Instructor

Sarah Huneycutt, Ph.D.


shuneyc@comcast.net

Course Description

Designing experiments, collecting data, and formulating an hypothesis to explain observations is the hallmark of scientific inquiry. In this introductory 5th grade science course we will explore the fundamentals of the scientific method by focusing on four individual disciplines: chemistry, biology (emphasis on animal behavior), earth science, and physics.  While each of these subjects could be a course unto itself, we will identify key concepts in each of these areas which will serve as a foundation for future study. Acquiring this basic knowledge and learning note taking and study skills will allow students to form a framework for future, more detailed science courses. 

Most importantly, science should be interactive and interesting. In addition to selected course readings and homework assignments, this course will have a strong emphasis on hands on activities.

Course Materials

The Usborne Science Encyclopedia* by Kirsteen Rogers et al.

Writing Utensils

Internet Access

 

Provided:

Science Notebook

 

Science Notebooks:

We will be creating a Science Notebook to be used throughout the year. I will provide students with the notebook and the materials to put in the notebook.  In addition to learning important note taking skills, these notebooks will offer students a way to express themselves creatively by adding drawings, diagrams, fold outs, and manipulatives that will assist them in understanding the topics we will be studying in this course. Students will be adding colorful and interactive elements to their notebook each week in class so it is very important that they bring their notebook with them each week. Students will be given time each week during class to color, glue, add definitions, etc. to the elements of their notebook during class time; however, they may feel free to finish or add additional elements or details to their notebook at home.  This will be their study guide and it is my hope that they personalize these and create a useful tool that they will be proud to show off by the end of the year.  This should be a fun and interactive way to help them gain confidence about their knowledge of general science. 

 

*We will be using the Usborne Science Encyclopedia. This book has a website associated with it with links to additional videos and web content for a more in depth understanding of the topicsThere is a box in the lower right hand corner of each page with the Internet link (www.usborne-quicklinks.com).  On this webpage, type in the keyword "science". Next select the page numbers that your student is currently reading. I will assign some of these links as homework throughout the year. Please feel free to explore any additional links that I have not assigned if your student wants to explore a topic further or if you have a student who you think needs additional information about a topic.

 

Homework

 

Students will have reading assigned each week from the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.  This reading will help them understand the topic we will be discussing the next week.  Students may also be assigned select videos to watch from the book website links.

Students will be given time each week in class to work on their Science Notebooks; however, any elements of the notebook that they did not finish in class should be finished at home.

It is not my goal to give a lot of homework for this class.  If you feel that your student is spending an excessive amount of time outside of class on homework, please contact me.  As a seasoned WEB parent myself, I understand that different children learn differently and handle workloads differently. I do not want students to feel overwhelmed or anxious about the material in this class.  I would love for them to feel excited about the things they are learning and I want this to be a positive experience for each and every student.

 

I do think that it is very important that students keep up with their Science Notebook materials.  I want for them to have a coherent and complete study resource by the end of the year and the only way for them to achieve this is by consistently bringing their notebooks to class and making an effort to complete all notebook elements during class time.

 

I will post each week’s homework assignment on the WEB website page under the General Science page.  Please make sure students check this webpage each week for assignments as they may not always be the same as what is written on the syllabus.

 

Grading/Assessment

 

Students will be given a score of 1-4 on their weekly work in their Science Notebook using the following rubric:

4

-All pages numbered, neat Table of Contents, Titles & Dates included

-All required notes, labs, activities, fold-ups, and vocabulary activities complete

-All items are glued in, colored, andorganized neatly

3

-At least 75% of pages numbered, neat Table of Contents, Titles & Dates mostly included

-MOST of the required notes, labs, activities, fold-ups, and vocabulary activities complete

-MOST of the items are glued in, colored, and organized neatly

2

-Table of Contents, Titles, Dates, and Page Numbers Incomplete or Messy

-SOME required notes, labs, activities, fold-ups, and vocabulary activities complete

-SOME items glued in, colored, and organized neatly

1

-Missing Table of Contents, Titles, Dates, and Page Numbers

-Missing required notes, labs, activities, fold-ups, and vocabulary activities

-Items are not glued in, colored, or organized neatly

Students will turn in their notebooks at the end of class each week.  I will grade the previous week’s work during 2nd period classes and return the notebooks to students at lunchtime each week so that they can take them home and finish working on any elements they need to complete at home for the next week.

*If your student does not stay for lunch, please contact me so I arrange an alternate time to return their notebooks.

 

Written Assessments will be given in class at the end of each Unit.  These assessments will be an opportunity for students to demonstrate their understanding of the material covered in the Unit.  

