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Homeroom Class Information




Mrs. Smith’s Class (grades 7-8)
Mrs. Vavreck’s Class (Grades 9-10)
Mrs. Wenner’s Class (grades 11-12)
Students at the Hoffmann Learning Center come from a variety of educational settings from very restrictive hospital, correctional, or day treatment settings to non-restrictive traditional middle school and secondary school settings. The Hoffmann Learning Center is considered a Federal Setting I because students with disabilities attend classes with students without disabilities, but students generally are in self-contained classrooms and most students have IEPs. Transition from the Hoffmann Learning Center to a less restrictive setting is considered on the recommendation of the student’s multi-disciplinary team.
Homeroom classes at the Hoffmann Learning Center are multi-grade, a system that meets the needs of most students due to small class sizes and the presence in each class of a paraprofessional. All students have access to the general education curriculum and adjustments are made for academic and behavior needs within the classroom.
Teachers are either licensed in subject areas or are considered highly qualified to teach in each subject area. If a student’s needs cannot be met in a group setting within the homeroom, the following options are available:
  • Independent study supervised and assisted by a teacher
  • Participation in other classes within the Hoffmann Learning Center
  • Classes at Saint Peter High School
All of these options allow students to earn high school credit while completing coursework at a level that is challenging.
Mrs. Smith’s Class
Teacher: Joanne Smith
Grades 6-9
Social Studies                                 
  1. Current Events: Recent news developments are discussed using daily television newscasts, and Time for Kids, a news magazine, and articles from the daily newspaper.
  2. American History: Different periods of history such as the Civil War, the Westward Movement, and The Revolutionary War are studied using a variety of materials: 20 Plays for U.S. History and 16 Extraordinary African-Americans) and videos such as Roots, Gettysburg, Lewis and Clark, 1776.
  3. Student research projects: Every other year rotation- State reports and president reports include power point presentation, written report, poster, and oral report on their chosen state or president. Research is done using internet sources, classroom materials and library books.
Textbook(s): None used
Additional Resources:               Fearon History
                                                            American History- Volumes I and II
                                                            Time for Kids
                                                            Daily news tape
                                                            Weekly News Quiz
                                                            Minneapolis Tribune- Gridiron Geography
                                                            Internet sources
  1. Spelling- weekly spelling lists using Spelling Workout books
  2. Writing- Daily Oral Language Activities
    1. Writing Starters
    2. Use Spelling words in sentences
    3. 6 trait Writing activities
  1. Reading- Variety of novels
    1. Plays, such as Oliver Twist, Gettysburg, Fall of the House of Usher (from Read magazine)
    2. Short stories and/or excerpts from longer literary works, such as Holes by Louis Sacher, works by Gary Paulsen, and other young adult writers
    3. Individualized reading lessons
    4. Textbooks: Spelling Workout
    5. Additional Resources: novels, Read Magazine
Math- individualized math assignments                                 
Textbooks: Saxon Math series
Additional Resources: Calendars, times tables
                                        730 Daily Math Warm-ups
1. Self- Esteem
  • Activities to promote self-awareness and self-esteem
2. General Health and Wellness
  • Knowledge of positive healthy habits and what a makes a                   person “healthy”
3. Stress Management
  • Recognition of physical signs of stress
  • Development of individual stress management techniques
4. Decision Making
  • Knowledge of steps to make a good decision
  • Identifying personal values
  • Peer pressure and how it affects decision-making
5. Anger Management
  • Recognition of individual reactions to anger
  • Development of individual anger management techniques
6. Drugs and Alcohol
  • Facts about drugs and alcohol
  • Recognition of signs of abuse
  • Affect of abuse on relationships and responsibilities
Natural Sciences- Animals, Weather, Current Events relating to science
Textbook- none
Additional Resources: National Geographic Explorer Magazine
                                        Eyewitness video series
                                        National Geographic and Nova videos
                                        Internet sources
Mrs. Vavreck’s Class
Teacher: Lyn Vavreck
Grades 9-10
Language Arts:

