Physical Science

I hope you are all safe and well! Below is a list of the topics we covered in science class this year, as well as the topics we were not able to cover due to the school closing.

How to improve your grade for the 3rd quarter:
For those of you who would like to improve your 3rd quarter grades, you can complete some alternative assignments that will be used in place of the assignments you have not completed. Here's how...

1) Sign in to IXL (you can use my Clever page or go directly to

2) Work on sections G,H and I (G - Velocity, acceleration and forces; H - Kinetic and Potential Energy; I - Thermal Energy)

3) When you are done, send me an email and tell me what you completed (In the subject line, please put your name and class period). I will then give you credit for missing work.

Physical Science SOL’s covered for the 2019-20 year


Listed below are Virginia standards for eighth grade Physical Science. I’ve included the date range  each standard was taught in science class this year.


  • Standards highlighted in GREEN have been taught and tested.
  • The standard highlighted in BLUE was being taught when school closed (students have not been tested)
  • Standards highlighted in RED have not been taught.


PS.1            8/26/2019 – school closure (this standard is embedded in the curriculum throughout the school year)


                  The student will demonstrate an understanding of scientific reasoning, logic, and the nature of science by planning and conducting investigations in which     

  1. chemicals and equipment are used safely;
  2. length, mass, volume, density, temperature, weight, and force are accurately measured;
  3. conversions are made among metric units, applying appropriate prefixes;
  4. triple beam and electronic balances, thermometers, metric rulers, graduated cylinders, probeware, and spring scales are used to gather data;
  5. numbers are expressed in scientific notation where appropriate;
  6. independent and dependent variables, constants, controls, and repeated trials are identified;
  7. data tables showing the independent and dependent variables, derived quantities, and the number of trials are constructed and interpreted;
  8. data tables for descriptive statistics showing specific measures of central tendency,  the range of the data set, and the number of repeated trials are constructed and interpreted;
  9. frequency distributions, scatterplots, line plots, and histograms are constructed and interpreted;
  10. valid conclusions are made after analyzing data;
  11. research methods are used to investigate practical problems and questions;
  12.   experimental results are presented in appropriate written form;
  13. models and simulations are constructed and used to illustrate and explain phenomena; and
  14. current applications of physical science concepts are used.


PS.2           8/26/2019 – 10/3/2019


                  The student will investigate and understand the nature of matter. Key concepts include

  1. the particle theory of matter;
  2. elements, compounds, mixtures, acids, bases, and salts;
  3. solids, liquids, and gases;
  4. physical properties;
  5. chemical properties; and
  6. characteristics of types of matter based on physical and chemical properties.


PS.3           10/4/2019 – 10/24/2019


                  The student will investigate and understand the modern and historical models of atomic structure. Key concepts include

  1. the contributions of Dalton, Thomson, Rutherford, and Bohr in understanding the atom; and
  2. the modern model of atomic structure.


PS.4           10/25/2019 – 11/21/2019


                  The student will investigate and understand the organization and use of the periodic table of elements to obtain information. Key concepts include

  1. symbols, atomic numbers, atomic mass, chemical families (groups), and periods;
  2. classification of elements as metals, metalloids, and nonmetals; and
  3. formation of compounds through ionic and covalent bonding.


PS.5           11/22/2019 – 1/9/2020


                  The student will investigate and understand changes in matter and the relationship of these changes to the Law of Conservation of Matter and Energy. Key concepts include

  1. physical changes;
  2. chemical changes; and
  3. nuclear reactions.


PS.6           11/22/2019 – 1/9/2020


                  The student will investigate and understand forms of energy and how energy is          transferred and transformed. Key concepts include

  1. potential and kinetic energy; and
  2. mechanical, chemical, electrical, thermal, radiant, and nuclear energy.


PS.7           1/10/2020 – 2/13/2020


                  The student will investigate and understand temperature scales, heat, and thermal energy transfer.  Key concepts include

  1. Celsius and Kelvin temperature scales and absolute zero;
  2. phase change, freezing point, melting point, boiling point, vaporization, and condensation;
  3. conduction, convection, and radiation; and
  4. applications of thermal energy transfer.


PS.10         2/14/2020 – until school closure (no unit test administered for this standard)


                  The student will investigate and understand the scientific principles of work, force, and motion. Key concepts include

  1. speed, velocity, and acceleration;
  2. Newton’s laws of motion;
  3. work, force, mechanical advantage, efficiency, and power; and
  4. technological applications of work, force, and motion.


PS.8           No instruction on this standard


                  The student will investigate and understand the characteristics of sound waves.  Key concepts include

  1. wavelength, frequency, speed, amplitude, rarefaction, and compression;
  2. resonance;
  3. the nature of compression waves; and
  4. technological applications of sound