Mrs. Cheryl Dunham
Honors Biology is a rigorous inquiry based lab course intended to prepare you to move into a college preparatory course such as Biology AP. You will investigate the principles that govern living organisms including cells and cellular processes, genetics, classification, ecological relationships, and evolution. This class requires a high level of motivation and self-discipline. Students who successfully complete the course will earn one credit towards high school graduation.
According to the National Science Education Standards (NAS, 1996), “ Learning science is something students do, not something that is done to them.” In learning science, you will be actively involved – both physically and mentally. You will work as individuals and in teams to make observations, acquire knowledge, generate explanations, test ideas, and communicate results.
Science as inquiry will be the controlling principle for the selection of all of the lab activities. Scientific inquiry is devoted to formulating and testing naturalistic explanations for natural phenomena. It is a process for systematically collecting and recording data about the physical world, then categorizing and studying the collected data in an effort to infer the principles of nature that best explain the observed phenomena.
Because of the depth and the pace of the material learned, you will be expected to complete reading assignments outside of class and actively apply your independent understanding and analytical reasoning skills to classroom discussion and laboratory activities. You will be required to complete a research proposal for an independent research project for entry in the Red Mountain High School Science fair and possible entry in the Arizona Science and Engineering Fair. You will work to choose a research question and collect background information during the 1st semester and then develop a research proposal by the end of the 3rd quarter. You will be required to maintain a research notebook and meet with me at scheduled times throughout the semester. .