Course Expectations

      Mrs. Fessler’s 6th Grade ScienceMacintosh HD:Applications:Microsoft Office 2011:Office:Media:Clipart: Business.localized:200235995-001.pngMacintosh HD:Applications:Microsoft Office 2011:Office:Media:Clipart: Business.localized:AA023118.png

Course Expectations 2019-2020



Science Materials

This year, all students will use a chromebook and a science book in class

  • Science Book

    • Science books will be provided for you, but they will usually stay in my classroom. You will bring a science textbook home if you missed a class or need to complete an assignment.  Sign out a book, using our sign-out sheet, and return it the following day. 

  • Chromebook

    • You will use your chromebook each day for warm-ups, research and explorations. Take care of your chromebook and use it appropriately in class. You may NOT explore other sites, play games, or search the internet for answers while working on science material. If you use your Chromebook inappropriately during my class,  you will be required to complete alternate pencil and paper assignments, instead of using the computer. 

    • YOU WILL NEED TO  BRING EARBUDS OR HEADPHONES TO CLASS EACH DAY. If you are unable to purchase earbuds or headphones, see me.

EXPLORATIONS: We will also use a variety of interesting lab materials and equipment each day.

WISH LIST: If you would like to donate items to our science class, we can always use the following: 

Pencils, markers, hand sanitizer, sanitizing wipes, tissues, dry erase markers

Science Units

Sixth grade science focuses on life science. The units are organized by quarter. Each quarter, students will receive an outline of the specific unit content, vocabulary and state standards. 

Quarter 1

Health and Human Body Systems

Quarter 2

Cells and Heredity

Quarter 3

Kingdoms of Life

Quarter 4

Ecosystems and Biomes

Graded Work

You will be given every opportunity to show what you know. Work hard, show respect, and you will do well.

  1. Quarter Assessment- You will complete district science test at the end of each quarter. 

  2. Lesson Quizzes- At the end of each unit within a quarter, you will complete short quizzes to show what you’ve learned. These will help me make decisions about our future lessons. 

  3. Explorations- All students in my class will participate in many explorations in the form of projects, mini-experiments, EdPuzzle video quizzes, Quizizz games, partner labs, and student presentations. These will be submitted in Google Classroom during class and will be graded. Late work may receive a point deduction if the reason for the delay in submitting the work  is unrelated to an excused absence. If you need more time to complete an exploration, speak with me about it. 

  4. Warm-Up-You will complete “warmups” on a Google Doc at the beginning of each class.  Each quarter you will be graded 1 point per warm-up. 

  5. Participation- You will have a participation grade each quarter. This is an easy way to boost your grade by simply participating respectfully. You will get full credit at the start of the quarter, but can lose points for not helping your team clean up after labs, being disruptive during class, refusing to work, making it difficult for others to complete work, etc.


  • The amount of homework that you will have in science class is actually up to you. If you work hard to complete quality work during class, and you do not waste time, you will not have homework most nights. You will be required to study for tests/quizzes and will complete unfinished work for homework. 


What happens if I am absent?

  •  As soon as you return to school, you must check GOOGLE CLASSROOM. If papers or other materials were used during class, you will need to check the “ABSENT?” bin when you return.

  • You must complete and return the assignments within the same number of days that you were absent. It is your responsibility to turn in missing assignments promptly.

  • If you miss a day when an assignment is due, you are required to turn in this work on the day that you return to school.  Work will be put in as a “0” until it is returned. 


This year you will be assigned a Chromebook to use during the school day. You will be given passwords that you may not share with other students. You must use your Chromebook only when your teacher directs you to use it.  You may not use your Chromebook to play games, visit unapproved sites, or look up images during the school day. If you choose to do this, you will lose Chromebook privileges in my class, and you will complete paper and pencil activities. It will be your job to keep track of your Chromebook, keep it clean and undamaged, and return it to homeroom daily. You will need to bring headphones or earbuds to my class each day. If you do not have headphones, see me. 


*ALL SMS STUDENTS must follow all rules found in the student handbook/rule matrix. You do not need to be perfect, but you need to do your best. All students will be trained the first day of school for appropriate SMS behavior. If you do not understand any of the expectations, please ask questions. You will have the student handbook to read the first week of school. In our classroom, I expect you to follow the rules of the student handbook: be respectful, responsible, and safe.  However, if these rules are not followed, the following consequences will occur, in the order that they are listed. 

  1. Verbal Warning 

  2. Behavior Reflection

  3. Parent Contact

  4. Referral to the Principal’s Office


 *I keep a record of the behavior with a fresh start each quarter. Behavior will affect your ability to attend activities/trips. The office will keep a record of behavior referrals as well. 


