All Things Chemical and Physical
Here is the course description including information about grading
Accelerated Chemistry 2010/2011
Chemistry is the study of interactions between substances at the one of the smallest and most fundamental levels. (Only nuclear study is more fundamental.) Of particular interest to the chemist are interactions which yield (or produce) new substances. Chemical interactions can be very complex, and, at times, seemingly impossible to predict. In this course we will deal with the simplest and most basic concepts, principles and topics which build a foundation for chemical studies.
Not everyone in this course will be planning on being a chemist, although I have no idea why not. As a matter of fact, some will not even like science. So, what is the benefit of having chemistry? Most simply, the benefit is in developing a logical problem solving skill. No matter what career you choose, being a problem solver is a valuable skill. Science courses are designed to create an appreciation for the world around us, an understanding of fundamentals of science, and, most importantly, to develop problem solvers. We don’t have too many real problem solvers in our world today. You will find that a major emphasis in this course is working to become a logical and critical thinker.
Accelerated Chemistry, like Chemistry, is a partially-weighted course. This means that a bonus is added to the grade points achieved in this course. This bonus helps students achieve higher GPAs, class ranking and aids in honors such as honor roll, National Honor Society, etc. The bonus also carries the expectation of more challenging and rigorous course work. In addition to the more difficult content this course will not accept late assignments. The top student should complete and submit work on time. Also, make up work and missed classroom information will be the responsibility of the student. It is your “job” to take the initiative to get missed notes, assignments and arrange for make up exams. You will have a syllabus so you will know in advance what assignments are given and when quizzes and tests are scheduled. Make up procedures will follow the guidelines in the Student Handbook.
Even though both courses are partially weighted, Accelerated Chemistry is more challenging than Chemistry. We will cover more material, go to greater depth on some topics, move at a faster pace, and have more difficult assignments. The course uses the same textbook as AP Chemistry (so you will be better prepared for that course if you choose.) The book is also used by numerous colleges for their introductory or basic chemistry courses.
Each chapter will be outlined on a syllabus. This document is your chapter’s “road map.” It tells you what will be covered, what reading and homework assignments are, when exams/quizzes/labs will be, and you should keep this near and dear to your heart. It is YOUR guide. Incidentally, you should do readings the evening prior to their being covered in class.
You will be given a blackboard account on blendedschools.net. This account will be registered with a username that is mu12.firstinitial last name (assuming you’re in the class of 2012). You will do homework assignments, take quizzes, write reports, participate in discussions, and submit lab information using these accounts. More later…
Grades for Accelerated Chemistry will be determined on a “total points” basis. In other words, a 20 point assignment carries twice the weight of a 10 point assignment. Each chapter will contain
Exams (1 or 2) * 50 – 70 points each ~ 35%
Homework 20 – 40 points total ~ 25%
Labs (3- 5)* * 4 – 8 points each ~ 15%
Lab Participation 1 point each ~ 5%
Quizzes (2 – 4)* 5 – 10 points each ~ 10%
Project/Presentation ~25 points ~ 10% (not every chapter)
Homework and labs will be collected at various times during the course of the chapter.
Occasionally a major lab report will be assigned. It will be worth about 25 points. As we work on labs we will develop the skills for writing a report.
No bonus work or extra credit is available. I don’t believe in it…it’s a long story.
*Some exam work, quizzes and lab reporting will be done using Blackboard online.
**Lab reporting may be done electronically or by project/presentation.
Make-up work is the sole responsibility of the student. You have a syllabus and are aware of what assignments were missed. You must make arrangements with the instructor to make up missed work. Labs cannot be made up but projects (including lab projects) will need an alternative assignment given.
No late work is accepted. If you are absent the day of collection for an assignment it is due at the beginning of the next school day. Since you have advanced knowledge of examinations in advance, if you miss the day prior to the test, you will take the test on the day it is scheduled.
What Do I Need?
- a spiral notebook for classroom notes
- a scientific calculator
- a sense of humor