The Next Generation Science Standards has been released and is now available for download. As with any new set of standards, there is always much discussion about the feasibility of implementing them within the classroom – all classrooms. Opinions and discussion surface on both sides – can we, can’t we; what will it look like? Have they thought about???
The writing team and support personnel at Achieve thought about these issues and also developed an appendix which answers and addresses many of these topics. Appendix D of the NGSS has the title of “All Standards, All Students: Making the Next Generation Science Standards Accessible to All Students.” The supporting information in this section states that “the NGSS are intended to provide a foundation for all students, including those who can and should surpass the NGSS performance expectations. At the same time, the NGSS make it clear that these increased expectations apply to those students who have traditionally struggled to demonstrate mastery even in the previous generation of less cognitively demanding standards.
To supplement this information, seven case studies were developed and posted to the NGSS website with the intent of providing views or lenses into different classrooms. Each of the seven case studies consists of three parts.
- A vignette of science instruction to illustrate learning opportunities through connections to the NGSS and the CCSS for English language arts and mathematics as well as use of effective classroom strategies. The vignette emphasizes what teachers can do to successfully engage students in learning the NGSS.
- A brief summary of the research literature on effective classroom strategies for the student group highlighted in the case study.
- Information on context for the student group – demographics, science achievement, and educational policy
The seven case studies have the following topics:
- Case Study 1: Economically Disadvantaged
- Case Study 2: Race and Ethnicity
- Case Study 3: Students with Disabilities
- Case Study 4: English Language Learners
- Case Study 5: Girls
- Case Study 6: Alternative Education
- Case Study 7: Gifted and Talented Students
We invite readers to discuss their thoughts and views about this supplemental appendix to the NGSS and their thoughts on how and what the NGSS will look like in their own classrooms!