STEM

California Schools Aim to Meet Science Standards with Digital Curriculum

Some schools in California are turning to a private partner to provide digital STEM curriculum designed to meet the California Next Generation Science Standards (CA NGSS).

The Tustin Unified School District and the Laguna Beach Unified School District have recently adopted STEMscopes California, from Accelerated Learning.

"STEMscopes California is built from the ground up to meet the CA NGSS," according to a news release. "It uses the 5E instructional model and connects the three dimensions of NGSS — disciplinary core ideas, science and engineer practices and crosscutting concepts — in an easy-to-use, intuitive format that enhances any teaching style."

The program includes digital resources, supplemental print materials and "exploration kits" for hands-on learning. It offers tools for problem-based learning, engineering challenges, scientific investigation, drawing connections between math and literacy and claim-evidence-reasoning assessments.

At Pasadena USD, use of the program is being expanded for use by students district-wide and in all grades.

"In just the first year of use in our district, the STEMscopes program cultivated an atmosphere of excitement among teachers, especially those who were previously ambivalent about teaching science. Needless to say, their enthusiasm has spurred interest among students, and their performance showed it," said Jodi Marchesso, Pasadena's STEM curriculum coach, in a prepared statement. "Extending the use of STEMscopes to our middle school grades is the natural next step as we continue to build our program with the goal of graduating students who are excited about and accomplished in the STEM subjects, and college and career ready."

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at jbolkan@gmail.com.

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