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Principles of Technology 8
Instructor: Cook   

Principles of Technology Syllabus 2014-2015

Room #109



STEM : Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics


“If it ain’t broken… improve it”  Discover Magazine

Mission Statement:


The TMS STEM program will offer meaningful and challenging educational experiences for each and every student within a stimulating, safe and nurturing environment. Students will discover and develop their potential in a technology filled world, to develop intellectual curiosity and a love of learning using Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Students will understand and promote democratic values, to become contributing members of the local and global communities in which they will live using hands-on approach with an Inquiry based learning method. The TMS STEM program will preserve a tradition of excellence while modeling exemplary practices in the education of students for a 21st Century global society.


Educational Philosophy: “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” Chinese proverb


As a Middle school STEM teacher, I feel students learn best by a hands on, constructivist, Inquiry based approach. I will use a student-centered learning community to plant the seed in the students to achieve based on their own goals and will empower them to take ownership of their own education. I will guide the students to solve real-world current and future problems using exploration, creativity, and a safe engaging learning environment.




The objective of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education is help students to become:


· Problem-solvers – able to define questions and problems, design investigations to gather data, collect and organize data, draw conclusions, and then apply understandings to new and novel situations.

· Innovators – creatively use science, mathematics, and technology concepts and principles by applying them to the engineering design process. “Innovate or Die”

· Inventors – recognize the needs of the world and creatively design, test, redesign, and then implement solutions (engineering process).

· Self-reliant – able to use initiative and self-motivation to set agendas, develop and gain self-confidence, and work within time specified time frames.

· Logical thinkers – able to apply rational and logical thought processes of science, mathematics, and engineering design to innovation and invention.

· Technologically literate - understand and explain the nature of technology, develop the skills needed, and apply technology appropriately. (Blaine H, 2009, p.3)

Class Supply List: (Please bring these everyday)

  • Notebook, Small for notes and 1-subject (something to write notes on)

  • Pencils & Pens (something to write with)

  • Headphones – any type (to listen to tutorials and Tech videos)

  • #1 a positive attitude and a SMILE !

  • Safety Glasses, Work gloves, USB Mouse “Can be found at Dollar Store”

Optional, if they want their own personal pair. “Class set provided”

USB Thumb drive (At least 2GB size) (storage, Google DRIVE can be used)


Homework Requirements or Assignments:


Students may be required to take notes during research or watching pre-requisite videos on topics but Traditional homework is not done in a STEM environment.




Students should come prepared for class; students may be required to lead discussions, ask and answer questions or participate with groups or partners. I will assist any students to participate who feel uncomfortable with group, tools, or speaking in front of class. As long as the student tries to overcome and achieve better participation all points will be given.


Units, Projects & Challenges:


The material will be presented to the students in many formats including Challenges and Projects.  They will include all topics related to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. They will explore many principles of technology including:


Medical: Biological technology, Nutrition, Safety

Agricultural: Hydroponics, Organic, Sustainable

Geo-Physical: Engineering, and Mechanics, Robotics

Energy: Resources, Green energy, Alternative types

Social: Communication, Pandemics, Lifehacking (making life easier), Conflict

Technology: Computers, Networking, Apps, Gaming, MAKE: the movement


Intro to Technology Challenge, National STEM Video Game Challenge, Invent Tank –Inventor’s institute, Rocketry Challenge, LEGO Robotics  Challenge, Floor plan Challenge, Design a roller coaster challenge, West Point Bridge Challenge, KNEX Structures Challenge,  STEMtrepreneurship Challenge, Solar energy car Challenge… and many more


The Grading Policy:


40% - Participation & Character

30% - Projects & Challenges

30% - Online portfolio & Assessments (Blogs, Journal, Notebooks, Quizzes)


This grading scale is at the discretion of the teacher. It may be modified based on a student’s abilities and situation. Extra credit, special projects or make up work will be given on a student by student basis. Most projects, challenges, and portfolios will be graded using a rubric that the students receive before each.


Class Rules and Expectations:


1. Raise your hand and wait to be called on

2. Do not speak while others are speaking

3. Treat others the way you want to be treated

4. Bring all materials to class and respect materials in the room

5. Follow directions the first time they are given

6. Respect your teacher and your classmates and your environment

7. No food, drinks, or gum in the classroom


I fully expect that these rules will be followed at all times. If you fail to follow these rules, you will receive one verbal warning. If the inappropriate behavior does not cease, you will be disciplined according to the rules of the Student Handbook. A classroom should be a safe environment where learning is the top priority.


A detailed safety contract for Labs and hand-on construction will be given separate which will have to be signed by a parent or guardian before a student is allowed to participate.


After School Hours:

Room 109

Monday - Friday

3:15 – 3:45 or by Appointment.


Attendance, Plagiarism, Dress code and Honor code :


The policies in the Student Handbook will be followed for each or these categories.


“A man who has never gone to school may steal from a freight car; but if he has a university education, he may steal the whole railroad.” Theodore Roosevelt

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