Leaders of three DR K-12 projects identify successful instructional strategies for using technology-enhanced curriculum materials, games, and models to achieve the NGSS practices.
The media, the public, and, indeed, many teachers have significantly criticized the introduction of the Common Core, citing concerns such as that it overcomplicates simple topics, diminishes innovation, and ignores equity issues. Following the recent introduction of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), we need compelling examples and powerful research to prevent premature criticism and ensure successful implementation. In this session, leaders of three DR K–12 projects (Leonardo, CLASS, FORCES)—who are taking advantage of technology to develop instructional strategies that incorporate the NGSS practices for diverse elementary, middle, and high school students—provide examples and stimulate discussion leading to a research agenda.
The Leonardo project is developing and investigating an intelligent cyberlearning system for interactive scientific modeling in elementary science education. Students use Leonardo’s intelligent virtual notebooks to create and experiment with interactive models of physical phenomena. CLASS is using automated scoring to integrate guidance alongside models and simulations to improve middle school students' scientific explanations. The FORCES project is developing and testing coherent interdisciplinary instructional materials using physical and computer-based models and simulations to help high school students visualize interactions at the molecular level. Students construct and revise models and explanations to provide causal accounts of personally relevant examples.
This interactive session starts with short presentations and questions for each project. Small groups led by individuals from each project identify cross-project research questions and report back. The group then synthesizes the questions and set priorities for a research agenda.