Science Vertical Team

September 2016

STAAR Resources

Released Tests and Readiness/Supporting Standards

Digital Instructional Material

Link to Discovery Education Techbook Parent Guide to Discovery Education Student Guide to Discovery Education Teacher Guide to Discovery Education (Use your CISD Login)


  • Remember to pick your kit up from the stage

  • FOSS TE-These are digital (use code on kit code for each new kit) there is also a paper copy in the library (
  • If you are missing something required for an investigation, email Linda Cook at or Melissa McGuire at and they will get it to you ASAP.
  • Ordering Animals – if you have a kit during this rotation that includes live animals, your team leaders will receive the animal ordering cards from Heath Scientific the week kits are delivered. Once you have determined which dates you would like to receive the animals, mail the card directly to Heath Scientific. They will deliver the animals via mail to Austin. Be aware of delivery dates and weekends/holidays.

FOSSweb Getting Started and Activating Modules on Your Teacher Page

Please read through the following technical frequently asked questions. If your question is not answered here, contact FOSSweb Support at

How do I get started on FOSSweb?

1. Register for a FOSSweb account. Register for a FOSSweb account using your school email on the registration page. Follow the steps to complete your registration. Registration requires your school email address and a password that is at least 8 characters in length. A confirmation email will be sent to your email address.

2. Activate access to purchased modules. Once you log in to FOSSweb, you will be brought to your Teacher Page. Select the yellow Activate a New Module in the top content area. You will find a FOSSweb access code on a label attached to Box #1 of your FOSS Kit. Each code is module specific and will provide you with full access to FOSSweb teacher resources for that module after online activation.

Once you have your code, enter it into the first page of the Activate a New Module dialog box. On the second page, select which module(s) you want to appear in My FOSS Modules. We suggest you select only the modules you use most. You can always add or remove modules from this area later. Note that a module must be in My FOSS Modules in order to assign it to a class. If you have a premium access code, you can enter it on this page. Click Submit and wait for your Teacher Page to reload.

3. Access module resources on your Teacher Page. Once you have activated access codes for your module(s), you can click on the module names listed in the My FOSS Modules area. You will have full access to all the resources after entering your module access code, with the exception of Premium Content.

FOSS Rotation Schedule-Dates

Everyone is on 11 week rotations!

Formative Assessment Probes

  • Page Keeley Books
  • We have 4 books in the library
  • Helps identify misconceptions


  • Hands-on, minds-on (80% K-1, 60% 2-3, 50% 4-5)
  • Inquiry based
  • Science Practices
  1. Asking questions
  2. Planning and carrying out investigations
  3. analyzing and interpreting data
  4. constructing explanations (claim, evidence, reasoning)
  5. Communicating Information (including writing in science)
  • Reading in Content Areas (readers are coming!) 3-5 Today and K-2 delivered this week!
  • Formative assessment and effective feedback

Science BOY Testing

There is not an overall BOY assessment for science (unless you want to use an old STAAR test on your own). There ARE new unit post assessments in Aware for you to use after you are done teaching each strand of science (Physical, Life, Earth) which we have designed to be as "STAAR-like" as possible. You can also use the unit pre-assessments that are in Aware or attached to the Splash Screens in Forethought if you want some pre-assessment info to guide instruction but these are smaller and done unit by unit and are not a single comprehensive test. It is my understanding that the post tests will be a district expectation but the pre-tests will be up to you. (5th grade post test are done, 4th grade post tests are almost complete, just final checks and revisions to make sure that they are ready, and 3rd grade tests are partially done. There will be no post tests for K-2 unless enough people want them).

The district is no longer using the Science MAP test because it was written to the National standards and we did not see the strong correlation between MAP scores and STAAR scores that the MAP people claimed were there (It showed you who the stronger and weaker science students were but that was about it, it was not even very accurate for showing their strengths and weaknesses.)

FOSS Inquiry Trainings @ Denton Creek

We will be presenting the FOSS inquiry science trainings on the following dates at Denton Creek Elementary in room A107. The trainings will include the hands-on materials and an overview for each FOSS lesson as it connects with Enduring Understandings and Essential Questions for each unit taught throughout the year. Teachers will see how conceptual understanding builds through the hands-on experiences. The official start and end times for the trainings are 3:45 pm - 5:00 pm, however, the stations are self-paced with opportunities to try equipment, ask questions, etc. This is an excellent opportunity to gain an overview of the TEKS-aligned investigations contained within the FOSS boxes.

Sept 8 - 5th Grade

Sept 15 - Kinder

Sept 22 - 3rd Grade

Sept 29 - 4th Grade

Oct 6 - 1st Grade

Oct 13 - 2nd Grade

Community Lectures at the Biodiversity Education Center (Coppell Nature Park)

FCNP Guest Lecture Series begins Sept. 17 at BEC

At 10 am, Saturday, Sept. 17, the Friends of Coppell Nature Park (FCNP) will begin their 2016-2017 series of guest lectures that highlight environmental education. Admission is free. The first program will offer insight into Texas trees.

Courtney Blevins, Regional Forester for Texas A&M Forest Service, will discuss the urban forests and Dallas and Fort Worth with a focus on North Texas tree identification. Blevins works to protect urban trees while educating the public about tree care.

“This is a very interesting presentation with hands-on opportunities to identify trees within our own nature park,” said FCNP Executive Director Bill Sundermann. “Blevins is one of Texas A & M’s highly acclaimed instructors on this subject. If you have questions about your trees and proper care, then don’t miss this interesting lecture.”

