Blog

West Ed Explores How California Districts are Approaching NGSS Implementation

West Ed’s Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning has unpacked the landscape of California State Standards implementation by examining key drivers of implementation such as funding, professional learning, and instructional shifts. Now, a new report looks across those domains to explore how districts are approaching implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards. FINDING… Read more »

Teacher Lara Minnear Sparks Curiosity in Creekside Science Students

In Zeeland, Michigan, teacher Lara Minnear knows science class is about so much more than memorizing the facts about the water cycle, climate change and Newton’s laws. It’s about curiosity and inquisitiveness. In her class, she encourages a “frontloading culture,” encouraging students to step up as leaders in the classroom and think and act more… Read more »

Developing Critical Thinking Skills Through STEM

  Critical thinking skills have become a top priority over recent years. Educators and employers are well aware of the importance of being able to really think, rather than just memorizing knowledge and procedures. The Next Generation Science Standards recognize this, and schools are switching direction to better meet students’ needs and prepare them for… Read more »

Minnesota Proposes Teaching Climate Change as Human-Caused

Minnesota’s draft science education standards include language that would require state students be taught that climate change is a human-caused phenomenon — the first time in Minnesota such guidelines would finger human activity as the driver behind global warming. If approved, the standards would take effect next school year. The department posted the draft on Nov. 10… Read more »

Science Unplugged

Wyoming Junior High seventh-graders recently worked in groups and presented plans for living off the grid. With a limited budget and resources, they devised windmills, water wheels and generators – methods to keep the lights on without hooking up to an external energy source. Included in their presentations about the devices and how they work… Read more »

California Approved Nearly 30 Science Textbooks. But Are They Truly Aligned to Standards?

California has selected nearly 30 textbooks purportedly aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards, a move that will likely affect the science curriculum marketplace, but leaves lingering questions about alignment and quality in a time when educators are struggling to put the complicated standards into action. Nearly all of the major publishers put forth a series… Read more »

Issues Arise in Teaching New Science Standards in New Mexico

Advocates of a set of science standards for public schools cheered when the New Mexico Public Education Department agreed after some contention and debate to initiate those recommendations starting this year. But the harsh reality of adopting the standards seemed to set in this week when the Legislative Education Study Committee heard from a trio… Read more »

Want To Keep Students Engaged? Ask, Don’t Tell

When we think back to our time in school, the teachers who stick out are the ones who actively engaged us in our learning. New research suggests that those teachers are the minority, but they don’t have to be. Active learning. Also called hands-on, problem-based, experiential, or student-driven learning—this method is helping students strengthen their… Read more »