Course Syllabus

9th Grade ACP Physics                                                                                                                       

Mahshid Pourmand

Room #: 248

Office: 358



“I think nature’s imagination is so much greater than man’s, she’s never going to let us relax.” -Richard Feynman

Physics at the Advanced College Prep level provides students with a comprehensive overview of the major topics in physics including simple harmonic motion, sound and light waves, the electromagnetic spectrum, static and current electricity, electromagnetism, motion and forces, momentum, and energy. Emphasis will be placed on observing these concepts in everyday life in order to collect and analyze evidence to discover and understand the patterns that emerge. Students will engage in numerous investigations and hands-on activities in order to construct their own understanding of the material. Refinement of problem-solving, scientific writing and science inquiry skills will be at the heart of this course. One of the primary goals of the course is to help students apply their understanding to solve problems. This is a challenging course that is suitable for those students who are proficient in reading, writing, math, and data analysis. This course prepares students for the Introductory Physics MCAS.   


What you need to bring: 

  • Your device (Macbook, Chromebook, Windows Laptop, and …). Please bring your device to school fully charged. 
  • Headphones or earbuds.
  • Pencil and eraser
  • Scientific Calculator (must have EE or exp button but graphing is not required)
  • An online place for Physics work (Make a Physics 2021 folder in your google drive)
  • Binder (to keep and organize handouts)

        You will be given a copy of the textbook “Physics: A First Course” in class. You will have access to a hard copy of the book and also be provided with access to an online version. You will be asked to complete readings, online assignments, and activities using this resource. You do not need to bring the textbook to class. The textbook must be returned prior to taking the final exam, as per school policy.


Absentee Policy:


  • Upon returning from an absence, check with me what you have missed. Do not do this at the beginning of the class. Email me before the class to arrange a time to talk. 
  • If you know you are going to be absent, let me know beforehand. This is especially important for tests and quizzes. 
  • You have until the next class to make up missed assignments. 
  • To make up for the missed test, you have a maximum of one week. 
  • Most importantly, be proactive in reaching out to me. 

Class breakdown:

This class will be graded on a point system. This means that everything you do in class will have a point value. Homework, classwork, class participation, and formative quizzes form 50% of your final grade. The other half of your grade would be tests, summative quizzes, and projects. 


Do Now

Each day there will be a “Do Now” assignment posted on the board. Students are expected to begin this immediately upon entering the classroom. 



Homework will be assigned every time the class meets. Some assignments will be graded on completion and accuracy, while others will be graded only on completion. If you are struggling with a problem, you still need to try using strategies explained in class. Textbook examples are also very helpful. Late homework will be graded for a reduced credit until the end of the unit. If you are absent (excused or otherwise), you are responsible to check online (Canvas) and make up your work.  


Classwork/ Labs


The majority of the class will consist of in-class activities and labs. Labs and activities will be completed in groups but every student is responsible for passing in their own work. Reports should be written in your own words. Plagiarism is taken seriously; plagiarized reports will be graded as a 0. Students are expected to actively participate in all classroom activities, contribute to group work, and follow all lab procedures and safety guidelines. 


Quizzes & Tests

Students expect a quiz at least two times per module. For most of the formative quizzes on Canvas, you have unlimited attempts. Tests might be made up if you received below 75%. You should show progress in your understanding to be given the chance to make up your test. If you are absent for a test, you should let me know as soon as possible to arrange a make-up. Be proactive and email me if you know you are going to be absent.



We will have several group and individual projects in the course of the year. Projects are the best way to learn physics. Be creative and have fun. The grades for group projects are not group grades. You will be graded based on your participation and contribution.  



Participation in this class is built on two things: Presence and Respect. Being present in class means you are arriving to class on time and contributing to classroom discussion. Upon arrival, you are going to start working on your “Do Now” activity.  Being respectful to your fellow classmates and teacher is equally important. Live by the ‘Golden Rule’ and give your full attention to whoever is speaking. It is extremely important that you participate in class discussions. It helps you understand the lesson better and let me have a better understanding of where the students are to adjust my lesson. 




No student may hinder the teacher from teaching or any other student from learning: 

  1. RESPECT yourself and your teacher, classmates, and classroom materials/furnishings. 
  2. Try your best. 
  3. Listen carefully and follow directions. 
  4. Pay attention and participate. 
  5. Raise your hand to speak and use positive language. 
  6. Remain seated; raise your hand if you need to leave the classroom. 
  7. Clean up after yourself and return all materials. 
  8. Follow all laboratory safety rules and the following school rules.


The Beginning of Class…

  • Is NOT the time to ask “did you get my email?” or “Wait! Can we just go over this one thing before we take the test!??”
  • Is NOT the time to stand in the doorway eating your snack. (You will lose class participation points for eating in class.)
  • Is NOT the time to dump your stuff and run to the bathroom and expect to be counted as “on time” if only your stuff (and not your smiling personage) is present. You will be marked Tardy Unexcused. 
  • Is NOT the time to wander in late and talking… (if you are late, assume class has started and come in respectfully and quietly! Your neighbor should quickly clue you in to what is going on.)
  • It really, really NOT the time to do your homework…

The beginning of class IS the time to find your seat and sit in it and get out your homework, calculator, notebook, and writing implement – all ready to go! Check the board to see what we are doing!



Don’t wait until the last minute to ask questions or to reach out for help!

I am always available, and more than happy, to help you. You can always reach me after school at my email address ( Email me with specific questions and explain what you have tried. The more specific you are, the better I can help you. If you need to meet with me to ask a question, please send an email and tell me your availability. We can arrange a meeting to talk. Lastly, enjoy yourselves this year and have fun!



I have read the syllabus on the attached pages. I understand the information it contains, including classroom expectations, materials needed, grading policy, Absentee policy, and late work/revisions policy. I agree with the policies as determined by Mrs. Pourmand and Wellesley High School. I will contact Mrs. Pourmand ( if I have any questions or concerns about the information in this syllabus.



Student name _____________       student signature _____________


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