Environmental Science is the study of the physical world around us and the interaction between humans and our environment. This environmental science course will provide students with the knowledge base to understand the world and the impact humans have on it, learning skills in analytical and problem solving, that will allow the student to think critically about their own impact on the earth and what humans as a species must do to protect our planet. The major topics covered are: a basic introduction to environmental science, ecology, populations, water, air, and land, mineral and energy resources, and our health and future.
Lecture Content/Live Zoom Discussions: All course lectures are recorded and available for students to playback at their convenience. I also post podcasts and short video clips explain course concepts as needed. Regular “office hours” will be listed after classes begin (survey of student time zones will determine the actual office hours) so students can reach me for immediate feedback or for individual or group homework help. Additional sessions will be held closer to the AP Exam to work through typical test problems.
Labs: Approximately twenty-one hands-on experiments and activities will augment the core concepts studied and fulfill the lab requirement for a high school science credit. These experiments can be completed at home (adult supervision is advised). Most use household materials or supplies readily available from homeschool science companies. A full list will be provided with the course syllabus.
Scientific Writing: Effective scientific writing is a vital skill required for success in college science courses. This course will teach and require students to write thoughtful and reasoned essays of various lengths to support or defend their position on various topics. Extra instruction and feedback will be given to those who need it as the course progresses.
Student Evaluation and Feedback: Students will be graded on homework, labs, discussions, exams, and projects. The homework will be a combination of short answer questions done on the course website and handouts to be completed, scanned, and uploaded. All student work will be graded and returned within one week of submission.
Communications: Course communication occurs through the message system on the course website. I am also available to students through Zoom by appointment.
Technical needs: To access course materials students will need broadband, high speed Internet and their own e-mail account. This course will be run on the learning platform called Canvas. Canvas is a user-friendly, powerful platform where parents can be linked to their students and access student material, see grades, and contact the instructor at any time. Most assignments are completed online, however, some assignments are downloaded as PDF files from the website. A scanner is required so that students can scan their completed work and upload it to the website for grading.
Time Commitment: The qualified student will spend 8-10 hours per week on this class. This accounts for reading the assigned texts, answering review questions, calculating practice problems, hands-on lab experiments, and discussing class work and reading assignments with others in the forums.
Class Meeting Time: Four times monthly, a live Zoom discussion will be held at the above listed Zoom meeting time to discuss concepts, answer student questions, and complete homework problems together. Students are not required to “meet” at the scheduled discussion time, but it is encouraged. Scheduled discussion times will be recorded for those unable to attend the live discussion times. All homework is due on the Canvas course website by Friday evenings, midnight EST, unless otherwise noted.
Instructor Qualifications: I have a BS in physics with a minor in mathematics and a MS in Education. I have a tutoring company that I began in 2012 when I saw a vast need for math and science help for high school and college level students and found it was a great way to share my love for both subjects. I homeschool my own 2 children in addition to teaching at a local co-op our family is a part of. I took online classes during both my undergraduate and graduate education and am familiar with both the power and limitations of the medium. I have a desire to pass on my own love of learning all subjects, but really hope to encourage students to enjoy learning science and math, which are often feared and avoided.
Who should apply: The well-prepared applicant also has completed a physical science course in the middle school years and has a good foundation in algebra.
To apply or ask a question regarding this class, email Kristen Lauria at firstname.lastname@example.org or see her website at MasteryAcademic.com for more information.