Washington Science

This group, curated by OSPI, contains resources created by and for educators - including instructional materials, review rubrics, and other useful links. (Icon: Science by Sergey Demushkin from the Noun Project)
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All resources in Washington Science

OSPI 3-5 Science Home Learning Resources During COVID-19

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This document provides some learning resources associated with each of the 3-5 Science Content Learning Standards. They are intended to serve during this “stay at home” time, which includes all Washington schools. They are not intended to replace or be equivalent to face-to-face learning. Please feel free to use the resources or to make adaptations.

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Lesson, Module, Teaching/Learning Strategy

Authors: Barbara Soots, Ellen Ebert, Kimberley Astle, Washington OSPI OER Project

ClimeTime Professional Learning Session: How to Support Home-Based Science Learning During School Closures

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With students and educators under shelter-at-home orders, states and districts are faced with difficult decisions about how to support students’ science learning while they are home. Home environments support different aspects of student learning than school-based environments. Designing home-based learning experiences to intentionally take advantage of the unique assets of being at home can be supportive of students’ social, emotional, and mental health; provide a meaningful and complementary science learning experience; and allow students to explore real-world and personally relevant science in ways that are difficult to accomplish in school. Field-based examples of home and neighborhood investigations of ecological systems will be shared.

Material Type: Teaching/Learning Strategy

Authors: Carrie Tzou, Leah Bricker, Megan Bang, Philip Bell

Science Back to School Considerations

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What does effective science teaching and learning look like for possible 2020-2021 back-to-school plans? This series of one-pagers addresses four areas for teachers of science, school/district science specialists, and administrators - curriculum, assessment, instruction, and safety and well being. Visit the Council of State Science Supervisors website to download editable copies of this resource. http://cosss.org/projects

Material Type: Teaching/Learning Strategy

Authors: Council of State Science Supervisors (CSSS), National Science Education Leadership Association, National Science Teaching Association (NSTA)

Supporting Students’ Science Learning During School Closures

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As schools close their doors as part of public health measures to limit the spread of COVID-19, educators are faced with how to support the diverse needs of all learners when students are not in school. This guide recognizes that solutions will not be – nor should be – “school as usual,” simply delivered in a virtual environment. Instead, this resource was developed by members of the Council of State Science Supervisors to provide guidance around how to support student science learning during these unique circumstances. Image by April Bryant from Pixabay 

Material Type: Teaching/Learning Strategy

Authors: Barbara Soots, Ellen Ebert, Kimberley Astle, Washington OSPI OER Project

Are seatbelts important for safe driving? (3rd grade Physical Science Unit)

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In this Unit, students embark on a mission to create a campaign which promotes seat belt use for a teenage audience. In the context of this project, students explore NGSS PE’s 3-PS2-2, 3-PS2-1, 3-5-ETS1-1, 3-PS2-3, and 3-PS2-4 while investigating the effects of balanced and unbalanced forces acting on an object. Through a series of collect evidence to write a claim based on evidence for why seatbelts are important. Download: ForcesAndInteractions.3rdgrade_krEFi7M.pdfDelete Google Drive with Teacher Resources Portions of this storyline can be successfully implemented without access to FOSS instructional or lab materials. Specifically, the unit entry event, driving question, supplemental lessons and online resources, etc., can still be used to engage students in learning the addressed NGSS bundle. For most recent version of this unit, please visit www.stemmaterials.org

Material Type: Activity/Lab

Author: Pranjali Upadhyay

How can we use sustainable energies to improve quality of life around the world?

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This Unit for the 4th Grade Kit, Waves and Energy, weaves together the various FOSS investigations in the context of an authentic and engaging storyline. Through an imaginary correspondence with a 4th grader who lives in the village of Ghaghara, India, students use a series of investigations to build their skills and content knowledge in order to solve larger problems being faced by their friend, Parvathi. Students engage in project-based learning while using science and engineering practices to help solve everyday problems in the context of Parvathi’s life. Students also use online research and evidence from investigations to construct claims based on evidence which inform and drive their practice of engineering.

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Assessment

Author: Pranjali Upadhyay

How can we help save the Pika who live in the Columbia River Gorge? (4th grade Life Science Unit)

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This integrated OER unit focuses on the 4th grade NGSS bundle addressing Structure, Function, and Information Processing (Performance expectations 4-PS4-2, 4-LS1-1, and 4-LS1-2). Students are engaged in a storyline which presents them with the problem of preserving the pika population who live in the Columbia River Gorge, a species which has recently been threatened in this region due to climate change. Through a series of activities, labs, and field STEM experiences, students engage in scientific modeling and investigation, while building their understanding of how an organism’s internal and external structures enable survival, growth and reproduction. The unit culminates with the development of a product that can be shared with a public audience to instigate positive change in the community and help protect the pika.

Material Type: Activity/Lab

Author: Pranjali Upadhyay

Ecosystem Invasion! (3rd Grade Life Science Unit)

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This integrated 3rd grade unit addresses the NGSS Life Science bundles for Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems (3-LS2-1, 3-LS4-3, and 3-LS4-4) and Inheritance and Variation of Traits: Life Cycles and Traits (3-LS1-1, 3-LS3-1, 3-LS3-2, and 3-LS4-2). Students embark on a mission to protect their native plants and animals by devising a plan to regulate and prevent the spread of invasive species in the area. Through a series of FOSS investigations and other OER (open educational resource) lessons and activities, students learn about how an organism’s traits aid in survival, how parents pass on traits to their offspring, and how the environment influences plant and animal traits and behaviors.

