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Next Generation Science Standards A Focus on Crosscutting Concepts. Summary created by: Fred Ende Regional Science Coordinator Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES. “Likely” New Standard Structure. The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) will most likely be built around three pillars:

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next generation science standards a focus on crosscutting concepts

Next Generation Science StandardsA Focus on Crosscutting Concepts

Summary created by:

Fred Ende

Regional Science Coordinator

Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES

likely new standard structure
“Likely” New Standard Structure
  • The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) will most likely be built around three pillars:
    • Scientific and Engineering Practices
    • Crosscutting Concepts
    • Disciplinary Core Ideas
crosscutting concepts
Crosscutting Concepts
  • What are they?
    • A crosscutting concept is an idea that bridges discipline boundaries (ex. stability vs. motion)
      • Thematic in nature, providing for multiple connections within and outside current topics being investigated
    • Crosscutting concepts better help students connect ideas from one discipline to another and help learners see the relevance and “worldview” of information being explored
crosscutting concepts1
Crosscutting Concepts
  • Crosscutting Concepts likely to be included in new standards (with color visual):
    • Patterns
    • Cause and Effect: Mechanism and Explanation
    • Scale, Proportion, and Quantity
    • Systems and System Models
      • Energy and Matter: Flows, Cycles, and Conservation
      • Structure and Function
      • Stability and Change
    • Interdependence of Science, Engineering, and Technology
    • Influence of Science, Engineering, and Technology on Society and the Natural World
why incorporate crosscutting concepts
Why Incorporate Crosscutting Concepts?
  • Learning science is best supported when instruction interweaves content and concepts from a variety of fields
  • Focus on “science as knowing,” thereby bolstering scientific literacy goals
  • With “learning progressions,” will assist teachers in spiraling content and skills through “grade bands”
    • K-2
    • 3-5
    • 6-8
    • 9-12
a progressive example
A “Progressive” Example. . .
  • Crosscutting Concept: Patterns
    • K-2: Students recognize patterns and develop ways to record observed patterns
    • 3-5: Pattern classification should increase in detail and show signs of scientific thinking
    • 6-8: Students relate patterns to microscopic and atomic-level structures
    • 9-12: Patterns occurring at different scales are observed and recognized. Classification at a certain scale may need to be “retooled” at other scales.
  • Note increasing “complexity” and also applicability to “any” concept or content area!
one more
One More. . .
  • Crosscutting Concept: Energy and Matter
    • K-2: Focus is on basics characteristics of matter. Energy is not discussed in this band.
    • 3-5: Macroscopic properties, states of matter, and cycles are introduced in regard to before/after processes. Energy is introduced, but only generally.
    • 6-8: Energy transfers are discussed. Mass/weight are distinguished and conservation laws are explored. Core ideas of matter and energy are emphasized here.
    • 9-12: Full development of energy transfer. Introduce nuclear processes.
  • Note developmental appropriateness!
how would teachers use crosscutting concepts
How Would Teachers Use Crosscutting Concepts?
  • Primarily as bridges from one content area or discipline to another
    • Making connections from chemistry to physics or from 7th grade science to 8th grade
    • Building opportunities for interdisciplinary instruction (i.e. patterns in predator/prey relationships compared to immigration)
  • As benchmarks for skill development and overarching question understanding
  • As discussion starters and/or “Do Nows” to coalesce student thinking
how would understanding of crosscutting concepts be assessed
How Would Understanding of Crosscutting Concepts be Assessed?
  • Assessment would work best as extended response or performance-based tasks
    • A student might be asked to write about everyday systems he/she experiences versus those of the human body and share similarities and differences
    • A student might be asked to create a plant cell out of food products highlighting structure and function of organelles
    • Students might engage in team debates focusing on cause and effect of global climate change
  • Assessment of crosscutting concepts could easily be incorporated into that of core ideas
    • Core ideas=crops, crosscutting concepts=how you plant them
references
References
  • Achieve, Inc. (2011). Achieve Inc. Retrieved from: http://www.nextgenscience.org/
  • Duschl, Richard. (2012). The Second Dimension-Crosscutting Concepts. Science Scope, 35 (6), 6-11.
  • National Research Council. (2011). A Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas. Retrieved from: http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=13165
  • NSTA Learning Center. (2011). A Framework for K-12 Science Education: Retrieved from: http://learningcenter.nsta.org/products/symposia_seminars/NLC/webseminarXI.aspx