Reading: Students read a variety of materials such as high interest/ low level novels, Read Naturally, Health 2 and Time for Kids magazines, newspapers, plays from the Read Magazine, social studies and science textbooks and individual reading materials of the students’ choice. Students with a reading level of 7.0 or lower will use the Read Naturally program to work on increasing reading fluency at their readability level. Reading is done in a variety of ways such as oral reading as a class, in small groups and individually; silent reading; and the teacher reading aloud to the students.
Spelling: Spelling is individualized according to ability levels. Using the Spelling Workout Series from Modern Curriculum Press, students work at their own pace. Each lesson includes a short story, a pretest of words, repetitious practice writing the words, practice pages, writing sentences or definitions, and a post test. Sight words from the SIMS Reading Program are also used for some students. 
Written Language: Written language consists of a variety of writing assignments. Students write in a daily journal, given writing prompts. They also write in a responsive journal about the books they are reading. These writings are not corrected for convention, but focus on ideas and voice to encourage students to write freely. Other writing assignments may include: research papers, creative writing, poetry, and 5 paragraph essays. Daily Oral Language exercises are used to learn editing. School House Rock is used to reinforce parts of speech. Because several students will be re-taking the Graduation Standard Writing Test, there will be some focus on learning the 5 paragraph essay approach.
Oral communication: Students will do some oral presentations on book reports, group projects, research papers and other projects. They will have a chance to learn about and participate in different types of speeches. They will participate in activities to build a learning community which involve communication in pairs, small groups and as a classroom. They will be involved in discussions across the curriculum. They will design rubrics for discussion participation, presentations, and speeches which will be used to assess each other and themselves in these areas.

Math Text: Students will use the Saxon Math series, which includes a variety of functional skills such as time, measurement, money, application problems, computation and more. Students are pre tested and placed at an appropriate level. They work individually or in small groups with direct teaching of new concepts and reinforcement of past knowledge. Students work at their own pace. 
My Skillstutor: Students use the Skillstutor program to learn and practice math skills on the computer at their level and pace.
Supplemental Resources: Math activities, games, flashcards, School House Rock, checkbooks, money activities, manipulatives and other supplemental resources are used to reinforce and apply math concepts.
Social Studies

World History: For one semester students will learn about world history using a variety of resources including textbooks, short stories, plays, videos, news, and literature. Reproducible activities from “World History Shorts 1 & 2” will be used as a supplemental resource.
World Geography: History lessons will be accompanied by lessons in basic world geography, past and present. General concepts such as map skills, continents and recognizing major countries will be included. Reproducible activities from “World Geography and Cultures” will be used as a supplemental resource.
Current Events: Students will watch current news from CNN’s Classroom News and take notes. Discussion of current events will improve comprehension and clarify stories for students. 
Social Skills: Students will be exposed to a variety of approaches to learn and practice appropriate social skills. Activities may come from Tom Jackson’s Active Learning books, Michelle Borba’s book Esteem Builders, A Handbook from Boys Town “Basic Social Skills for Youth”, and other resources.
Subjects may include: conversation, friendships, peer pressure, decision making, self-advocacy, showing and earning respect, anger management, conflict resolution. 