More important than any other aspect of my classroom is showing kindness. Be kind to others and yourself. Kindness can be shown in the words you say, the faces you make and the things you do. Kindness means helping others, refusing to pass on gossip, including others who are left out, and accepting differences. Kindness makes everyone feel welcome and happier. It takes a brave, strong person to be kind. In my classroom, be strong, be brave, and be kind - always. If you are interested in joining the Kindness Club, listen to the AM announcements for meeting dates and times. 



Entering Class

  • Line up outside the classroom until you are told to enter. Begin the warm-up when seated.


  • You MUST get your pass signed and use the sign-out sheet  in order to leave the room.

Daily Schedule

  • Each day we will follow this four-part schedule (times may vary slightly):

  1. Warm-Up (5 minutes) - As soon as you enter class, begin your warm-up. This will be completed on your warm-up Google doc. It’s like a workout for your brain. When you complete the warm up, you must have a silent reading book ready. 

  2. Focus (5 minutes) -This is when I will introduce our focus for the day, show a quick video clip, distribute materials, and share some directions for the activities. 

  3. Explore (25-30 minutes) – This is our hands-on portion of the class. You will work with your lab partner or your lab team to discover something science-y and awesome. You record your work on your exploration Google doc. You will begin clean up at this time as well. 

  4. Meeting (5-10 minutes) – This is when we come together to share what we’ve learned, discuss science topics, and make connections to our lives. Come to our meeting ready to share what you’ve learned in the class that day.  If you have homework that night, you will write your assignment in your agenda after our meeting. It is your responsibility to write your homework assignments or reminders in your agenda. This is also the time when you will make sure that you’ve ORGANIZED and CLEANED UP your area completely (graded). 


  • There will be assigned seats, which will change at the teacher’s discretion - usually monthly.

  • Students will be assigned lab partners and lab groups.  You are expected to be an active, kind, hard-working partner and an active participant in your group. Teamwork is required. 


  • If you need specific materials that you do not have available to you, raise your hand.

  • Some science tools require careful use for safety. Please respect the materials and rules.  

  • All materials will have a location and must be returned at the end of every class.  If you leave your lab tables or materials disorganized, you will be asked to come back to clean it. Remember, participation is a graded topic and cleaning up counts as participation. 

Leaving the Room at the End of Class

  • Permission must be given at ALL times, in order to leave the classroom for your safety. 

  • Your lab table, science books, and materials must be organized before you leave, or you will be asked to return to clean up, making you late for the next class period. All materials must be ready for the next class, as they were for your class.

  • Students are to remain in their seats until the teacher dismisses them.  The bell doesn’t dismiss students, the teacher does. Upon exiting the room, push in your stool/chair.

  • Remember to make sure that you have all of your materials (including your Chromebook) as you leave the classroom. Materials left behind often end up not being found in middle school. 

  • If you consistently leave the classroom in a disrespectful manner, or leave a mess regularly, there will be behavior and grading consequences (see the previous page).


SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS ARE AWESOME! However, they require proper safety procedures. The following standard procedures will apply to the science lab classes at Shikellamy Middle School. Students must follow these rules and practice acceptable behaviors to make this area safe for ALL students. In order to participate in laboratory activities, you must read the course expectations, including the lab safety rules, and you must sign this document (last page). We begin labs immediately, so return this form as soon as possible.

Safety Rules:

  1. Students may not work in the science lab without a certified science teacher present.

  2. Do not handle equipment and supplies set up in the lab until given instruction to do so from the science teacher. Read all written directions before beginning an experiment. 

  3. Eye protection and gloves must be worn when required by the science teacher.

  4. No eating or drinking is permitted during science labs unless an edible lab is part of the procedure and the science teacher gives permission to eat. If you have any food allergies, this must be reported to your teacher and the school nurse. 

  5. No unauthorized experimentation is allowed. 

  6. Follow lab procedures carefully and accurately. Do not proceed with any experiment if you do not understand the procedure.

  7. Do not taste or inhale chemicals. Do not touch chemicals with bare hands. If you have any allergies to chemicals or lab materials, you must report this to the teacher and nurse before participating in science labs. 

  8. If you have a question at any time regarding a lab, ask the science teacher.

  9. If glass or other materials break, notify the science teacher immediately. Do not attempt to clean up broken glass or other materials. 

  10. Students must clean the work area and wash hands thoroughly before leaving the room.

  11. Report all injuries, no matter how minor, to the teacher. The teacher will give guidance on the treatment needed and direct the student to the nurse’s office, if needed.

  12. Follow any additional safety procedures explained by your teacher at the start of a lesson. 


Do not take this lab safety list lightly. It is important.

It is YOUR responsibilty to follow all lab/classroom rules.

We will review the use of the eye wash station and other safety equipment.

If you have any questions about lab safety, please ask me as soon as possible. 




I have a REMIND class just for 6th grade science. Your parents may have joined the SMS remind group already. Your parents may also join my class! Parents: Download the REMIND app. This is for parents only. My code is @scifess. I will send reminders of important events/dates. ☺️