• Las Colinas Middle School
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Welcome & Classroom Information

  • Welcome to 2018/2019 Physical Science!


    Course:                                  Physical Science, Grade 8      

    Teacher:                                 Sarah Scott


    Google Classroom Codes:           

    Per 1 - cuph75d

    Per 2 - qxkcu0k

    Per 4 - ji1fql

    Per 5 - q8ttq4

    Per 6 - nc1upzh

    Course Outline:

    Matter and Its Interactions

    Atomic composition of simple molecules and extended structures, properties of a substance before and after substances interact to determine if a chemical reaction occurred, how synthetic materials impact society, particle motion and thermal energy, conservation of mass

    Chapter 1 – Intro to Matter                            (CPO chapter 3.1)

    Chapter 2 – Solids, Liquids, Gases                 (CPO chapters 4/5)

    Chapter 3 – Elements and Periodic Table       (CPO chapters 6/7)

    Chapter 4 – Atoms and Bonding                    (CPO chapter 8)

    Chapter 5 – Chemical Reactions                     (CPO chapter 10)

    Chapter 6 – Acids, Bases, Solutions               (CPO chapter 9)


    Motion and Stability: Forces and Interactions

    Newton’s Third Law, Newton’s First Law, Newton’s Second Law (motion of two colliding objects and the change in an object’s motion depends on the sum of the forces on the object and the mass of the object), electromagnetic fields, gravitational interactions

    Chapter 7 – Motion                                         (CPO chapter 12)

    Chapter 8 – Forces (and 9.1/9.2)                    (CPO chapters 13/14)

    Chapter 16 – Electricity                                  NEW NGSS STANDARD

    Chapter 17 – Magnetism                                 NEW NGSS STANDARD



    Relationship between kinetic energy and the mass of an object, potential energy, thermal energy transfer,

    Chapter 10 – Energy                                       (CPO chapter 3.2)

    Chapter 11 – Thermal Energy and Heat         (CPO chapter 3.2)


    Waves and their Applications in Technologies for Information Transfer

    Amplitude and energy of waves, waves are reflected, absorbed, or transmitted through various materials, digitized signals vs. analog signals

    Chapter 12 – Characteristics of Waves           NEW NGSS STANDARD

    Chapter 13 – Sound                                        NEW NGSS STANDARD

    Chapter 14 – Electromagnetic Waves             NEW NGSS STANDARD

    Chapter 15 – Light                                          NEW NGSS STANDARD


    CA Science Standards:  http://www.cde.ca.gov/be/st/ss/documents/sciencestnd.pdf (old standards)

    Next Generation Science Standards:  http://www.cde.ca.gov/pd/ca/sc/ngssstandards.asp (new standards)


    Grading Scale/Q Parent Connect:  (Grades are calculated as per District recommendations)

    A – 90% to 100%       B – 80% - 89%            C – 70% - 79%            D – 60% - 69%           F – 0% - 59%

    Grading Scale Weights:

    Tests – 50% of total grade

    Projects/Labs/Quizzes– 40% of total grade

    Classwork/ Homework/Participation – 10% of total grade

    Parents should monitor their student’s progress through Q Parent Connect.  A password is required to access the grading system, and is available in the office.


    Teacher Communication:  email is the preferred method of communication:  ScottS2@pleasantvalleysd.org

    My Google Classroom website will be updated weekly with homework assignments, quiz and test dates, project due dates, and other important school information.  

    Recommended Supplies: 8 ½ x 11  lined notebook, folder, lined paper, pencils and erasers, CALCULATOR – students are allow to use a calculator on all tests but NOT the calculator on their cell phones, colored pencils, green, yellow, and pink colored highlighters, a colored ball point pen for correcting, mini stapler, scissors, glue sticks, scotch tape,…


    Homework Policy:  Homework will be assigned on an as-needed basis to reinforce concepts taught in class that week.  Unfinished classwork must be taken home that night and completed as homework and turned in the next day.  Only homework completed and turned in will receive credit.  Partial credit might be given for late assignments at teacher discretion. All homework credit will be given in Q/Parent Connect. Homework turned in without a name will be posted, and it is the student’s responsibility to check if they did not receive their homework back from the teacher.  Unclaimed papers will be thrown away at the end of every quarter.


    Students with excused absences will have the same number of days to make-up any missed assignments and/or tests.  It is the student’s responsibility to collect and complete their missing homework assignments in the time allowed.   Students will have a week to make up missed labs.

    Exam Correction Policy:

    Test and Quizzes are open book/notes; however, science tests with a grade of 69% and below may be corrected for a new grade to be recorded (in place of the old one). Students will receive half credit for every correct answer. Corrections must include writing each missed question out with the correct answer by hand.  Quizzes are not eligible for re-takes. 

    • Students should always do their best work on each test and not depend on being able to correct to improve their grade. 
    • Students who study hard and do well on their tests the first time benefit as they will not be surpassed by students who may rely corrections. 
    • At the same time, students who receive a grade 69% or below on a test will benefit from the opportunity to correct their mistakes, re-learn material, and improve their grade.
    • Whenever possible, corrections will be scheduled as due within a week after graded tests are returned to students. It is the student’s responsibility to return the original test on the specified date and signed by a parent on the top front of the correction page in order to correct a test.
    • Only students who return their original tests with signed notices on the date specified will be able to correct their tests.

    Mrs. Scotts Golden Rules

      1. Please be in your seat when the bell rings.
      2. Please be on task at all times
      3. Please keep all food, drinks, and gum out of the classroom (water must be in a clear bottle and is allowed only on non-lab days).
      1. Please be respectful of all learners
      2. Please use appropriate behavior at all times.
    1. All other school wide policies will be enforced in the classroom.

    Consequences:  Citizenship Book Procedures

    When a rule has been broken, student will write her/his name in the Citizenship Book (after a verbal warning,) write what s/he was doing, and write what s/he should have been doing.

    • Verbal warning
    • Name on the Please Stay board and students will stay after class to have a quick discussion about their behavior – no further consequence (consider this a written warning.)
    • Name on the Please Stay board two times – parents emailed and/or called
    • Name on the Please Stay board three times – detention, office referral to speak with Mr. Goldman or Ms. Opulstic and begin progressive discipline, and parents called.
    • Severe actions beyond acceptable will lead to immediate removal from class and may be cause for suspension.
    • Labs: Working in a lab is a privilege and student safety is my number one concern. I have ZERO tolerance for misbehavior during a lab OR does not completely follow the lab procedures. If a student misbehaviors and/or does not follow the lab procedures, they will be removed from the lab and/or classroom (if warranted), be given sentences that they will have to return with a parent signature at the top, and receive a zero for the lab. If the signed sentences are not returned the following school day, a parent phone call or email will be made and further actions if necessary.


    • FUN!
    • We’ll have a productive, more relaxed environment
    • Students will receive a reward every unit (e.g., extra credit) for good behavior and not receiving their name on the Please Stay board three times.
    • High citizenship marks


    Crash Course Chemistry and Crash Course Physics on YouTube

    Bill  Nye the Science Guy

    Absolute Zero by NOVA, not rated

    The Science of Measurement: Taking Measure of the World by Athena, not rated

    The Mystery of Matter: Search for the Elements by PBS, not rated

    Hunting the Elements by PBS, not rated

    Einstein’s Big Idea by NOVA, not rated