Academy Of Distance Education
Grade 9 Science Course Outline

School Name: Academy Of Distance Education
Department of Science
Curriculum Policy Document: The Ontario Curriculum,
Grades 9 and 10: Science, 2008 (Revised)
Course Developer: Science Department
Course Development Date:
August 30, 2009
Course Revision Date: September 22, 2010
Course Title: Science
Course Type: Academic
Course Level: Grade 9
Course Code: SNC1D
Credit Value: 1.0
Duration: 110 hours
Prerequisite: None
Course Origin

This course was developed by the Academy of Distance Education,
department of Science, using the curriculum document, “Ontario
Curriculum, Grades 9 and 10, 2008 (revised)”.


Course Rationale/Description


This course enables students to develop their understanding of
basic concepts in biology, chemistry, earth and space science,
and physics, and to relate science to technology, society, and
the environment. Throughout the course, students will develop
their skills in the processes of scientific investigation. Students
will acquire an understanding of scientific theories and conduct
investigations related to sustainable ecosystems; atomic and
molecular structures and the properties of elements and compounds;
the study of the universe and its properties and components;
and the principles of electricity.





The course consists of 5 strands namely Scientific Investigation
Skills and Career Exploration; Biology: Sustainable Ecosystems;
Chemistry: Atoms, Elements, and Compounds; Earth and Space
Science: The Study of the Universe; Physics: The Characteristics
of Electricity. Please note that the strands in this course are also
the units of study in the course as has been conveniently designed
by the publishers of the main text books.


Strand 1: Scientific Investigation Skills and Career Exploration

Overall Expectations

Throughout this course, students will:

• Demonstrate scientific investigation skills (related to both inquiry
   and research) in the four areas of skills (initiating and planning,
   performing and recording, analyzing and interpreting, and communicating);

• Identify and describe a variety of careers related to the fields of
   science under study, and identify scientists, including Canadians,
   who have made contributions to those fields.


Strand 2: Biology: Sustainable Ecosystems

Overall Expectations

By the end of this course, students will:

• Assess the impact of human activities on the sustainability of terrestrial
   and/or aquatic ecosystems, and evaluate the effectiveness of courses of
   action intended to remedy or mitigate negative impacts;

• Investigate factors related to human activity that affect terrestrial and
   aquatic ecosystems, and explain how they affect the sustainability of
   these ecosystems;

• Demonstrate an understanding of the dynamic nature of ecosystems,
   particularly in terms of ecological balance and the impact of human
   activity on the sustainability of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.


Strand 3: Chemistry: Atoms, Elements, and Compounds

Overall Expectations

By the end of this course, students will:

• Assess social, environmental, and economic impacts of the use of
   common elements and compounds, with reference to their physical
   and chemical properties;

• Investigate, through inquiry, the physical and chemical properties
  of common elements and compounds;

• Demonstrate an understanding of the properties of common elements
  and compounds, and of the organization of elements in the periodic table.


Strand 4: Earth and Space Science: The Study of the Universe

Overall Expectations

By the end of this course, students will:

• Assess some of the costs, hazards, and benefits of space exploration
  and the contributions of Canadians to space research and technology;

• Investigate the characteristics and properties of a variety of celestial
  objects visible from Earth in the night sky;

• Demonstrate an understanding of the major scientific theories about the
  structure, formation, and evolution of the universe and its components
  and of the evidence that supports these theories.


Strand 5: Physics: The Characteristics of Electricity

Overall Expectations

By the end of this course, students will:

• Assess some of the costs and benefits associated with the production of
electrical energy from renewable and non‑renewable sources, and analyze
how electrical efficiencies and savings can be achieved, through both the
design of technological devices and practices in the home;

• Investigate, through inquiry, various aspects of electricity, including
the properties of static and current electricity, and the quantitative relationships
between potential difference, current, and resistance in electrical circuits;

• Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of static and current electricity.

Strand 1, Scientific Inquiry, will be taught in conjunction with every other
strand throughout the course as a tool to enhance student learning.

