Parents: Boston Public Schools Grade 7

Grade 7 Learning Standards

This information is from the Boston Public Schools Citywide Learning Standards.


Discussion and Oral Presentation
Students will be able to:

  • Use agreed upon rules for informal and formal discussions in large and small groups such as Book Club, Literature Circles, and Buddy Reading.
  • Facilitate discussion groups independent from the teacher; identify and practice techniques to improve group productivity such as discussion guidelines, setting time limits for speakers and deadlines for decision-making.
  • Organize and present ideas in a logical order.
  • Ask for clarification when others' responses are unclear.
  • Actively listen, respond to, and build on ideas generated during group discussions.
  • Use information to inform or change their perspectives.
  • Support their responses with evidence or details; expect and request the same of others.
  • Summarize and evaluate what they have learned from the discussion.
  • Evaluate the productivity of group discussion using group created criteria and make suggestions to address the needs of the group.
  • Give oral presentations for a variety of purposes, using teacher-made criteria that demonstrate consideration of audience, purpose and content.
  • Create an appropriate guide to prepare, improve, and assess presentations.
  • Use assessment criteria to prepare their presentations.
  • Listen critically and express opinions in oral presentations.
  • Distinguish between fact and opinion.
  • Compare and contrast points of view.
  • Gather relevant information for a research project or composition through interviews.
  • Conduct interviews for research projects and writing.
  • Determine the meaning of unfamiliar words using knowledge word parts and context clues.
  • Recognize that a word performs different functions according to the position in the sentence.
  • Understand how the features of word dictionaries and thesauruses help them determine pronunciations, meanings, alternate word choices, and parts of speech of words.
  • Identify the eight basic parts of speech.
  • Expand or reduce sentences during oral and written responses.
  • Demonstrate appropriate use of formal and informal language.
  • Identify differences between oral and written language patterns.
  • Recognize common irregularly spelled words by sight.
  • Use letter-sound knowledge to decode written English.
  • Read grade-appropriate imaginative/literary and informational/expository text fluently, accurately, and understanding.
  • Understand how language is used for different purposes: creative expression, description, explaining, and persuading.
  • Identify and analyze sensory details and figurative language.
  • Identify and analyze the author's use of dialogue and description.
  • Recognize organizational structures of informational/expository texts.
Reading and Literature
  • Demonstrate fluency and understanding when reading different grade-level appropriate text.
  • Select books for independent reading.
  • Use before, during, and after reading strategies to enhance their comprehension of different texts.
  • Use background knowledge to make inferences and predictions and to make personal connections with what is being read.
  • Set a purpose for reading.
  • Ask questions to clarify information.
  • Summarize information to check understanding.
  • Visualize information in text to support comprehension.
  • Identify and analyze the topic and main idea of different texts.
  • Use knowledge of text features and organization structure to make meaning of what is being read.
  • Monitor their learning; understand when comprehension breaks down, knowing and using self-correcting strategies to make meaning of what is being read.
  • Relate a literary work to artifacts, artistic creations, or historical sites of the period of its setting.
  • Identify and analyze the characteristics of various genres as forms chosen by an author to accomplish a purpose.
  • Analyze and evaluate similar themes across a variety of selections, distinguishing theme from topic.
  • Locate and analyze elements of plot and characterization; use an understanding of these elements to determine how qualities of the central characters influence the resolution of the conflict.
  • Identify and use knowledge of common textual features and organizational structures.
  • Recognize use of arguments for and against an issue.
  • Distinguish between the concepts of theme in literary work and author's purpose in expository text.
  • Respond to and analyze the effects of sound, form, figurative language, and graphics in order to uncover meaning in poetry.
  • Identify and analyze imagery and figurative language.
  • Identify and analyze how an author's use of words creates tone and mood.
  • Identify conventions in epic tales.
  • Identify and analyze similarities and differences in mythologies from different cultures.
  • Develop and present characters explaining how the artistic choices made.
  • Maintain a process for collecting ideas for writing from different texts and sources (dialogue, artifacts, memories, images, etc.).
  • Distinguish between writing for different purposes and for different audiences.
  • Understand and analyze different genres and organizational structures.
  • Monitor their selection of appropriate genres and organizational structures for drafts.
  • Monitor their selection of appropriate strategies for developing ideas into drafts.
  • Monitor their selection of appropriate strategies for revising the organization and ideas in drafts.
  • Demonstrate effective use of language for talking about pieces of writing (e.g., craft, focus, structure, genre, voice, audience).
  • Write stories or scripts with well-developed characters, setting, dialogues, clear conflict and resolution, and sufficient descriptive detail.
  • Write poems using poetic techniques, figurative language, and graphic elements.
  • For informational/expository writing: write reports based on research that includes quotations, footnotes or endnotes, and a bibliography.
  • Select and use appropriate rhetorical techniques for a variety of purposes, such as to convince or entertain the reader.
  • Revise writing to improve level of detail and precision of language after determining where to add images and sensory detail, combine sentences, vary sentences, and rearrange text.
  • Improve word choice by using dictionaries or thesauruses.
  • Use knowledge of types of sentences (simple, compound, complex), correct mechanics (comma after introductory structures), correct usage (pronoun reference), sentence structure (complete sentences, properly placed modifiers), and standard English spelling when writing and editing.
  • Integrate the use of organizing techniques that break up strict chronological order in a story (starting in the middle of the action, then filling in background information using flashbacks).
  • Organize information into a coherent essay or report with a thesis statement in the introduction, transition sentences to link paragraphs, and a conclusion. (See Key Question requirement.)
  • Apply and evaluate their steps for obtaining information from a variety of sources, organizing information, documenting sources, and presenting research in individual projects.
  • Differentiate between primary and secondary source materials.
  • Differentiate between paraphrasing and using direct quotes in a report.
  • Organize and present research using Grades 7-8 Learning Standards in the Composition Strand as a guide for writing.
  • Document information and quotations and use consistent format for footnotes or endnotes.
  • Use standard MLA or APA format to document sources.
  • Use established criteria from a scoring rubric to evaluate compositions, recitations, or performances before presenting them to an audience.
  • Analyze the techniques used in different media to effect on the reader's or viewer's emotions.
  • Create media presentations and written reports on the same subject and compare the differences in effects of each medium.
  • Use criteria to assess the effectiveness of media presentations.

