A. NAME: ________________________

TEACHER: Mr. Mancuso

B. Welcome

Welcome to General Biology. This syllabus is an explanation of what you can expect, and what will be expected of you, in this course. You are responsible for reading, understanding, and following these guidelines. If there is anything you do not understand, please ask so that your work and behavior are appropriate.
Remember that there are always excuses to fail in life. There are always people to blame when you make mistakes. In the end however, the only one who failed was you. We must take the challenge together to make the best of what we have at school and learn.
If you are not doing as well as you want to, remember these are poor excuses:
    1) I don't like Mr. Mancuso.
    2) This class is boring.
    3) My girlfriend / boyfriend broke up with me.
    4) School is stale
    5) I'm in love.

Let’s learn and have fun!

C. Records

All records of this course and the lab course will be kept in a three ring binder with five divided sections:
    1) Handouts - (your grade sheet is the first hand out, includes colorings)
    2) Notes - (all class notes)
    3) Assignments - (including questions)
    4) Labs - (notes, raw data)
    5) Projects

This syllabus is to be placed in front of all material in the notebook.

D. Quarterly Project/ Report

A project/report will be due each quarter. These projects will vary but will include Internet research and Internet authoring of biology topics. Details will be given later.

E. Rules

There are three basic rules of class:

Be On Time and Prepared
Bring your binder, assignment, and a pen and pencil everyday. Come to lecture having completed the required readings.
Take Responsibility
Accept that you are the only one who can be credited for your successes or failures. Be proactive and take initiative. Be in charge of your learning
Respect Others
We all have problems, don't take out bad feelings on others in class, instead deal with them in a mature manner. Respect others opinions and feelings.

F. Grading

    1) Grades are not given in this class - they are only recorded. If you would like a higher grade, earned more points.
    2) Grading is done on a point system. As a result, you may determine your grade at any time by dividing the number of points you have earned by the number of points possible.
    For example:

You have earned 225 points out of a possible 275
225/275 = 82
This is an 82 % or a "B" Grade

    3) The "grade you will receive on your grade reports will be recorded as a percentage the same percentage you have calculated for that grading period.
    4) You may earn extra points for answering difficult questions in class. These questions are called "Day's A's".
    5) You will record your progress on a grade sheet. Parents, it is imperative that you monitor your child's grade sheet weekly as a progress report.
G. Attendance

    1) Please read board policy 411 on attendance.
    2) Please leave all forms (attendance monitors, field trip forms, admit slips...) on my desk at the beginning of the period.
    3) If you forget a form, do not return for it during a class, You will be turned away.

H. Make up work

    1) Work missed because of an unexcused absence cannot be made up.
    2) Make up work must be completed and turned in the same amount of time the student was absent upon the student's return.
    3) It is the students responsibility to find out what work has been missed. Make up work will be discussed before school,          between classes, during break, and appointment after school. This policy also applies to extra credit.

I. Passes

Hall passes will be written only for emergencies. There is at least fifteen minutes of break every two hours of class, please do not use all of this time just talking to friends. If you must talk all break, take a friend to the bathroom for conversation.

J. Course goals

After successfully completing this course you will:
    1) Have a working knowledge of biology that relates to your everyday life.
    2) Be prepared for upper division science coursework.
    3) Demonstrate organizational skills, self-discipline, and effective group communication.

K. Discipline

    1) Our class will work on a three warning system for minor discipline problems. On the third warning a consequence will be given. These consequences may include: Loss of class time to work on home assignments, home assignments to make up for lost instructional time, Science Department detention…
    2) Warnings will be given on the class level, group level and individual level. An individual discipline record will be kept on each student who requires discipline.

STEP 1 – Verbal warning… after class, lunch detention…
STEP 2 – Written warning…detention, work detail….
STEP 3 – Parent Conference…parental discipline, work detail…
STEP 4 – Office Referral…detention, suspension, expulsion…

    3) Major discipline problems will receive immediate consequence, no warnings.
    4) Please remember that field trip privileges will be taken away for the quarter at level two, and for the year at level three.
    5) All school rules apply at all times.

L. Laboratory

Prior to the first lab meeting, lab requirements and safety procedures will be discussed and handed out.

M. Course Content

This course is designed in accordance with the Guam Department of Education Science Content Standards and the National Science Education Standards. These standards are new and rather different than past years. Emphasis within the area of Biology is now placed on five new areas: Unifying Concepts and Processes, Science as Inquiry, Science and Technology, Science in Personal and Social Perspectives, and the History and Nature of Science.

What this means is that this course will stress the process of scientific thinking more than memorizing facts. This can be difficult for some students who have difficulty expressing opinions and fielding educated guesses. Yes evolution is a strong theme in biology now which can upset some students and/or parents, but as the teacher I will never require students to reveal their religious beliefs (although they are welcome to if done respectfully). Neither will I ask that they change their belief system. I only require that they learn it in accordance with local and national standards.

The course will be structured as follows:

Monday - Lecture
Tuesday - Laboratory
Wednesday - Laboratory
Thursday - Review
Friday – Testing

Quarter 1 - Molecules and Cells (chemistry, cell structure and function)
Quarter 2 - Heredity and Evolution (genetics, change over time, natural history)
Quarter 3 - Organisms (survey of plants, animals, fungus, and bacteria…)
Quarter 4 - Populations (how living things interact, human impact on the Earth)

Please refer to the course text for a more detailed listing of topics we will cover throughout the year. The text is only a general guide to what we will cover, we will use many other sources to enrich the content.

N. Responsibilities to Your Seating Area

You are fully responsible for any mess, graffiti, and other vandalism to your seating area. "It was here when I got here " is never an excuse unless you tell me at the beginning of class as soon as you take your seat. This applies to your assigned lecture seat and assigned lab table area.

Permanent markers are not permitted in class for any reason

O. Contract signatures
Thank you parents for taking the time to read this syllabus.
I am sure you realize the importance of parental involvement in your child's education. It is imperative that you check your child's progress weekly by way of the grade sheet. I am looking forward to seeing you at parent nights.
My signature (or initials) below indicates that I have read and understand this syllabus.

This page is homework assignment # 1, quarter 1

P. Parent Notes to Mr. Mancuso