• Learning About Science at the Elementary Level in NYS

    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) framework at the elementary level aims to provide a comprehensive structure for science education that fosters inquiry, exploration, and critical thinking skills among students. These standards emphasize hands-on, inquiry-based learning experiences that engage students in the process of scientific discovery and problem-solving. The overarching elements of the NGSS framework include 1) Science and Engineering Practices, 2) Disciplinary Core Ideas, and 3) Crosscutting Concepts. 

    At CSH, students in grades K-5 are instructed through a core instructional resource known as Science 21, which is aligned to the NGSS framework as follows:

    • Emphasizes inquiry-based learning approaches that are central to the NYS Next Generation Science Standards
    • Incorporates crosscutting concepts such as patterns, cause and effect, systems and system models, scale and proportion, energy and matter, and stability and change
    • Emphasizes the development of 21st-century skills such as critical thinking, collaboration, communication, and creativity
    • Addresses environmental literacy by helping students develop an understanding of the natural world and their role as responsible stewards of the environment

    NYS Next Generation Science Standards by Grade Level(s):
    Gr. K-2 NYS Next Generation Science Standards
    Gr. 3-5 NYS Next Generation Science Standards 
    Gr. 6 NYS Next Generation Science Standards Life Science (pages 9-15)

    Expectations For the NYS Elementary-level Science Test (GRADE 5)

    The Grade 5 NYS Elementary-level Science Test will be administered for the first time in Spring 2024 and further information about this test can be found below:

    • The Grade 5 Science test will take place on May 14 at LH and May 15 at WS
      • The test is designed to measure knowledge and skills contained in New York State P-12 Science Learning Standards. (Please refer to the linked standards above.)
    • The test will be administered as written examinations in the spring of each school year and consist of both multiple-choice and constructed-response questions.
    • In order to prepare for this test with authentic, hands-on laboratory experiences, students in grades 3 through 5 have been participating in a series of required activities called Investigations.
      • Like the written tests, the required investigations are aligned with the New York State P-12 Science Learning Standards but provide the opportunity for performance-based assessment of student science knowledge and skills. They are designed to be embedded into instruction and can be offered any time during the school year, dependent on when teachers cover the particular learning standards assessed. 
      • The four required investigations for Elementary-level Science and the primary performance expectations measured by each are:
        • Structure and Properties of Matter: What’s in the Bag? (PE: 5-PS1-4)
        • Weather and Climate: Cloud in a Bottle (PE: 3-ESS2-3)
        • Energy: Light It Up (PE: 4-PS3-4)
        • Life Cycles and Traits: Circle of Life (PE: 3-LS1-1) 

    Information From NYSED About Required Investigations