Origins to 1815

Teaching for Understanding

  • Significant time needs to be spent during the year developing students' understanding of key concepts or "big ideas" that are important to all eras and regions of the world. Examples of these big ideas are listed below.
  • At the beginning of the year, teachers should engage students in activities to find out what they already know about some or all of the big ideas. At the close of each topic, teachers should return to the big ideas and ask, "What's something new you have learned about the big ideas? What people, places, events, documents, artifacts, and other details have contributed to your new understandings? How are your new understandings different or similar to your previous opinions and beliefs?"
  • Teachers may also pose more specific key questions that stimulate additional thought, discussion and writing by students. Over the course of the year, students' opinions and beliefs will be sharpened into generalizations and principles supported by the evidence they have collected along the way.
Key Concepts/Big Ideas: Examples
  • Economic, Political, Social Justice
  • Economic, Political, Social Systems
  • Power
  • Freedom
  • Race/Gender/Ethnicity/Class
  • Discrimination
  • "Unalienable Rights"
  • War/Peace/Violence
  • Religion
  • Art, Music, & Culture
  • Childhood, Adolescence, and Family Life
  • Money, Wealth, Poverty
  • Work: Labor & Management
  • Business & Economics
  • Leaders & Leadership
  • Government & Politics
  • "My country, right or wrong"
  • Geography/Natural Resources/Nature
  • "E pluribus unum"
  • "Of the people, by the people, for the people"
  • Individual, Civic, and Social Responsibility
  • Imperialism/Colonialism
General Standards
  • Construct and interpret historical timelines; associate period with chronological order.
  • Put events into temporal order.
  • Observe and identify details in cartoons, photographs, charts and graphs.
  • Use maps and globes to locate places and events: demonstrate an understanding of longitude and latitude; North and South Pole, Equator, Prime Meridian, Hemispheres; compass rose, scale, legend; political, topographical, specialized, modern and historical maps and their differences
  • Demonstrate an understanding of cause and effect, and the relations between events.
  • Demonstrate an understanding that actions can have intended and unintended consequences.
  • Be familiar with the key people, places, events, documents, movements, and other details identified under each topic.
  • Make connections between key people and events, people and events from their own lives, the lives of family members, and people and events in the world around them.
  • Compare and contrast ideas, rituals, customs, and concerns expressed or conducted by individuals of the past that may be similar or different from their own.
  • Increase and demonstrate their understanding of the big ideas associated with each topic, using key people, places, events, document, et al. to illustrate and support their own ideas.
  • Conduct historical inquiry projects: employ a variety of sources to gather information and evidence, and reach conclusions; identify primary and secondary sources; differentiate among the kinds of texts they read; understand that narrative accounts vary in emphasis and accuracy depending upon to the author's point of view and understanding of cause or significance.
Discussion and Presentation
  • Use agreed upon rules to participate in and facilitate large and small group discussions
  • Organize and present their thoughts in a logical manner
  • Support their ideas with evidence or details; expect and request the same of others
  • Actively listen, respond to, and build on ideas generated during discussions
  • Use the information to inform or change their perspectives
  • Ask for clarification when others' responses are unclear
  • Summarize and evaluate what they have learned from the discussion
  • Evaluate the productivity of discussions using established criteria; make suggestions to improve the discussions
  • Give oral presentations, using established criteria to prepare, assess, and improve their presentations
  • Write frequently in response to readings, lectures, and other presentations (e.g., summaries, questions, reactions, interpretations, connections, perspectives, predictions, and other responses to people and events).
  • Maintain a system (e.g., history notebooks) for collecting, referring to, and sharing their notes, thoughts, and writings, including formal writing products.
  • Write occasional, brief research reports to extend their knowledge beyond classroom presentations; include a clear focus and supporting details.
  • Write, share, assess, and revise frequent responses to MCAS-like, open response (key) questions posed by the teacher.
Era I: Early America and Americans (Beginning to 1650)

