Tuesday, March 27, 2012


This Power Point covers some of the material in Chapter 13.1 of the Environmental Science text. As mentioned, this material (also covered by an RA on Monday) will be quizzed in Wednesday's class. Be prepared.....


Friday's class featured excerpts from 'Extinction!', which is Episode 3 from NOVA's 'Evolution' series (2001).

The video begins with paleontologist Peter Ward hunting for Permian fossils in South Africa's Karoo Desert, and relates ecological pyramids (which are like a 'house of cards') to mass extinctions, which are believed to be rare but important events in the history of life.

It then follows the work of American Museum of Natural History researcher Michael Novacek in building the fossil record of small, shrew-like mammals from the Mesozoic, representative of the lineage that will survive the next mass extinction (the K/T event), which will claim the dinosaurs.

It concludes with an examination of the role of human activity in accelerating the rate of extinction, with important attention to conservationists like Alan Rabinowitz. I encourage students to watch the video in its entirety for themselves if there are points that they don't get in class. We simply do not have enough class time to review this, but I know many students will want to see the whole story again, either by going to Google Video or watching it here:


Here are links to the video shown in class featuring Donal MacIntyre, the episode "Wind!" from the BBC series "Wild Weather". Very entertaining! Topics covered include global wind patterns, the solar wind, hurricanes, tornadoes and the layers of the atmosphere.


So, the time has come once again where my Biology students begin to learn about the ideas that have been called the cornerstone of modern biology: which is to say, common descent, evolution and natural selection. Well-established and part of our state standards, these ideas still have the power to spark controversy outside the scientific community due to their powerful ability to explain features of life in a testable manner.

Be advised, students and parents, that Mr. Hatfield will always treat the personal beliefs of students with respect in this area....but, on the flip side, all students are expected to be able to demonstrate their understanding of the ideas. In the 21st century, a person can not be considered well-educated if they don't understand evolution and natural selection!

Here is our syllabus through the middle of April:

Friday, March 23, 2012


Here are the Power Point notes on Air Pressure and Weather. This does not contain the next set of notes, on global wind patterns and the magnetosphere, which will be added next week.

Thursday, March 22, 2012


These notes were given to students on March 15th-March 20th. The Power Point on "Diversity and Classification" can be uploaded here. The Lecture Guide based on the Power Point can be found as a PDF file here.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


The Power Point with the Notes on Biotechnology is available here. All students will need to download the entire Power Point in order to finish the Lecture Guide, so make sure you do it!

Students who have lost their original Lecture Guide and need to get another copy can download the Guide as a PDF file here.

The Genetic Disorders Poster Project was due today.

We will do a Lab in class tomorrow. Students may need to complete their notes outside of class by using the Power Point if they miss one or more sessions of class due to CAHSEE. There is a Study Session after school on Wednesday between 3:15 and 5:15, and the Unit Test will occur on Friday, March 16th.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012



The Power Point Notes for Human Heredity are available here.

STUDENTS: Please remember that you have a major 100-point project DUE on Tuesday, March 13th. This is a GROUP project. Next Monday (the 12th) is the ONLY in-class work day you will be given for the poster project, so you and your group need to meet beforehand.

The STUDY SESSION for the next Unit Test is after-school on Wednesday, March 14th. The next Unit Test is Thursday, March 15th.

Friday, March 2, 2012


Again, I will be holding Saturday School in my room on the Bullard campus (N-63), on Saturday, March 3rd, between 8:30 and 11:45

Students need to arrive promptly. Those who are more than ten minutes late will not be admitted, and both they and any students who in any other way act inappropriately will be referred. This is an opportunity for students to raise their grade, an opportunity that should in now way be wasted!

Our new syllabus for our unit on human genetics and biotechnology is shown below(click on the image for a larger view). Students received a copy of this syllabus in class on Friday, March 2nd.

Parents: Please note that your student has been assigned into a group to produce a major project on a particular human genetic disorder, and that between now and March 12th should be meeting with other students outside of school to complete that task.