Earth Science Syllabus

Dear students,

I am happy to have you in my class this year.  I absolutely love talking about Earth processes and materials.  I hope to share that love with you this year.  I hope you gain an appreciation of science in general and how it can apply to your everyday life.  My goal is not to turn you into scientists, but help you think like a scientist; a person who troubleshoots problems and comes up with solutions.  Earth science is just one of the many content areas that school offers so that students can gain a better understanding of how to find solutions to everyday problems.


During this year, you will participate in intensive discovery activities and assignments in the following content areas:

  1. Geology

    1. Matter

    2. Rocks and minerals

    3. Volcanology and earthquakes

    4. Erosion and deposition

  2. Historical Geology

    1. Formation of the Earth

    2. Fossils and fossil record

  3. Meteorology

    1. Weather prediction

    2. Weather models

    3. Interpretation of weather maps

    4. Storms: lightning, hurricanes, tornadoes

  4. Astronomy

    1. Earth’s place in the solar system

    2. Solar Systems place in the galaxy

    3. Galaxies place in the universe

    4. Current discovers


It's going to be fun.


Grading Policy

  • Tests = 100 points

  • Final Exam (Will be part lab) = 200 points

  • Labs/Classwork = Face Value (Points vary)

  • If you are in Honors Earth Science you will have a 9 week project to present each quarter and three essay questions on each test and 5 on the final exam.

  • I enter grades on Fridays and Saturdays.  FamilyLink should be updated with grades by Sunday.


Late Policy

  • I don’t usually take points away for being late on assignments.  However, I am not in a hurry to grade late assignments.  If you turn it in late, it may be a couple of weeks before I get to my late pile.  If the assignment was part of a presentation, you will miss the opportunity to present.  I don’t have students present after the last student or group has presented their material.

  • I would rather you be late turning in an assignment, than turning it in halfway done.  If you turn in an assignment that is not completed, I will grade it, but you will not have an opportunity to redo the assignment.  I don’t want to grade it twice.


  • I do allow retakes on all quizzes and tests, except for the final exam.  I allow extra time to complete the tests as long as they are completed in my class or another teacher’s class who is willing to proctor the exam.  In order to retake the test however, you must have attended reteach and gone through an opportunity to study the test with me.

  • Reteach will be at 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM on Fridays.  


Extra Credit

  • I hold knowledge gained, higher than the current standard of grading.  The grade isn’t as important as gaining knowledge to better your understanding of the world around you.  That being said, grades are used in order to show current understanding.  Because I don’t offer extra credit assignments throughout the year, I don’t want to grade them and I am sure you don’t want to do them, I will give every student up to 60 points per quarter. The curriculum is tough, so those with excellent work ethics and the ability to pay attention and participate in class will be able to use those points to make up any points you might have missed on quizzes, tests, labs, and other assignments.  To keep all of those points, all you need to do is be on time, work hard, and participate in class.  You will lose these extra points in the following manner.

    • 10 points for every tardy.

    • 10 points for every assignment you are missing in my class.  (You may not use these points to make up missing assignments.)

    • 10 points for every unexcused absence you have in my class.

    • 10 points for needing to go to the restroom or getting drinks during class.  (If assignments are done or during the rare occasion that there is some down time before the bell rings, you may ask to go to the restroom or get  a drink without losing points.

    • 1-10 points for behavior issues (disrupting class, not paying attention to other student presentations, etc...)

  • The points for missing assignments and unexcused absences will be taken away at the end of each 9 week grading period.


Tardies and behavior

  • If you are a student who throws the extra credit points away, then any tardy or behavior issued after you are out of points, will be an office referral.  


Classes are awesome when things go well.  For those of you who haven’t been in my class before, you should know that I love to have fun and I have fun teaching when students show respect to each other and to the teachers.  If the teacher is happy, then the whole atmosphere of the class is awesome.


I hope that your school year goes well.  Good luck and have a great year.



Brian Weir