Topic 1: Geography and Resources of the Western Hemisphere

    Students will be familiar with:
  • Major physical characteristics and resources of North America
Topic 2: Native Americans: Differing Economics & Politics; Peace & War
  • Native American groups in different geographic regions of the United States; structural/ family organization, use of land; values and religious beliefs.
  • The diversity that exists among native groups under study.
  • The causes of warfare among native groups (optional).
Topic 3: Major European Societies & Rivalries; 15th & 16th Century Explorations
  • Attempts by Europeans to break the Italian trade monopoly, including scientific and technological advancements which improved navigation.
  • The contributions of Prince Henry the Navigator, Bartolomeu Dias, and Vasco de Gama.
  • The causes of competition between England, France, Spain; the significance of the Spanish Armada.
Topic 4: African Geography, Societies, Politics; Backgrounds of the Slave Trade
  • The physical characteristics and resources of Africa and the role that geography played in the development of African civilizations.
  • One of three African Kingdoms (Ghana, Mali and/or Songhay); its social and political organization and economic development ; students will then compare this kingdom to any other civilization they have studied.
Topic 5: First Encounters Between Americans and Europeans; the Consequences
  • The explorations of North and South American by European explorers.
  • The concept "clash of cultures;" the causes of conflicts between Native Americans and Europeans.
  • The advantages and disadvantages of Native American and European contact.
Topic 6: Early English Settlements and Daily Life in Massachusetts
  • The geographic regions in North America that were settled by the English; the influence of geography on the development of the settlement; reasons for the eventual success of British colonies.
  • Daily life in colonial and modern Massachusetts (education, occupations, freedoms, liberties).
Era II: Settlements, Colonies, and Emerging American Identity (1600-1763)

