Title: Planning, Implementing, and Reflecting on Three-Dimensional, Phenomena-Based Science Instruction Units This microcredential is the second in the Classroom Practice in Science microcredential stack. This stack, when completed, meets Requirement Area #6 of the Elementary Science Endorsement. Through this microcredential applicants demonstrate understanding of how to prepare and enact three-dimensional science instruction that is based on authentic phenomena and problems and supports the development of students’ conceptual science understanding and scientific literacy.
To earn this microcredential you will need to collect and submit two sets of evidence demonstrating your effective and consistent use of appropriate science instructional strategies. You will also complete a short written or video reflective analysis.
This stack of microcredentials must be completed sequentially starting with Microcredential #1 in the Classroom Practice in Science stack.
This microcredential is not available for educators with a secondary certification.
As previously stated, this microcredential stack completes the competencies for one requirement area of the Elementary Science Endorsement. These competencies are the same regardless of the pathway the educator selects to complete, microcredential stack or university course. Also of note, these competencies are structured to lead the educator through a series of experiences. First, the educator analyzes the purpose of the Learning Intentions and demonstrates proficiency in them (This is typically the first and possibly the second microcredential in the stack). Then, the educator plans, implements, and reflects on instruction for the identified Learning Intentions. The last microcredential in the stack involves educators reaching out to support others in their school, district, state, or nation. This focuses on developing leadership skills and promotes building a professional network of support. Through these experiences, the educator demonstrates competency of the knowledge, skills, and dispositions for the specific requirement area of the educator endorsement.
A system is an organized group of related parts that make up a whole that can carry out functions that its individual parts cannot.
Research from A Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas (National Research Council, 2012), states that “to develop a thorough understanding of scientific explanations of the world, students need sustained opportunities to work with and develop the underlying ideas and to appreciate those ideas’ interconnections over a period of years rather than weeks or months” (p. 26). This document also asserts that “The framework focuses on a limited set of core ideas in order to avoid the coverage of multiple disconnected topics—the oft-mentioned mile wide and inch deep. This focus allows for deep exploration of important concepts, as well as time for students to develop meaningful understanding” (p. 25). This places the focus on students using the other two dimensions of science instruction identified in The Framework (NRC, 2012), crosscutting concepts and science and engineering practices, to deepen understanding of disciplinary core concepts. Of note, The Framework (NRC, 2012) document is the foundational resource that informed the development of the current Utah Science with Engineering Education (SEEd) Standards (USBE, 2019). Within these standards, the concept of sensemaking of core ideas through crosscutting concepts and science and engineering practices is a foundational principle of science education. However, for teachers to include appropriate sensemaking experiences into instruction, they must also understand how to develop it in students.
This microcredential focuses on planning, implementing, and reflecting on the effectiveness of science instruction in Grades K-6.
Reference: National Research Council. (2012). A framework for K-12 science education: Practices, crosscutting concepts, and core ideas. Committee on a Conceptual Framework for New K-12 Science Education Standards. Board on Science Education, Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
Submit the evidence listed below to demonstrate your effective and consistent preparation and planning for elementary science instruction.
Provide evidence for your competency in preparing three-dimensional science instruction that is based on authentic phenomena and problems and supports the development of students’ conceptual science understanding and scientific literacy. Be sure it includes:
❏ A written introduction describing how you create and implement an accepting and safe environment for learning that:
Values diverse cultures and experiences in scientific discourse,
Identifies real-world, culturally relevant phenomena and problems that build student curiosity to anchor sensemaking, and
Maintains a safe physical environment.
❏ A unit plan elaborating upon how you design and implement teaching with effective three-dimensional instruction that:
Supports students’ use of the science and engineering practices, crosscutting concepts, and disciplinary core ideas to gather, reason, and communicate their understanding,
Integrates literacy skills that develop authentic science communication,
Supports the development of students’ skills to gather information, reason from evidence, and communicate ideas to create useful and accurate scientific models, explanations, and arguments, and
Models and designs instruction (e.g., lessons/episodes/units/progressions/storylines) that demonstrates the progression of student sensemaking from experience to experience.
Use and cite sources to support your rationale and instructional decisions.
Submit the evidence listed below to demonstrate your effective and consistent implementation of appropriate pedagogical practices for elementary science instruction.
Provide evidence for your competency in enacting three-dimensional science instruction that is based on authentic phenomena and problems and supports the development of students’ conceptual science understanding and scientific literacy. Be sure it includes:
❏ A unit plan that delineates the three dimensions of science instruction embedded within the instructional sequence.
❏ Up to five student work samples from the lesson sequence that demonstrate student sensemaking using all three dimensions throughout the instructional sequence.
❏ A written reflection that:
analyzes, through student work samples and assessment evidence, the effectiveness of the instruction to support student sensemaking in all three dimensions.
provides possible ways to improve future instruction.
Use and cite sources to support your rationale and instructional decisions.
Criterion 1: Evidence demonstrates educator plans instruction that includes attributes of accepting and safe environments.
Criterion 2: Evidence demonstrates educator develops and enacts effective three-dimensional instruction that integrates authentic literacy skills, develops through a gather, reason, and communicate framework, and supports student sensemaking.
Criterion 3: Evidence demonstrates educator accurately reflects upon (a) elements of three-dimensional instruction embedded in assessments, (b) experiences that scaffold student sensemaking of the disciplinary core ideas using the crosscutting concepts and science and engineering practices, (c) effectiveness of instruction in supporting student sensemaking, and (d) possibilities for improvement to instructional design for the future.
What are the strengths of your instructional plan as seen through your analysis of student work samples and assessments? Submit your response in approximately 150 words.
What were the challenges of your instructional plan as seen through your analysis of student work samples and assessments? Submit your response in approximately 150 words.
How will you gain the knowledge and or skills to support changes to instruction as identified by student work samples and assessments? Submit your response in approximately 150 words.
Evidence of Preparation and Planning:
Criterion 1: The reflective analysis indicates an awareness of the instructional design strengths as identified by student work samples and assessments.
Criterion 2: The reflective analysis indicates an awareness of the instructional design challenges as identified by student work samples and assessments.
Evidence of Implementation:
Criterion 3: The reflective analysis indicates an awareness of the instructional design challenges as identified by student work samples and assessments.
Criterion 4: The reflective analysis indicates an awareness of where to gain additional knowledge or skills to improve instructional practice.
A teacher friendly research document that explains the three dimensions of science including science and engineering practices, crosscutting concepts, and disciplinary core ideas. Each dimension is explained in depth within its own chapter. The disciplinary core ideas are grouped into major disciplines (i.e., Physical Sciences; Life Sciences; Earth and Space Sciences; Engineering, Technology, and Applications of Science). Each discipline is explained in a separate chapter. The report also describes developmentally appropriate learning progressions.
This book explores how to support student sensemaking of science concepts.
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