Step into Godwin Heights (Michigan) High School biology teacher Cory Klocko’s classroom on any given day, and you’re bound to see few eyes on the teacher. Rather, you’ll see students discussing, hypothesizing and testing their theories to answer questions such as “Why is Addie sick?”

Addie is a character in one of three narratives provided by the Next Generation Science Standards storyline curriculum embraced this year by Klocko and his colleague, biology teacher Derek Stoneman.

Memorizing facts is one thing, but understanding concepts is quite another. Thanks to the three storylines, which cover an entire year of biology curriculum, students are ditching the flashcards and homework and finding that biology is pretty cool when it revolves around telling stories.

As one storyline goes, Addie gets sicker over time and antibiotics aren’t helping. Students have to figure out why, and the solution requires learning about bacterial evolution, growing bacteria on an agar plate and understanding antibiotic resistance, among other things.

Less Memorization, More Assimilation

The new curriculum is unlike anything Madison Hall, a 10th-grader in Klocko’s Biology class, has ever seen.

“The teachers let the students find the answers as a class without telling them the answer directly, and help steer the students in the right direction to understand the material,” Madison explained.

Click here to read the full story featured on School News Network (Kent, Michgian, Independent School District) May 31, 2019

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