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How Do I Do Well on the High School Science Gateway? Spring 2007.

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Presentation on theme: "How Do I Do Well on the High School Science Gateway? Spring 2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 How Do I Do Well on the High School Science Gateway? Spring 2007

2 Getting Started Making the Right Choice:  One of the most important keys to your success is choosing the Writing Task Choice that will be the best one to let the graders know what you know. As you start the test, make sure you read both choices and the documents then do the following things.

3 Making the right choice..  Think of how you would respond to each task. (Choice 1 or Choice 2)  On the pages in the back of the task folder, jot down what you know about each task from the scenario, documents and from your classes. (Brainstorming)  For which choice do you have the most information and facts?  Then think, “For which choice do I already have the better answer forming in my head?”  Choose that choice.

4 As you begin, read the choice again.  Create a brainstorm list of how you will respond to each part of the task. For example, if you were writing about plants- your list would look something like this: Photosynthesis, cell wall, chloroplasts, green, large vacuoles, oxygen, CO2, water, enzymes, cell membrane, leaves, root, stem, seed

5 When taking the Gateway, summarize what you know and need to include from the documents. Then make a list of things you know about the task and use your list to make an outline, Venn diagram, chart or other graphic organizer to help you plan how you will write your response. Include the information you will use from the documents. Write a rough draft of your response. Strategy

6 Strategy, cont. See if you can improve the response by using the Science and Writing Checklist. Rewrite the rough draft neatly into your response folder. Make sure you leave enough time to complete copying your draft. Use documentation and reference any pictures, diagrams or tables you included.

7 Strategy, cont. You SHOULD attempt to write a multi-paragraph essay complete with INTRODUCTION, BODY, and CONCLUSION. You SHOULD NOT copy straight from the packet. For example- do NOT write an entire essay saying : Document A says…..Document B states…Document C states….. and so on. Do not copy the scenario as your introduction.

8 You will be graded in science and language arts. This section will help you to better understand the science aspects.

9 The scenario gives you background information to build your thesis This part is the basis for your thesis Each of these bullets should be included as a supporting idea in your essay. Scenario: You are an ecologist studying an ecosystem that consists of a stream surrounded by woods. The following organisms can be found in this ecosystem: mice, rabbits, birds, snakes, bears, large fish, small fish, otters, bacteria, algae, grass, and seed producing plants. Three months ago, a manufacturing plant opened about 2 miles upstream. The plant has been dumping waste water into the stream that contains a high concentration of acetic acid. Over the last month, you have been noticing a decline in the number of fish in the stream; you have also noticed that the grass growing along the side of the stream is starting to become yellow. Your job is to write an essay that discusses the environmental impact of the manufacturing plant’s waste on this ecosystem. In your essay, make sure you include the following. Discuss the importance producers to this ecosystem; give an example of a producer.  Discuss the importance decomposers to this ecosystem; give an example of a producer.  If grass, algae, and seed producing trees are eliminated from this ecosystem due to the acidity of the water, how will this affect other animals in the ecosystem? SAMPLE WRITING Task Ecosystems and Food Webs

10 Main Idea Reason or supporting idea Fact or Example Brainstorming/Thesis Building Process Fact or Example

11 The science rubric consists of THREE categories:  Communication of Scientific Facts, Concepts and Principles (1-6) (Counts 40% of total score)  Knowledge and Use of Science (1-6) (Counts 40% of total score)  Use of Scientific Processes (1-6) (Counts 20% of total score)

12 COMMUNICATION— Papers with the following scores, usually have these characteristics.  6- Exceptional Fully explained and developed  5- Very Good Correct, but could use more detail  4- Target Average Most of the response is correct  3- Low Average Some of the response correct, needs more detail  2- Below Average Some of the documents copied, too brief, or assumptions (ideas) are wrong  1- Poor Not doing what the task asks or not understandable

13 For Communication, you should  answer ALL parts of the question. That means that if there are three bullet points then you must answer all three points with supporting evidence.  stay on topic or FOCUSED- for example- if the topic is cell structure in plants do not talk about human body systems. Be sure you can link your example to the topic.  organize the knowledge so it helps the grader understand that you know about science  develop the essay- how?- with details and evidence (in other words support or back up what you say)  pay attention to words in the task such as defend, describe, explain, discuss  use diagrams, graphics, tables and formulas correctly, as needed.  explain your reasoning for any statements you make.

