Scioly Class

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cmousseau
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Scioly Class

Post by cmousseau » November 11th, 2009, 6:56 am

I am a high school teacher and Science Olympiad coach in New York. Another Science Olympiad coach and I were pondering the idea of trying to create a Science Olympiad class out our school.

Right now we are in the class proposal phase. This phase is primarily where we determine the type of class we are trying to propose and the correlating initial curriculum that would go with it. We are thinking about making this class a 1 credit or half a credit science offering that would take place either every day one period (block) or every other day. Considering all schools are slightly different in how they offer class time and credit I understand what I just said may not make sense to many of you.

The reason for my post is I was wondering if those of you that are part of a Science Olympiad Class at school would be willing to give me a breakdown as to what you do during the school day? After searching the forums I did find a thread which asks who has Science Olympiad as a class so I know there are schools out there with a Science Olympiad class. I am now wondering what you may do in the class during the day and what kind of credit and time allotment might it involve?

Thanks for all input, and good look this year to everyone!

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Re: Scioly Class

Post by Celeste » November 11th, 2009, 4:53 pm

My school has a Science Olympiad class! :geek: We have it as a zero-hour, meaning it starts an hour before first block classes begin. It kind of sucks having to get up early every day, but it's totally worth it for the extra study time. Technically, the class is called "Research In Science" and is supposed to be an independent study science course for any student who wishes to join, but it's really just our team working on events. We get grades and are given credits just like any other class. We're graded for participation and using our time wisely, and we have occasional binder checks in which our coach goes over our notes to see how we're doing. This is the first year we've done it, and we can already tell the difference. We're really benefiting from the class, and it'll totally show during competition!
2011~Dynamic (1st Regional, 1st State, 36th Nats) ~Birds (1st, 2nd, 39th) ~Remote (1st, 3rd, 42nd) ~Wind Power (1st, 4th, x)

2010~Dynamic (1st Regional, 1st State) ~Egg-O (x, 6th) ~Birds (4th, 5th) ~Remote (1st, 1st)

2009~Egg-O (11th State, 36th Nats) ~Herp (6th, 44th) ~Remote (x, 36th)

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Re: Scioly Class

Post by cmousseau » November 13th, 2009, 2:54 pm

Thanks for the reply Celeste! I have a few questions for you:

1) Do you find the class has benefited everyone as well as the overall goals of Science Olympiad? For instance, do you see everyone as committed now that you have the class as you were before the school offered it to the class? One concern we have is that as students take this as a class it is no longer an "above and beyond" requirement. This may lead to some students simply taking it for a way around taking other science classes, and not necessarily because they want to be a part of Science Olympiad.

2) How many teachers do you have for this class?

3) Did you have you have to apply to be in the class, and does the class allow for more then the 15 team member max?

4) Are students still allowed to be a part of Science Olympiad is they are not in the class?

Again thanks for the reply and if anyone else would be willing to chime in I would surely appreciate it! :D

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Re: Scioly Class

Post by waawamellon » November 13th, 2009, 3:00 pm

I also have a science olimpiad class durring school. We have 1 teacher unless the technology teacher isn't buisy.
We have it 3rd hour every other day, and the days I don't have it, annother class has it...
And on tuesdays before school everyone comes for science olimpiad practice.
AND IT IS NOT PART OF SCIENCE OLIMPIAD! WE DON'T HAVE TO BE IN SCIENCE OLIMPIAD TO BE IN SCIENCE OLIMPIAD CLASS!
AND YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE IN SCIENCE OLIMPIAD CLASS TO BE IN SCIENCE OLIMPIAD.
or at least thats how we do it at my school.
oh yeah, it helps A LOT. With out it none of anyone's building events would be anywhere close to being done!
hope that helps :) :) :)
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Re: Scioly Class

Post by gneissisnice » November 13th, 2009, 3:48 pm

cmousseau wrote:Thanks for the reply Celeste! I have a few questions for you:

1) Do you find the class has benefited everyone as well as the overall goals of Science Olympiad? For instance, do you see everyone as committed now that you have the class as you were before the school offered it to the class? One concern we have is that as students take this as a class it is no longer an "above and beyond" requirement. This may lead to some students simply taking it for a way around taking other science classes, and not necessarily because they want to be a part of Science Olympiad.

2) How many teachers do you have for this class?

3) Did you have you have to apply to be in the class, and does the class allow for more then the 15 team member max?

4) Are students still allowed to be a part of Science Olympiad is they are not in the class?

Again thanks for the reply and if anyone else would be willing to chime in I would surely appreciate it! :D
While our school never offered a scio class, we did have a science olympiad camp over the summer that I helped at (it was for 6-9th graders, and I helped out for a couple of years). Many of the kids that went there ended up not doing scio for school, but they had a lot of fun, and likewise, not everyone on the scio team was forced to come. I think that a scio class should work the same way. Making the class compulsory would end up with a lot of kids unable to join scio because they couldnt fit the class in their schedule, and excluding non-scio kids is a mistake because letting them join the class would increase their awareness of scio, and might get you more kids interested in the team.

Also, I feel like it should just be an elective, good for a credit, but not replacing a science credit, so kids wont take it just to avoid physics or something. The class is certainly not required for you to have a good team (our high school and jr. high have been to nationals plenty of times, and almost always get top 5 at states, though we dont have a class for it). So just have fun with it, and dont make it so that the class adds extra pressure to your students. I think it should just be a fun class that takes a different approach to science.
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Re: Scioly Class

Post by sweetcoop » November 13th, 2009, 3:58 pm

cmousseau wrote:Thanks for the reply Celeste! I have a few questions for you:

1) Do you find the class has benefited everyone as well as the overall goals of Science Olympiad? For instance, do you see everyone as committed now that you have the class as you were before the school offered it to the class? One concern we have is that as students take this as a class it is no longer an "above and beyond" requirement. This may lead to some students simply taking it for a way around taking other science classes, and not necessarily because they want to be a part of Science Olympiad.

