SCIENCE AT SUMMIT
CHEMISTRY & PHYSICS
ACCELERATED CHEMISTRY & PHYSICS
GUIDELINES FOR PLACEMENT IN 8th grade accelerated chemistry & Physics Course
Students master skills and content at different rates. To provide the optimal level of challenge, Summit’s Science curriculum is designed to allow for acceleration during the 8th grade school year. Summit offers both Chemistry/Physics and Accelerated Chemistry/Physics at the 8th grade level.
The goal of student placement in Accelerated Chemistry/Physics is to help ensure placement in the science class with an appropriate level of challenge and opportunity for growth. Summit’s curriculum is designed so that conscientious and properly placed students will achieve mastery and success.
The Summit Science Department makes placement recommendations with care, based on the curriculum and skills required to be successful at each level. Every student’s placement is based on a body of evidence with careful consideration. The teachers’ professional judgment is a pertinent factor in assessing readiness for an accelerated placement. As science levels increase, so does the need to apply science-based math concepts. Therefore, similar to High School, math placement and achievement, are factors in 8th grade accelerated science placement.
All Summit science students are carefully monitored through measures of academic growth and achievement including: Science and Math MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) testing, math course level, science based math skills, grades, labs, projects, classroom-based assessments, critical thinking skills, and habits of scholarship.
8th grade science placement decisions are made by the Science team in collaboration with the Math department and school administration. Acceleration decisions are made at the end of 7th grade. Parents will receive communication if their student has been identified for acceleration. Some students who are identified may have course scheduling conflicts which require families to prioritize scheduling decisions and they will be notified as such.
Parents may request placement review through the school’s Assistant Principal which will be taken into consideration by the Science department. Parents should not press individual teachers to change a placement recommendation. If acceleration is not recommended, parents will be notified, the decision is final and can only be appealed to the principal.
Below you will find a summary of the similarities and differences between Chemistry/Physics and Accelerated Chemistry/Physics.
Both the Accelerated Chemistry/Physics course and the Chemistry/Physics course include topics typical of an introductory high school Chemistry/Physics survey course, such as: units of measurement, significant figures, the properties of matter, energy, models of the atom, the periodic table of the elements, chemical bonding and chemical reactions, electricity, electromagnetic waves, circuits, magnetism, waves, and sound. Both include advanced instruction in scientific methodology.
While Chemistry/Physics is not lower in terms of the level of content, the pacing is slower than in Accelerated Chemistry/Physics. Accelerated Chemistry/Physics is more quantitative and thus a certain level of mathematical aptitude is expected upon entry into the course. Additionally, the Accelerated Chemistry/Physics course takes more “deep dives” into specific content matter rather than just a basic overview.
Updated for the 22-23 School Year