Our approach to science is much more complex than memorizing sets of facts and examples. Research has shown that students come to classrooms with many naïve ideas about the natural world that often interfere with them learning science concepts. As we align the Performance Based Assessment Tool Rubric to our instructional outcomes, we fuse literacy into our science instruction in an effort to explore explanations harbored prior to instruction, so that we can have students to use critical thinking and challenge established hypotheses and theories. Our conceptual framework, gives students the opportunity to process their ideas – before, during and after new learning takes place. This is done orally, meta-cognitively or in writing. This document will describe for teachers a number of writing strategies that students can use to surface their currently-held ideas, and then process them in relation to new science related experiences and information. In addition, it is important for all scientists to be able to write clearly and effectively.
Our teachers work in collaboration with the school wide instructional focus to implement steps from the writing process to help students use writing strategies effectively in science:
- Explain the strategy and its purpose and describe the real-world application of the strategy or skill.
- Model how to do a sample of the expected writing, while modeling, talk aloud about the thinking that goes on while preparing to write and during writing.
- Have students practice the strategy. This might be done in small groups with the teacher or with partners.
- Provide feedback on the work, encourage students to use the feedback in their next efforts.
- Encourage students to become more independent in their practice as they build their skills
Not only do they have to keep clean and complete records of their ideas and work, but they also have to communicate their findings.
The course is designed around the Biology/Living Environment Framework in preparation of completing a PBAT aligned assessment that focuses on the major concepts in marine biology and their connections to humans. Additionally, the curriculum framework provides a basis for students to develop a deep conceptual understanding as well as opportunities to integrate biological knowledge and the science practices through inquiry-based activities and laboratory investigations without having to teach a textbook from cover to cover.
Out of the big Bang came everything in the universe. All of the matter that formed the earth, in the course of study our students will examine 8 different units of study that explore how we are able to live and survive on this planet despite changes in temperature , solar systems, movement in tectonic plates, investigation of the rock cycle, water cycle , frequency of natural disasters such as Earthquakes and hurricanes along with what that does to human population growth. This year long course also look at what variables help determine or support migration across the earth.
Our 11th grade students take physics as a tool to understand the everyday functions of the world and how its used to describe, make predictions and create explanations for everyday phenomenon such as movement, flight, weight and force. Our students will use Scientific Models and other representations of physical structures, systems, or phenomena that can be used as part of a model, including written statements, diagrams, tables, graphs, and equations. Students will create models by studying real systems, conducting experiments, generalizing results, and applying them to determine limitations to study the velocity and acceleration of an object, its motion can be predicted at any later time. Followed by research on objects that have a natural tendency to maintain their state of motion that uses a net force required to cause change in the state of motion of an object
Environmental Science is a year-long course designed to show thematic connections between a variety of science disciplines including geology, biology, chemistry, and physics that culminates in our students’ final PBAT for their high school commencement. It gives students a coherent and realistic picture of the applications of a variety of scientific concepts as they manifest in our environment. During this first semester of environmental science, students will focus on human population growth, natural resources, and ecosystem dynamics. The aim of this course is to increase students’ knowledge of the environmental challenges of today, while continuing to cultivate scientific critical thinking skills.