Future programs offered by the FCNP Guest Lecture Series are:

Sat., Oct. 15, 10 am to 12, “Mosquitos and North Texas Viruses”

Dallas County Health and Human Services has advised travelers to be aware of West Nile, Chikungunya, Dengue and Zika viruses. These viruses are transmitted by mosquitos. Dr. Christopher Perkins--Medical Director, Spencer Lockwood--microbiologist, and Dr. Zachary Thompson--DCHHS Director will discuss these viruses. “Dallas County residents may be traveling to countries where these viruses are endemic and need to be aware of precautions to take while traveling,” said Zachary Thompson, DCHHS director. “Additionally, if they become infected, they should be aware of what to do to help prevent spreading a virus here locally.” Plan to be at the BEC on Oct. 15th for this important presentation.

Sat., Nov. 19, 10 am to 12, “Nature Photography as a Science Citizen”

“Science Citizen” is described as scientific research conducted, in whole or in part, by amateur or nonprofessional scientists. Rick Murphy, a North Texas Master Naturalist, will show his nature photos as a Citizen Scientist photographer with the intent of getting others to enjoy nature, take photos, and share their images through volunteer projects or sites like Many of Murphy’s photos have been taken at Coppell Nature Park. If you enjoy photography and would like your images to contribute to our area’s understanding of our natural environment, then this lecture is for you.

Sat., Dec. 17, 10 am to 12, “Snakes and Reptiles of North Texas”

Roger Sanderson, Director of Horticulture for Texas Discovery Gardens, will return to discuss snakes and reptiles of North Texas. This is a very interesting presentation with “hands-on” opportunities with these critters. Sanderson has one of the best collection of live snakes in the State of Texas and is a highly acclaimed instructor on this subject. His presentations illuminate and promote increased knowledge about these often-maligned critters.

Sat., Jan. 21, 2017, 10 am to 12, “Urban Wildlife within D/FW”

Author Chris Jackson will discuss the growing urban presence of coyotes, bobcats, and other animals. “Something remarkable is happening in our cities and towns,” Jackson says. “Due to a confluence of changes in laws, attitudes, and population distribution over the last several decades, native wildlife has been able to establish itself in some unexpected places. Counterintuitively, many of our more adaptable wild animals actually prefer the urban environment and are living there because of the bountiful amounts of food, water, and shelter that it contains.”

Sat., Feb. 18, 10 am to 12, “Geology & Fossils of CNP”

Dr. David Goodner, geology instructor at North Lake College, is returning to our BEC podium to present his thoughtful presentation and hands-on tour of the Nature Park to describe the geology of our area and the fossils that comprise our specific archeological history. Dr. Goodner’s presentations have been a big success within numerous CISD classrooms as well.

Sat., March 18, 10 am to 12, “Rose Rosette Disease in our Roses”

A representative of the Dallas County Master Gardners Association will discuss the Rose Rosette Disease. This spreading disease is taking out knockout roses all over North Texas. Emphasis will be focused on how to eradicate this disease and what plants are desirable in our landscapes.

Sat., April 15, 2016, 10 am to 12, “Raptors of North Texas”

Erich Neupert, Executive Director of the Black Land Prairie Raptor Center, will return to the Biodiversity Education Center to discuss and demonstrate these great birds. He will have live birds to illustrate the characteristics and exceptional hunting abilities of these birds.

Sat., May 20, 8 am to 12, “Birding in North Texas”

North Lake College’s Chuck Siegel will conduct an early morning bird tour of Coppell Nature Park from 8 to 9:45 and will present “Birding in North Texas” from 10 to 12. This will be a special opportunity for attendees to enjoy the more than 220 species of birds that migrate through CNP each year.

The Biodiversity Education Center (BEC) at the Coppell Nature Park is situated on 66 acres of nature preserve within Wagon Wheel Park. The vision for the Center is to promote and provide hands-on environmental education. Its purpose is to facilitate adult and youth education at all levels—from academic to professional to hobby. Participants of the education programs, for both school and the community, observe and learn about local flora, fauna, and environmental sustainability issues, as well as develop a deeper connection to their environment through nature.

Additionally, The FCNP Guest Lecture Series has been approved for advanced training credits for any North Texas Master Naturalist. The Texas Master Naturalist(TM) volunteer program is coordinated by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and supported by a variety of local organizations. Volunteers receive 40 hours of in-depth training in wildlife and natural resource management customized to focus on local ecosystems. In return, volunteers provide at least 40 hours of service in the form of community education and demonstration projects, while pursuing a minimum of 8 hours of advanced training in areas of special interest.

The Texas Master Naturalist curriculum provides a standardized base of knowledge and skills for volunteers across the state. Training is provided by educators and specialists from universities, agencies, nature centers' museums, and other organizations who donate their services.

Friends of Coppell Nature Park (FCNP) is a 501(c) (3), non-profit corporation committed to supporting Coppell Nature Park (CNP) through fund raising, publicity, education and volunteer park maintenance. The Foundation is directed by dedicated Coppell citizens and is a mentor for the volunteerism of hundreds of families and students. FCNP commits its annual budget to development and maintenance of CNP and implementation of environmental education programs.

Coppell Nature Park is situated at 367 Freeport Parkway on the west side of Coppell, Texas. It is part of Wagon Wheel Park, a 153-acre tract of land of which 66 acres are the natural wooded section of Coppell Nature Park. The Biodiversity Education Center is only open to the public during center program offerings. Further information about CNP and FCNP is available at

Ms. Rhodes

3rd Grade

Math and Science

Austin Elementary