St. Philip School

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Day of Giving May 3, 2019
K-8 Course Descriptions » Science


The SPS Science curriculum offers progressive learning in all three major fields of scientific study:  physical, earth, and life sciences.  Key subject areas are revisited annually with increasing complexity as students advance in grade level.  A dedicated STEAM committee explores new avenues each year for additional learning in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math.

Curriculum highlights include:

  • Mastery of the Scientific Method:  Inquire, Research, Hypothesize, Experiment, Analyze and Conclude.
  • Discrepant demonstrations to introduce new science concepts and challenge student knowledge of scientific principles
  • Introduction of Science in Kindergarten
  • Weekly labs in the higher grades designed to promote mastery of key science concepts
  • Progressively more complex hands-on projects and experiments beginning in the Lower Grades.  Examples include:
    • Grades 1-4
      • Major organ introduction through “Paper People”
      • Building and study of various models including animal habitats, human bones and lungs, plant & animal cells, and amusement parks (to study gravity and potential and kinetic energy)  
      • Plant Web Quest highlighting growth, survival and reproduction
      • “Hurricane" tracking using latitude/longitude coordinates and hurricane "safe house" modeling to analyze the effects of water and wind on house strength
      • Experiments demonstrating electrical circuits, static electricity, magnetism, liquid density, force, buoyancy, changing states of matter, and friction’s effect on moving objects 
    • Grades 5-8:
      • Hydroponic lab activities
      • Bone density experiments
      • DNA modeling
      • Rocket construction, launch and analysis
      • Sound wave study
      • Trebuchet and catapult testing
      • Hot air balloon experiments (study of gas laws)
      • "Tower of Power" experiments (study of tensile and shearing forces) 
      • Fossil casting
      • Study of internal organs using life-size human model

Outside of the classroom, additional avenues for Science learning include:

  • Opportunity for all students to participate in robotics projects, Invention Convention, Carnegie Science Center SciTech Days, Computer Fairs, mobile science labs and STEAM Lab projects.
  • Opportunity for advanced students to participate in 9th Grade Honors Biology Class at Bishop Canevin High School, Science Bowls & Olympiads, K’Nex Design Challenge, Design Lives Here, Inventionland, and the Northern Area Gifted Consortium's annual Battery Car Races.