2) How many teachers do you have for this class?

3) Did you have you have to apply to be in the class, and does the class allow for more then the 15 team member max?

4) Are students still allowed to be a part of Science Olympiad is they are not in the class?

Again thanks for the reply and if anyone else would be willing to chime in I would surely appreciate it! :D
I will answer these for my school also has a sci oly class

1) See if you can get it at the school as only an elective class so that the students can't use it to avoid taking another science class. This will also help you get students that are dedicated and don't take the class just cause that think it will be an easy A.

2)My school has one teacher but members of the community come in to help

3)I didn't have to apply and this year the class at my school has about 26 students. It is a better idea to have more that 15 in the class so that you can have alternates.

4) My school has made a exception for a few students but it is required to be in the class to do Sci Oly.
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Re: Scioly Class

Post by amerikestrel » November 13th, 2009, 4:43 pm

My school doesn't exactly have a "class" for SO, but there are a few periods during the week that I study in.

My school has a period every day called "AREA", where you sign up for different classes/activities. Oh, and my school operates on a six day cycle, so you have classes on "day 1, day 2, etc." instead of the days of the week. That way, if school is cancelled, the day that you get back is just the next day of the cycle (and you don't miss any classes). It's sort of confusing.

Anyway, there is a SO area on two days of the cycle, and I usually study for SO period 6, day 3, instead of going to music class. :P
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Re: Scioly Class

Post by brobo » November 13th, 2009, 5:18 pm

At our school, we have a "Science Olympiad Advisory", so our advisory is our Science Olympiad meet. Then every day 2 or 3 events stay after school, except on Friday. We have an A and a B team. The A team is all the people that went to State the year before, and the B team is everyone else, including the noobs. There are some tournaments that just the A team goes to, some where just the B team goes, and others where both go. Then my coaches make a final team, which is the best of the A team and B team, and they go to State, then become the next year's A team.
Its kinda one of those "organized chaos" things.
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Re: Scioly Class

Post by Celeste » November 13th, 2009, 6:08 pm

cmousseau wrote:Thanks for the reply Celeste! I have a few questions for you:

1) Do you find the class has benefited everyone as well as the overall goals of Science Olympiad? For instance, do you see everyone as committed now that you have the class as you were before the school offered it to the class? One concern we have is that as students take this as a class it is no longer an "above and beyond" requirement. This may lead to some students simply taking it for a way around taking other science classes, and not necessarily because they want to be a part of Science Olympiad.

2) How many teachers do you have for this class?

3) Did you have you have to apply to be in the class, and does the class allow for more then the 15 team member max?

4) Are students still allowed to be a part of Science Olympiad is they are not in the class?

Again thanks for the reply and if anyone else would be willing to chime in I would surely appreciate it! :D
1) I think we're all more dedicated to the team because of the class. Mostly because we've put a lot more time into things and can't wait to compete to see how they work. It's also making us more dedicated because we're getting to spend more time with each other. It still is pretty "above and beyond" for us, because we take it zero hour, and it takes quite a bit to want to get up that early! Making it an early class also helps keep out the slackers who might want to get around taking other science courses.

2) We just have one teacher, our coach, for the class. Other science teachers come and go and help with events some, though. We also go to the nearby computer lab and that teacher helps us, too.

3) Our teacher/coach got all of us registered for the class. We usually have 20-ish people there, because we didn't limit it to just the 15.

4) The class is not a requirement to be on the team. We have several people who are on the team who aren't in the class. They just miss out on a lot of good study time and have to plan for work time on their own.
2011~Dynamic (1st Regional, 1st State, 36th Nats) ~Birds (1st, 2nd, 39th) ~Remote (1st, 3rd, 42nd) ~Wind Power (1st, 4th, x)

2010~Dynamic (1st Regional, 1st State) ~Egg-O (x, 6th) ~Birds (4th, 5th) ~Remote (1st, 1st)

2009~Egg-O (11th State, 36th Nats) ~Herp (6th, 44th) ~Remote (x, 36th)

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Re: Scioly Class

Post by cmousseau » November 14th, 2009, 3:34 pm

Thank you everyone for all of the replies! This is going to help a lot with the planning stage I am in right now!

I am going to design the class and make the following suggestions:

1) This class would be considered a science elective. In our district this would allow an individual to take the class and receive a science credit, however, this would not replace any of the core mandatory science classes.

2) We will meet on our odd day schedule (days 1, 3, 5). This will allow students to have a little more freedom with their schedule to permit them to take other electives they are interested in without being completely tied up with scioly. This will also have the class act as a half credit course (versus the full year 1 credit course).

3) I may request this class be completed before or after school rather then during the school day. This may help keep the unmotivated students away from the class and allow the motivated students to truly be motivated.

4) At the start we will not make this a class which needs an application. We will go on science teacher recommendation. IF the course gets too busy we may end up making it application based.

5) We will allow more than 15 students into the class. This will help with alternates as well as an overall perpetuating cycle throughout the 9-12th grade levels.

6) We will also allow students to participate in scioly if they are not in the class and vice versa. Ultimately the team will be determined by coaches based on skill, commitment, and success.

Again, thank you to all that have responded to my questions. One more thing for you, if any of you in a scioly class has a scioly class website I would love to see it. Perhaps the site has course description or syllabus I could review for the creation of our class.

Good luck to everyone this year!

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