Physical Science Syllabus

Physical Science Honors Syllabus

Mr. L. Simons

305-947-1451 X 2262

Science Curriculum Synopsis:

John F. Kennedy Middle School’s Science Program is a challenging integrated science curriculum that incorporates Middle School grade level (6th - 8th) concepts. 

Physical Science Honors – Middle School ONLY                                                                                                Course Code: 200332001

1ST Nine Weeks

2nd Nine Weeks

3rd Nine Weeks

4th Nine Weeks

       I. Introduction (What keeps the Universe together and changing?)

(SC.8.N.1.1; SC.7.N.1.2; SC.6.N.2.2)

A. Develop Interest in Physical Science

B. Lab Safety

C. Develop the logic and sequence of the Scientific Process 

D. Lab Report writing and expectations

      II. Measurement (How do you find out the mass of one grain of rice?)

(SC.8.E.5.1; SC.8.E.5.3; SC.8.E.5.7; SC.8.P.8.4; SC.7.E.6.5)

A. Develop the logic of using Metric Units

B. Practice “Measurements” by measuring

C. SI Units Conversions

D. Data analysis, graphing and Interpretation

E. Develop the concepts of mass, volume and density relationships

    III. Motion (How does a rocket ship get into orbit?)

(SC.8.E.5.7; SC.8.E.5.4; SC.8.E.5.9; SC.8.P.8.4;  SC.6.P.13.3)

A. Develop the concept of motion

B. Position

C. Speed 

D. Velocity

E. Acceleration

F. Graphs of Motion

   IV. Forces (Why do we wear a seatbelt?)

(SC.8.E.5.4; SC.8.E.5.9; SC.7.N.1.5; SC.6.P.13.1)

A. Develop the concept of Forces and equilibrium

B. Newton’s First Law

C. Newton’s Second Law

D. Newton’s Third Law

E. Law of Universal Gravitation

     V. Work & Machines (How do you move a refrigerator to the second floor?)

(SC.8.E.5.7; SC.7.N.1.5; SC.6.L.14.5; SC.6.E.7.4; SC.6.E.7.5)

A. Develop the concept of work

B. Observe examples of work and power

C. Analyze and synthesize qualitative work scenarios

D. Identify and Build Simple Machines


   VI. Energy (How much energy is there in a chocolate bar?)

(SC.8.L.18.4;SC.7.N.3.1; SC.7.P.11.2)

A. Develop the concept of Energy

B. Forms of Energy

C. Energy Transformation   

D. Law of Conservation of Energy

E. Energy resources

F. Review Energy Pyramid and trophic Levels

  VII. Waves: Sound & Light (If you scream in space, do you hear the sound?)

(SC.8.E.5.5; SC.8.E.5.1; SC.7.N.1.5; SC.7.P.10.1; SC.7.P.10.3)

A. Develop the concept of waves

B. Properties of sound

C. Sound Waves

D. Electromagnetic spectrum and optics

E. Speed of light

VIII. Matter (How does the sun make energy?)

(SC.8.P.8.4; SC.8.L.18.4 )

A. Nature of Matter

B. Atoms, elements, and compounds

C. Phases of Matter

D. Classification of Matter (homogeneous and heterogeneous)

E. Properties of matter

   IX. Behavior of Gases (Why do your ears pop when you are in an airplane?)


A. Atmosphere and Pressure

B. Factors affecting pressure

     X. Temperature (Which will increase in temperature at a higher rate; a bucket of water or a swimming pool?)

(SC.8.E.5.6; SC.7.P.11.4; SC.7.E.6.5; SC.6.E.7.5)

A. Concept of temperature

B. Temperature conversions

C. Heat and Thermal Energy

D. Specific Heat

E. Transfer of Heat


   XI. Atomic Structure (Why is the water from prehistoric time the same as the water we drink today?)

(SC.8.P.8.5; SC.7.N.3.1; SC.7.E.6.4; SC.6.L.14.1; SC.6.N.2.2)

A. Structure of the Atom

B. Atomic Models

C. Periodic Table

  XII. Compounds (If the parents have brown eyes how can their child have blue eyes?)

( SC.8.P.8.5; SC.6.L.14.1; SC.6.L.16.1)

A. Chemical Bonds and electrons

B. Chemical Formulas

C. Building Blocks of Life

D. Organic Compounds

E. Macromolecules

XIII. Chemical Reactions (How are the colors of fireworks created?)

(SC.8.L.18.4; SC.8.P.9.2; SC.7.N.1.5; SC.7.N.3.1)