 

Syllabus

 

This syllabus is flexible as the year progresses.  We may decide that a particular topic needs more or less than the allotted time.  I will update the syllabus as well as post weekly homework on the WEB website throughout the year.

 

SYLLABUS

Week 1  August 16 - Introduction to Science Notebooks.  We will use this class period to discuss how to setup our Science Notebooks and talk about what is expected.  We will begin talking about science and the scientific method.

                     Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook that we worked on in class.

                     Complete the "All About Me" Activity and glue it on page 1 of your Science Notebook.

                     Read pp. 250-253 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 2 August 23 - Botany Unit: Plant Cells, Stems, and Roots.

                      Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                      Read pp. 254-259 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia

Week 3 August 30 - Botany Unit: Leaf Structure

                      Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                      Read pp. 260-267 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 4 September 6 - Botany Unit: Photosynthesis; How Plants Eat

                      Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                      Read pp. 268-273 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 5 September 13 - Botany Unit: Plant Sensitivity, Parts of a Flower, Pollination

                      Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                      Read pp. 274-281 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 6 September 20 - Botany Unit: Seeds and Fruit, Seed Dispersal, Germination, Vegetative Reproduction

                       Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                      Read pp. 282-293 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 7 September 27 - Botany Unit: Flowerless Plants, Plant Lifestyles, and Types of Cycles

                      Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook. Complete the Botany Unit take home Quiz.

                      Read pp. 298-299 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 8 October 4 - Cells: Types of Cells and Parts of a Cell - 

                      Homework - Over Fall Break, catch up  your Science Notebooks. Make sure your materials are up-to-date and that all materials are glued to the proper pages.

October 11 -------Fall Break---------------

Week 9 October 18 - Cells: We will build our own cells this week!

                      Homework -  Read pp. 316-319 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia and the adaptation handouts.

*****Please note that as we start the Animal Unit, the syllabus may change. We may alter the order that we do things because some of the activities may involve the use of live animals. Some of the activities may require more than one class period to complete. I will post any changes as they arise.

Week 10 October25 - Animal Unit: Animal Adaptations

                       Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                       Read pp. 300-303 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia and handouts.

Week 11 November 1 - Animal Unit: Animal Adaptations continued

                       Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                       Read pp. 304-309  in Usborne Science Encyclopedia and handouts.

Week 12 November 8 - Animal Unit: Animal Habitats

                       Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                       

Week 13 November 15 - Animal Unit: Animal Habitats continued

                       Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                       Read pp. 330-333 in Usborne Science Encyclopedia and handouts.

November 22 --------Thanksgiving Break-------------

Week 13 November 29 - Animal Unit: Animal Hibernation    

                    Homework - Make sure your Science Notebook is up-to-date and all materials are glued on pages.

                   

-------------------- Winter Break---------------

Week 14 January 10 - Animal Unit: Animal Migration    

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 332-337 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia and handouts.

Week 15 January 17 - Animal Unit: Animal Classification    

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 338-343

Week 16 January 24 - Animal Unit: Animal Classification continued

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read Handouts

 Week 17 January 31 - Animal Unit: Animal Behavior

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read Handouts

Week 18 February 7 - Animal Unit: Animal Behavior continued

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read Handouts

Week 19 February 14 - Animal Unit: Animal Behavior continued

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 118-123 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

*****Please note that we will be doing several experiments for our Physics and Chemistry Units. The Homework may change depending on how much we accomplish during these class periods. I will update the class homework page weekly so please have your students check it regularly.

Week 20 February 21 - Forces and Motion:  Pushes and Pulls, Newton's Laws

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 134-137 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 21 February 21 - Forces and Motion:  Simple Machines

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 124-127 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 22  February 28 - Forces and Motion: Friction

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 128-131 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 23 March 7 - Forces and Motion: Gravity

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 132-133 and 138-139 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

March 14 ---------Spring Break------------

Week 24 March 21 - Forces and Motion: Finish up unit 

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 10-15 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 25 March 28 - Chemistry: Atoms and Elements

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 16-23 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia  and Lab Handout.

Week 26 April 4 - Chemistry: States of Matter; class experiment

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook

                    Read pp. 24-29 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia.

Week 27 April11  - Chemistry: Periodic Table

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                    Read pp. 76-79 in the Usborne Science Encyclopedia and the Lab Handout.

Week 28 April18- Chemistry: Chemical Changes

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

                   Finish lab experiment handout.

Week 29 April 25- Chemistry: Chemical Changes continued

                    Homework - Finish adding elements to the Science Notebook.

Week 30 May 2 - Last Class Wrap up and Review; finish working on Science Notebooks

May 9- Snow Day or End of Year Party