Gainesville Middle School

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    We have completed our first week from break and have been working on DNA.  This unit that not only deals with DNA but genetics relates to wonderful topics for family discussions.  These include discussions on family history and geneology, gmo's and genetic modified organisms, cloning, and more.  As we enter a wold where we have begun to modify humans it is important to start the moral discussions of these topics at home.  Other interesting discussions include 23 and me and genetic testing done on infants for medical purposes. In class we will discuss what was the human genome project, what is a clone and how did the first scientist accomplish this in a sheep, what is a GMO and what are some arguments for and against, what is CRISPR and how did the first genetically modified human come to be as well as how do we predict the possibility of different traits and the genome project.  We will learn about Mendel and his peas and the history of the discovery of the shape of DNA. Last week, amongst all the snow days, we learned the shape of DNA, What the letters in DNA stand for and what makes up the strand of DNA.  We reviewed how Chromosomes are made of DNA and that a section represents a gene.  The gene is code for a specific trait. Students have been givien there vocabulary and should be working on them at home.  We are also on oue last weeks of working on the science fair projects. Last friday the graph, data table and results paragraphs were due.  Before break, students were given aids, a demonstration, and class time (including this past Thursday) to work on their projects.  This Friday, the rough draft for the conclusion paragraph is due.  The firnal report is to be typed, printed and submited on January 24th.  In addition, retakes for standards 9 and 10 must be completed by Friday.  Please email me if you have any questions.
    Posted by armstrem  On Jan 13, 2020 at 5:39 AM
    We have had a wonderful week and I hope everyone has a great weekend.  Do not forget we have monday off.  We have just completed our first week of research for our Science Inquiry (Science Fair) Project.  The students should print out their abstracts and title page if they have not done so and submit them on Tuesday.  I will then give feedback and make corrections.  When the students get their papers back back they should make the corrections, but do not print again until the final drafts.  The students were to have the the research essays and works cited done by this coming Friday but we will have a field trip and the computers will not be available so I have postponed it to the following week.  We will go over some of the directions, techniques and strategies next week so if they want to work on them at home and get a little ahead they can.  All students should be done with their research for the science fair.  I have attached the form that we did our research on.  Please ask the students to show you the form and discuss what they have discovered.   Next week we willl be returning to our regular curriculum and be moving on to standard 7 cell transport and standard 8 photosynthesis and cellular respiration. Over the next week we will discuss dialysis, chemical poisening through air and more.  For homework students should be working on Chapter 4 Lesson 3 and 4 as well as Chapter 5 Lesson 1 and 2 in their workbooks. We will be finishing this up the following week. Please email me if you have any questions. 
    Posted by armstrem  On Nov 08, 2019 at 5:35 PM
    This week we will take our last test of the quarter.  It will cover standards 5 Cell Theory and 6 Cell Structure and Function. Student have received a study guide.  on addition they may go to and enter this code 135266and practice.  The end of the quarter is arriving quickly.  The last day is November 1st.  Finally we are working on finalizing our science fair project topics.  We will be starting research on the week of November 4th.  Reminder there is no school November 4th and 5th for students.  Please email me if you have any questions or concerns.Unit 2 Cell Theory _ Cell Structure Study Guide 2019.doc
    Posted by armstrem  On Oct 22, 2019 at 6:59 PM
    Last week in 1st, 2nd, and 7th periods we finished standards 1-4 and completed the quick checks for each topic.  In addition, we took some retakes for a couple of the standards that we saw a larger number of students not have as much success.  I continue to be available at lunch.  Some students have taken advantage this and have seen significant improvement.  I also had the opportunity to work in a small group with many of the students. The quick check scores have been updated in the Hubb.  On Monday, all classes will be in the library learning how to research.  We will also be learning what resources will be available for research.  Students should have brought home a proposal sheet that they shared and worked on with you for their science fair idea.  I have not approved any projects yet.  That is my goal for Sunday, to go over the proposals.  I will not be handing any back until Tuesday.  The library is a busy experience and I do not want anyone to lose their forms.  On, Wednesday 1st, 2nd, and 7th periods will be taking their tests.  There are numerous resources for them to use.  The enriched period will be finishing up their botany unit this week.  After a discussion I had with students on Thursday of last week, I have decided that this week’s Team Time in science will be devoted to study habits and how to study.  If you have any questions please email me and have a wonderful weekend.
    Posted by armstrem  On Sep 29, 2019 at 3:29 AM
    In class this week we worked on the steps in the scientific method and identifying variables in experiments.  We also practiced writing hypotheses and scientific questions.  All classes have started the Fish Lab Project for this unit.  The final project will count for 3 90% grades each for a different standard. Third period worked on graphs as well and will have their test on Monday.  I have emailed the review sheets answers for practice.  Please remember that all students have the study packet that has sheets for the whole year to study from that should be at home. The packet is also available online in my files and documents.  In addition, I have posted a Quizizz code to help prepare for the test as well.  First, second, and seventh period will continue with graphs as well as work on their projects next week.  We will have their test on the following Wednesday October 2nd.  On Friday September 7 students will be having a lesson by the counseling department and the following Monday we will be in the library to learn about the resources the library has as well as how to use them.  Students were the proposal form for the science fair project.  I ask that they try to come in by Wednesday.  It may take more time than this.  If they have at least the front page and a discussion with you about the topics they are looking into for their projects that will be very helpful.  Students must have a parent or guardian approval before I will sign off on a project, however I will assign a topic if they do not get a proposal in by November 1st. For this project students should be looking at a problem to solve and questions they have.  They are looking at what effect a change has on something.  Therefore, crafts such as the volcano and the activity of making the fruit and vegetable clocks are not acceptable. In addition, we do not accept brand testing or mold and bacteria projects.  The latter is for safety. We also ask that students do not make crystals for these projects often fall apart.  Furthermore, when considering projects, one must understand that students must do multiple trials. In regard to plants, if they do the minimum of 4 independent variables, they will need 25 plants.  I would suggest germinating part of a bag of beans from the grocery store to keep the budget in check.  Students will need a tri-fold board but not until January. Please email me if you have any questions.  As I told the students, the idea is what is most important. I will post past ideas in the files and documents section of my web page.  Students were told not to do an experiment idea they find online, but rather to  come up with a new idea or tweak the idea to make the idea their own.
    Posted by armstrem  On Sep 21, 2019 at 7:37 AM