Topic 7: Political, Religious, and Economic Motives of European Colonizers

  • Economic, religious and personal motives of Europeans in coming to North America.
Topic 8: Coexistence and Conflict Between Europeans and Native Americans
  • How Native American societies changed as a result of European settlement.
  • The causes and results of the Pequot War of 1637 and King Philip's War in 1675.
  • English and French relations with Native Americans.
Topic 9: Massachusetts Town Government, Religion, and Schooling in Colonial Times
  • Citizen participation in government affairs in colonial Massachusetts; the history of town meetings; the role of church and town elders in government affairs and the ability of individuals within the colony to vote (optional).
  • The importance of the General School Act of 1647.
Topic 10: Colonial Era Labor and the Advent of North American Slavery
  • The influence of geography on the development of regional economies.
  • Attempts by land owners to secure a labor force; indentured servants and enslave individuals.
  • The reason for European enslavement of Africans and the significance of the Middle Passage.
Topic 11: Family Life Across Classes, Races, and Regions of Colonial America & Topic 12: Intellectual and Religious Heritage of Anglo-American Colonials
(Teachers may select two of the following four standards for in-depth study.)
  • The development of family patterns in the colonies and how these patterns varied by region.
  • The role of women in society and how this role varied by geographic region.
  • How people were dependent upon one another for survival regardless of class, race, gender, and religious background.
  • The role of the Bible in developing the intellectual and religious heritage of Anglo-American colonists.
Topic 13: Growing Social and Political Divergence From England
  • The concept and influence of mercantilism.
  • The practice known as "salutary neglect."
  • Ways that American colonist limited the power, influence and authority of royal governors and the significance of these actions.
Era III: The American Revolution: Creating a New Nation (1750 to 1815)

Topic 14: Events and Interests Behind the American Revolution

  • The reasons for British change of attitude towards the American colonies after the Seven Years' War.
  • The significance of the Proclamation Act of 1763; how the Proclamation fractured British/American relations.
  • The acts and laws of the British, their purpose and results (e.g., the Sugar Act, Currency Act, Stamp Act, Townshend Acts, Tea Act, Coercive Acts).
  • The impact of the Boston Massacre, 1770; Boston Tea Party, 1773; British occupation of Boston.
Topic 15: First Battles in Massachusetts; the Declaration of Independence
  • The causes and results of the Battle of Lexington and Concord, April 1775; the significance of the Battle of Bunker Hill, June 1775.
  • The importance of Thomas Paine's Common Sense to the revolutionary cause.
  • Key principles in the Declaration of Independence (July 4, 1776); the long-lasting implications of the Declaration here and abroad, past and present.
Topic 16: Leaders, Turning Points, and Deciding Factors of the Revolutionary War
  • The importance of the Battles of Saratoga and Yorktown; the leadership of George Washington.
  • The factors in the defeat of the British.
  • The terms of the Treaty of Paris, 1783.
Topic 17: The Anglo-American Political Heritage: Greco-Roman History, Magna Carta, Evolution of Parliament, Mayflower Compact, the English Revolution, Colonial Governments, & Ideas of the Enlightenment Era
  • The principles of democracy in documents such as the Magna Carta and the Mayflower Compact; the ideas of Hobbes, Locke, and Montesquieu.
Topic 18: Leading Founders, Founding Documents and Debates: Adams, Hamilton, Jefferson, Madison, State Constitutions, Articles of Confederation, Northwest Ordinance, Constitution, Federalists, Anti-Federalists, Bill of Rights
  • The strengths and weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation; the need for a stronger central government.
  • The reasons for the Constitutional Convention and the goals of the Founding Fathers.

