I believe that students have a responsibility to make the most of their education. Therefore, they are responsible for doing their work and making sure that they meet the deadline for each assignment. In order to make this an easier process for everyone involved, assignments and deadlines will be posted on this page of the website so that there is constant access to the information. In addition, students will be given an assignment notebook provided by the school in case access to the Internet is unavailable.
Overview of Assignments:
Students will be given homework, quizzes, tests, projects, lab reports, presentations, and a portfolio during the school year. Each of these has a purpose in helping the student grow academically and socially. Most assignments will be hands-on allowing each student to create their own knowledge and control their extent of growth in my classroom.
Students will receive some homework in the form of reading, worksheets, etc but it will be graded based on completion and effort instead of correctness. Homework is content the student is in the process of learning and therefore is not graded for mastery. Most often, student homework will be in the form of working on a project, presentation, or lab report instead of the above forms mentioned. Homework will be worth the least amount of points.
Students will take quizzes during each chapter so that I can know what material needs to be taught again or in a different method. It will also let me know if the students have a good grasp on the information allowing us to move on more quickly. Quizzes also help keep the students accountable all the way through the chapters and units being taught. However, quizzes will be worth less that tests, projects, presentations, lab reports, and the portfolio.
Students will take tests at the end of each unit in order to help prepare them for the other testing they will receive throughout their school career such as standardized exams, ACT, SAT, etc. The tests will not be worth as many points as lab reports, projects, presentations, and the portfolio because they do not show student growth in all areas like these other assessments do.
Students will keep all of their lab reports in a graphing spiral. This way they will have a catalog of all their work by the end of the year. They will be required to use the Scientific Method in each write-up. This will be gone over in class, and students will be given a rubric, so that students know what to expect. Creativity and presentation of the writ-up will also earn students points.
Projects and Presentations
Students will be a part of many group and individual projects and presentations. These forms of assignments allow students to show all of their knowledge in a creative and meaningful way. They allow more student choice, expression, and talent to be displayed than a paper and pencil assignment. They also teach problem-solving, teamwork, and communication skills that all students need in the 21st century. Therefore, they are worth the most points along with lab reports.
Students will be asked to create a portfolio throughout the year. The students will create a goal and purpose statement for this portfolio. Then they will collect pieces of their work that best exemplify their growth throughout the year. They may include their best work, their worst work, the work they are most proud of, etc. The guidelines and format will be discussed and agreed upon by the students and teacher in the Science Forum in order to best meet the needs of the students in this class. These portfolios will also be the basis of discussion at parent-teacher conferences.