Next Generation Science Standards

Connecting Literacy and Science with NGSS and Common Core

Hi everyone- Today, August 6th is NSTA's Virtual Conference on Connecting Literacy and Science with NGSS and Common Core. (http://learningcenter.nsta.org/products/online_courses/VirtualConference.aspx) I'm setting up this Topic in the Community Forums so that we can continue the discussion of the issues raised throughout the day and in the days, weeks, and month's to come. As a starting point, what are people hoping to hear about at the conference today? -Ted Willard Director of NGSS@NSTA

Ted Willard
Ted Willard
2270 Activity Points

I'm hoping to hear about ways to integrate curriculum areas to meet the CCSS and NGSS.

Kathleen Nicholson
Kathleen Nicholson
2695 Activity Points

Looking forward to learning how to connect literacy and science in my middle school classroom.

Cassandra Hall
Cassandra Hall
710 Activity Points

Hello Ted, I am hoping for practical strategies that I can implement in the classroom. - Elizabeth Cooke

Elizabeth Cooke
Elizabeth Cooke
7245 Activity Points

Is there a "poster-ready" version of the middle school NGSS sheets that display the performance expectations above the practices, core ideas, and crosscutting concepts? I want to display these on the classroom wall. Thank you, Hope

Hope Oliver
Hope Oliver
1755 Activity Points

Hoping to hear about some of the projects that are already in place, but have not been introduced in terms of NGSS and CCSS (e.g., RA). CCSS can push NGSS implementation.

Susan Codere
Susan Codere
1210 Activity Points

I want to learn more about how I can help teachers integrate literacy into science instruction without seeing these as separate initiatives.

Jeremy Peacock
Jeremy Peacock
1405 Activity Points

My biggest challenge is to get secondary science teachers to buy into teaching literacy. They have already been tainted with initiatives such as writing across the curriculum where they have been asked to "help" the ELA teachers.

Anna Newman
Anna Newman
755 Activity Points

What do you all see as the greatest challenge to connecting science and literacy during curriculum and instruction?

Ted Willard
Ted Willard
2270 Activity Points

Time in the classroom. I successfully lobbied more more science minutes this year, but I feel for those science teachers that work under time constraints. Many times there is so much science content to be covered it is hard to "Read, Write, See, Do, and Talk" about it all. When will we have time for thinking? (a 6th modality?)

Martha Bogdanowicz
Martha Bogdanowicz
490 Activity Points

Probably finding accessible text. Having only taught in urban classrooms, it was always really tough to get students reading and writing when they are missing a lot of the basic skills that they need to do so. Textbooks are oftentimes WAY above their present reading level.

Brendan Finch
Brendan
150 Activity Points

The very scripted approach of some literacy curriculum seems to be a big challenge in local district.

Marilyn Morey
Marilyn Morey
3500 Activity Points

Ted-I see two challenges: first) time...everywhere, classroom time is being shortened to the legal minimum with classroom size being increased to the maximum. second) although teachers are agreeing that the NGSS standards are the needed step to enhance and improve science education, I see more and more districts requiring their teachers to be "lock-stepped" into teaching the same lesson, the same day, and assessing their students through a scantron. This is not good science (or even good teaching). Also, the "supplied" curriculum is often inadequate, not relevant or appropriate.

Sue Garcia
Sue Garcia
42665 Activity Points

About finding accessible texts, check out http://www.ck12.org/. It is free, online and you can very the reading levels.

Martha Bogdanowicz
Martha Bogdanowicz
490 Activity Points

Coordinating literacy strategies and finding a common language for ELA and science is a key challenge to surmount, so that students explicitly see how their expository reading and writing applies to all subject areas during the school day.

Hope Oliver
Hope Oliver
1755 Activity Points

More reading sources and more writing translates into time-management challenges for the science teacher, so science teachers need to learn time-saving and effective tools used by ELA teachers

Hope Oliver
Hope Oliver
1755 Activity Points

Sharing with teachers, models of lessons/units that offer rich examples of integration, along with ideas for mapping plans for supporting and meeting standards/expectations of all content areas. Without the mapping, even rich lessons suggest that something needs to be ignored if we want to integrate literacy and science.