Transition: Transition class will focus on employment skills. This will include finding information about jobs, applying for jobs, interviewing, getting along with employers and coworkers, etc. Individual transitions needs may be specified in students’ IEPs.
Science: Students will have one quarter of biology and one quarter of chemistry. Both will be a general overview of the subject. Resources include textbooks, workbooks, and videos. 
Health: Students will focus on current adolescent health issues using a bi-weekly magazine called Health 2. These issues will be supplemented by activities from Tom Jackson’s Active Learning books, videos and current news. 
Mrs. Wenner’s Class
Teacher: Deb Wenner
Grades 11-12
Social Studies
Current Events: Viewing current events on the local and national news or in the news papers, developing skills for proper note taking, discussing these events.
United States History: A chronological coverage of United States History: Three Worlds Meet through Contemporary United States. Comprehensive reading, discussion, vocabulary, activities, workbook activities, chapter outlines, tests, and videos.
Geography: A comprehensive unit that provides information on location, environments, ways of travel, and specifics about each United States region. Students learn to interpret maps, determine locations, and use a compass. They study climates and landforms. 
Government: A study of how our government began and the origins of political parties. The study begins with the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock and continues up to present-day political issues.
Social Skills: Group social skills activities.
Textbooks for Social Studies Curriculum
History: United States History (Text, activity sheets, worksheets, chapter outlines and tests)
Geography: Geography of the United States (workbook)
Government: Learning About Government (workbook)
Additional Resources:
            Current Events: Taped news and news papers.
            History: Historical videos
            Geography: Regional videos w/worksheets
            Government: Videos
Language Arts
Spelling: Spelling Workout: Each lesson offers an integration of reading, writing, and critical thinking in a variety of short spelling skill drills designed to help students learn by getting actively involved.
Reading: A series of fascinating, up-to-date novels and a weekly reader (READ), read aloud in a group with comprehension and interactive activities. The Read, View, and Listen standard at the primary level is part of this course.
Writing: A Pictures Is Worth 1000 Words is a text that offers students the opportunity to provide practice and expand basic vocabulary in a fun and enjoyable way.
English: Language Exercises: A series focusing students on the six most critical areas of language: vocabulary, sentences, grammar and usage, capitalization and punctuation, composition, and readiness/study skills.
Textbooks for Language Arts Curriculum
Spelling: Spelling Workout workbook (Level C - H)
Reading: A collection of novels, with comprehensive worksheets and activities. (Examples: Hatchet, The River, Brian’s Winter, Holes, Soldier’s Heart).   Plays from a weekly reader, READ.
 Writing: Activities and pictures from:  A Picture Is Worth 1000 Words
English: Language Exercises workbooks (Level C - G).
Regular Math: (Saxon) An individualized mathematics program that helps students to: automate basic skills; successfully solve multi-step problems; strengthen mental math capabilities; master fundamental concepts such as ratios, proportions, and percents; and apply math while gaining confidence in their abilities.
Algebra 1 and 2: An individualized program that covers: proofs, statistics, probability, explicit embedded geometry instruction. Students will concentrate to the more complex skills and understanding required for high-school level mathematics.
Consumer Math: Check Writing: Students will learn how to open an account and how to take care of an account. They will practice writing checks and deposit slips, keeping a check register, and balancing their own accounts.
Textbooks for Math Curriculum
Regular Math: Saxon textbook (Math 54 – Algebra ½).
Algebra 1 and 2: Saxon textbook (Algebra 1 and 2).
Consumer Math: What Everybody Should Know About: Check Writing workbooks. 
Life Skills
Career Planning
  • examine career requirements and rewards
  • identify occupations
  • consider education and training requirements
Job Search
  • create job-search materials
  • job application and interview
  • employment needs
Employment Setting
  • beginning a new job
  • employing time-management techniques
  • handling workplace relationships
  • setting career goals
  • obtaining a raise or promotion
  • coping with a layoff
Financial Responsibilities
  • managing a budget
  • opening bank accounts
  • handling a paycheck
  • managing credit
  • paying taxes
Household Smarts
  • finding an apartment
  • organizing a household
  • managing household maintenance
  • insurance
  • communicating by telephone
  • caring for clothing
A Safe Lifestyle
  • safety at home
  • safety at work and play
  • vehicle safety
  • pedestrian safety
  • safety during natural disasters
Textbooks for Life Skills Curriculum:
Everyday Life Skills: (Text, activity sheets, workbook activities, self-assessments, tests and accompanying videos).
Students embark on a captivating scientific journey where they will encounter the unique and the commonplace as well as discover the realms of scientific discovery past and present. 
Science Curriculum: Eyewitness Video Series accompanied by comprehensive worksheets created with the students academic levels in mind.