Fall 2020 Registration for this Course Opens on February 27.

Physical Science

Grades 6-8

he world in which we live is complex and wonderful! This Physical Science course is designed to pique the natural curiosity of middle school students and lead them through the processes of investigation and discovery.  The course will introduce students to the principles of Chemistry and Physics.  The material will be highly conceptual, and not math intensive, although basic math is a component of physical science.

This course will involve two 45-minute sessions of live teaching each week.  Included in these live classes will be occasional demonstrations to illustrate concepts.  Students will be assigned reading, homework questions, and hands-on activities to complete independently between classes.

Weekly homework consists of reading from the text, review questions and some instructional videos.  Many weeks also include a lab or related activity.  The average homework load is approximately 2 hours per week.

Prerequisites: Intro to Middle School Math or Instructor Permission

  • "Thank you so much for teaching my son this year! It truly was his favorite class and he learned so much! He has said many times this year that you were his favorite teacher! I know my son is much more prepared for high school after having taken your class."
    -Kristin D, New Jersey

  • "Thank you very much Ms. Shaffer. My daughter enjoyed your class this year. You really sparked an interest in science in her that I have not seen before. I was very impressed with the course and your teaching style!"
    - Natalie W, California

  • "Thank you so much for a wonderful class!  The course was organized, well thought out, and the perfect level of challenge.  I could not have asked for a better outcome.  My son will be entering a private high school next year. This has been possible in no small part because of the knowledge he gained and the rigor he experienced in your class.  Thank you so much for your efforts and contribution to his education."
    - Selena D. California

This course is organized as follows:

Fall Semester Physical Science – Introduction to Chemistry
Investigation and Scientific Method
Properties of Matter
Elements, Compounds, and Mixtures
Structure of Atoms
Chemical Interactions

Spring Semester Physical Science – Introduction to Physics

Forces and Motion
 Work and Simple Machines
 Energy and Energy Resources
 Heat and Heat Technology
Electricity and Electromagnetism

The following is a list of lab supplies required for each semester.  This list is not complete and may vary somewhat from year to year.  A complete list of supplies and purchasing information will be available on the Physical Science course page in our learning management system, Canvas.

Fall Semester:

Safety goggles
Graduated cylinder (100 mL)
Graduated cylinder (10 mL)
600 mL beaker
2-250 mL beakers
4 large test tubes
Laboratory thermometer
Digital balance (0.01 g precision)
Fine steel wool




Spring Semester:

*Safety goggles
*Graduated cylinder (100 mL) 
*Laboratory thermometer
Spring scale
2 Ring magnets
Bar magnet
Iron filings
3-1.5 V light bulbs
3 bulb holders
Knife switch
Insulated copper wire
Magnet wire (20 gauge)
Digital multimeter

*these items carry over from fall semester