ASTRONOMY COURSE SYLLABUS

Douglas County Comprehensive High School    
8705 Campbellton Street                               Douglasville, GA   30134
Mr. Andre Weaver, Principal       

 

Dear Students and Parents,

 

Welcome back!  During this semester, I will try to open up the fascinating world of Astronomy.  Astronomy is the study of objects and matter beyond Earth’s atmosphere. To gain the maximum benefit from my teaching style, I ask students to be prepared and work with me in the ways outlined below.

 

COURSE DESCRIPTION

This semester course is an in-depth study of astronomy. Topics studied include the history and foundations of astronomy; concepts of gravity with the combined motions of Earth, moon, and sun; astronomical cycles and man’s measurement of time; characteristics of galaxies; tools and techniques used to observe the universe; stellar evolution and past and current theories of the origin of the universe.   We will start our journey from the Sun, to the planets, to the galaxies, and finally to the structure of the universe as a whole entity.  Students will investigate Astronomy standards and concepts through experience in laboratories, and technology.

 

MATERIALS

1 scientific calculator (If you must purchase get a Casio fx-260 solar. It’s reliable and inexpensive!)

1 folder with pockets (Handouts)

1 regular (wide or college) ruled composition book (Daily work)

1 quad (graph paper) ruled composition book (Homework and Lab work)

Pencils for daily use

 

CLASSROOM PROTOCOL

 

1. NO PHONE USE IN CLASS! The use of any personal electronic/technology device is strictly prohibited. The only time personal devices will be used is at the explicit direction of the teacher.

A red, yellow, green flag system will be employed:

 

Red Flag = NO PHONE USAGE

Yellow Flag = MUST ASK PERMISSION TO USE PHONE

Green Flag = PHONES CAN BE USED

 

2.  Tardies interfere with learning.  All students should be in their assigned seats with needed materials out, ready for instruction, when the bell rings.

If tardy to class a pass is required for admittance. 

If possible, restroom needs should be attended to before or after class.  No passes will be issued during FIRST 15 MINUTES AND THE LAST FIFTEEN MINUTES, per school rules.

As the end of class nears, students need to be sure all lab areas are clean and equipment is replaced to the proper positions.  Everyone needs to be seated and quiet before dismissal so as not to miss any announcements.

 

3.  If a student is absent, missed assignments will be placed in the missed work file in the front of the classroom to the left of the classroom door. Carefully read the Douglas County School System policies printed in the Student Handbook regarding attendance, tardies, and make-up work.  You must have an excused absence to receive credit for make-up work.

 

4.  The science laboratory can be a source of unlimited learning.  I spend an enormous amount of time planning, preparing, and fostering the safest laboratory conditions possible.  Students unable to employ safe lab conduct will be excluded from these activities and receive a “1” (see grading system below).  A LABORATORY SAFETY CONTRACT will be sent home by each student. It must be signed by a parent or guardian and returned for participation in laboratory activities. Please read it carefully, and then sign it.

 

5.  Students are expected to maintain high standards of conduct.  Failure to maintain these standards will result in disciplinary action as outlined in the online Student Handbook.  Students who damage school property, including books, furniture and lab equipment will be required to repair, replace, or pay for the damage done.  Writing on desks and in books is considered damage to school property.

 

 

 

 

 

GRADING SYSTEM

5.  The final semester average is computed as follows:

                        Classwork =                                10%

                        Homework =                               10%

                        Quizzes =                                    10%

                        Labs =                                         20%

                        Reports =                                    10%

                        Tests =                                        20%

                        Final Exam =                               20% 

                        Total =                                       100%                                           

 

The school publishes grades on a secure website.  Contact the school’s media center regarding information about accessing grades/attendance in Infinite Campus portal.  

 

Numerical codes will be used in the gradebook to indicate the grading status of assignments and assessments. They are as follows:

0 = student absent/ assignment can be made up

 

1 = student refused to do assignment OR violated the personal technology contract/ assignment cannot be made up

 

2 = student cheated/ assignment cannot be made up

 

3 = student got all responses incorrect/ assignment may be made up

 

99 = grade is pending

 

 

6. Students who elect to disrupt the classroom’s learning environment for any reason will receive the following consequences:

a/ Parental/Guardian contact

b/ Placement in another teacher’s classroom to do work.

c/ Administrative referral. 

 

7.  Punctuality is critical in the ‘real world’ of work and careers, as well as high school and college.  Students are expected to adhere to deadlines and turn in all assignments on time. 

 

If a student is absent the day of a test, they may be expected to take a make-up test the day they return to school, if the absence is an excused absence. Make-up activities (labs, etc.) will be done at the discretion of the teacher, which will be usually after school and not during class.

 

 Please note that no make-up work will be assigned for unexcused absences.  

 

All late work will accrue a 20% deduction for each day past the due date.

 

Per the Student Handbook, a tardy of 10 minutes or more is considered a class cut!

 

ACADEMIC HONESTY

8.  Academic honesty allows students to benefit from learning opportunities, while cheating undermines this purpose.  Cheating includes but is not limited to: copying worksheets from other students or from other sources; allowing others to copy your worksheets; revealing the content of tests, quizzes or other activities that involve earning class credit; copying answers from another student’s test or quiz or allowing another student to copy your answers; talking during tests or sharing information with another student in any way or form during a test or quiz; using materials other than that expressly permitted during tests and quizzes; and the unauthorized use of electronic devices.

Cheating on any assignment, test or quiz will result in no credit for the assignment.  The opportunity to make-up the assignment, test or quiz is forfeited.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EXPECTED STUDENT COMPETENCIES

 

The Astronomy curriculum is designed to continue student investigations of the physical sciences that began in grades K-9 and provide students the necessary skills to be proficient in Astronomy. Successful completion of Physical Science, Biology, and Algebra are prerequisites for this course.  By the completion of the coursework, the student should be able to...

 

  1. Use science process skills in laboratory or field investigations, including observation, classification, communication, metric measurement, prediction, inference, collecting data and analyzing it.

 

  1. j0299125 Use traditional reference materials to explore background and historical information regarding a scientific concept.

 

  1. Use on a regular basis standard safety practices for laboratory or field investigations.

 

  1. Give examples of industrial processes that have been derived from scientific research and describe the impact on society.

 

 

     5. Enhance their studies by reading appropriate books and articles that contain informational, technical, and fictional content; students will also develop                  skills for discussing books & articles while building vocabulary knowledge.

 

     6. Explore opportunities to improve critical thinking and problem-solving skills through various laboratory applications using the processes of scientific inquiry;          students will also improve their ability to analyze how scientific knowledge is developed.

 

 

A FINAL NOTE...                                                                                                        

If you have not done so already, set aside a firm, designated study time.  This should be away from TV, stereo, or phone calls.  Extensive research has proven the benefits of reviewing notes and textbook material within 8-12 hours of its initial presentation.  Master the concepts presented in school by rereading notes and/or book pages every night

 

Tutoring will be offered after school by appointment on an as-need basis and on Thursdays, afterschool from 3:45 – 4:15.

 

I put a tremendous amount of time and effort into planning lessons and creating activities to help students understand science concepts.  I am your guide and facilitator through a fascinating field of study.  I ask that students put in the effort to practice and learn, to the best of their abilities, that which I present to them.

Please note that changes may be made to this document contingent on instructional and/or logistical necessity to ensure the best experience in this Physics course for all students.

 

Yours in education,

Mr. Ernest Kelly

Science Faculty

Douglas County High School

ernest.kelly@dcssga.org