Priority Features of NGSS Aligned Instructional Materials
Recommendations for Publishers, Reviewers, and Educators
The California Science Teachers Association and the science teachers associations of three other Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) west-coast states, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington, have co-authored a white paper on priority features of NGSS instructional materials. This is the first time our states have collaborated to convey a common vision on an issue of great importance for the implementation of the NGSS. We understand all too well that for meaningful shifts to happen and to support the full vision of the NGSS, strong K-12 Instructional materials are required. We specifically call out K-12 because although California is a K-8 adoption state, high quality materials are also needed for 9-12.
In addition to the priority features identified in the white paper, California adopted a Science Curriculum Framework in 2016 which includes guidance for instructional materials. CSTA supports the Science Curriculum Framework and its recommendations in addition to those provided in the white paper.
As articulated in the Framework, an additional priority feature includes California’s Education and the Environment Initiative Law of 2003 and its resulting Environmental Principles and Concepts. We urge producers of instructional materials to reference Appendix 2 of the California Science Framework and uphold the vision of environmental literacy for California’s students with integrity. As referenced in the white paper, observable components of the student’s school or community and local environmental issues as local phenomena or problems provide an avenue for this seamless integration of the EP&C’s with the NGSS.