Reflection: Standards Alignment Measurement: Temperature - Section 1: Engage


The NGSS are new! And complicated! The idea of "unpacking" the standards is a hot topic whenever new standards are released; this process of analyzing what the standard is really asking and what it would take for students to meet a performance indicator is arduous and creative, necessary and challenging. In the case of this lesson, "measuring temperature" is not literally stated as part of the standards. However, the concept of temperature appears several times. For example:

Develop a model that predicts and describes changes in particle motion, temperature, and state of a pure substance when thermal energy is added or removed (MS-PS1-4).

If students don't understand temperature, this performance indicator is not accessible. Students would also need to understand:

Matter is made of particles.

Particles move.

Movement of particles is related to thermal energy.

Thermal energy and temperature are related.

Pure substances are made of one type of particle.

Thermal energy can be added or removed from a system and results in changes to the particles.

From one performance indicator, we now have a unit of study!

Luckily, we are not totally alone in this process. Groups across the nation, including the Master Teachers here at Better Lesson, are racing to provide help. There are many professional development opportunities available to aide in this process. Online resources are also popping up everywhere.  At the end of the day, individual teachers often do the work of retrofitting their curriculum to new standards or or even starting from scratch! Here are a few resources to get started:

This is a blog describing one teacher's quest to align existing curriculum with the NGSS: Biology Corner

The Concord Consortium offers an interactive pathway to explore the NGSS and find lessons: Concord Consortium: NGSS

On the Teaching the Next Generation's Science page, the Lewis Center has a comprehensive resource for exploring the NGSS. Most notable are the excellent videos by Paul Anderson of bozemanscience where he "unpacks" Cross Cutting Concepts, Science and Engineering Practices and Disciplinary Core Ideas: The Lewis Center for Educational Research.

  Unpacking the Standards - Finding the Little Learning Objectives That Make a Big Difference
  Standards Alignment: Unpacking the Standards - Finding the Little Learning Objectives That Make a Big Difference
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Measurement: Temperature

Unit 4: Measuring Matter
Lesson 7 of 7

Objective: SWBAT measure the temperature of matter using metric units and a thermometer.

Big Idea: Hot and cold are two everyday concepts that affect our daily lives. Students find out what it means to really measure temperature.

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