Criteria and Constraints

Defining Problems Energy and Matter Engineering

The Science and Engineering Practice of Asking Questions and Defining Problems asks students to identify the criteria and constraints presented by a given problem.  Criteria and constraints are both aspects of a problem that limit a solution.  Students should be started to identify these components starting in 3rd grade. Criteria Part of the engineering design …

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How to Use Google Sheets to Create Graphs

Analyzing and Interpreting Data Engaging in an Argument Using Evidence Google Apps Patterns Remote Learning Scale, Proportion and Quantity

I use Google Apps for Education almost every day in my classroom. One of my favorite ways to use Google is to have students create digital graphs.  The video below will show you, and your students, how to use Google Sheets to Create Graphs. How do you use Google Sheets to Create a Graph? This …

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Five Cellular Structures Students Should Learn About in Middle School

Life Science Middle School Structure and Function

Which cellular structures do students need to learn about in middle school?  There are far fewer than you would think.  There are only five cellular structures that students need to learn about in middle school.   Why don’t students need to know all of the organelles anymore? Pre-NGSS, the students were required to memorize the …

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Unobservable Scales and Mechanisms in NGSS

Developing and Using Models Energy and Matter Middle School Scale, Proportion and Quantity Uncategorized

I first ran across the terms “unobservable scales” and “unobservable mechanisms” early in my NGSS journey.  I had no idea what these were. A  google search didn’t provide any answers.  Read this post to find out what the terms unobservable scales and mechanisms mean in the NGSS. Where do these terms appear in the NGSS? …

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How to Introduce the Crosscutting Concepts

Crosscutting Concepts Middle School Uncategorized Upper Elementary

The Crosscutting Concepts are one of the three dimensions in the Next Generation Science Standards.  They are often the last dimension that teachers try to incorporate into their lesson plans.  Here is a quick overview of the Crosscutting Concepts and some ideas of how to introduce the Crosscutting Concepts into your lesson plans. What are …

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Five Common Mistakes Teachers Make When Introducing the Crosscutting Concepts

Crosscutting Concepts

The Crosscutting Concepts are one of the three dimensions of the Next Generation Science Standards. They help students make connections to the Disciplinary Core Ideas and make sense of the Science and Engineering Practices.  It’s important to avoid these five common mistakes when introducing the Crosscutting Concepts. 1. Introducing all of the Crosscutting Concepts at …

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