Mr. Martin, a.k.a. Jeff, is a native of Northern Virginia. Growing up just outside the beltway, I developed both a healthy interest in, and intuitive distrust of politics and politicians. In 1998-99, I lived throughout the former Yugoslavia in Eastern Europe, learning fluent Serbo-Croatian, eating various greasy foods, and avoiding NATO bombs. Upon returning home, I focused my undergraduate studies and graduate studies on the very countries that I had lived and worked in, eventually earning a B.A. and M.A. in Political Science. During this time, and most importantly, I married his beautiful wife Lisa, with whom have been blessed to raise two beautiful daughters. I’ve had a (some might consider) strange variety of jobs before I became a social studies teacher, including a pizza delivery specialist, a data collector for a federal drug study, a graduate teaching assistant. Prior to teaching I worked as a clothing designer (twice), and owned and operated my own clothing company for over 2 years. Currently, I am very happy to be in my second year of teaching Modern World History at Baltimore’s prestigious all-girls Western High School. In the 2009-2010 school year, I started teaching AP Human Geography, which has been as challenging as it has been rewarding.
About this site:
This site, www.martinsclass.com, was created in November 2008 of my first year of teaching as a way to make my teaching as transparent as possible to encourage students to stay on top of the assignments and material. Another central idea driving this site is to make as much information available to my students as possible. AP HUG students face a daunting amount of content to master; I would rather they spend less time acquiring the information and more time engaging with and analyzing the information. Hopefully this site facilitates such a process.
New with this version:
This is the second version of this site, which utilizes wordpress to run two simultaneous blogs that enable students to register and have their own account, and will even be able to make public posts. Even more, students will be able to comment on each others posts, taking the learning and class discussion online in a format that is likely very familiar to my students. I will be frequently posting articles and information that I find interesting and relevant to my courses, and will expect students to view this information and leave their comments on a weekly basis.
This site also features several methods whereby students and parents can stay extremely connected to coursework and homework assignments. First, each student will be automatically subscribed to receive homework and coursework posts sent to them via email. Second, this blog is linked to a twitter account, which students can subscribe to with their cell phones. When I post homework, it will sent a simple text message to students (that are subscribed).
Parents, if you would like to receive emails whenever something is posted on this website (which I warn you might be quite a bit, as I will have students posting weekly current events articles w/ analysis) you can send me your email address and I can create a user account for you so you get email updates as well as students.
I encourage students and parents will use it often so that the time I spend to keep it current and updated will be well spent.
A note to other AP HUG teachers:
In recent months I’ve noticed that this site is getting more and more hits from all over, and has become referenced on several sites. Please keep in mind that my site is very much an agglomeration of everything I have come across over the past year (going on 2). I am a scavenger and pirate by nature, and am known to borrow, adapt, and utilize any ideas and resources to implement in my teaching for the benefit of my students. I am a firm believer in borrowing ideas that work, and am happy to help share these ideas with other teachers. In fact, you might notice that I’m already using ideas/worksheets/elements from other teachers. I try to give credit where I can, but I’m slightly preoccupied with teaching AP HUG.