Strand 1/Unit 1

Scientific Investigation Skills and Career Exploration (taught in conjunction within/ embedded with each of the other 4 units)


Strand 2/Unit 2

Biology: Sustainable Ecosystems

23 hours

Strand 3/Unit 3

Chemistry: Atoms, Elements, and Compounds

30 hours

Strand 4/Unit 4

Earth and Space Science: The Study of the Universe

23 hours

Strand 5/Unit 5

Physics: The Characteristics of Electricity

29 hours


Final Assessment

8 hours

Total hours 113 hours



Teaching and Learning Strategies and Tools

Because the nature of the teaching strategies of the course is
electronic delivery, media for conveying learning will be either
synchronous or asynchronous. Academy of Distance Education is
dedicated to maximize possibility of establishing “comfort zone”
for students while opportunities for learning successfully are continuously
explored. For that reason, both of the mediums of electronic delivery
mentioned above are equally utilized as per the need and suitability
of each one in different situations. Teachers will give students opportunities
to discuss material covered in assynchronus mode through chatrooms
designed for this purpose so that any concepts that were nor grasped
while the lesson went on could be be revisited one-on-one with the teacher.


Examples E- Teaching/ E-Learning Strategies in
the course/courses:

  • Lectures/handouts/note taking (through on-line vehicles both
    synchronously and asynchronously)
  • Case Studies (both synchronously and asynchronously)
  • Brainstorming (in virtual class discussions as well as in face book
    or other social sites used for the purpose of e-learning and
  • Writing (research, essays, poems)
  • Homework, class work, assignments
  • Labs and demonstrations (mainly computer simulations to
    accommodate distance learning)
  • Small/large group discussions (virtual classes or one-on-one
    virtual situations)
  • Multimedia presentations (all on-line)
  • Guest speeches

Teaching/Learning Tools: (all designed to meet the requirements
of e-schooling)

  • Textbook
  • Overhead projector, screen, electronic writing devices like
    the electronic pen pad and transparencies
  • Online software, CDs, DVDs, videos/films
  • Chart paper,
  • Posters
  • Online educational activities and games
  • Relevant scientific sites & magazines & articles


Assessment & Evaluation Methods at ADE;

Assessment and evaluation at the Academy of Distance Education
is based heavily on dividing the assessment strategies equally between
comprehensive, on-site and supervised assessments and assessments
conducted by the student alone and sent electronically or through other
means by the student. The latter will include instances where the student
does access-controlled on-line testing and quizzing where possibilities of
extra-personal efforts are eliminated completely making sure that the
student does the work. Other opportunities will allow for students meeting
assessment requirements while seeking help from any source but making
sure knowledge has been gained by the student through the help provided
to him/her. All these systems are designed the benefits of e-learning and
e-teaching are maximized and not diminished by factors that could be
brought forth by the introduction of non-traditional classrooms.

In general, Assessment is a continuous process of gathering evidence to
facilitate and enhance student learning, provide feedback, and improve
instructional strategies. Evaluation is the process of judging the quality
of student work in an assessment, on the basis of established criteria, and
the assigning of a value to represent that quality. The purpose of evaluation
is to summarize student progress at a given point in time.


In the 2010/2011 and beyond, Numerous and varied assessment opportunities will be given to students and various strategies and tools will be employed throughout the course in order to achieve maximum precision and fairness in assessing how well students learned the curricular expectations of each strand and the course. This will be an attempt meet ministry of education guidelines introduced for the 2010 and effective successive years until further notice of change. Diagnostic assessments will be used to determine prior learning, students’ strengths and for planning purposes and therefore will not be used to determine term or final grades for report cards. Formative assessments will be used regularly as a learning tool and feedback mechanism to improve student learning and instructional strategies. Summative assessments will be used to provide final professional judgment and evaluation of student learning of curricular expectations and therefore will be used to evaluate term work and the final assessment for reporting purposes. When planning assessments, the curricular expectations will be reviewed and linked to the achievement categories to which they relate. This is to ensure that all the expectations are accounted for in instruction, and that achievement of the expectations is assessed within the appropriate categories. All three types of assessments are still further regrouped into three parts: assessment for learning, feedback mechanisms meant to enhance student learning (formative and diagnostic); assessment as learning, self assessment and peer assessment tools done led and /or teachers in which students learn how to independently assess the level of their own learning (diagnostic , formative)’ and assessment of learning (summative only), which is led by the teacher alone and is used for purposes of evaluation and reporting of student achievement to parents and other stake holders. Of all the three mentioned above, assessment for learning occupies the biggest portion of the space allocated for all assessments. This is in conformity with the changes made by the ministry of Education of Ontario in 2010 through different policies including the
"Growing Success".


