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Coordinated Science

Yvonne Duncan
El Cajon Valley High School


A survey course for ninth grade students. The course provides an introduction to specific topics in Biology/Ecology, Chemistry, Earth Science, and Physics

Course Size:

Course Format:
Integrated lecture and lab

Course Context:

This is a course for select ninth grade students. Most are the top performing students in their grade. The course is not a pre-requisite; it may be deemed an academic elective (as opposed to a laboratory science requirement) by prospective colleges, such as a University of California. Lab work is a part of the course, but labs are not treated explicitly as "labs." The course is one semester long, and follows the California State Standards for Integrated/Coordinated Science 1.

Course Content:

See course features and syllabus.

Course Goals:

  • Students will demonstrate a foundation in specific aspects of biology, chemistry, Earth science, physics as dictated by the California State Standards
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to deduce scientific principles by using inquiry strategies similar to "real" scientists
  • Students will be able to apply literacy strategies to science text
  • Students will be able to apply mathematical skills to scientific investigations
  • Students will practice teamwork skills using cooperative learning and collaborative strategies

Course Features:

Teaching the Process of Science

Students are presented a real-life scenario and questions to engage them, followed by a chapter challenge project that relates to the questions and scenario. Throughout the unit, students complete investigations require them to build knowledge related to the scenario by experiencing research or experiments. The investigations begin with a question or two, followed by an investigation written in a style that "speaks" to the student and "asks" the student to reflect on the various steps conducted throughout the investigation and reason out the concepts addressed. The investigation is followed by a reading which is meant to fill in the gaps and aid in the student's understanding of the investigation. Finally, students are expected to demonstrate understanding by answering related questions, then apply the knowledge gained to the chapter challenge project.

This course aims to address all of the Integrated Coordinated Science 1 Standards and the basic science and math skills necessary for a foundation in science. Students are introduced to the scientific method and the metric system and metric conversions as a part of this.

Course Philosophy:


Assessments include the following: lab notebook assessed by a teacher generated rubric (some assignments have been evaluated using the textbook lab rubric), occasional quizzes and white board presentations, end of the unit test, and a final exam.


Coordinated Science Syllabus (Microsoft Word 72kB Jul1 09)

Teaching Materials:

References and Notes: