This Website was created to assist both students and parents in Mr. Ritter's classroom. Below you can learn a little about me and find information about my classroom rules, my grading policy, and the high school's calculator policy.
Homework assignments can be found on the calendar by clicking on the individual class pages to the left.
Follow me on Twitter @Mr_Mathematicus.
- Graduated Catasauqua High School (1997)
- B.S. Secondary Education - Mathematics, Kutztown University (2001)
- M.Ed. Curriculum and Instruction, Kutztown University (2005)
- Mathematics Teacher at Emmaus High School (2002 - Present)
I grew up in Bethlehem and have lived in the Lehigh Valley my entire life. I married my wife, Sarah, in 2006, and we welcomed our son, Ryan, in 2009. We currently have two pets, a rescued rottweiler-shepherd mix named Baxter and a cat that showed up on our doorstep one night, Mittens. Other than spending time with my wife and son, I enjoy golfing. I competed in track & field in high school and college where I held two high school records (long jump and 200 meters) and one collegiate record (4x200m relay), but I found that golf is more fun at this point in my life! I was a track and field coach at Salisbury High School for 8 years and the JV golf coach at Emmaus for 6 years before deciding to take time away to embrace the world of parenthood. As of 2015 I am coaching youth soccer.
Some assorted favorites of mine include: the New England Patriots; the Penn State Nittany Lions; Arsenal FC; playing fantasy sports; watching NFL football, PTI, Game of Thrones, and the Big Bang Theory; golfing; playing poker; chess; Playstation (online too); listening to music; and traveling. Currently, I have set foot in 10 countries and 27 states with the goal of someday setting foot in all 50. Disney World is my favorite vacation destination!
Be Respectful. Students' classroom behavior and comments should show respect for fellow students and teacher. (This means no inappropriate language.)
Be Prepared. Bring your covered textbook, notebook, writing utensil (preferably pencil), homework and calculator for EVERY class unless instructed otherwise.
Be On Time. If you are going to be late, make sure you get a pass. All lates will be reported. Remain in your seats until you are dismissed. The bell does not rule!
Be Efficient. Use your class time wisely. When I allot time for you to work on assignments, I expect you to do so. This gives you an opportunity to ask questions.
Be Honest. Cheating is a serious offense and will not be tolerated. Also, copying of homework is a form cheating and all parties will be punished accordingly.
ALL school rules apply!
An essential element of learning math is practicing problems. Homework will be assigned regularly and will be checked for points. It is extremely important that homework is completed each time it is assigned. Homework is usually worth 2 points, but can be worth more for larger assignments. There is NO credit for late homework!
Quizzes will vary in point value. Quizzes will almost always be announced.
Tests will be given throughout each marking period with point values greater than quizzes. You will be given advanced notice for all tests.
In addition to the aforementioned, I also give a 30-point class preparedness grade. Points can be lost for things such as not participating, books not being covered, arriving late, unexcused absences, etc.
Extra credit and bonus points will be given throughout the year. Students should take advantage of the chances when they arise.
Except for Algebra I CP, grading is based on a point system. All points earned throughout the marking period from homework, quizzes, tests, etc. will be totaled. To find your grade, divide your total points by the total points possible.
Per East Penn policy, Algebra I CP grades will be weighted as follows: 50% Tests, 10% Study Island, 10% Homework, 30% everything else (quizzes, participation, projects, etc...).
CALCULATOR USE IN HIGH SCHOOL MATH COURSES
All mathematics courses at Emmaus High School currently allow the use of calculators on a daily basis. They are being used to perform tedious calculations, eliminate computational error, and solve realistic problems that use higher-level math functions. They should never be used as a crutch when students are unable to perform basic math skills. Doing simple calculations mentally is still a very valuable skill. Students are being taught how to use a calculator effectively, how to confirm results using mental math, and when it is preferable not to use a calculator. There are three basic kinds of calculators on the market today:
· Four function ( +, -, x, /, ±, =)
· Scientific (sin, cos, tan, ln, log, exp, nPr, nCr)
· Graphing (statistics, matrices, graphing)
Four function calculators are primarily used in elementary school. Scientific calculators are satisfactory for students who are taking Algebra I and II, Geometry, Math Analysis, Applied Algebra 1A & 1B, Applied Geometry, and Integrated Math. Graphing calculators are used in many classes occasionally, but Algebra III/Trig C.P. and Honors, A.P. Statistics, and all levels of Calculus involve their regular use.
Most of the math portion of the SAT and the PSSA (PA State Assessment given to 11th graders) allow the use of any calculator except those with the QWERTY keyboard or paper tape so that problem solving rather than computational skills can be emphasized. In both cases, students will need practice in knowing when to use a calculator and when not to use it. The A.P. Calculus and A.P. Statistics courses are designed with graphing calculators being an integral part of the curriculum. The TI-83 Plus is needed for A.P. Statistics and the TI-83 or TI-83 Plus is recommended for all Calculus courses.
Any calculator except the TI-89 or TI-92 may be used in testing environments. We expect students to purchase their own calculator as a needed school supply along with pencils, notebooks and a book bag. That way they become familiar with it and can use it both at home and in school. The TI-83 graphing calculator will serve all students well throughout high school. The cost of most scientific calculators is less than $15 and most graphing calculators cost less than $100. Please consider investing this much in your child's education and future.
The math department will issue a subject-appropriate calculator, as they do textbooks, to any student who cannot purchase one for financial reasons. Calculators, as well as textbooks, will not be provided for students who forget to bring one to class unless there is a specific graphing calculator-related activity taking place that day! Teachers will have various expectations and penalties for students being unprepared.
The EHS Mathematics Department