Susan Codere
Susan Codere
1210 Activity Points

Ted, I have had some teachers asking recently about teaching the math common core through the context of science. Even if their state and district has not fully adopted the Next Gen Science Standards, they found the connections in the NGSS useful for finding "real life" applications to their math standards. I hope we hear something about this today. For the literacy connection, teachers have noticed the science notebooking provides great writing prompts. Much deeper than writing a lab report, the writing can cut across the evaluation and analysis often discussed in inquiry based learning. John Putnam

John Putnam
John Putnam
1970 Activity Points

What you're referring to is exactly why I'm so excited to start using math journals this year. In the past the math notebook was just that, pages of notes and definitions. This year is going to be different. There will be reflective thinking about problems and evidence to support the students' claims. I can't wait to start my own math journal as I model for my students.

Kathleen Nicholson
Kathleen Nicholson
2695 Activity Points

Hi all- What was your biggest "take away" from David Pearson's opening session?

Ted Willard
Ted Willard
2270 Activity Points

Literacy can be a bully, but should be your buddy

Brendan Finch
Brendan
150 Activity Points

I loved the graphic about "words as concepts" -- I have trouble explaining this to my ELA colleagues who insist that "meaning" is equivalent to "definition". I will share this with them and use it to support development of vocabulary assessment items that go beyond just definitions.

Miriam Fuhrman
Miriam Fuhrman
1390 Activity Points

I agree with the Bully/Buddy and Words as Concepts favorites. I also liked David's reminder that the CCSS are process standards that help us access and communicate ideas in all of the content areas -- including Literature, Science, and Social Studies. We need to recognize that ELA teachers address content (literature) just as do science, social studies, and mathematics teachers.

Susan Codere
Susan Codere
1210 Activity Points

Loving this conference so far. If you're looking for a great resource to use for integrating more literacy into science, check out www.birdbrainscience.com

Brendan Finch
Brendan
150 Activity Points

Subjects taught - from silos to a weaving loom. Great visual!

Vicki Massey
Vicki Massey
1073 Activity Points

My biggest take away is the supportive evidence to build the case for integrating ELA and Science at the elementary level! I loved the metaphor of the loom and the concept of "curricular enconomy". This opening was so worth the price of admission!

Terry Wilson
Terry Wilson
5595 Activity Points

Terry, I agree with you. I am a very vocal advocate of improving science instruction for elementary schools students. The first step would be allowing teachers to teach science!

Kathy Renfrew
Kathleen Renfrew
33535 Activity Points

So many "big takeaways" from Dr. Pearson's talk, and very hard to choose just one. But I learned some new points that I might not have otherwise encountered: 1. pedagogical silo vs. loom/interweaving. This metaphor is so useful, not just for talking about science and literacy, but for all subjects. 2. reasons why critics have been skeptical about connecting literacy and science. 3. NCLB focus on literacy as an end goal rather than a tool. 4. multiple points of intersection between authentic literacy practices and authentic science practices.

June Wai
June Wai
260 Activity Points

I am looking forward to learning more strategies that I can model for my teachers on connecting Lit in Science.

Martha Manzi
Martha Manzi
995 Activity Points

I am a HS teacher in an inner city school. My students arrive to me with relatively low reading, writing, math skills. However the the most difficult aspect is their lack of drive, understanding of the importance of doing the best job. They don't see point of a science . I have already tried incorporating read for comprehension and writing. For many they dont feel it is necessary to read and write in science. So I would appreacitate concrete ideas on how to apply todays session. Thank you

Debra Sweet
Debra Sweet
550 Activity Points

Debra, I've been teaching this same population for the last 7 years and I definitely agree that it's difficult to engage the students in the content. I'd highly recommend finding issues that low income populations sometimes face more often such as diabetes, obesity, air pollution, water quality, and anything else that relates to your subject area. I've found that the social justice route can be super rewarding for most students and can inspire some future scientists!

Brendan Finch
Brendan
150 Activity Points

We have sessions going on Reading in Science, Writing in Science, and Discourse in Science. Which one do you see as the most challenging to incorporate into your classes? Why is it challenging? What strategies did you hear about in the sessions that you found helpful to better incorporate these activities into your classrooms?

