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ES Syllabus


COURSE SYLLABUS: Earth Science (6th Grade)

Teacher: Mrs. Barbara Cushing


Room #: 100

Voice mail #: 665-3400 ext 100
Email is checked more frequently.)

 Welcome to 6th Grade Earth Science!  I am excited to have all of you in my class this year.

Course Overview:
The sixth grade Earth Science studies will include basic chemistry, geology, ecology, astronomy, and earth systems. Students are encouraged to develop their critical-thinking skills and to integrate those skills to become self-directed, life-long learners. Math and Language Arts skills are supported through activities in a science notebook format.

Course Organization:
The course will be organized into major units, to include

Earth Materials,
Changing Surface of the Earth,
Earth’s Internal Processes,
Change and Earth’s History,
Earth’s Air and Water,
You and the Environment.

The processes of scientific investigation, the inquiry process, the history and the nature of science, and science in personal and social perspectives will be integrated throughout the course.

Course Goals:
Students will develop an understanding of the scientific method and science processes. Given a grade appropriate problem, students will be able to design, implement, and analyze results to determine an answer to the science-related question, and suggest ways to improve their results in the future, as well as determine future avenues for investigation.
Students will be able to describe and explain basic earth processes as they relate to natural phenomena on our planet, such as plate tectonics, the rock cycle, climate and weather patterns, and erosion.
Students will be able to discuss human impacts on the water, air, and land resources of our planet.

Glencoe McGraw-Hill Arizona Science Grade 6

Each student will receive a textbook for home use.  A set of textbooks will be available for use while in class. When students first enter the class, they will take a book from the shelf, and return it neatly as they leave. The classroom books will not be taken from the room.

Science Fair:
All students will participate in the science fair and will design and conduct an independent experiment/investigation for this project. This is an in-depth, independent project that will be presented in steps. It will be introduced in August, and will be worked on throughout the first semester and into the second. The project will be a major component of each student’s grade.

40% -- Participation during in-class assignments and discussions, homework, notebook, activities, and lab reports
40% -- Tests, Quizzes, Projects and Papers
20% -- Semester Finals

Grading Scale:
90-100% A
80-89% B
70-79% C
65-69% D
Below 65 F

Homework will be assigned several times a week. Homework may include reading from the textbook and taking notes, completing work started in class, worksheets, and other assignments designed to reinforce the day’s lesson.
When homework is not assigned, every student is responsible for reading over his or her notes or preparing for test & quizzes.

Unless the students are otherwise informed, homework is due at the BEGINNING of the next meeting period. Homework will be turned into the assigned “in-box” as the student enters the classroom. In addition to daily homework, students will be expected to work on their science fair project at home. Other projects will also occasionally be assigned as homework.

Missed/Late Work:
Assignments are expected to be on time. Missing assignments receive a zero. For larger projects, 10% of the grade will be deducted for each day the project or paper is late. When the grade reaches 50%, the assignment will no longer be accepted.

The exception to this rule is the science fair project. This project has a definitive due date, as NO projects will be accepted after the due date. As the science fair project is a major component of all students’ grades, students must ensure that the project is turned in on or before the assigned due date.

Students with excused absences have one day for each day missed to complete assignments. Labs, tests, and other activities should be made up during the next scheduled tutoring time following the absence.

Making Up Work When Absent:
If students must miss class, they are responsible for making up any missed assignments. It is the students’ responsibility to find out what assignments they missed by talking to a classmate or checking the classroom planner. Students are also responsible for borrowing any missed class notes from a classmate and copying them into their notebooks. If they know they are going to be absent, it will be in their best interest to ask for the assignments ahead of time so that they do not fall behind.

Supply List:

--  Three (3) -- 100 page bound Composition Notebooks (NO Spiral Bound or Tear Out Notebooks)
Pens & pencils
Pocket Folder (used to contain handouts)
Three pens or sharpened pencils brought to every class
Handheld pencil sharpener
Loose-leaf paper
Other supplies, including markers, poster boards, magazines, index cards, and other general school items may be needed from time to time. Students will be advised of any items to bring at least two days in advance.

Science Notebooks:
All students are required to keep three composition notebooks for science. No spiral notebooks are permitted. Composition notebooks generally have a black & white marbled cover and are bound. One notebook will be used for daily notes, another will be used for science labs, and the other will be used for the Science Fair.  Science notebooks will be graded periodically. This will be a major tool for students studying for science class.

Extra Credit:
Occasional extra credit assignments will be offered to the entire class. Extra credit assignments will not be accepted from students who have not turned in major projects or papers. In other words, extra credit assignments cannot be completed to make up for missed ones. Individual extra credit assignments will not be accepted. For example, do not turn in “extra” work that was not assigned and expect to get extra credit for it.

Follow directions.
Enter the classroom quietly, be in your seat on time, and begin bell work/reading assignment.
Be prepared. (Arrive with paper, pencil, homework, science notebook, etc.)
Be polite. (Be quiet or use an inside voice during group work. Keep your hands to yourself. Raise your hand to speak. One person speaks at a time, etc.)
Be on task and engaged. (Work on the given assignment or participate in the current discussion.)

Eye contact
Verbal warning
DPS points and / or removal from activity
Phone call home
Students consistently requiring some level of correction in spite of interventions (seat changes, phone calls home, etc.) will be given a referral to the principal.

Plagiarism and cheating are serious matters. Plagiarism means copying someone else’s words, ideas, or information and presenting it as your own work. This includes copying and printing information from the internet and representing it as your own work. We will discuss how to properly put other’s work in your own words and give them credit when you do research in the library or online.  Copying or using another student’s work is also considered cheating. School policy will be applied in cases of plagiarism and cheating.

Making Contact:

The most effective way to reach me is through e-mail. I check my email several times a day, so during the school week, you should generally receive a response within 24 hours. Emails sent on the weekends or during school holidays will be answered on the first school day we are back in session. You may also call the school office and leave a message. If you would like to meet with me in person, please email to set up a time.

Please note that this syllabus is subject to change.  Because the school’s primary goal is to maximize student achievement, material may be added, deleted, and/or substituted at the teacher's discretion based on individual needs, levels, and learning styles of each class. Creative projects, written assignments, & supplemental material may also be included throughout the year as opportunities arise.

I am looking forward to an exciting, productive year!

Mrs. Cushing