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Earth Science Standards - Course Overview

The New Generation Earth Science Standards will be finalized in 2017. The current standards provide a satisfactory overview of the objectives of the course.


Earth's Place in the Universe  (Universe, Stars, Solar System)


A study of the universe beginning with the history of this planet and an examination of the solar system.


Earth's Systems  (Water Cycle, Weather, Climate)


Many phenomena  on earth's surface are affected by the transfer of energy through  radiation and convection  currents.

As a basis  for understanding  this concept, students know:

  1. the sun is the major source of energy for phenomena  on Earth's surface; it powers  winds, ocean currents, and the water   cycle.
  1. solar energy reaches  Earth  through radiation, mostly in the form of visible  light.
  1. heat  from  Earth's  interior reaches the surface primarily  through convection.
  1. convection  currents distribute heat  in the atmosphere and oceans.
  1. differences in pressure, heat, air movement, and humidity result in changes of weather.

Heat moves  in  a predictable  flow from warmer  objects to cooler  objects until  all  objects  are the same temperature .

  1. energy can be carried from one place to another by heat flow or by waves, including water, light and sound waves, or by moving  objects.
  1. when fuel is consumed, most of the energy released becomes heat energy.
  1. heat flows in solids by conduction (which involves no flow of matter) and in fluids by conduction and by convection (which involves  flow  of matter).
  1. heat energy  is also transferred  between  objects by radiation  (radiation  can travel  through   space).
  1. Students know differences in pressure, heat, air movement, and humidity result in changes of weather                                                      

Plate Tectonics and Earth's Structure

Plate tectonics  accounts  for important  features of Earth's surface and major geologic events.

As the basis  for understanding  this concept, students know:


  1. the fit of the continents, location of earthq uakes, volcanoes , and mid-ocean ridges, and the distribution of fossils, rock types, and ancient climatic zones provide  evidence  for plate  tectonics .
  1. the solid Earth  is layered  with  cold, brittle  lithosphere ; hot, convecting mantle and dense metallic   core.
  1. lithospheric plates that are the size of continents and oceans move  at rates of centimeters  per year in response  to movements  in the mantle.
  1. earthquakes and sudden motions along breaks in the crust called faults, and volcanoes/ fissures are locations where magma reaches  the surface.
  1. major  geologic   events, such  as earthquakes, volcanic  eruptions, and  mountain  building  result  from plate motions.                    
  2. how to explain  major  features  of California  geology  (including mountains, faults, volcanoes)  in terms  of plate  tectonics.                     
  3. how to determine the epicenter of an earthquake and know that the effects of an earthquake on any region vary, dependin g on the size of the earthquake, the distance of the region from the epicenter, the local geology, and the type of construction in the region.

Shaping the  Earth's Surface

Topography is reshaped by the weathering of rock and soil and by the transportation and deposition    of sediment.

As the basis  for understanding  this concept,  students know  that:

  1. water running  downhill  is the dominant process  in  shaping the  landscape, including California's   landscape.
  1. rivers and streams are dynamic systems that erode, transport sediment, change course, and flood their banks in natural and recurring patterns.
  1. beaches are dynamic systems in which the sand is supplied by rivers and moved along the coast by the action of waves.
  1. Students know earthquakes , volcanic  eruptions, landslides, and floods change h uman  and wildlife    habitats.

Earth and Human Activity (Climate Change Causes, Resources, Natural Hazards,)

Sources of energy and materials differ in amounts, distribution, usefulness, and the time required for their formation.

As  a basis  for understanding  this concept,  students know:


a the utility of energy sources is determined by factors that are involved in converting these sources to useful forms and the consequences  of the  conversion  process.


b. different natural energy and material resources, including air, soil, rocks, minerals, petroleum,  fresh  water,  wildlife,  and  forests, and know  how to classify them  as renewable  or  nonrenewable.


c. the natural  origin of the materials  used  to make  common  objects.



Mr. Rauseo

Introductory Thoughts



During the school year you will be asked to work both individually and as part of a group. Many of you will perform well and find the work enjoyable and rewarding.  Some of you will find the work extremely frustrating and difficult. Regardless of your situation you must try to do your very best, always conducting yourself as students.


Your individual strengths and weaknesses are not as important as your steady progress as students and as citizens. Your character is just as important to me as your grades.  Still, here are some suggestions for improving your academic and organizational abilities:


  • Bring necessary materials to school every day. Bring your own pencils, papers, pens, rulers, etc; do not ask other students to give or lend you materials.
  • Don't disrupt the class; it's wasteful behavior.
  • Get at least 8 hours of sleep.
  • Ask questions when you don't understand something.
  • Learn at least one thing every day.



During the school year some of you might ask how you might assist your child in the performance of his or her classwork. You may experience frustration with your capacity to understand the material.However, don't let this deter you from insisting that your child establish and maintain effective study habits. You must be firm and disciplined regarding the time your child spends on academics. If you show interest in your child's academic progress, it is more likely that school work will be completed.


  • Ask your child about his or her day. Insist on details. Look at notes and homework. Ask your child to tell you what he or she has learned. If your child consistently communicates nothing about the school day, you should take that as a signal to talk with the teacher(s). STAY INVOLVED at any level you can manage.
  • Make sure you have a quality English language dictionary at home. Nothing is more important to academic, professional, and social success than literacy.
  • Set aside a time and quiet place for study. Turn off the television and radio. Make sure there are no disruptions.
  • Make sure your child gets at least 8 hours of sleep.  
  • Make sure your child has all necessary materials.  Check backpacks nightly.  Remove unnecessary items.  




Grades will be based on points from the following (possibly weighted) categories:







Total points will be translated into a percentage and letter grade based on the grading scale below:


100% - 90% = A

  89% - 80% = B

  79% - 70% = C

  69% - 60% = D

  59% - 50% = F




Contact me:


email (


ph. (818.712.1200)








In grade 6, instructional time should focus on four critical areas:


(1) connecting ratio and rate to whole number multiplication and division, and using concepts of ratio and rate to solve problems


(2) completing understanding of division of fractions and extending the notion of number to the system of rational numbers, which includes negative numbers


(3) writing, interpreting, and using expressions and equations


(4) developing understanding of statistical thinking. 



Ratios and Proportional Relationships

 Understand ratio concepts and use ratio reasoning to solve problems.


The Number System

 Apply and extend previous understandings of multiplication and division to divide fractions by fractions.

 Compute fluently with multi-digit numbers and find common factors and multiples.

 Apply and extend previous understandings of numbers to the system of rational numbers.



Expressions and Equations

 Apply and extend previous understandings of arithmetic to algebraic expressions.

 Reason about and solve one-variable equations and inequalities.

 Represent and analyze quantitative relationships between dependent and independent variables.



 Solve real-world and mathematical problems involving area, surface area, and volume.


Statistics and Probability

 Develop understanding of statistical variability.

 Summarize and describe distributions.