Students are confronted with a scenario of a student who is texting and driving in the school parking lot and they are tasked to determine the effect of various parameters to see if a student will collide with a pedestrian. Students must begin by breaking the scenario down into more manageable parts to determine what must be studied about the situation. Through a series of labs and activities, students learn how to model and predict situations with constant velocity and acceleration. Then, coding a spreadsheet, students model the complex situation of a texting driver, reacting, and braking during a potentially hazardous situation to create an evidence-based argument.
Portland Metro STEM Partnership
This unit is centered on designing a shoe for a customer. Students decide on a particular type of shoe that they want to design and utilize ideas of force, impulse, and friction to meet the needs of a particular customer. Force plates are used study the relationship between force, time, and impulse to allow students to get the mathematical models that allow them to make data informed decisions about their shoe design.
The phenomenon that launches this unit is a cell phone call to a student in the class, where the caller on speaker phone asks “How are you hearing me?”. Over the course of the unit, students discover the patterns with waves. Then use that understanding to explain ultrasound medical imagining technology and ultimately how cell phones work. Cell phone communication is operationalized by the engineering challenge of communicating a three letter signal by first coding a spreadsheet to digitize the signal in binary (ASCII), then transmit the digital signal using light and sound (AM and FM), then receive and decode the signal to complete the communication. This project models the sending and receiving of a text message.
This unit is loaded with phenomena. The real world task of being a member of Oregon's Energy Commission that must create a 50-Year Energy Plan propels students through a learning arc that includes electricity, magnetism, power production, and climate science. After the Request for a 50-Year Energy Plan students jigsaw energy sources and power production. They need to understand the basic physics of how generators works leads us to build and explore motors (starting with speakers which also connect to the Waves & Technology unit) and inefficient generators (electric guitars). The need for large amounts of energy and efficient generators motivates us to engineer wind turbines and optimize solar cells for a local facilities use. Creating the rubric to evaluate large scale power production launches us into climate science. With all the learning of the unit students and many real world constraints student finally complete, compare, and evaluate their 50-Year Energy Plan.
By using the hook of Halley’s comet, dark matter, and dark energy students data mine Newton’s Law of Universal Gravity and build an and evaluate other arguments for the Big Bang.
This lab-based course covers the foundational principles of modern life science as outlined in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). It also includes approximately a third of the Earth and Space Science standards, primarily those connected to environmental science and ecology. The course emphasizes all three dimensions of the NGSS, with special attention to the crosscutting concepts of Patterns and Energy and Matter. Additionally, scientific inquiry and engineering design practices are emphasized throughout the course. The course is designed to follow a chemistry course and so builds on student understandings of molecules as they explore the biomolecular underpinnings of life's functions, the evolution of life, and the interactions of life in ecosystems. Technological, historical, political, and environmental aspects of biology will also be addressed. Critical thinking, data analysis, and argumentation from evidence are also emphasized.
Anchoring Phenomenon: A baby is born and seems perfectly healthy, but after a few days starts to exhibit strange symptoms that could lead to physical impairment or even death. What is causing the problem? Can the baby be saved? Unit Essential Question: How and why do cells make the molecules they need and get rid of the molecules they don’t need? What happens if steps in this process aren’t working?
For this unit plan, see the old unit calendar (link on left sidebar, click ALT3 tab at the bottom). Once we update this unit to the new Doc template, we will post it here. This is now unit 3, but it used to be unit 2 (we will update file and folder numbering as we continue to revise the units). Thanks for your patience as we work hard this year to update all of the materials to the new unit template and unit/standards arrangements.
Anchoring Phenomenon: Identical twins have the same DNA yet one was diagnosed with breast cancer and the other was not?? One about diabetes? Unit Essential Question: Why are some people diagnosed with diabetes and breast cancer while others are not?
For this unit plan, see the old unit calendar (link on left sidebar, click ALT5 tab at the bottom). Once we update this unit to the new Doc template, we will post it here. This is now unit 5, but it used to be unit 6 (we will update file and folder numbering as we continue to revise the units). Thanks for your patience as we work hard this year to update all of the materials to the new unit template and unit/standards arrangements.
This unit is under construction and should be ready by January 2019. Some of the materials for this unit will be taken from the former Unit 4 (Ecosystems Matter and Energy) but will also contain new material. Here is some of the source material that will be in the new unit when we get to it.
For this unit plan, see the old unit calendar (link on left sidebar, click ALT7 tab at the bottom). Once we update this unit to the new Doc template, we will post it here. This is now unit 7, but it used to be unit 4 (we will update file and folder numbering as we continue to revise the units). Thanks for your patience as we work hard this year to update all of the materials to the new unit template and unit/standards arrangements.