Using a Notice and Wonder Activity to Introduce Phenomena

Asking Questions Science and Engineering Practices Uncategorized

One of my favorite ways to introduce phenomena is to use a notice and wonder activity.  During a notice and wonder activity, you present students with your phenomenon and ask them what they notice and what they wonder. Students write the observations and questions in an interactive notebook, or in an online journal.  Then students …

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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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Google Slides for Graph Annotations

Analyzing and Interpreting Data Google Apps Remote Learning Science and Engineering Practices

Google Slides is a great tool for digital graph annotations.  Students can use their own graphs that they create using Google Sheets.  Or, you can provide students with a graph, or other form of data, for them to annotate. What are graph annotations? Graph annotations are similar to any other type of annotation.  Graph annotations …

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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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Using Student Questions in Your Storyline

Asking Questions Elementary Science High School Middle School NGSS Science and Engineering Practices

I get so many questions asking about the relationship between storylines and phenomena, but I am rarely asked about student questions.  In an ideal scenario, student questions would be at the heart of your storyline.  Check out this definition from . As you can see, student questions are really at the heart of building storylines.  …

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