Science


The fifth and sixth grade science curriculum is organized into units of content area study.

FIFTH GRADE 
  • Forces
  • Near Earth and Space
  • Forms of Matter
  • Environment
  • Invertebrates/Vertebrates

SIXTH GRADE

Energetic Connections
Sixth graders deepen their understanding of energy in its multiple forms through investigations into kinetic and potential energy and begin to understand the scientific reasoning that energy is not created or destroyed. Students explore changes in states of matter that mass is conserved during changes in states.
 
Planet Rock
The Planet Rock unit explores the rock cycle, weathering and glacier movement and leads to a study of soil and a comparison of soil samples.
 
Earth: Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow
Sixth graders gain an understanding of the Earth’s history and future through the study of plate tectonics and major geological events. They build their knowledge from the unit, Planet Rock to include tectonic movement, layers of the Earth, the magnetic properties of the Earth, and how rocks, rock layers, and fossils tell the history of the Earth.
 
Energy in an Ecosystem
Students explore ecosystems with relation to the energy flow in a balanced ecosystem and the roles organisms play to maintain the balance. They investigate patterns of relationships, predict changes in populations, and examine populations, communities and ecosystems to apply their knowledge to the Great Lakes region.
 

The school district provides textbooks, teacher resources, activities, and materials for each unit and is aligned with the Michigan Curriculum Framework science benchmarks. Balanced with instruction of content is the use of process skills and scientific inquiry. Process skills include: observing, classifying, measuring, inferring, predicting, communicating, using number relationships, making models, defining operationally, collecting and interpreting data, identifying and controlling variables, formulating hypotheses, and experimenting. Scientific inquiry refers to the activities through which students develop knowledge and understanding of scientific ideas, as well as an understanding of how scientists study the natural world. It reflects on how scientists come to understand the natural world, and it is at the heart of how students learn. Understanding science content is significantly enhanced when ideas are anchored to inquiry experiences.