Hello Parents and Students!

Here is the text of the note I sent out on the app regarding the upcoming Module 1 Assessment:

Hello Parents!

As you are aware, we started a new science curriculum this year.  Getting through the first module was a huge learning curve, but we finally got through it all.  I look for the remaining modules to move much more swiftly and smoothly now that the students and I both have a better grasp on how the PhD Science program works. 

Students will have the Module 1 assessment in science next Tuesday, January 14th.  Today in class, we looked over the actual test and discussed everything we have learned so far.  We also went through the logbook and highlighted/marked certain pages and made a few notes about what they need to be prepared to do. This is not a rote memorization type test, so traditional study methods may not be helpful.  Students should be able to, at this point, apply the knowledge they have gained during the module to a new situation to demonstrate their understanding of the concepts covered.  

Your child should be able to demonstrate understanding of the following concepts based on classroom instruction and investigations:

  • Rock Layers
    • Which layers are oldest/newest
    • What we can learn about how an area’s landscape has changed over time from studying fossils found in the layers
  • Processes that shape features found in canyons
    • Weathering (we learned four different agents; I expect to see at least two)
    • Erosion (we learned four different agents; I expect to see at least two)
    • Volcanic eruptions (create volcanic rock that can be found in/around/near canyons)
    • Earthquakes (can cause cracks in canyon walls)
  • Features that are found near canyons
  • Processes that occur near canyons
  • How to identify a likely location for a canyon based on a relief map
  • Students will be given a scenario where erosion is a problem and asked to:
    •  propose two solutions to the problem based on their observations during the engineering design challenge and other investigations
    • Select one of their two solutions to recommend and support that choice with evidence from what they observed during the challenge and investigations 

Some questions will ask students to draw a model, while others require written explanations with supporting evidence.  The goal is not to write the LONGEST response, but to thoroughly and accurately answer the question and move on. 

Students will be allowed to refer to their logbooks on this assessment, so they should be sure to bring them back to school by Tuesday.

Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

Thank you for your support and for sharing your incredible children with me,

Terri Meerpohl

Thanks for all you do!


Under “Mrs. M.’s Favorite Websites,” there are many links to helpful websites. Sheppard Software is particularly helpful with U.S. Geography, but also has other topics.


I will use the Fairfield app often to communicate about school events, assignments, and more.