Teacher Profesional Learning
STEM Storyline Trainings
Forces and Interactions
In this Unit, students create a campaign which promotes seat belt use for a teenage audience. In the context of this project, students explore NGSS PE’s 3-PS2-2, 3-PS2-1, 3-5-ETS1-1, 3-PS2-3, and 3-PS2-4 while investigating the effects of balanced and unbalanced forces acting on an object. Through a series of collect evidence to write a claim based on evidence for why seatbelts are important.
Have your kindergarten students embark on a mission to create an animal sanctuary for an endangered species in need! Through this PBL unit, students will study the ways that people, plants, and animals interact with their environment and will create a model of an animal sanctuary to shelter an endangered species!
What’s for lunch?
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).
This NGSS-aligned STEM Storyline addresses the NGSS Life Science bundles for Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems (3-LS2-1, 3-LS4-3, and 3-LS4-4) and Inheritance and Variation of Traits: Life Cycles and Traits (3-LS1-1, 3-LS3-1, 3-LS3-2, and 3-LS4-2). 3rd graders go on a mission to battle the local invasive species who are threatening the native species in their area!
Save our Turtles!
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, 5-PS-1-4).
Why Won’t Our Blueberries Grow?
This NGSS-aligned STEM storyline, students embark on a mission to help preserve the Western Pond Turtle from extinction! Students study the ecosystem in which this endangered species thrives and come up with a plan to help reduce negative human impact on their survival! Students master the NGSS Life Science bundle for Matter and Energy in Organisms and Ecosystems (PEs 5-PS3-1, 5-LS1-1, and 5-LS2-1).
Patterns in the Sky
Embark on a journey with your students to answer the driving question: How are animals affected by changes in the sky? This NGSS-aligned integrated storyline unit strives to help students explore the 1st grade NGSS standards bundle Space Systems: Patterns in the Sky (1ESS1-1 and 1-ESS1-2). Students explore changing patterns in the sky through a series of investigations which are interwoven with the storyline of exploring animal behavior and how it changes as the sun, moon and stars appear to change. Help students understand these daily astronomical phenomenon while using a variety of picture books and expository texts to create an experience that cultivates literacy in both English Language Arts and STEM! The unit ends in an art gallery showcase where students create pieces of art to educate others about how a particular animal behaves as the sky changes.
Inspired by Nature
This unit helps students understand the concept of biomimicry and how humans can use the traits and behaviors of plants and animals to create solutions to many human-related problems. The unit starts by highlighting the practice of biomimicry by helping students make connections to everyday objects that have been inspired by the natural world. Then, each lesson helps students dig deeper into the traits and patterns of behavior that organisms exhibit in nature. The structure of the unit includes a combination of hands-on FOSS investigations, engineering tasks, and other lessons that help students deepen their understanding of plant and animal traits.
Where did the beach go?
Embark on a journey with your students to answer the driving question: How can we design a solution to prevent Washington’s coast from eroding? This NGSS-aligned integrated storyline unit strives to help students explore the 2nd grade NGSS standards bundle Earth’s Systems: Processes that Shape the Earth (2-ESS1-1, 2-ESS2-1, 2-ESS2-2, & 2-ESS2-3). Students explore earth’s processes that cause change slowly and quickly. Students also explore a variety of earth materials and their resistance to erosion while designing a plan to help the people of Washaway beach with their serious beach erosion problem. The unit culminates in students designing a blockade to help prevent erosion in Washaway Beach (North Cove, WA).
Becoming Protectors of the Earth
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. We believe that a part of STEM literacy is the ability for students to be aware of and think critically about the ways in which we are protecting or disturbing the natural world. We hope to use this unit to amplify the voices of Youth Activists of Color and support your 5th graders in developing their own voices as leaders in their community. The unit culminates with students presenting their learning to their community in order to expand their community’s understanding of environmental stewardship.
We Are Wondrous
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. Students explore a variety of art forms which are introduced by numerous artists from a variety of BIPOC communities. Through various embedded STEM activities (some FOSS), students explore the ways in which STEM ideas help us better understand and create art. The unit culminates with an art showcase where we invite families and community members to visit an art show where the classroom community is celebrated through art. This unit is intended to help us reimagine the ways in which we teach STEM and to highlight the importance of positive identity development in creating equitable opportunities for all our students.
Climate, Weather, and Ways We Shelter
In this 3rd grade integrated STEM Storyline focused around the topics of climate and weather, we present students with the challenge of designing and building prototype temporary shelters for people in need. The unit launches with a discussion about the importance of shelter for humans. Then, students explore the significance of local weather conditions, the local climate, and how these may affect us. Students continue by exploring climate conditions around the world and how people have designed housing that shelters them from daily weather and climate. This unit culminates with students engaging in a design thinking process (similar to engineering design) where they design and test a shelter for people to use.
Project-based learning (PBL) is much more than having students complete a project at the end of a unit of study. A true PBL engages students in an authentic, local problem that engages students by its relevancy and allowing for student voice and choice. PBL implies a strong collaboration between schools, the community and local business. The Buck Institute provides great resources for getting started, and ESD112 STEM Initiatives can coach your team, building or district towards implementing a PBL focus.