OTH040: Reaching Your Academic Potential (Elective)

This list is representative of the materials provided or used in this course. Keep in mind that the actual materials used may vary, depending on the school in which you are enrolled, and whether you are taking the course as Independent Study.

For a complete list of the materials to be used in this course by your enrolled student, please visit MyInfo. All lists are subject to change at any time.

Scope & Sequence : Scope & Sequence documents describe what is covered in a course (the scope) and also the order in which topics are covered (the sequence). These documents list instructional objectives and skills to be mastered. K12 Scope & Sequence documents for each course include:

Course Overview

Students learn essential academic skills within the context of their learning style, individual learning environment, and long-term goals. This course helps students develop habits for more successful reading, writing, studying, communication, collaboration, time management, and concentration. It also provides insights into how the brain works when it is learning, and ways to maximize its potential.

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Course Length

One Semester

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Course Outline

Unit 1: Reaching Your Academic Potential

Students learn how their academic potential is tied to self-awareness and learn about the role of brain development in improving academic potential during teen years.

  • Course Introduction: Reaching Your Academic Potential
  • Thinking About Thinking
  • You Have Strengths

Unit 2: Your Mind and Your Mindset

Students learn about multiple definitions of intelligence and how mindset and self-efficacy can affect behavior and outcomes. They look at myths regarding learning, achievement, success, college, and career.

  • Defining Intelligence
  • Urban Legends of Intelligence and Identity
  • Choice and Consequence

Unit 3: Learning as Process and Preference

Students learn the fundamental processes of learning within the brain, identify their personal preferences in learning, and learn how those preferences relate to personal preferences in careers.

  • How the Brain Learns
  • Your Own Learning Preferences
  • Learning Preferences Go To Work

Unit 4: Effective Work Habits

Students look at brain functions related to concentration and distraction, look at their own current behavior, and identify strategies to reduce distractions. They also identify characteristics of good work environments and design an improvement plan for their own work environment.

  • Do Not Disturb! Avoiding Distractions
  • Work Habits for Life
  • Design Time: Your Space

Unit 5: Memory and Studying for Tests

Students look at how the brain processes information and commits it to memory. They look at the purpose of testing and learn coping skills to reduce test anxiety, then create a test study plan.

  • Memory
  • What Testing is For
  • Taking a Test? Take a Breath.

Unit 6: Taking Tests

Students develop strategies for coping with test anxiety, look at different test-taking techniques appropriate for different kinds of questions and different kinds of tests, and learn about academic integrity.

  • Your Strategy for Tests
  • Academic Integrity on Tests
  • Your Own Test Case

Unit 7: Making Decisions and Setting Goals

Students learn how parts of the brain are involved in decision-making and explore the role of critical-thinking, reasoning, and value systems in decision making. They learn the processes for making decisions and setting goals and set a short-term goal identifying milestones and potential barriers. They learn that the choices they make in the short term will set the right path for life beyond high school.

  • Making Decisions 101
  • Setting Goals 101
  • Making Goals Real

Unit 8: The Career Ahead

Students learn the specialized functions of the right and left hemispheres of the brain; how an individual's preferred hemisphere may be a factor in career preference; and the psychological, financial, and personal rewards and sacrifices associated with careers. They take the Career Interest Profiler assessment, and investigate some of the careers identified.

  • Career Choices and the Brain
  • Career Choices and Rewards
  • Career Interest Profiler

Unit 9: Focus on Reading

Students learn how the brain functions during reading and apply self-efficacy principles to reading. They identify habits of good readers and develop reading strategies. They read career oriented materials in order to gain an understanding of the nature, preparation, commitment, and workload associated with specific careers.

  • Reading and the Brain
  • Reading and You
  • Remembering What You Read
  • Reading in Action

Unit 10: Focus on Writing

Students learn how the brain functions during writing and apply self-efficacy principles to writing. They review the stages of the writing process, and write a mission statement and career goal.

  • Writing and the Brain
  • Getting Ready to Write
  • The Writing Process
  • Writing in Action

Unit 11: Focus on Math

Students learn how the brain understands and manipulates numbers and apply self-efficacy principles to math. They learn the characteristics of successful math students and identify strategies and resources to improve math fluency. Students look at real-world applications of math.

  • Math and the Brain
  • Succeeding at Math
  • Math and the Real World

Unit 12: Communication

Students look at how the brain functions during spoken communication and compare and contrast appropriate communication styles used in different settings. They identify non-verbal factors in communication and strategies for remembering the content of communication.

  • Communication and the Brain
  • Communication Styles
  • Listening and Body Language
  • Capturing What You Hear
  • You in Front of Others

Unit 13: Research

Students look at different forms and purposes of research and how to determine if resources are valid. They learn how to organize and present their findings, and how to construct proper citations. They apply principles of good research to determine colleges that fit their personal criteria.

  • Research and Valid Resources
  • Orderly Research Means Usable Research
  • Research, Plagiarism, and Academic Integrity
  • Research for Your Future

Unit 14: Creativity and Collaboration

Students explore creativity and effective habits for collaborating with others. They learn what it means to be a good “netizen” and analyze various scenarios of teamwork on the job.

  • Creativity 101
  • Collaboration and Criticism
  • Teams and Leaders
  • Collaboration and Careers

Unit 15: Academic Potential and You

Students apply fundamental concepts of this course to their life in high school and beyond. They identify short-term and long-term goals, and the specific academic requirements to reach those goals. They also identify strengths they already possess and areas in which they could use improvement. Finally, they identify sources of support that will help them reach their goals and overcome challenges.

  • The Test Case Who Is You
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K12 Scope & Sequence documents for each course include:

  • Course Overview (as seen above)
  • Course Outline
  • Lesson Time and Scheduling