What is NGSS? (science standards)

Nature-based learning really support NGSS!  These standards  http://www.nextgenscience.org/next-generation-science-standards shift the focus to having students understand and do science and engineering, giving them a deeper understanding of key concepts and building critical thinking for their future in the knowledge- and technology-driven global society. There are three dimensions (scientific and engineering practices, crosscutting concepts, and disciplinary core ideas) that combine to form student performance expectations.

A Rubric has been developed for nature-based learning NatureRubric .  It outlines indirect, direct and action-oriented nature experiences to develop a sense of place and local nature, and to investigate nature using Science and Engineering Practices.

A learning community has formed, to understand and apply the NGSS to nature-and local-based learning. Workshops have been held since fall 2013 to explore the Disciplinary Core Ideas, Science and Engineering Practices, Cross-cutting Concepts, and how they fit together. Workshops are co-sponsored by and held at SDSU-Center for Research on Math and Science Education (CRMSE), 6475 Alvarado Road, San Diego, second floor, parking free.

Nature-based learning supports four DCIs

  • Life Sciences LS2.A. Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems: How do organisms interact with the living and nonliving environments to obtain matter and energy?
  • Life Sciences LS4.D.  Biodiversity and Humans: Why do individuals of the same species vary in how they look, function, and behave?
  • Earth and Space Science ESS2.D. Weather and Climate:  What regulates Weather and Climate?
  • Earth and Space Science ESS3.C. Human Impacts on Earth Systems. How do humans change the planet?

The Framework contains pages that clearly describe the concepts in each DCI,

San Diego County Office of Education