OVERVIEW: We are at an exciting spot in the implementation of NGSS where we are seeing some high-quality three dimensional instructional materials being released. The American Museum of Natural History (and other partners) has developed a unit titled Disruptions in Ecosystems that provides five chapters to immerse students into understanding life science and human activity MS performance expectations in NGSS. Each chapter provides a phenomenon for students to investigate.
PURPOSE: This unit obviously has potential as being helpful for any middle school science teacher/system that is looking for a well-designed NGSS ecosystems unit. However, this unit also provides a model for what good NGSS instructional materials might look like.
AUDIENCE: middle school teachers, science PD providers, curriculum directors, curriculum writers, etc
LINK: Here is the link on the NGSS site where you can get Disruptions in Ecosystems as a zip file and also see how this unit rated on the EQuIP Rubric.
Here is a video on Teaching Channel where you can see students engaging in constructing arguments using this unit.
Are you looking for more samples of 2 Dimensional and 3 Dimensional summative assessment items for NGSS? Well, Michigan just recently released online samples of NGSS science assessment items for grades 5, 8, and 11.
Check out the portal HERE. Click on the grade you want and then follow the login instructions. Enjoy!
If you are a science assessment nerd like me then you’ve been anxiously awaiting the release of several documents to support the new NGSS Science Assessment in WA State or the Washington Comprehensive Assessment of Science (WCAS).
We recently got the following items from the science team at OSPI:
A. Online sample items at grades 5, 8, and 11
B. The first set of WCAS Test & Item Specs…more will be arriving in the coming year
Grade 5 Test Design and Item Specifications
Grade 8 Test Design and Item Specifications
High School Test Design and Item Specifications
C. Webinars to support each of these items are also available- see below:
Register for the “How to Work with the WCAS Training Tests” Webinar on January 10
Register for the “Science Test and Item Specifications Release” Webinar on January 24
Click HERE to see the updated science assessment page at OSPI.
This is a very affordable opportunity for upper elementary and middle school science teachers in the Puget Sound Region to dig into STEM education and equity.
Here is the link if you are interested in signing up:
Below is information copied from the registration site…
DATE AND TIME
Wed, November 29, 2017
8:30 AM – 4:00 PM PST
Microsoft Conference Center
16070 NE 36th Way
Redmond, WA 98052
This full-day workshop for upper elementary and middle school teachers will give participants tools to engage their students in science and engineering practices aligned with the NGSS. From building low-cost sensors, to iterating design challenges to writing across the STEM disciplines, teachers will add to their toolkit of effective and engaging teacher practices. Professor Jose Rios’ keynote will challenge participants to develop their ideas about educating for equity and access in STEM.
Six STEM clock hours will available for an extra fee, pending approval.
- 8:30-8:45 am – Opening
- 8:45:- 10:30 am – Hacking STEM
- 10:30 – 10: 45 am – Break
- 10:45 – 12:30 pm – Science/Engineering Notebooks
- 12:30 – 1:15 pm – Lunch
- 1:15 – 2:00 pm – Equity Presentation
- 2:00 – 3:45 pm – Engineering Fellow Program
- 3:45 – 4:00 pm – Closing
I haven’t posted a fun science video in awhile- so here you go! Enjoy and check out the other videos from A Capella Science.
OVERVIEW: I first mentioned Nextgenstorylines.org on this site in the spring of 2016. At that time there was only one elementary and one high school storyline. Those storylines were also not fully developed units of instruction. Well, if you haven’t visited Nextgenstorylines.org recently, you should really check it out. There are now multiple units at each grade band with more coming soon. Each unit (storyline) features a clear storyline along with a teacher guide and supporting documents.
The storylines are excellent examples of three-dimensional units of instruction that feature anchoring phenomena and problems. There are many design features that might be useful to others who are creating science lessons and units:
- 3D learning objectives
- storylines written from the student perspective (what will students be wondering and thinking about now…)
- How to structure a unit around the evidence that students will need… rather than the activities “I like” or the content “I’m supposed to cover”.
PURPOSE: This site provides exemplars for what intentional 3-Dimensional instruction looks like, It also provides a structure and tools for teachers to design their own units. The tools are structured around the 5 Routines that the design team follows.
AUDIENCE: teachers of science, professional development providers, curriculum writers, school and district administrators, teacher educators, others
To piggyback on my last post about the impact of simple things such as NGSS Cheat Sheets– here is a simple document I created for rating the “3Dness” of assessment tasks. I often use this document with the ACESSE PD Module B on Building Assessment Tasks That Work (if you are not familiar with this PD module you should check it out).
The modification I make to the module is the following. I break the analysis of the task set into a couple of steps.
A. Participants analyze the set of assessment tasks with (blue, orange, & green) highlighters and highlight words and text features that connect with SEPs, CCCs, and DCIs.
B. Then participants use the 3D Rating Sheet to go through the tasks and score each item for evidence (or lack of evidence) for the given SEP, CCC, and DCI in the assigned PE. This really helps cue participants to parts of assessment tasks and how often the SEPs and CCCs are lacking or missing in most traditional science assessment tasks.
Click HERE to download the 3D Rating Sheet.