Welcome to the 2019-2020 SMS Middle School Science program.  We are excited to have Physical Science and specifically Matter and Its Interactions be our focus for this year.  The following is a description of what our students will be experience in class this year.

Science  Grades 6-8 – 2019-2020 focus – Physical Science – Matter and Its Interactions

Matter and Its Interactions addresses the performance expectations, attendant science and engineering practices, and crosscutting concepts deemed appropriate for grades 6 through 8 by the Next Generations Science Standards (NGSS). It helps students to develop an understanding of matter, predict its changes, and apply their understanding to design solutions that utilize chemical processes.

Each lesson in this unit builds on the skills and concepts presented in previous lessons.  As students progress through the unit, they take increasing responsibility for their own learning.

To structure and scaffold the development of students’ knowledge, skills, and cognitive reasoning, this unit includes three primary lesson types: pre-assessment, skills and knowledge, and assessment. The pre-assessment lesson allows the teacher to assess students’ preconceptions, misconceptions, and skills. The skills and knowledge building lessons provide multiple opportunities for students to grow and learn through formative assessment. The assessment lesson includes both performance and written assessment activities that function together as a summative assessment of student learning.


Middle School Science uses the Standards Based grading system of 4.0, 3.5, 3.0, 2.5, 2.0, 1.5 and 1.0.  Practice is not included in the final grades, as we recognize that students make mistakes while they are learning the material presented.  All final grades are based on Assessments that include specific rubrics for the given assignments.


Smithsonian Education Center – Science and Technology Concepts for Middle School – Physical Science – Matter and Its Interactions

Homework and class work (student warm-ups and lab activities) will be reflected on the report card under Self-Directed Learning and Problem Solving.