Pre AP Geophysical Science Syllabus

Pre-AP Geophysical Science  2017/18

Instructor:  Mr. Scott Kindt                  email:

Web page

Text Books:     Earth Science   Tarbuck, Lutgens

Course Description

Pre-AP Geophysical Science is for 9th grade students in the Berthoud High School STEM program.  The goal of this course is to give students a solid foundation in science so they will be successful in future AP Science courses.  Many students go on to take AP Biology or AP Physics their 10th grade year and this course will give them the prerequisite skills to be successful.  The curriculum first semester will focus on Astronomy and Earth’s history. Second semester will investigate the Earth’s tectonic features and Environmental issues with a focus on Chemistry. There are numerous inquiry based labs that involve problem solving and the scientific method.


Composition Lab Notebook, Scientific Calculator, Class Notebook, Pen or Pencil, Students will have the opportunity to purchase their own safety goggles for $7 the first week of class.

Grading  See Link on Standards Based Grading

Exams will make up approximately 70% of the total grade.  The other 30% will come from laboratory assignments, homework, and quizzes.  Assignments are due on the assigned date.

               Standard Grading Scale         

               100%-90% A,   89%-80% B,   79%-70% C,   69%-60% D,   59%-0% F


Course Outline

1st Semester

Unit 1 Scientific Method, Graphing, Data Analysis Metrics & Density

     Lab on Conductivity & Density Lab

Unit 2  Astronomy (The Sun & Solar System)

     Tracking sun spots + LTO star night

Unit 3  Waves / Energy & The Electromagnetic Spectrum

      Electromagnetic Lab


Unit 4  Astrophysics  (Life Cycle of Stars and Cosmology)

       Astronomy Project

Unit 5  Earth’s History  (Relative / Absolute Dating)

          Relative dating rock sequence project

Comprehensive Semester Exam


Second Semester

Unit 6 Plate Tectonics Earthquakes & Volcanoes

            Plate Tectonic Project & District Assessment

Unit 7  Climate & the Atmosphere

            Paleoclimate Project

Unit 8  Environmental Impact of Pollution

              Phosphate analysis Project  /  Chemical Analysis of Egg Shells

Unit 9  Final Outdoor Field Project

            Case study of BHS field

Comprehensive Semester Exam