Number Sense and Operations

  • Understand numbers, ways of representing numbers, relationships among numbers, and number systems.
  • Understand meanings of operations and how they relate to one another.
  • Compute fluently and make reasonable estimates.
  • Compare, order, estimate, and translate among integer, fractions and mixed numbers (i.e., rational numbers), decimals, and percents.
  • Continue to recognize, compare, order ,and graph integers and rational numbers on a number line; locate a number between two given numbers.
  • Differentiate between types of numbers (whole and real numbers, integers, rational, and irrational numbers).
  • Define, compare, order, and apply frequently used irrational numbers, such as and .
  • Continue to reinforce computations with fractions(decimals, percents, ratio and proportion) and real numbers(integers, rationals, irrationals).
  • Use ratios and proportions in the solution of problems, in particular, problems involving unit rates, scale factors, and rate of change.
  • Understand and apply ratio and proportion to probability and geometry to solve numerical and algebraic problems.
  • Represent numbers in scientific notation, and use them in calculations and problem situations.
  • Recognize and write in exponential notation.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of absolute value, e.g., I -3I =I3I = 3.
  • Apply the rules of powers and roots to the solution of problems. Extend the Order of Operations to include positive integer exponents and square roots.
  • Identify and use place value in exponential, standard, and expanded form(including negative, positive, and zero powers) and apply then in meaningful problem solving situations.
  • Understand, use, and perform four fundamental arithmetic operations on whole numbers, fractions, decimals, percents and integers: use order of operations.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the properties of arithmetic operations on rational numbers. Use the associative, commutative, and distributive properties; properties of the identity and inverse elements (e.g., -7+7 = 0; x 4/3 = 1); and the notion of closure of a subset of the rational numbers under an operation (e.g., the set of odd integers is closed under multiplication but not under addition).
  • Use the inverse relationships of addition and subtraction, multiplication and division, and squaring and finding square roots to simplify computations and solve problems, e.g., multiplying by or 0.5 is the same as dividing by 2.
  • Estimate and compute with fractions (including simplification of fractions), integers, decimals, and percents (including those greater than 100 and less than 1).
  • Estimate the outcomes of operations on whole numbers, fractions, decimals, percent,s and scientific notation.
  • Determine when an estimate rather than an exact answer is appropriate and apply in problems.
  • Use estimation to solve problems involving money, length area, perimeter, and volume.
  • Apply a variety of methods to check reasonableness of results.
  • Select and use appropriate operations - addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and positive integer exponents - to solve problems with rational numbers (including negatives).
Patterns, Relations, and Algebra
  • Understand patterns, relation, and functions.
  • Represent and analyze mathematical situations and structures using algebraic symbols.
  • Use mathematical models to represent and understand quantitative relationships.
  • Analyze change in various contexts.
  • Extend, represent, analyze, and generalize a variety of patterns with tables, graphs, words, and when possible, symbolic expressions. Include arithmetic and geometric progressions.
  • Describe, and develop patterns using numbers, variables, and geometric figures.
  • Develop patterns into algebraic forms (functions, relations, general term).
  • Describe and represent patterns using models, tables, graphs, simple rules, and manipulatives.
  • Develop and apply the idea of a function as a certain sort of relationship between quantities.
  • Use patterns and functions to solve problems.
  • Use patterns involving integers and positive rational numbers to solve problems.
  • Use a calculator to graph ordered pairs and convert numerical patterns from tables to graphs.
  • Evaluate simple algebraic expressions for given variable values, e.g., 3a2- b for a=3 and b=7.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the identity (-x)(-y)=xy. Use this identity to simplify algebraic expressions, e.g., (-2)(-x+2 )= 2x - 4.
  • Continue to use concrete and abstract models to understand and describe the mathematical processes underlying the operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division (and their relationship with one another) on fractions, decimals, and integers.
  • Develop and apply key concepts such as variable, equivalence, order, and inverse in the context of number, algebra, and geometry; use order of operations on algebraic expressions.
  • Create and use symbolic expressions; relate them to verbal, tabular, graphic representations.
  • Identify the slope of a line as a measure of its steepness and as a constant rate of change from its table of values, equation, or graph. Apply the concept of slope to the solution of problems.
  • Use calculators, computers, concrete manipulatives, and real life situations to explore and describe linear relationships and to solve simple linear equations.
  • Represent real-life situations to solve linear equations.
  • Identify the roles of variables within an equation, e.g., y=mx+b, expressing y as a function of x with parameters m and b.
  • Set up and solve linear equations and inequalities with one or two variables, using algebraic methods, models, and/or graphs.
  • Form and manipulate equations or inequalities to solve problems involving geometry, probability, and statistics.
  • Solve and graph solutions to inequalities.
  • Explain and analyze—both quantitatively and qualitatively, using pictures, graphs, charts, or equations—how a change in one variable results in a change in another variable in functional relationships, e.g., C= d, A= r2 (A as a function of r), Arectangle =lw (Arectangle as a function of l and w).
