love of reading and writing, but an understanding that everything they want to do in life will be greater if they are stronger writers and readers.
I expect students will be willing each day to partake in classroom activities by bringing their basic materials. This includes: a fully charged Chromebook, their library/reading book and something to write with. I want them to start learning to become mindful of being prepared for what they might need on a basic level each day.
Turning in Assignments:
Students will be turning in assignments in person on paper or sometimes a document through Canvas. I have labeled boxes in my room for turning in their papers according to the class periods. Assignments MUST be turned in on time otherwise there are late penalties that happen. I try my best to show them that it is better to get all the points they can, and eliminate late nights after their extracurriculars, by getting in assignments early or at the least on time.
My room is one where respect is the key part of our success. The students need to be polite and respectful towards me, other students, and most importantly, themselves. I don't tolerate shenanigans during my class but I believe each day is a new day. We can build off our past successes and failures and grow throughout time.
What I Hope Students Take Away from my Class:
I want students to feel like they are learning something that is valuable in my class that will benefit them throughout life. I want them to learn that there are going to be bumps in the road in life, but they don't define us. That instead what we choose to do to repair them is what does. A bad grade is not the end of the road, but how you react to it and handle it is of a greater importance.
Grades and Work
Grades are a huge thing in our students' lives and hopefully this section will help you to understand how they balance in my classroom.
Daily Work - 60% Major Grades/Tests - 40%
This means a heavier weight is placed upon their daily assignments, which there will be a lot more of. These are also the easier assignments for your students to cushion their grade with. Like I stated in my expectations, I hope they learn through me that getting things done early and when you have the free time leads to less stress later on.
Students will have an amount of days equal to the amount of days they were absent to make up the assignments that were missed. Students should also know that if something ends up locked due to an extended absence, all they need to do is contact me either through Canvas message or in class and we will fix it to where they can do the assignment.
*NOTE* If they are out with COVID I will have an option for digital submissions in Canvas as well. If they are sick I don't expect them to work but if they are feeling up to it or are not sick then it would be in their best interest to try and keep up with the class.
Students can turn in their work until there is a major grade/summative test taken over the content. At that time the assignments will close. Please contact me for more details.