Science

Science is magic! Science is wonder! Science is exploration! Our students build upon their prior knowledge as they hypothesize, observe, manipulate, collect & analyze data, make connections and draw conclusions about Science content, concepts and the world around them.  They are true mini-scientists!  

Our teachers use a combination of Science programs and techniques to inspire a love of Science.  This year, all classroom teachers will use FOSS (see below).  Students in Grades 3-4 visit the Science Lab Room once a week.  For more information about the Science Class for Grades 3-4 and preparing for the NYS Science Test please see Ms. Maletta's Science website.  For general information about our Science and STEM programs, please see below.

FOSS Program
FOSS is an inquiry based Science program designed to encourage students to wonder and draw conclusions.  To find out more, please read the information below from the FOSS website:

What is FOSS?

FOSS is a research-based science curriculum for grades K–8 developed at the Lawrence Hall of Science, University of California at Berkeley. FOSS is also an ongoing research project dedicated to improving the learning and teaching of science. The FOSS project began over 20 years ago during a time of growing concern that our nation was not providing young students with an adequate science education. The FOSS program materials are designed to meet the challenge of providing meaningful science education for all students in diverse American classrooms and to prepare them for life in the 21st century. Development of the FOSS program was, and continues to be, guided by advances in the understanding of how youngsters think and learn.

Science is an active enterprise, made active by our human capacity to think. Scientific knowledge advances when scientists observe objects and events, think about how they relate to what is known, test their ideas in logical ways, and generate explanations that integrate the new information into the established order. Thus the scientific enterprise is both what we know (content) and how we come to know it (process). The best way for students to appreciate the scientific enterprise, learn important scientific concepts, and develop the ability to think critically is to actively construct ideas through their own inquiries, investigations, and analyses. The FOSS program was created to engage students in these processes as they explore the natural world.

Excerpted from: http://www.lhsfoss.org/introduction/index.html

Check Out Some of Our 

Kindergarten - Unit 1
Trees and Weather
The Trees and Weather Module provides systematic investigations of trees and leaves over the seasons to bring students to a better understanding of trees' place at school and in the community. Students will observe day-to-day changes in weather over the year, as well as the impact weather has on living things.

STUDENTS WILL:
Observe and compare trees, using the senses.
Observe and compare the shapes of leaves; compare leaf shapes to geometric shapes.
Identify trees as resources that are used in everyday life.
Observe weather by using senses and simple tools.
Communicate observations made about different kinds of trees, leaves, and weather conditions orally and through drawings.
Observe and record seasonal changes to living things.





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Grade 1 - Unit 1
Insects and Plants
The Insects and Plants Module provides experiences with the life sequences of a number of insects so that students learn that organisms reproduce offspring of their own kind. At the same time, students grow a plant from seeds and observe brassica go through its life cycle to produce new seeds.

STUDENTS WILL:
Develop a curiosity and interest in insects and flowering plants and an appreciation for them as living things.
Provide for the needs of insects and plants and observe them over time.
Observe the similarities and differences of the life sequences that different types of insects exhibit (simple and complete metamorphosis).
Compare the life cycles of different kinds of animals and learn that organisms reproduce offspring of their own kind.
Observe variations within a group of insects.
Organize and communicate observations through drawing and writing and use bar graphs to record data.
Use magnifiers to observe and draw organisms.
Write or draw a sequence of steps for an event.

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Grade 2 - Unit 1
Pebbles, Sand and Silt
The Pebbles, Sand, and Silt Module provides experiences of Earth's natural resources– rocks, soil, and water–and provides opportunities for students to engage in scientific and engineering practices. Students explore the natural world by using simple tools to observe and describe properties of earth materials.

STUDENTS WILL:
Observe and compare physical properties of rocks and soils, using various tools.
Rub rocks together and observe that they break into smaller pieces.
Use screens to separate and group river rocks by particle size, and investigate properties of pebbles, gravel, sand, silt, and clay particles.
Explore places where earth materials are naturally found and ways that earth materials are used.
Use sand to make sculptures and clay to make beads, jewelry, and bricks.
Find, collect, record, and compare samples of soil outside the classroom.