Assessment Methods: The means through which student learning may be assessed (i.e., written, spoken, or done). In this course, students will use all three methods to demonstrate their learning: oral work (debates, discussions, presentations, skits), written work (tests, quizzes, reports, essays), and performances (labs, models, pamphlets, charts). Both synchronous and asynchronous opportunities are made available.


Assessment Strategies:The actual assessment instruments used as the process used for assessing student learning and the level of their achievement of meeting curricular expectations (e.g. journal). ADE will use conduct assessments both synchronously and asynchronously throughout the course. Below is a list of the most commonly used assessment strategies for this course:

  • Tests/Quizzes (done both on-line and at a designated site with supervision)
  • Interviews/Conferences (Virtual class discussions)
  • Examinations (done only comprehensively at a site with supervision)
  • Multimedia Presentations (virtual class presentation synchronously
  • Assignments, Research Projects/Reports (on-line)


Assessment Tools: An instrument that is used to initiate or guide the assessment strategy or to track, monitor or record the assessment data (e.g. rubric). Below is a list of the most commonly used assessment tools for this course:

  • Check lists (learning skills, homework check, completion of a task, basically to check absence or presence of a concept, process, skill, or attitude)
  • Marking Scheme (tests/quizzes, assignments, worksheets, to quantify student response; value based tasks)
  • Rating Scales (to assess frequency of achieving a task or quality of task)
  • Rubrics (performances, written reports, presentations, labs, complex projects/tasks)
  • Anecdotal Comments (learning skills, group work, independent work, presentations,



Course Evaluation
In this course, two parts make up the evaluation of student achievement through the different assessment strategies mentioned above.
a)The term work accounts for 70% of the overall grade for the course. Assessments for this portion are spread throughout the course and will terminate approximately 3-4 weeks before the end of the study term.
b) The final evaluation will account for 30% of the overall grade for the course. It is a comprehensive assessment that will commence within approximately the last 3-4 weeks of the study term. It will be in the form of a final examination encompassing the concepts and skills taught throughout the year with emphasis on the latter portions of the course.


Term Work =70%
Strand 1 / Unit 1: Scientific Investigation Skills and Career Exploration

Assessment of this strand will be spread out throughout the other 4 strands(units of study) as an embedded strand and each of the two overall expectations and their specific expectations will be assessed in each strand or unit of study in this course. Units of study and the strands are one and the same in this course and strands are taught in the sequence they are ordered in the curricular document.

Strand 2 / Unit 2: Biology: Sustainable Ecosystems
Quizzes 4.0%
Assignments 2.0%
Unit Test 12.0%
Total: 18%
Strand 3 / Unit 3: Chemistry: Atoms Elements, and Compounds
Quizzes 4.0%
UnitTest 12.0%
Assignments 2.0%
Total: 18%
Strand 4 / Unit 4: Earth and Space Science: The Study of the Universe
Quizzes 4.0%
Tests 10.0%
Assignments 2.0%

Total: 16%

Strand 5 / Unit 5: Physics: The Characteristics of Electricity
Quizzes 4.0%
Assignments 2.0%
Unit Test 12.0%
Total: 18%
Summative Task =30%
30% Final Examination

Final Grade = Term Work + Summative Task =70% +30% = 100%

Achievement Charts
The achievement chart will be used as a reference point for all assessment practice and a framework within which to assess and evaluate student achievement. It is organized into four broad categories of knowledge and skills: Knowledge/Understanding, Thinking/Inquiry, Communication, and Application/Making Connections. It describes the four levels of achievement (performance standards) of the curriculum expectations within each category. The descriptions associated with each level will serve as a guide for gathering assessment information, making consistent judgments about the quality of student work, and providing clear and specific feedback to students and parents.

Learning Skills
While not evaluated for marks, learning skills (Works Independently, Teamwork, Organization, Work Habits/Homework, and Initiative) are necessary skills in order to success in school and beyond. As with other skills, they will be demonstrated, practiced, and assessed in the classroom (using letters E — Excellent, G — Good, S — Satisfactory, and N — Needs Improvement). Numerous and various opportunities will be given to students throughout the year to demonstrate and improve their learning skills. Individual assignments to for independence and initiative; lab work in pairs and small-groups to foster cooperative learning and develop teamwork; occasional binder checks and portfolios collection to develop and maintain organizational skills; and random homework checks will be conducted.

Main Resources 1. Nelson Science 9. (Main Text Book)
2. Online Teacher’s Resource — Nelson Science 9.
3. Internet (Biology related sites), software, animations, and videos tapes.
5. Public Libraries