Pacing Guide

Quarter 1

  • Introduce the research requirement for the course.
  • Nature of Science
  • GPS technology & use
  • Introduction to Atmosphere and Near Space (layers (incl. ozone) & composition (incl. greenhouse gases)
  • Introduction to Weather -global & local connections
  • Air Pollution: -major pollutants in Illinois, smogcity activities,
  • Measurement methods and technnologies, including tethered launch trial runs
  • Teacher models thinking, problem-solving, and decision-making throughout a research project (using one or two experiments from last summer's work)(Possible examples for students: Ozone, Infrared Imaging & Crop Health, & Albedo of different roofing material)
  • Students develop research project ideas and begin designing or modifying methods to collect data (using engineering design cycle).

Week 1: Unit 1: CHAMPS, Syllabus, NOS lessons, introduce research requirement for course

Resources: Face Perception site, ICAN site (link on home page)
Unit 1 Plan:
NASA Unit 1 Plan- Introduction
Mystery Tube (Psycho Cylinder)

Week 2: Unit 2: GPS Technology & Use

Resources: Geocaching site (link on home page)
Unit 2 Plan:
NASA Unit 2 Plan- GPS
GPS Treasure Hunt

Weeks 3 - 4: Unit 3: Atmosphere & Near Space

Resources: Verhage articles, Windows to the Universe site (links on home page)
McDougal Littell online investigations (see chapters 17)
Unit 3 Plan:
NASA Unit 3 Plan - Atmosphere & Near Space
Could You Break the Record for an Around the World Balloon Flight? online activity

Weeks 5 - 6: Unit 4: Weather & Climate

Resources: NASA JetStream Weather School, USGS, Midwest Regional Climate Center sites (links on home page)

Unit 4 Plan:NASA Unit 4 Plan - Weather & Climate
Observing Greenhouse Gases lab extension

Weeks 7 - 8: Unit 5: Air Pollution

Resources: Illinois Air Quality and Monitoring sites and the Smog City site (links on home page)
Unit 5 Plan:
NASA Unit 5 Plan - Air Pollution
**Tethered balloon launch
Assessments: Mini research on a type of air pollution, communicated to class via PowerPoint

Week 9: Unit 6: Fields of Research

Resources: Atmospheric Science Research Center site (link on home page)
Unit 6 Plan:
NASA Unit 6 Plan - Field of Research
Summarize research articles and share with class via class wiki and oral presentation.

Week 10:

Review, Midterm assessment, Sharing of initial research project ideas

Quarter 2

  • Teacher continues to model thinking, problem-solving, and decision-making throughout a research project (using one or two experiments from last summer's work)
  • High Altitude Balloon launch - DePaul University
  • Basic statistical methods: measures of central tendency, standard deviation, error bars
  • Students conduct research and write research paper (Resources will be available on wiki regarding technology, etc.)
  • Research Paper and presentations (in class and in Hancock Science Fair)

(Quarter 3)

  • May be an option for a few students from semester 1 to continue more advanced independent research projects.

(Quarter 4)

  • Refinement of second semester students' independent research projects, using more advanced statistics (t-test, Chi-square, etc.)