Students learn biology, chemistry, and the history of Earth and its water.
Teaching to Standards: SCIENCE
A systematic science curriculum for middle and high school students
Two years of classroom research at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte have shown Teaching to Standards: Science to be highly effective in teaching science vocabulary and engaging students in inquiry-based lessons. Students participate in a hands-on experiments during each lesson and use the Student Response Guide to engage in the inquiry process. The curriculum is designed for students with moderate-to-severe developmental disabilities, including autism.
Their own student book, ScienceWork, provides students with extension activities that connect the science concepts to the world around them. Teachers follow scripted lessons that provide clear direction for individual student accommodations. A set of experiment materials included in the Classroom Kit makes it easy to prepare for class. An electronic Image Library can be used to create communication overlays and additional homework assignments.
Teaching to Standards: SCIENCE is a research-based science curriculum for middle and high school students (ages 12-21) who have moderate-to-severe developmental disabilities including intellectual disabilities and autism. The curriculum objectives align with state and national standards based on those established by the National Science Education Standards.
The curriculum includes four units of study which address science standards using an inquiry-based approach: Earth (Earth’s history), Biology (including microbiology), Waters (Earth’s waters), and Chemistry. Lessons are based on the principles of systematic instruction and provide scripts and suggestions for adaptations to accommodate students who are nonverbal, have visual or hearing impairments, or have special physical needs. All students learn actual scientific vocabulary like pollution, precipitation and condensation.
Evidence-based practices for teaching science to this population were gleaned from a comprehensive literature review and form the basis for the curriculum. Suggestions for extending skills or for creating more learning opportunities in the everyday lives of the students are provided as stories in the ScienceWork book. The program can be used as a full-year curriculum or as a model for selecting content that matches specific state standards.
What you get:
Teaching to Standards: SCIENCE
Teaching to Standards: SCIENCE
How it works:
Teaching to Standards: SCIENCE is highly effective in teaching science vocabulary and engaging students in inquiry-based lessons.
Students participate in a hands-on experiment during each lesson. The Student Response Guide helps them engage in the inquiry process.
The student book, ScienceWork, provides extension activities that connect the student's world to science concepts.
Using the Implementation Guide, teachers follow scripted lessons that provide clear direction for individual student accommodations
If you purchase the Classroom Kit, materials and equipment needed for the experiments are included, except for food items and items commonly found in a classroom or at home. The storage bin provides extra space for storing materials you gather. These experiment materials make it easy to prepare for class.
Also included is an Image Library on a disk that you can use for communication overlays and additional homework assignments.
Extra ScienceWork student books and the Experiment Materials are available separately.
By Ginevra Courtade, PhD, Bree Jimenez, MEd, Katherine Trela, PhD, and Diane Browder, PhD. ScienceWork, full-color, spiralbound, 104 pages; Implementation Guide, full-color, spiralbound; Student Response Guide, full-color, spiralbound, 121 pages, 2008.
Alignments to State Standards are available for California, Florida, Missouri, Georgia, Texas and South Carolina.
Teaching to Standards: SCIENCE Foundations
The National Research Council (NRC) asserts that “inquiry is a set of interrelated processes by which scientists and students pose questions about the natural world and investigate phenomena; in doing so, students acquire knowledge and develop a rich understanding of concepts, principles, models, and theories” (NRC, 1996, p. 214). Within the National Science Education Standards (NSES), inquiry is described as a critical component of a science program. Through inquiry-based instruction, students can learn science in a way that represents how science actually works.
Inquiry-based instruction requires more than hands-on activities. Students must follow a problem-solving process that is applicable to the real world. Similarly, students with significant disabilities need instruction that will help them solve problems that occur as part of real-world experiences. Using an inquiry-based approach to teach science to students with significant disabilities allows the students to experience and understand the environments they live in. It also creates the opportunity for access to the same instruction that their general education peers are receiving.
Engaging students in inquiry helps students develop:
- An understanding of scientific concepts
- An appreciation of “how we know” what we know in science
- An understanding of the nature of science
- The skills necessary to become independent inquirers about the natural world
- The dispositions to use the skills, abilities, and attitudes associated with science.
Science as inquiry is basic to science education and is a controlling principle in the ultimate organization and selection of students’ activities. The standards on inquiry highlight the ability to conduct inquiry and develop understanding about scientific inquiry. Students at all grade levels and in every domain of science should have the opportunity to use scientific inquiry and develop the ability to think and act in ways associated with inquiry.
Browder, D. M., Trela, K., Courtade, G. R., Jimenez, B. A., Knight. V., & Flowers, C. (2012). Teaching mathematics and science standards to students with moderate and severe developmental disabilities. The Journal of Special Education, 46, 26-35.