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Grade 3 - Unit 1
Measuring Matter
Measurement, the process of quantifying observations, compares nature to a standard unit allowing the organization of the world to become more comprehensible. The Measuring Matter Module introduces students to tools and procedures for comparing matter in its common states of solid, liquid, and gas.

STUDENTS WILL:
Apply the conventions of measurement– accuracy, position, orientation, and repetition.
Use tools to make accurate measurements and represent measurements by using numbers and units; use measurement data to construct explanations.
Plan a procedure, and apply it to solve a problem.
Use tables and graphs to organize and display data for analysis.
Weigh materials to confirm conservation of matter.
Investigate the relationship between phase change and heating and cooling.
Make and separate a number of simple mixtures; mix materials to observe solutions and reactions.











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FOSS Units!

Kindergarten - Unit 2

Materials In Our World
The Materials in Our World Module provides experiences that heighten students' awareness, curiosity, and understanding of the physical world as they observe and compare the properties of a variety of kinds of wood, paper, fabric, and earth materials. Students discover what happens when they subject the materials to a number of tests and interactions.

STUDENTS WILL:
Observe and compare physical properties of different kinds of wood samples, using the senses.
Observe and compare properties and structures of different kinds of paper and fabric.
Observe how wood, paper, and fabric interact with water.
Explore the technology of making wood products.
Observe and describe how and where fabrics are used.
Observe, describe, and mix earth materials with water to observe properties.
Communicate observations made about different kinds of materials, orally and through drawings.
Use knowledge of the properties of materials to create useful and/or aesthetic objects.


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Grade 1 - Unit 2
Solids and Liquids
The Solids and Liquids Module provides opportunities for students to observe, describe properties and behaviors of solids and liquids, as well as engage in scientific and engineering practices. Students observe that matter exists in three fundamental states: solid, liquid, and gas.

STUDENTS WILL:
Investigate and sort objects based on their properties.
Observe, describe, and compare the properties and behaviors of solids and liquids.
Record observations with pictures, numbers, and words.
Recognize the properties of solid materials that make them appropriate for tower construction; build towers.
Combine and separate solid materials of different particle sizes using tools.
Observe, describe, and record what happens when solids and water are mixed and when liquids and water are mixed.
Use knowledge to conduct an investigation on an unknown material (toothpaste).
Observe and describe changes when solids and liquids are heated and cooled.



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Grade 2 - Unit 2
Balance and Motion
We live in a dynamic world where everything is in motion in different ways, as objects, move from one place to another, vibrate, or rotate around and around. Still other things are stationary, stable for a time, balanced on a thin line between stop and go. These are the global phenomena that students experience in the Balance and Motion Module.

STUDENTS WILL:
Create and use representational models to demonstrate stable balanced systems.
Plan and execute examples of stable balanced systems.
Discover different ways to produce rotational motion.
Construct and evaluate toys that demonstrate spinning, and explain how they operate.
Design runways to control or change the motion of marbles.
Communicate observations and compare stability and motion, using precise vocabulary.
Plan and carry out investigations with sound and with magnetic force.
Analyze and interpret observational data.


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Grade 3 - Unit 2
Matter and Energy
Students experience a variety of forms of matter and energy. They investigate the properties of light, observe the conversion of energy from one form to another, and explore properties of the three common states of matter (solid, liquid, and gas). Students use metric tools to measure the properties of matter-mass, volume, and temperature-and observe that starting substances can change into new substances as a result of a chemical reaction. 

