On-Demand Teacher Support - OpenSciEd

Providing Resources and Community that Empower Educators

OpenSciEd is constantly developing new ways to support teachers as they use our materials with students. This page contains resources and community connections, including recorded webinars, teacher handbooks, approaches to grading, support for multilingual learners, and more.

Join the OpenSciEd Teacher Community on Facebook

One of the best resources for supporting implementation is connecting with teachers across the nation who are implementing OpenSciEd. Each middle school unit and each high school course have active, moderated Facebook Groups filled with thousands of teachers asking and answering questions and sharing resources.

Elementary School Facebook Groups

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Coming soon – 2025

Middle School Facebook Groups

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Tutorials and Webinars

If you want more information about OpenSciEd, our storyline instructional model, or ideas about grading, assessments, emerging multilingual learners, navigating the materials, or remote learning, check out the general OpenSciEd webinars below. If you’re looking for support specific to a unit or grade band, expand those sections for more support.

OpenSciEd Elementary School Webinars

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Teacher Resources

The OpenSciEd instructional materials have embedded educative supports built into the teacher materials in the form of front matter, teacher references, and callout boxes. The following resources have been developed to go deeper into different areas to support the specific needs of educators as they implement the materials.

Teacher Handbook

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While the OpenSciEd units are designed to provide teachers who are new to three-dimensional learning with enough support to implement the units successfully, this OpenSciEd Teacher Handbook provides overviews of features of the OpenSciEd units and open educational resources on the website that are likely to be new to many teachers. Each chapter focuses on a different feature.

Teacher Tools & Resources

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The Teacher Tools & Resources document provides a collection of all the tools and resources embedded in the OpenSciEd units that could be utilized in other units or with other instructional materials.

The intention of this resource is to provide educators with ideas and resources to modify units or provide additional scaffolds for their students. 

This document is organized into clusters of resources but you will see that many resources overlap with other areas. For example, a tool or template under Section A. Resources and Tools to Support the Science and Engineering Practices might also include ideas for supporting the cross-cutting concepts. We offer this tool as a PDF or as a Google Document

Approaches to Grading

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The OpenSciEd materials have a comprehensive assessment system that is aligned with the model of instruction, which supports students in sensemaking and developing their ideas over time. While the materials have embedded assessments, it is up to each teacher to determine how to map the assessment moments to their classroom grades. Grading practices are very localized and informed by school and district policies and a teacher’s own priorities and policies. On this page and in the associated resources, we provide a variety of approaches that educators have taken with grading that aligns with the general approach of the materials.

Driving Question Board Support

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The Driving Question Board (DQB) is a tool used throughout the OpenSciEd units as a way to generate, keep track of, and revisit student questions that drive the investigation of the anchoring phenomenon and related phenomena. The DQB is a visual representation of the class’s shared mission of learning in the unit and is a central support for the OpenSciEd Instructional Model.

Remote Learning Resources

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In March 2020 the COVID-19 Pandemic caused schools in every state to close their doors. Remote instruction effectively became a national policy for the rest of that year. In an effort to support educators while they shifted to remote learning, OpenSciEd created a handful of remote learning resources. These resources include guidance on how to adapt OpenSciEd’s units for remote learning, remote adaptations of some units, and tips for staying grounded when teaching remotely.

Multilingual Learners Supports

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The vision set forth by the NGSS calls for major shifts in the teaching and learning of science, where students learn in the context of puzzling phenomena and engage in authentic science and engineering practices (SEPs) as they seek to make meaning of these phenomena. To meaningfully engage in these SEPs, students must use language in increasingly complex ways. This type of learning presents opportunities for EMLs to tap into their language resources and assets, but could also bring about potential challenges if certain English language needs go unaddressed. This page shares the supports and resources built into our materials for Multilingual Learners and provides insights from teachers using the materials. 

Substitute Plan Strategies

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As an educator, being absent from the classroom for even a single day can disrupt the planned instructional sequence and impact student learning. However, by utilizing a high-quality curriculum that is widely adopted, one can tap into a collaborative network to co-create resources that support students effectively. We have created a set of substitute plan strategies with suggestions that serve as potential approaches or sources of inspiration for crafting new and creative ideas.

Absent Student Support Strategies

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It can be a significant challenge for students to catch up on missed lessons, even if they have only been absent for one day. This guide offers crowd-sourced supportive strategies for absent students gathered from educators globally who utilize OpenSciEd materials in their teaching. We are grateful for the collaborative problem-solving we are able to engage in with educators as we work together to improve science learning for all students.

OpenSciEd Professional Learning Materials

Though not currently designed for self-learning, the slide decks and resources from OpenSciEd’s professional learning materials are free and available for anyone to utilize.

OpenSciEd Knowledge Base

Looking for something you can’t find, check out our Knowledge Base of frequently asked questions to quickly find answers to your pressing questions. If you can’t find your answer there, submit your questions using our Contact Us form and we will help out as quickly as we can.