Course Syllabus



Spring  2019

Kara Thompson

Contact Information:

Extra Help is available most mornings from 7:15 to 7:45, or afternoons by appointment

Course Expectations:

  • Develop the understanding and knowledge of the nature of science, its unifying concepts and connections to other disciplines
  • Develop natural curiosity and inquiry skills
  • Develop critical thinking and communication skills
  • Develop the ability to reflect on personal learning experiences and assess development as a learner
  • Demonstrate advanced proficiency and concept mastery of biology topics
  • Develop global content knowledge and skills necessary for successful completion of college and university work

These will be achieved through:

  • Displaying a constructive and optimistic learning attitude
  • Continuous collaboration with students and teacher
  • Daily participation in classroom discussions and activities
  • Designing and completing laboratory investigations to master the topics presented in biology
  • Reading analyzing and reporting on key scientific discoveries and recent research in science.

My expectations:

  • Work to accomplish the expectations listed above
  • Have a positive attitude
  • Participate in discussions
  • Come prepared for class, labs, tests, and activities
  • Use and develop critical thinking and analytical skills
  • Have high expectations of me! If I am doing something that does not help you learn, talk to me about it!
  • Make learning your responsibility – I cannot force you to learn but I can help you with the content of this course.

I will do my best to provide a positive environment so that you can be successful and learn.  I am excited to begin this learning experience with you!


Course Outline:

Section 1: Ecology & Biochemistry, cells and cellular transport

Section 2: Energy & DNA, the cell cycle, and genetics/genomics

Section 3: Evolution, Classification, & Behavior

Course Grading:

            Each graded assignment will have a specific point value (for example, a 100 question test might be worth 100 points or a 30 question quiz might be worth 50 points).  To calculate your grade on the assignment you would do the following:

            Total points earned / total points possible = Your Grade

** No credit will be given for plagiarism (school policy will be followed), shared work, or assisting others in completing individual assignments.

To help prevent plagiarism work will be completed in a variety of ways and submitted in a variety of ways as well. 

Absence Policy:

            When a student has a lawful absence, per MRSH policy, two days will be allowed for each day absent, for students to have ample time to make up missed work.  The student is responsible for obtaining those missed assignments.  If you do not make arrangements to make up work, no credit will be given for those assignments.

Late work:

            Late work will be accepted with a 20% deduction for the first day and 10% deduction for each day thereafter.  It is important to me that you are learning the material, but it is equally important that you demonstrate responsibility and complete and return the assignments.

Classroom Rules:

  • Be in class on time, with materials needed and ready to learn when the bell rings
  • Raise a hand when you want to make a comment or ask a question
  • Do not interrupt others while they are learning
  • Follow all verbal, written, and laboratory instructions
  • Follow school rules, regulations, and policies of MRHS and UCPS
  • Not following these rules will result in a warning, and if behavior continues, parents will be notified and consequences as set by the school will occur


Laboratory Rules:

  • No food or drink in the laboratory area
  • Closed-toe shoes must be worn during certain lab activities. This will be communicated in advance.
  • Long hair, ties, loose clothing must be tied back or secured while working in the lab. Any loose jewelry must be removed.
  • Always read labels and directions before using any items in the lab. If labels or directions are unclear or confusing, ask!
  • Always wear safety goggles, lab aprons and gloves when necessary in the lab. 10 points will be deducted from your grade each time you are not wearing your safety equipment.
  • Always clean your work area and wash your hands when the lab is complete. 20 points will be deducted for failure to do this.
  • Roughhousing is not permitted in the lab and will result in a removal of the student(s) involved.


 Required Materials

Laptop                                                                  1 subject notebook (8.5 x 11)

3-ring binder (1 ½ - 2 inch)                                 Colored Pencils

4 Dividers with pockets                                        Pencils

Black or blue pens (no bright colors)                   Paper

Mini stapler or glue stick                                     

Marvin Ridge High School

Biology Course Requirements and Classroom Management

Student, Parent/Guardian, and Teacher Agreement

As your son/daughter’s teacher, I will treat all students equally and with respect.  I strongly believe that effective parent/guardian/teacher communication will promote the academic success of students at Marvin Ridge High School.  In order to facilitate communication, please fill in your current email address (if applicable) and phone number(s) at the bottom of this sheet.  In addition, please let me know your preferred method of contact.  If you have any questions please do not hesitate to call me at school at (704-290-1520) or email me at  I am looking forward to this semester with your son/daughter.


Kara Thompson  

As a student in Mrs. Thompson’s class, I agree to:

  • Follow procedures and expectations as outlined in the attached syllabus
  • Abide by the policies outlined in the school handbook
  • Attend class regularly and be on time
  • Be polite and respectful to my peers, teacher, and my school
  • Stay on task on class and complete assignments

Student name: ___________________________________________________

Student Signature:________________________________________________

As a parent/guardian of a student in Mrs. Thompson’s class I:

  • Have read the course requirements/expectations information for my child and I understand and agree with the expectations. (If not, please contact me with issues and concerns)
  • Will let Mrs. Thompson know of any medical, physical, mental, or dietary needs that I should be made aware of (confidentially) that may impact my child’s learning
  • Will contact Mrs. Thompson with any questions of concerns

Parent/ Guardian Signature:___________________________________________

Parent/ Guardian Name ­­­­­­­­­:______________________________________________

Mother     Father     Guardian  (circle one)

Parent/ Guardian Email:_______________________________________________

Cell Phone __________________________________________________________

Home Phone________________________________________________________

Work Phone_________________________________________________________

Please circle your preferred method of contact:

Email              Cell Phone                Home Phone                       Work Phone

Preferred contact time: _______________________________________________

Do you have a computer at home or access to one?   YES   NO

Internet access?   YES    NO        Printer access?   YES   NO   

Are there any Special conditions that I need to consider when teaching your child? ___________________________________________________________________

Thank you in advance for your cooperation!  I am very excited to have your child in my class!

Course Summary:

Date Details Due