Science is an organized, disciplined approach to observing the natural world. It can be thought of as observations of regularities and relationships in nature. Using these observations, an individual can predict the outcome of an event and tests its validity. This leads us to a greater understanding of the world around us. Ultimately, one must be able to effectively communicate the knowledge to others.
Lyman Memorial High School, in partnership with our cooperating communities, recognizes the unique academic, social, and personal strengths of each of its students. Our goal is to facilitate the development of academic capabilities, social awareness, and a sense of civic responsibility necessary to become productive life-long learners in a global society.
Physical Science is about the rules of the physical world-physics, chemistry, geology, and astronomy. This course is designed to allow you to explore the world around you while developing a foundation for further study in the sciences. The course will attempt to show the historical evolution of science and technology and the fact that current knowledge may be altered by improved understanding of natural phenomena and by further discoveries. Skills such as designing an experiment, writing a lab report, creating a science display, and writing a research paper will all be important components of the class. Short reflections and reactions to science articles in newspapers, journals and magazines will also be required. Labs and hands-on activities will be an integral part of the curriculum. Students will also conduct a comprehensive, semester-long research project. It is important for everyone to understand the impact of science and technology on society in order to make informed decisions. The following lists the topics to be covered, but the time to be spent in each area should be determined by the interest of the students and the discretion of the teacher.
1. Introduction to Physical Science
• Scientific measurement (SI), scientific method, experimental design, lab write-up, data presentation & analysis
2. Structure of Matter
• Atom structure, Periodic table, physical properties, states of matter
3. Reactions and Interactions
• Chemical and physical changes, atomic bonding, conservation of mass & energy, combustion & corrosion, acids & bases
4. Chemistry of Carbon
• Carbon bonding, organic compounds, plastics & polymers
5. Isotopes and Radioactivity
• Decay, nuclear reactions, fission & fusion
6. Energy Sources and Transformations
• Forms of energy, conservation of energy, wave mechanics, light & sound
7. Earth Systems
• Essential natural resources, ecosystems and the environment, conservation, renewable & nonrenewable energy, geochemical cycles
8. Earth History and Dynamics
• Plate tectonics, rock cycle, geological history
• Origin & evolution of the universe, interpretation of stellar information