Grade 3 - Unit 4
Structures of Life
In the Structures of Life Module, students observe, compare, categorize, and care for a selection of organisms. Students observe and describe the life cycles of plants and animals, observe the characteristics of the human body, and explore food chains.
STUDENTS WILL:
Observe and compare properties of seeds and fruits.
Investigate the effect of water on seeds.
Observe, describe, and record structures of germinated seeds and learn their functions for the growing plant.
Describe and compare different kinds of germinated seeds.
Grow plants hydroponically and observe the life cycle of a bean plant, focusing on structures and functions.
Observe and record crayfish structural and behavioral adaptations.
Use knowledge of crayfish requirements to maintain the organisms in the classroom.
Organize data about crayfish territorial behavior.
Study skeletal systems using bones, images, and models.
Collect, organize, and analyze data from life science investigations to build explanations.

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Kindergarten - Unit 3

Animals Two by Two
Animals Two by Two provides young students with close and personal interaction with some common land and water animals. Students observe differences in structure and behavior and learn about basic needs of animals.

STUDENTS WILL:
Observe and describe the structures of a variety of common animals¿fish, snails, earthworms, and isopods.
Compare structures and behaviors of different pairs of animals.
Observe interactions of animals with their surroundings.
Communicate observations and comparisons orally and through drawings.
Handle animals carefully, and participate in the care and feeding of classroom animals. Describe the basic needs of animals.







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Grade 1 - Unit 3
Air and Weather
The Air and Weather Module provides experiences that heighten primary students' awareness, curiosity, and understanding of Earth's dynamic atmosphere, and provides opportunities for young students to engage in scientific and engineering practices. Students explore the natural world by using simple instruments to observe and monitor change.

STUDENTS WILL:
Discover properties of air by observing interactions of air with objects.
Demonstrate that compressed air can be used to make things move.
Construct parachutes, pinwheels, and kites, and observe how they interact with air.
Use weather instruments, including a thermometer, an anemometer, and a wind vane, to measure air conditions.
Observe and describe daily weather on a calendar; record observations using pictures, words, and data.
Graph weather observations to look for patterns in local weather conditions, precipitation, and temperature throughout the seasons.
Monitor and record the changing appearance of the Moon over a month.



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Grade 2 - Unit 3
Plants and Animals
The Plants and Animals Module provides experiences with structures of plants, so that students discover ways to propagate new plants from mature plants (from seeds, bulbs, roots, and stem cuttings). Students build a terrarium and provide for the needs of both plants and animals living together in a classroom habitat.

STUDENTS WILL:
Develop a curiosity and interest in plants as living things.
Provide for the needs of growing plants and animals.
Observe and describe the changes that occur as plants grow and develop.
Observe and describe structures of flowering plants (root, stem, leaf) and become familiar with their functions.
Discover various ways that new plants can develop from mature plants.
Compare the basic needs of common plants and animals.
Experience some of the diversity of forms in the plant and animal kingdoms and become aware of features that help plants and animals thrive in different habitats.
Organize and communicate observations through drawing and writing.
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Grade 3 - Unit 3
Force and Motion, Third Edition
Students explore Force and Motion with twelve hands-on activities and the Delta Science Reader. Students use a Delta Education tool, a push-pull meter, to measure force. They compare the relative work of moving identical objects different distances and different objects identical distances. Then students discover how simple machines make work easier by reducing the amount of force needed. They lift with levers, roll with wheels and axles, and raise with fixed and movable pulleys. They drag loads up inclined planes, separate objects with wedges, and secure wood blocks with screws. In a teacher demonstration, they see how a spring scale works. Young scientists crank gears, decrease friction, and investigate household gadgets to identify what makes them labor-saving devices.

In the Delta Science Reader Force and Motion, students read about the relationship between force, motion, and work. They discover how the six simple machines: lever, wheel and axle, pulley, inclined plane, wedge, and screw, help people do work by moving objects easier, faster, or farther. They also read about people in science "bicycle inventors" and how they created ways to make the bicycle an increasingly more complex (and safe) machine. Finally, students find out how the waterwheel works and how friction affects motion.









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