Wednesday, April 30, 2014

MS Science

It has been an exciting and educational year in 8th grade science!  Mr. Kenny and I have co-taught three different units this year.  Our classes have learned about the Human Brain and Senses, Populations and Ecosystems, and will be finishing up Chemical Interactions to end the year.  Our curriculum consists of the Full Option Science System (FOSS) kits where students learn science by doing science!

In the Human Brain and Senses unit students explored the use of knowledge and structures and functions of the human sensory and nervous system.  Students investigated how the brain and senses acquire, interpret, and respond to information.  Students were able to explore vision by dissecting a real cow eyeball!  We had a lot of fun exploring learning, memory, and the human’s senses. 

In the Populations and Ecosystems unit, students explored ecosystems, which is our largest organizational unit of life on Earth.  Students learned that every organism has a role to play in its ecosystem and has structures and behavior that allow it to survive.  Students were able to create their own terrestrial and aquatic environments in class to observe how populations interact.  Students also learned that food is the source of energy for all organisms and explored reproduction, limiting factors, heredity, natural selection, and evolution in this unit.

Our last unit is Chemical Interactions.  In this unit students will inquire into the structure and behavior of matter.  Students will conduct experiments to observe the macroscopic transformations of matter such as phase change, dissolution, and reactions.  Students will apply the kinetic particle theory to explore these transformations at the microscopic level.  Students will learn about atoms, how atoms combine to form substances, and that substances make up molecules and compounds. Students explored gas expansion by heating and cooling gases in plastic bottles and investigating what they did to balloons and soapy solutions. Students will also explore the components of a chemical reaction. 
~Matt Svare

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