Ted Willard
Ted Willard
2270 Activity Points

Discourse is most challenging, followed by reading text in class -- time constraints, balancing "hands-on" with "minds-on" inquiry, and the lack of text resources are roadblocks

Hope Oliver
Hope Oliver
1755 Activity Points

I find writing in science is most difficult to implement in the elementary classroom. I provide baskets of multi-level books for our science and social studies topics, and elementary students love to share and discuss. The CCSS in ELA have been helpful in that the oral language standards provide guidelines for discussing in a meaningful way. Writing is hardest because the students are at so many levels and they're not used to writing to provide evidence for their claims. Unfortunately, they expect a prompt to write to, and have seldom been asked to write about what they know, how they know it, and how to explain it clearly.

Kathleen Nicholson
Kathleen Nicholson
2695 Activity Points

I think discourse requires the greatest shift in teacher behavior and, therefore, presents the greatest challenge. That approach is counter to most of our school experiences.

Jeremy Peacock
Jeremy Peacock
1405 Activity Points

Hello Hope, The California Science Teachers Association (http://www.cascience.org/csta/ngss_resources.asp) has links to middle school learning progressions and additional resources. - Elizabeth Cooke

Elizabeth Cooke
Elizabeth Cooke
7245 Activity Points

Reply to Elizabeth – please double check the link, I can’t get it to work.

Sandy Gady
Sandy Gady
42985 Activity Points

Hi Ted, Discourse for sure will be the most challenging to integrate in the science classroom due to the time factor in the elementary schools. Good discourse takes time. Discourse in Science will be my 3rd break out session and I'm looking forward to it! Eileen

Eileen LaTorre
Eileen LaTorre
845 Activity Points

Hi everyone- What examples did you find most useful in the sessions that focused on Elementary School, Middle School, High School, and English Language Learners? -Ted

Ted Willard
Ted Willard
2270 Activity Points

I found a lot of the resources from Mark Windschitl's session really helpful. I like how he explained different types of scaffolding. I am looking forward to adapting his claim-evidence-reasoning template for next year.

Nicole Vick
Nicole Vick
1175 Activity Points

I agree, Nicole. I can't wait for the archives to become available. I will want to view that one again more carefully. All of the sessions were rich with useful information and great take-away strategies to begin implementing in our classrooms! Anyone have one in particular they are planning to try?

Carolyn Mohr
Carolyn Mohr
83233 Activity Points

Nicole, I totally agree with you in terms of adapting the CRR template. I really want to be more effective with this strategy. I was only so-so with it last year. Which session level was this one, elementary, middle or high school? I want to make sure I am checking out the archives for this topic across all grade levels.

Sandy Gady
Sandy Gady
42985 Activity Points

Now that you have had a chance to attend several session, what commonalities do you see between efforts to incorporate reading, writing, and discourse into the science classroom?

Ted Willard
Ted Willard
2270 Activity Points

I think David's introduction framed everything so well. My main take away is "do it-write it-read it-see it-repeat-remix." We have to recognize the integral role of literacy in science and not think of literacy as "another thing to do."

Jeremy Peacock
Jeremy Peacock
1405 Activity Points

I think David's introduction framed everything so well. My main take away is "do it-write it-read it-see it-repeat-remix." We have to recognize the integral role of literacy in science and not think of literacy as "another thing to do."

Jeremy Peacock
Jeremy Peacock
1405 Activity Points

Ted, After attending the conference, I wanted to go back over some of the topics. I was hoping to find the link for the archived Virtual Conference, but can not find it. Is it available yet, and if so-where can I access it?

Sue Garcia
Sue Garcia
42665 Activity Points

I found the Archive for the Aug. 6th Virtual Conference. It is my Library now. Thanks.

Sue Garcia
Sue Garcia
42665 Activity Points

Great idea to incorporate in the classrooms! It is nice to know that even though it may be hard to achieve its possible to connect literacy and science in the classroom!

Karen Espino
Karen Espino
55 Activity Points

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