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ssec.si.edu

Jan 04, 2022 2022-01-04

STEM • STEAM • STREAM

STEM Curriculum Centered on Student Ideas

Smithsonian Science for the Classroom is setting the standard for 3D learning and 3D assessment. Developed by the Smithsonian Science Education Center, this integrated STEM curriculum is designed to engage students in grades 1–5 in phenomenon-based learning through coherent storylines that connect to the world around them. The curriculum was developed in consultation with teachers and technical experts, and field-tested in a range of schools with diverse populations.

Drawing on the latest findings and best practices from educational research, the program was designed from the ground up to meet the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and NGSS Performance Expectations (PEs). The PEs are divided into four bundles that correspond to four modules in each grade. If all four modules are used within the year, then students should be prepared to meet all the NGSS PEs at that grade level.

The modules are further organized into four topical strands: life science, Earth and space science, physical science, and engineering design. There is one module in each strand per grade level. While the strands serve as organizing themes, the modules themselves are interdisciplinary and always include PEs from at least one other topic.

The module titles are phrased as questions to motivate students and tie together the concepts within the module’s PE bundle. Each module has a culminating science or design challenge, depending on the strand, which serves as a performance assessment. A full listing of modules, correlated to NGSS, appears on the program’s website.

Assessment Digital Literacy Diversity/Equity/Inclusion Engineering Science

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