If neither nature, nor science, nor technology is constrained by single disciplines, why is science education still compartmentalized?
Sandy Simon, Ph.D.
Lab Head, Cellular biophysics, The Rockefeller university, NYC
ENGINEERED TO EASE TRANSITIONS
Gone are the days of silos. STE(A)M is interconnected, international, and interdisciplinary, and there is no going back. But course requirements are often siloed, and it’s not easy to ensure these requirements are met in an interdisciplinary pathway. We are the only learning designers who embed all the rigorous content required by traditional secondary and Community College/Polytechnic schools within a completely new lifelong-learning architecture driven by current global contexts that cross-cut a variety of STEM disciplines—all within the same amount of time as conventional courses.
EXPERTS BELIEVE IN OUR APPROACH
Since 2000 we have collaborated with STEM researchers, master educators, university professors, local and national policymakers, and classroom teachers in a cycle of ongoing improvement. “This is amazing–why aren’t more schools doing this program?” they ask. Jay McTighe, co-author of the Understanding by Design series, comments: “The EduChange science curriculum is conceptually sound, authentically rigorous and genuinely engaging. In fact, I think the term ‘elegant’ is in order! My commendation to you and your team for developing this rich curriculum.”
STUDENTS REFLECT ON GROWTH, PREPARATION & RELEVANCE
15+ YEARS OF IMPLEMENTATION & ITERATION
RIGOR increases gradually to REDUCE anxiety
The pressure of national and program-based exams heightens teacher & learner anxiety, but sometimes parents demand these offerings. If you prepare students for those exams, Integrated Science is the the perfect non-test-prep precursor to AP, IB/DP and other test-prep courses. And those who know the IB program quickly see how Integrated Science is a great fit for MYP.
One high school principal comments that Integrated Science “is very strong in terms of content and intellectual rigor, in terms of asking kids to make choices and decisions in collecting and evaluating data. They’re really figuring things out.”
Authentic rigor is not about forced memorization, nor does it need to increase anxiety and stress. Our intentional, coherent multi-year design supports the right kind of rigor.
Special NGSS Information
NGSS is more difficult for teachers to employ than previous sets of standards. And high school teachers have AP, IB/DP & graduation requirements to meet as well. We’ve been creating 3D designs that leverage STEM practices and cross-cutting concepts at the high school level long before NGSS existed. Actually, our designs are 4D.
See below for prepared a cover letter and sample NGSS alignments for 3 of our 35+ units of study.
STUDENT-DESIGNED PROJECTS: FROM PLANNING TO PUBLICATION
The Integrated Science Program favors the principles and premises of Project-based and Problem-based learning. Classroom instruction & assessment prepares students in the collaborative, research, questioning, communication, design and analytical skills they need to design their own projects. All the Science & Engineering Practices wrapped up in a long-term, authentic experience!
We partner with The Journal of Emerging Investigators (JEI) to give students an authentic capstone experience whenever they are ready. JEI runs an online, scientifically peer-reviewed journal designed specifically for middle and high school students. They accept manuscripts from every STEM discipline, and students can engage in peer review with Ph.D. candidates at TWO different points in the process: once during their design process, and again after they submit their manuscript. Click each image below to look closely.