A Parent's Guide to A&P

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Anatomy and Physiology

A&P Course Expectations


How to write objectives

Parent's Guide to A&P

AP Biology

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I assume all of you have read the course expectations and other information distributed on our first day. Here are some more things that I can tell you so you can know what to expect from the class and how you can help your children.

1. Keep up whatever you are doing. Thank you for sharing your teenagers with me.

2. My goals for the students are to capitalize on their natural intelligence, skills at learning information, and curiosity to help them appreciate the relevance of anatomy and physiology, and develop thinking skills and work habits that will help them as students in the college.

3. Grading is based on total points: a point on homework is equal in value to a point on a test. However, by the end of the term there will be more points from tests than homework. The students will be able to keep track of their grades with ease.

4. I would like to make career exploration another goal for the class. If any of you have contacts in the allied health professions and think you could deliver a guest speaker, please let me know.

5. Homework:
• The students will be reading and taking notes.
• They will also use these to create a study guide (and leave their books at home).
• A rule of thumb: If I said they could use the notes on a test, would they feel OK with them or want to add more?

6. This course requires both understanding of the material and memorization of the anatomy. Memorizing is difficult. Many of the words are unfamiliar. Encourage your child to practice using blank diagrams. They not only have to remember the terms but recognize the anatomical part on a diagram or specimen.

7. There will be dissections in this course. The students can expect to dissect hearts, eyes, brains and pigs. Dissection is an important part of this class. They can wear their anatomy T-shirts for protection.

8. In class we emphasize understanding and thinking.
• I ask a lot of questions. I encourage the students to “Dare to be wrong”.
• They ask a lot of questions (perhaps those written for homework). This is how we work on understanding. Everyone’s question is important to everyone else.
• The student questions drive the lecture.
• Students can take notes on the page on which they did the objective. No need for separate HW and class notes sections of their notebooks. It also means they only need to write down what they don’t have and can spend more time thinking/understanding.
• Students really are partners in this class.
• Yeah, I tell a lot of stories. It sets up interest and learning associations. They really are relevant. Well mostly.

9. Unit exams will come at the end of the unit and will usually consist of multiple choice questions, short answers and identification questions. For many exams there will be a lab practical. We’ll work on these skills in class. I usually give a quiz part way through the unit as a check of understanding and a study motivator. I’ll plan tests well ahead and discuss quiz dates with the students so they are not overloaded. There will be an occasional pop quiz.

10. Typically a term ends up with about 500 points. I try to maintain a balance among assignments and try to keep student grades fair.

11. I’m available after school almost every day for extra help. I mean that for you too. As some of you know, senior year can be a bumpy ride at home.

12. On the other hand, around February I’ll be dealing with the other form of Senioritis! This will manifest itself as a general state of giddiness alternating with lethargy, a desire to discuss cartoons of the early 1990s, an obsession with wearing new sweatshirts, and a resistance to doing work. By the way, they still have to do work! (See above).

13. Ask them about 2D-3D tic-tac-toe.

14. Of course, contact me whenever you have any concerns, problems, information, offers of major pieces of lab equipment or whatever. Email me at James_Dixon@sharon.k12.ma.us