Next Generation Science Standards

Literacy: The 4th Dimension in 3D Learning

Recognizing the importance of literacy in science education, NGSS added Common Core ELA Connections to each of its standards. Some teachers may not appreciate this 4th requirement in an already complex 3D system (SEP, DCI, CCC). However, if they integrate both ELA and Science curriculum, teachers can create new efficiencies for themselves and great opportunities for their students. An ELA classroom can use science resources as texts while a science classroom can use ELA practice as formative assessment. 

For instance in 3-LS2-1 (Construct an argument that some animal groups help members survive), both the SEP and the ELA W.3.1 ask students to construct arguments. The teacher can kill two birds with one stone- or help them survive. The online resources on OpenEd can especially support this approach. Students can watch the National Geographic movie Sociable Sharks or the Smithsonian Specialized Birds of Prey to observe the natural phenomenon of how animals can cooperate. Then, they can satisfy both science and ELA performance expectations by using this evidence to create an argument that some animals do- in fact- help each other out -but some do not.

Jane Jacobson
JANE Jacobson
10 Activity Points

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