  • Use linear equations to model and analyze problems involving proportional relationships. Use technology as appropriate.
  • Understand how algebra is used in the real world (as it relates to ratio and proportion).
  • Use tables and graphs to represent and compare linear growth patterns. In particular, compare rates of change and x- and y-intercepts of different linear patterns.
  • Use and find a function rule from a table of data, graphs and rules.
  • Analyze characteristics and properties of two- and three-dimensional geometric shapes and develop mathematical arguments about geometric relationships.
  • Specify locations and describe spatial relationships using coordinate geometry and other representational systems.
  • Apply transformations and use symmetry to analyze mathematical situations.
  • Use visualization, spatial reasoning, and geometric modeling to solve problems.
  • Analyze, apply, and explain the relationship between the number of sides and the sums of the interior and exterior angle measures of polygons.
  • Classify figures in terms of congruence and similarity, and apply these relationships to the solution of problems.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the relationships of angles formed by intersecting lines, including parallel lines cut by a transversal.
  • Identify, draw, and describe line segments, rays, angles using letters and measuring angles with a protractor.
  • Identify and draw basic geometric figures(point, line, plane, intersect, line segment, endpoint, ray, and angles, vertex of an angle and side of an angle).
  • Use a straightedge, compass, or other tools to formulate and test conjectures, and to draw geometric figures.
  • Predict the results of transformations on unmarked or coordinate planes and draw the transformed figure, e.g., predict how tessellations transform under translations, reflections, and rotations.
  • Continue to explore, identify and use transformations such as flips, turns, rotations, translations, and composite transformations.
  • Identify three-dimensional figures (e.g., prisms) by their physical appearance, distinguishing attributes, and spatial relationships such as parallel faces.
  • Recognize and draw two-dimensional representations of three-dimensional objects, e.g., nets, projections, and perspective drawings.
  • Relate geometric shapes and ideas to the measurement, ratio, and proportion.
  • Understand measurable attributes of objects and the units, systems, and processes of measurement.
  • Apply appropriate techniques, tools, and formulas to determine measurements.
  • Select, convert (within the same system of measurement), and use appropriate units of measurement or scale.
  • Choose appropriate units of measurement and supply the concept of accuracy at predetermined levels.
  • Use customary and metric units for length, mass and capacity.
  • Describe and use estimates and actual measurements in real life situations.
  • Understand the process and relate measurement to number, data, and geometry.
  • Use powers of ten to metric measurement and scientific notation.
  • Given the formulas, convert from one system of measurement to another. Use technology as appropriate.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the concepts and apply formulas and procedures for determining measures, including those of area and perimeter/circumference of parallelograms, trapezoids, and circles. Given the formulas, determine the surface area and volume of rectangular prisms, cylinders, and spheres. Use technology as appropriate.
  • Use ratio and proportion (including scale factors) in the solution of problems, including problems involving similar plane figures and indirect measurement.
  • Recognize and draw symmetric, similar, and congruent figures and solve problems using similarity of figures.
  • Develop and apply formulas for area, perimeter, and volume for standard figures, objects, and for figures both 2D and 3D.
  • Use models, graphs, and formulas to solve simple problems involving rates, e.g., velocity and density.
Data Analysis, Statistics, and Probability
  • Formulate questions that can be answered with data and collect, organize, and display relevant data to answer them.
  • Select and use appropriate statistical methods to analyze data.
  • Develop and evaluate inferences and predictions that are based on data.
  • Understand and apply basic concepts of probability.
  • Describe the characteristics and limitations of a data sample. Identify different ways of selecting a sample, e.g., convenience sampling, responses to a survey, random sampling.
  • Select, create, interpret, and utilize various tabular and graphical representations of data, e.g., circle graphs, Venn diagrams, scatterplots, stem-and-leaf plots, box-and-whisker plots, histograms, tables, and charts.
  • Create simple algorithms to solve problems.
  • Use counting techniques(tree diagram, permutation and combination techniques) to determine the number of outcomes for situations.
  • Investigate the benefits of simple circuits and networks.
  • Use logic and inductive reasoning to make predictions related to a series of statements.
  • Find, describe, and interpret appropriate measures of central tendency (mean, median, and mode) and spread (range) that represent a set of data. Use these notions to compare different sets of data.
  • Analyze survey data to make predictions and to solve problems.
  • Read and interpret statistical data to make predictions, inferences, and decisions.
  • Use tree diagrams, tables, organized lists, basic combinations ("fundamental counting principle"), and area models to compute probabilities for simple compound events, e.g., multiple coin tosses or rolls of dice.
  • Carry out probability experiments, discuss the results.
  • Conduct experiments to determine experimental probabilities and construct a table to establish theoretical probabilities and compare two results.
Discussion, Presentation, Composition
  • Use agreed upon rules to participate in discussions in large and small groups.
  • Express ideas in an organized way.
  • Explain their mathematical thinking in writing.
  • Maintain a system for collecting, referring to, and sharing their work.

