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Course Expectations

Honors Biology Class Expectations

Ms. Churchill -mchurchill@marincatholic.org

Welcome to Honors Biology!  I’m so excited to work with such a motivated, hardworking group of students.

Biology is the science of life.  It is concerned with the study of all living things.  Observation, exploration, questioning, and attention to detail are all part of a science that allows biologists to discover a world of relationships that most people don’t even know exists.

Some of the topics we will cover include: cells (structure and function), cellular respiration, photosynthesis, mitosis and meiosis, genetics and heredity, evolution, and the biosphere.

I. Materials

A.    Textbook- Biology: Concepts and Connections.  6th Edition. Campbell, Reece, Taylor, Simon, and Dickey.  There is an upward looking leopard on the cover.

B.    My Google Sites Page- Your HW is posted here, but you still need to write down the HW each day from the board.  Assignments are fine tuned and explained in class. My Wiki also has lecture animations, powerpoints, and some handouts.


III. Class Operation and Policy

On most days, you can expect the following format

1.     Warm-up.  5-10 minutes.  This often is a worksheet that you pick on the counter as you are entering or a free response question you may be asked to blog about on our google site.

2.     Direct Instruction 15-20  minutes.  Using a variety of teaching tools, I will introduce the day’s material.

3.     Guided Practice. 30 minutes.  Using a variety of resources, including group-work, you will solidify your understanding.

4.     Homework. Often it will be a short review of the day’s lesson.  The homework will also often be reading and questions in the book, or pre-labs.  You must prepare yourself for each class, or you will quickly get confused and behind. I will write the homework on the board each day.  I expect you to copy it in your planner.  I will post my assignments to the website, but there can be last minute changes which you are responsible for.

Class Expectations

Please follow the 3 Rs

1.     Respect for self. Do the best you can.

2.     Respect for others, including your classmates, your teacher, and your school environment

3.     Responsibility for all your actions

(IV) Grading

I use the same A-F scale as the rest of the school. I use the following categories:

Tests and Quizzes                                                            40%

Labs and Major Assignments                                           30%

Homework                                                                        15%

Final Exam                                                                        10%

Independent Research Project (IRP)                                  5%

I will always give you a couple day's notice for a test, but I reserve the right to give pop quizzes. You can retake a test only if you score 69% or below.  With a make-up, the highest you can raise your grade up to 70%.

I outline the lab write-up on another form.  Usually, the write-up is due the day after the lab was completed.  Doing a good job on your pre-lab will make your life easier.

Please remember to turn in your assignments, either to my blue bin or your class’s in- box.   Do not turn in assignments to my presentation cart or table! If your legible name is not on the FRONT PAGE of an assignment you turn in, you automatically get half credit, if I ever figure out that it was your paper.

Late assignments

1.     Homework- If it is not ready when I check it, you will receive a “0”, because I usually “make use” of it right away. It can be made up for 50% of the credit if turned in late.

2.     Lab category.  I will accept late assignments in this category. Your grade will be one letter grade lower for every day it is late.  You can turn in late work with the max 50% deduction until one week after I have posted it in Powerschool.  The After that point, you will receive a “0”.  The dates in Powerschool are not the dates of the assignment (look in the google sites for that) but are the dates of posting.

If you are absent……

1.     If your absence is planned, please get your work before you leave. .

2.     When you return, please turn in your homework to your class’s in-slot.  At the same handy desk location, pick up any handouts you missed.

3.     If you miss only the day of a test, you are expected to take the test in class the day you return.  If you were gone one or more days prior to the test, you need to contact me ASAP to schedule your make-up.  Usually, I will give you a reprieve for as many days as you were gone.

4.     Assignments.  You get as many days to turn in make-up work as you were absent.

 We are going to have a great year together!!!!


Aug 10, 2011, 9:39 PM