March 2016


PBLNY 2016

The survey related to the draft NYSSLS is now closed. NYSED is in the process of synthesizing the results and developing the final NYSSLS, to be presented to the Board of Regents. For a review of the development process as well as a summary of the draft NYSSLS survey results please refer to this recent NYSED summary.

The transition to the NYSSLS is going to be significant. Instruction aligned to the NGSS, which formed the basis of the NYSSLS is often referred to as requiring ambitious teaching practices. This will require focused, systematic, and sustained PD. This article, by Ermeling and Gallimor, focuses on one type of PD that supports NGSS instruction. The article is based on research conducted in California (adopted NGSS in 2013). Specifically the article notes the need for PD that is close to practice or that allows teachers to systematically investigate instructional practices and student learning.

The importance of discourse in the science classroom centered on students’ sharing evidence based reasoning is an instructional cornerstone of the NGSS. This recent NSTA publication, What We Call Misconceptions May Be Necessary Stepping-Stones Toward Making Sense of the World, by Campbell, Schwarz, and Windschitl points out the value of misconceptions and provides some strategies for facilitating science discourse in the classroom to support students in doing the cognitive work, as a collective, to develop a more cohesive and accurate understanding. The article notes that teachers can’t simply “stamp out” misconceptions and “stamp in” the scientifically correct understanding.

This is a nice visual of why new science standards are so important for our students.

There is a PD opportunity for Earth Science teachers being held in Albany on May 7th. This one-day workshop is being orchestrated by the New York State Museum.

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