Material Type: Activity/Lab

Author: Pranjali Upadhyay

What's for Dinner? 5th Grade STEM Project

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Meaningful STEM learning can happen at home as we problem-solve around the house and make sense of intriguing phenomena around us! Join us as we embark on a mission to create a healthy and nutritious meal for our family! This STEM mini-project can be launched by the teacher and can provide families with a fun project to do in the kitchen.

Material Type: Activity/Lab

Author: Pranjali Upadhyay

Grade 3 - Elementary Science and Integrated Subjects: How Do Plants Grow and Survive

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Elementary Science and Integrated Subjects is a statewide Clime Time collaboration among ESD 123, ESD 105, and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. Development of the resources is in response to a need for research- based science lessons for elementary teachers that are integrated with English language arts, mathematics and other subjects such as social studies. The template for Elementary integration can serve as an organized, coherent and research-based roadmap for teachers in the development of their own NGSS aligned science lessons.  Lessons can also be useful for classrooms that have no adopted curriculum as well as to serve as enhancements for  current science curriculum. The EFSIS project brings together grade level teams of teachers to develop lessons or suites of lessons that are 1) focused on grade level Performance Expectations, and 2) leverage ELA and Mathematics Washington State Learning Standards.

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Reading, Unit of Study

Authors: Georgia Boatman, Washington OSPI OER Project, Kimberley Astle, Ellen Ebert, Barbara Soots

Grade 4 - Elementary Science and Integrated Subjects: Sage Grouse and Sagebrush, Threatened Partners

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Elementary Science and Integrated Subjects is a statewide Clime Time collaboration among ESD 123, ESD 105, and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. Development of the resources is in response to a need for research- based science lessons for elementary teachers that are integrated with English language arts, mathematics and other subjects such as social studies. The template for Elementary Integration can serve as an organized, coherent and research-based roadmap for teachers in the development of their own NGSS aligned science lessons.  Lessons can also be useful for classrooms that have no adopted curriculum as well as to serve as enhancements for  current science curriculum. The EFSIS project brings together grade level teams of teachers to develop lessons or suites of lessons that are 1) focused on grade level Performance Expectations, and 2) leverage ELA and Mathematics Washington State Learning Standards.

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Lesson Plan, Module, Reading, Teaching/Learning Strategy

Authors: Georgia Boatman, Washington OSPI OER Project, Kimberley Astle, Ellen Ebert, Barbara Soots

Grade 5 - Elementary Science and Integrated Subjects: Where Do Plants Get What They Need to Grow?

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Elementary Science and Integrated Subjects is a statewide Clime Time collaboration among ESD 123, ESD 105, and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. Development of the resources is in response to a need for research- based science lessons for elementary teachers that are integrated with English language arts, mathematics and other subjects such as social studies. The template for Elementary integration can serve as an organized, coherent and research-based roadmap for teachers in the development of their own NGSS aligned science lessons.  Lessons can also be useful for classrooms that have no adopted curriculum as well as to serve as enhancements for  current science curriculum. The EFSIS project brings together grade level teams of teachers to develop lessons or suites of lessons that are 1) focused on grade level Performance Expectations, and 2) leverage ELA and Mathematics Washington State Learning Standards.

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Lesson Plan, Module, Reading

Authors: Georgia Boatman, Washington OSPI OER Project, Kimberley Astle, Ellen Ebert, Barbara Soots

Seed to Tree Unit: Grade 5 Elementary Science and Integrated Subjects

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This 5th grade unit iterates an earlier version and is designed to maximize the integration of science with the other content areas, especially English Language Arts and Math. It is designed to be used now for remote teaching and includes learning activities to be delivered via Zoom or another similar platform, as well as activities students will complete independently or with their families.  You are free to adapt this OER unit as needed. Please note that this unit is a first draft beta version, so please communicate any questions, errors or omissions, feedback and suggestions for improvement to kimberley.astle@k12.wa.us.  

Material Type: Unit of Study

Author: Kimberley Astle

Matter and Its Interactions Phenomenon Unit - Tanker Collapse

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This resource is a phenomenon-based adaption to the Smithsonian's STCMS Matter and Its Interactions kit. The anchoring phenomenon event features a railroad tanker that collapses due to the phase changes of water that was used to clean it. Students will investigate what causes phase changes, energy transfer, thermal energy, the law of conservation of mass, and atoms and molecules throughout the three week unit.

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Lesson Plan

Author: Carissa Haug

How can we use solar energy to improve the lives of people living “off-the-grid” in Kenya? (Middle School Engineering Design)

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How can we use solar energy to improve the lives of people living “off-the-grid” in Kenya? This unit explores the NGSS Middle School bundle for Engineering Design (MS-ETS1-1, MS-ETS1-2, MS-ETS1-3, MS-ETS1-4) by engaging students in a Project-Based engineering task where students develop and apply their understanding of solar energy to create a solar device which can generate electricity for people who have lost power due to a natural disaster.

Material Type: Activity/Lab

Author: Pranjali Upadhyay