14 KNOWLEDGE AND USE OF SCIENCE— Papers with the following scores, usually have these characteristics.  6- ExceptionalUses extensive prior knowledge and documents correctly  5- Very GoodUses correct prior knowledge and documents correctly  4- Target Average Prior knowledge and documents are used correctly, but not often  3- Low AverageLimited prior knowledge and documents used correctly  2- Below AverageLittle prior knowledge and documents used or used inaccurately  1- PoorNo scientific knowledge evident and documents copied or not used.

15 For Knowledge, you should  use facts that are ACCURATE and RELEVANT  use the DOCUMENTS provided (but do NOT only use the documents) and cite your sources – for example if you pull something from the first document, you might cite it like this---- In Document A …, or Green states that the fish are colorful and vicious at the same time (Doc A).

16 Knowledge, cont.  include PRIOR KNOWLEDGE- Information that is not given to you in the documents, but that you know. Give facts, ideas, etc. that you learned in class or from other sources.  connect the information to what you already know  use science vocabulary (that means words that are particular to the topic and science and give the definition of the word you are using in the context of the essay)  make assumptions that are necessary – but make sure you explain why they are appropriate.  Create diagrams if necessary to explain a concept or your thoughts. Reference the drawing.

17 USE OF SCIENTIFIC PROCESSES--- Papers with the following scores, usually have these characteristics.  6- Exceptional Extensive use of scientific connections and transitions among ideas  5- Very GoodWell-written and appropriate procedures and connections  4- Target Average Correct and coherent connections  3- Low AverageSome transitions between scientific ideas  2- Below AverageAttempts to connect ideas  1- PoorScientific ideas do not flow together or make sense

18 Scientific Processes (Do you understand how to solve problems as a scientist would?) You should:  show them that you really know what you are talking about and can use the scientific method. This can be demonstrated by if/then or cause/effect thinking.  use the information you have and apply it to the topic) and draw some valid conclusions (show some connections between the data provided, scientific terms and concepts you mention in your essay)  write a step by step procedure when required or it helps answer the question,  clearly describe and justify any procedures or solutions you propose

19 Language Arts Features: Focus and Development- Focus and Development is closely tied to communication in the science rubric and is rated on your ability to answer the Gateway task. Making sure you address each part of the question and the bullets will help you to score well in this area. Organization- Your paper must have a plan and flow from one paragraph to the next. You must always have an introduction and conclusion paragraph. The opening paragraph should let your rater know what your paper is going to be about (thesis statement). The concluding paragraph should put it all together and summarize your essay. Often it is appropriate to use information from the scenario in the opening and concluding paragraph. The Gateway does not have to be in a five paragraph essay format. As a general rule, each part of the essay can be answered as an independent paragraph.

20 Language Arts Features Fluency- In the fluency feature, you are rated on your ability to write well. Your papers should use interesting and sophisticated words outside your scientific vocabulary. The words should flow into sentences and your sentences into meaningful paragraphs. Errors should not slow the reader down or force them to wonder what your meant by your sentence. A good way to do this is to use a variety of words and sentences- some short, some long, some simple, some compound and some complex. In fluency it is better to try misspell a more complex word than to only use short, simple ones. Conventions- Grammar, usage, mechanics and spelling make up the conventions feature. Did you write in complete sentences, use proper punctuation, spell correctly, make sure your subjects and verbs agree, and use paragraph breaks? You should have a capital letter at the beginning of the sentence and correct punctuation at the end. Run on sentences and sentence fragments should not exist.

21 Language Arts- What should I do?  Do some brainstorming to get your ideas together before you start your essay.  Write a first draft, make revisions, and then write your final draft as neatly as possible. (you do not have to double space)  Try to find a creative way to open your essay. Quotes, questions, shocking statements, and interesting facts are always good options. (organization)  Make smooth transitions between paragraphs. (organization) Examples include: next, therefore, however, thus

22 Language Arts: What should I do?  Provide a good conclusion that sums up your paper and leaves your reader with something to think about.  If they ask you to write a letter, use a letter format with a date, salutation, and farewell. (conventions)  Use interesting, precise vocabulary. Stay away from generic words, phrases (such as “something,” “stuff,” etc.), abbreviations, and slang. It is better to misspell a high-level vocabulary word than to use a word that is too simple or general. (fluency).  Mix up your sentences. Include long and short sentences; compound, complex, compound-complex, and simple sentences. Your sentence structure should not be choppy or repetitive. (fluency)

23 Language Arts: What should I do?  After you write your first draft, read it over and edit for spelling, grammar, etc. (conventions)  If you make a mistake, cross it out and continue writing.  Be sure you have cited the documents you used. The graders will be looking for at least one parenthetical citation. (conventions).

24 You need to be:  Knowledgeable  Confident  Competent And you will do well!

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