Friday, 19 December 2014
Belinda E Jacobs1, Elaine Bohls-Graham2, Alejandra Olivia Martinez3, Katherine Kelly Ellins4, Eric M Riggs5, Laura F Serpa6, Eric Stocks7, Sean Fox8 and Molly Kent8, (1)Cedar Ridge High School, Round Rock Independent School District, Round Rock, TX, United States, (2)Austin Independent School District, Science, Austin, TX, United States, (3)Eagle Pass Independent School District, Eagle Pass, TX, United States, (4)Univ of Texas-Inst for Geophys, Austin, TX, United States, (5)Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, United States, (6)Univ. of Texas at El Paso, El Paso, TX, United States, (7)University of Texas at Tyler, Educational Psychology, Tyler, TX, United States, (8)Carleton College, Northfield, MN, United States
Today’s instruction in Earth’s systems requires thoughtful selection of curricula, and in turn, high quality learning activities that address modern Earth science. The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), which are intended to guide K-12 science instruction, further demand a discriminating selection process. The DIG (Diversity & Innovation in Geoscience) Texas Instructional Blueprints attempt to fulfill this practice by compiling vetted educational resources freely available online into units that are the building blocks of the blueprints. Each blueprint is composed of 9 three-week teaching units and serves as a scope and sequence for teaching a one-year Earth science course.

In the earliest stages of the project, teams explored the Internet for classroom-worthy resources, including laboratory investigations, videos, visualizations, and readings, and submitted the educational resources deemed suitable for the project into the project’s online review tool. Each team member evaluated the educational resources chosen by fellow team members according to a set of predetermined criteria that had been incorporated into the review tool. Resources rated as very good or excellent by all team members were submitted to the project PIs for approval. At this stage, approved resources became candidates for inclusion in the blueprint units. Team members tagged approved resources with descriptors for the type of resource and instructional strategy, and aligned these to the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Earth and Space Science and the Earth Science Literacy Principles. Each team then assembled and sequenced resources according to content strand, balancing the types of learning experiences within each unit. Once units were packaged, teams then considered how they addressed the NGSS and identified the relevant disciplinary core ideas, crosscutting concepts, and science and engineering practices.

In addition to providing a brief overview of the project, this presentation will detail the intensive review process educators utilized to determine the viability of the resources included in the blueprints. A short summary of first-year implementation results will be shared, along with the second year now in progress.