STEM Storylines in Elementary (K-5)
Our STEM Storylines for elementary school are a fun way to engage students in problem-solving and sense-making around interesting phenomena in the real world. Each storyline unit is geared to support experiences around a topical bundle of NGSS standards and launches students on mission to solve a problem through tinkering, investigating, argumentation, and communicating of ideas and concepts. Our units follow the framework of project-based learning and strive to empower students to become impactful STEM leaders in their world. While many units are created to support teachers in Southwest Washington with meaningful repurposing of FOSS materials, most elements of each storyline can be used in classrooms without lab materials.
Our units are developed by ESD 112 in collaboration with STEM teacher leaders and local partners in our region. Our work has also been supported by partnerships and grants with WA OSPI (Office of the Superintendent of Public Education), Washington STEM, and through grants provided by Governor Inslee and the Washington State Legislature to support advancement of Climate Science and NGSS-aligned reformation in STEM education. We are grateful for the continuous support of our partners and the amazing STEM innovators in our region!
In this 2nd Grade Integrated Unit focused around Social Emotional Learning, STEM, Art, and Language Arts, we present students with the driving question: How can we use art to celebrate each and every one of us? Students read a variety of literature that provides them with the opportunity to talk about and think about how each and every student’s uniqueness is beautiful and valued in the classroom community.
In this 5th grade STEM Storyline Unit focused around Climate Justice, we present students with the idea of environmental stewardship and restoration. Students learn from communities and activists who are working to protect the Earth against negative human impacts.
Set your kindergarteners on a mission to use Physical Science to catch the gingerbread man!
In the “Sediment on the Move” storyline, fourth grade students explore the hazards of volcanic sediment and solve the problem of managing these hazards. This robustly developed and problem-based learning unit supports teachers in creating a rigorous and rich experience for students through use of fully-developed teacher support resources (Google Slides for students ready to be used), rich media (videos, images, first-person narratives), and a plethora of engaging and 3-dimensional formative assessments.
Set your kindergarteners on a mission to help shelter an endangered species by creating an animal sanctuary for an animal in need. Students will create a physical model of an animal sanctuary (diorama) for an endangered animal while studying what that animal needs from its habitat in order to survive and thrive.
In this NGSS-aligned STEM storyline, students explore the physical and nutritional properties of different foods and engineer a healthy and yummy snack for their friends and families. This unit aids students in mastering the 5th grade Physical Science performance expectations for Structure and Properties of Matter (5-PS-1-1, 5-PS1-2, 5-PS1-3, and 5-PS-1-4).