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White Plains Science Curriculum Grades K-5

White Plains Science Curriculum Grades K-5

Children are naturally curious. The White Plains Elementary Science Curriculum fosters this curiosity by providing students with opportunities to have direct experience with common objects, materials and living things in their environment. Emphasis is placed on understanding important relationships, mechanisms and processes and on applying concepts in science, rather than on the memorization of specialized terminology or technical details. Much of the content in science is explored while fostering literacy skills through nonfiction content reading, as well as children's literature that incorporates accurate science concepts within fictional reading selections. For this reason, the science curriculum units outlined in the attached documents are designed to provide instruction in science every other day. The balance of the expectation of daily science instruction set forth by the State is provided through interdisciplinary units linking science with the literacy and mathematics curricula.

Each grade level has four or five science curriculum units. The units may be implemented in different sequences by different teachers.The units are designied to be taught in any order, so while the skills of science build upon previous experience throughout the school year, the content of one unit is not dependent upon the previous introduction ofanother unit in the same grade. The following chart gives an outline of the curriculum units taught at each grade level.*


Variety of Senses

Variety of Living Things

Variety of Materials

Variety of Weather Conditions and Seasons

Sand and Water Play

First Grade

Properties of Plants and Animals in Woodland and Pond Habitats

Properties and Changes in Solids and Liquids

Comparing and Measuring

Properties of Air and Weather

Second Grade

Changes in Plants (Life Cycles)

Changes in Animals (Life Cycles)

Changes in Things that Sink or Float

Changes in Balance and Motion

Third Grade

Soils, Sand and Clay: Planting Variables

Animal Adaptations and Behavior

Metric Measurement

Interactions in the Human Body

Fourth Grade

Buoyant Systems

Plant Growth and Development

Models and Designs

Electric and Magnetic Systems

NYS Elementary-Level Science Test Review

Fifth Grade

Chemical Interactions

Energy Interactions

Microscopic Interactions

Variables Affecting Motion


*Units are not sequential and may be taught in a different order by individual teachers.