NOT RATED OR POORLY RATED:
As of February 2023, EdReports has reviewed 14 middle school science curricula. Only two have received the ‘green’ rating, including OpenSciEd.
OpenSciEd received a ‘green’ rating from EdReports, indicating the highest quality of science education instructional materials.
DESIGNED FOR OUTDATED RESEARCH:
EdReports reviews of materials make it clear that most middle school science programs did not really embody the instructional shifts elevated in the K-12 Framework for Science Education and the NGSS.
DESIGNED FOR THE K-12 FRAMEWORK FOR SCIENCE EDUCATION:
The entire program was written from the ground up for Framework-based standards like the NGSS. This design was validated for the entire program by EdReports and every unit by NextGenScience.
ORGANIZED FOR LEARNING ABOUT:
Science learning is organized to make sense to someone who already knows the information. Students have to trust the teacher that what they are learning is important.
ORGANIZED FOR FIGURING OUT:
Science learning revolves around figuring out an intriguing phenomenon. Students are motivated to figure out what’s in front of them, and teachers guide that process to deep science learning.
Programs use phenomena or demos as “hooks” to draw in students and experiments to reinforce learning. However, the primary focus is to tell students what they should learn and give them ways to help memorize that information.
Thoughtfully selected phenomena generate the student questions, explanations, and ideas for investigations that motivate learning. Teachers elicit these ideas, coordinate collaboration, support investigations, and guide learning to deep conceptual understanding.
Teachers or books tell students about science. The teacher is the giver of information, and the students are the receivers of information.
Students work together and learn from each other as they ask questions, design investigations, and find solutions with the teacher as a facilitator. Students learn how to work together collaboratively and respectfully.
Students are exposed to vocabulary and facts and follow the predetermined directions for “hands-on” experiments to confirm what students have already learned.
Driven by engaging phenomena, students investigate their questions and wonderings as they incrementally build and revise their ideas/understanding of the science behind the phenomena.
Teacher-directed instruction has historically led to a small subset of students who think that science is relevant to their lives and an even smaller set that connects it to their future careers.
Instructional routines are designed to value every student’s voice in learning science, fostering a sense of belonging and empowerment for every student. In every unit of our field tests, greater than 90% of students reported their science learning was relevant to their lives.
DIFFICULT TO ADAPT:
Materials are locked in proprietary formats that make it difficult for teachers to adapt to their classrooms.
Materials are provided in editable formats that allow teachers to adapt them to their students’ needs and localize the learning.
High fees are paid for proprietary materials available from only one source.
OER-based curriculum reduces overall costs.