With a grant funded by the National Academy of Sciences, 20 states around the country have partnered to rewrite science standards that guide K-12 science education. Their direction is to create standards that:
…will encourage students to examine concepts that cross the boundaries of physics, biology and chemistry.
Achieve, a nonpartisan, nonprofit is coordinating the effort. More engineering concepts will be integrated into curricula and students will be expected to learn and apply the concepts instead of just memorizing facts. (click here for link to the K-12 Science Standards Framework, link embedded in article). A summary of the framework can be seen through the PDF attachment below.
A recent article, Maryland in Joint Effort to Change Science Education, appeared in the Baltimore Sun. This article describes the initiative in general terms, but is a good primer to the work being accomplished.
States involved in the initiative are: Arizona, California, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia.
The framework being proposed contains ideas in three domains:
- scientific and engineering practices;
- new and innovative concepts; and
- disciplinary core concepts in science.
The goal is that standards be developed across grades K-12, and
designed so that students continually build on and revise their knowledge and abilities throughout their school years.
To support learning, all three domains need to be woven into tne standards, curricula, instruction, and assessment.