A. Chemical Reactions

B. Classifying Reactions

C. Photosynthesis and Cellular Respiration

D. Biogeochemical Cycles

E. Processes Related to Cycles

F. Human Impact

XIV. Solutions (How do bugs walk on water?)

(SC.8.P.8.4; SC.8.P.8.5)

A. Properties of Water: The Universal Solvent

B. Solutions

C. Acids, Bases, and pH


 XV. Crunch Time

·    SC.8.E.5.1 (space travel); SC.8.E.5.3; SC.8.E.5.5; SC.8.E.5.6; SC.8.E.5.7; SC.8.E.5.8; SC.8.E.5.9; SC.8.L.18.4

·    SC.7.E.6.2; SC.7.E.6.4; SC.7.E.6.5; SC.7.L.15.2; SC.7.L.16.1; SC.L.17.2;

·    SC.6.E.7.4; SC.6.E.7.5;SC.6.P.13.1; SC.6.L.14.1; SC.6.L.14.2; SC.6.L.14.4; SC.6.L.14.5; SC.6.L.15.1


XVI. Energy and Chemical Reactions (Why do glow sticks glow?)

A. Types of Reactions

B. Required Energy

C. Reaction Systems

D. Reaction Rate

E. Nuclear Reactions


XVII. Electricity-Static Current (Why do socks stick together when you take them out of the dryer?)

A. Develop the concept of Electricity

B. Conductors, semiconductors, and insulators

C. Electric Circuits and systems


XVIII. Magnetism (Why should we not put magnets near our cell phones or computers?)

A. Develop the concept of Magnetism

B. Properties and Interactions of Magnets

C. Electromagnets

D. Electric motors and generators


XIX. Behavior of Gases

A. Gas Laws (Boyle’s law, Charles law, Gay-Lussac’s law)


 XX. Ramping-Up for Biology (What is the smallest living organism?)

A. Equipment and Procedures

B. Cells Types

C. Review  of the Scientific Process

D. Famous Biologists

A. Biology Vocabulary


Student expectations:

1.     Come to class/lab prepared with all needed school supplies including: pencils/pens, paper, notebook, composition books, calculator, graph paper, etc.

2.     Turn in all assigned work when due. Unexcused late work will be discounted a letter grade per day for a maximum of 3 days from due date.  After the third day, the unexcused late work will get a maximum of a 50%.

3.     All turned in work must be neat/legible and in prescribed format for maximum credit.

4.     Participate during class discussions, labs, and Q&A's.

5.     Safety is paramount in class/lab/field. Inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated.



Students are individually evaluated on performance/mastery of class material- lecture, textbook assignments, labs, etc. Evaluations include but are not limited to the following: Homework (10%), Quiz (10%), Classwork (15%), Laboratories (25%), Tests (20%), and Projects (20%).


Grading errors:

If a grading mistake is found or alleged, the protesting student MUST return the graded paper back to the teacher with the question number(s) circled and a written explanation, on a separate sheet of paper, as to why the student's original answer(s) is/are correct. The teacher will review the submitted petition and return a written response to the student within one week. The teacher reserves the right to re-grade the entire paper submitted.


Make-up work:

As per Miami Dade County Public Schools Policy, a student that has an excused absence from school/class can make-up missed class work. The student has one day per excused absence day to make up the work. Make-up work not turned in on time will get a zero for a grade.



Class rules:

Science and science experimentation can be both fun and demanding. Whether we are learning from lecture or from hands-on activities, the science class room/lab is never the place for inappropriate behavior to be exhibited that may directly or indirectly affect the learning environment, health and or safety of all concern. Therefore,

1.     Conduct yourself as “Gentlemen” and “Ladies” at all times.

2.     Do no harm to yourself, others or property.

3.     Come to all labs academically prepared.

4.     If you are not sure, or just ' THINK ' YOU KNOW, what/how to do, ask first!

5.     Report any unsafe equipment/situations /activity to the teacher immediately.



Inappropriate behavior (depending on the nature, severity, or frequency of the infraction) may result in one or more of the following actions by the teacher:

1.     Verbal/Visual warning

2.     One-on-one conference with student on behavior issues

3.     Phone call to parents concerning student's behavior issues

4.     Face to face conference with parent(s) and student on behavior issues

5.     Referred to administration for further consequences