Topic: Varieties of Life on Earth

  • Classify organisms into the currently recognized kingdoms according to characteristics that they share. Be familiar with organisms from each kingdom.
  • Recognize that all organisms are composed of cells and that many organisms are single-celled (unicellular) e.g., bacteria yeast. In these single celled organisms, one cell must carry out all of the basic functions of life.
  • Compare and contrast plants and animal cells, including major organelles (cell membrane, cell wall, nucleus, cytoplasm, chloroplast, mitochondria, and vacuoles).
  • Recognize that within cells, many of the basic functions of organisms (e.g. , extracting energy from each food and getting rid of waste) are carried out. The way in which cell function is similar in all living organisms.
  • Recognize that heridity information is contained in genes located in chromosomesof each cell.
  • Recognize that evidence drawn from geology, fossils, and comparative anatomy provides the basis of the theory of evolution.
  • Relate the extinction of species to a mismatch of adaptation and the environment.
  • Explain how dead plants and animals are broken down by other living organisms and how this process contributes to the system as a whole.
  • Recognize that producers (plants that contain chlorophyll) use the energy from sunlight to make sugars from carbon dioxide and water through a process called photosynthesis. This food can be used immediately, stored for later use , or used by other organism.
Topic: Earth, Rocks, Geological Events
  • Recognize, interpret, and be able to create models of the earth's common physical features in various mapping represantations, including contour maps.
  • Describe the layers of solid earth, including the lithosphere, the hot convecting mantle, and the dense metallic core.
  • Explain the relationship among the energy provided by the sun, the global patterns of atmospheric movement, and the temperature differences among water, land, and atmosphere.
  • Describe how movement of the earth's crustal plates cause both slow changes in the earth's surface (e.g., formation of mountains and ocean basins) and rapid ones (e.g. ,volcanic eruptions and earthquakes).
  • Describe and give examples of ways in which the earth's surface is built up and torn down by natural processes, including deposition of sediments, rock formation, erosion, and weathering.
Topic: Forces and Motion
  • Explain and give examples of how the motion of an object can be described by its position, direction of motion, and speed.
  • Graph and interpret distance vs. time graphs for constant speed.
  • Differentiate between potential and kinetic energy. Identify situations where kinetic energy is transformed into potential energy and vice versa.
Topic: Technology/Engineering Design
  • Identify appropriate materials, tools, and machines to solve problems.
  • Identify and explain the steps of the engineering design process.
  • Demonstrate methods of representing solutions to a design problem.
Topic: Scientific Inquiry
  • Use simple tools such as rulers, magnifiers, balances, thermometers, graduated cylinders, etc. to observe and measure things carefully.
  • Design and conduct simple science experiments using appropriate equipment and measuring tools. Some questions may be posed by the student and some will be posed by the teacher.
  • Predict, observe, classify and record results clearly in journals or logs.
  • Communicate scientific procedures and explanations using presentations, charts, simple graphs, discussions, and writing.
  • Develop descriptions, explanations, predictions, and models using evidence.
  • Compare results and explanations with scientific knowledge.
Discussion & Presentation
  • Participate in formal and informal discussions in large and small groups, using agreed upon rules to conduct and facilitate them.
  • Organize and present their thoughts in a logical manner.
  • Support their ideas with evidence or details; expect and request the same of others.
  • Actively listen, respond to, and build on ideas generated during discussions.
  • Use the information to inform or change their perspectives.
  • Ask for clarification when others' responses are unclear.
  • Summarize and evaluate what they have learned from the discussion.
  • Evaluate the productivity of discussions using established criteria; make suggestions to improve the discussions.
  • Give oral presentations, using established criteria to prepare, assess, and improve their presentations.
  • Write frequently in response to readings, other presentations, and observations (e.g., summaries, questions, reactions, connections, predictions, reports).
  • Maintain a system for collecting, referring to, and sharing their thoughts, observations, writings, illustrations, and other work.
  • Write occasional, brief research reports to extend their knowledge beyond classroom presentations; include a clear focus and supporting details.
  • Write, share, assess, and revise frequent responses to MCAS-like, open response (key) questions posed by the teacher.