Kindergarten: Kindergarten science students learn about the living and non-living things in the natural world as they compare and contrast characteristics of plant and animals and examine the way things move. They identify changes in the things seen in the sky and that the sun warms Earth. Exploring questions and making observations about the natural world and designed structures creates the foundations for more advanced understanding of scientific inquiry and engineering design.
1st Grade: First grade science students build their basic understanding of the natural world through examination of characteristics and properties of objects, living organisms, and Earth materials. They begin to develop an understanding of how living and non-living things interact as they learn about the basic needs of living things and the motion of the objects when a force is applied. Students explore the use of basic tools in observing the natural world and in engineering design. They develop their skills in making and recording observations and their understanding of scientific inquiry and engineering design.
2nd Grade: Second grade science students refine their understanding of the natural world through investigation of the variation and change in living and non-living things. They explore how things respond to magnetic forces, the life cycles of living things, movement of the sun and moon, and daily and seasonal temperature changes. Students develop their skills in observing, measuring, recording, and organizing data, and making predictions based on observations. They use tools and work with a team to refine their engineering design skills.
3rd Grade: Third grade science students develop their understanding of the variation in living and non-living things and their interaction with energy and forces. They explore physical properties of the states of matter and how forces affect an object’s position, motion, and speed. Students investigate the live cycles of plants and animals and characteristics of organisms and their offspring. They study Earth’s seasonal weather patterns of precipitation and temperature. Students learn the basic concepts of scientific inquiry as they make observations, ask questions or form hypotheses, plan a simple investigation, and collect and use data to explain the results and draw conclusions. Students build their understanding of engineering design as they identify a problem propose a potential solution, design a prototype and learn how inventions have changed the way people live and pursue science.
4th Grade: Fourth grade science students build their understanding of the natural world learning how living and non-living things are classified by their characteristics and properties. Students study physical changes in matter, the properties of energy, and how objects vary in the way they interact with energy. They compare and contrast fossils and living organisms, and learn about interactions of organisms and their environment. They study Earth materials and the changes that take place on Earth’s surface. Students build their scientific inquiry skills as they develop testable questions, design an investigation, and collect, record, summarize, and use the results to confirm and support a logical argument. They also develop their use of science and engineering design skills as they learn to identify a problem and design, construct, and test a possible solution.
5th Grade: Fifth grade science students develop an understanding of living and non-living things as systems composed of related parts that function together and interact with force, energy, and matter. They investigate the Sun-Earth-Moon system, how energy from the sun affects Earth’s weather and climate, and how forces affect objects on Earth. They study adaptation and the interdependence of organisms and the environment. Students extend their work with scientific inquiry, designing and conducting simple investigations to answer questions or test hypotheses, and collecting, organizing, summarizing, analyzing, and interpreting data. They also extend their work with engineering design using science principles to describe, design, and build a solution to a problem given criteria and constraints. Students learn that inventions may lead to other inventions.