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This is STEMscopes Science
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Engage Your Students

The way we teach our students is just as critical as the content we provide them. STEMscopes Science Powered by CNN combines research-proven pedagogy with practitioner experience to engage students in learning science.

5E+IA Model

Provides a hook as an invitation into learning about a scientific concept. Through student responses to this engaging introduction many student misconceptions are revealed and noted.
The heart of inquiry-based instruction. It provides an opportunity for teams of students to use collaborative skills and prior knowledge to explore a concept through hands-on experiences. A choice of Explore activities are provided. These are based on the complexity in development of the three dimensions.
A sequence of experiences that guide students to explain what they understand about the scientific concept explored earlier. The embedded best practices guide students towards a more in-depth understanding. Differentiation, Response to Intervention and the needs of the English Language Learner, are met through a variety of resources.
Builds students’ understanding of the science concept through the integration of mathematics and reading within each science module. Expand provides opportunities for all students to intertwine their science knowledge and skills with other curriculum content in tightly aligned tasks.
Provides both the teacher and the student a means to assess the student’s ability to understand and apply the science content.
Sometimes required for the student who is unable to grasp the concept the first time it is introduced.
Provides resources for the teacher to incorporate science into two additional engaging and concept specific tasks, which challenge students to look at science from another perspective.

It is the goal of STEMscopes to provide an inquiry-based curriculum, which incorporates the research-based, constructivist phases of the BSCS 5E Instructional Model (Bybee et al., 2006). The development of the STEMscopes 5E+IA model in the delivery of science online curriculum takes into account the research of the National Research Council in their publications How People Learn (2000) and How Students Learn Science in the Classroom (2005).

STEMscopes also addresses an additional level of support for teachers of English Language learners (ELL) and Response to Intervention (RtI) (NASDSE, 2010) implementation as teachers meet the needs of all students in their classrooms. Within the development and delivery of the 5E+IA STEMscopes science curriculum model, teachers are provided a sequenced pathway, resources, and support for meeting the needs of all students.

Three Key Findings

  1. Students come to the classroom with preconceptions about how the world works. If their initial understanding is not engaged, they may fail to grasp the new concepts and information that are taught, or they may learn them for purposes of a test but revert to their preconceptions outside the classroom.
  2. To develop competence in an area of inquiry, students must (a) have a deep foundation of factual knowledge, (b) understand facts and ideas in the context of a conceptual framework, and (с) order knowledge in ways that facilitate retrieval and application.
  3. A «metacognitive» approach to instruction can help students learn to take control of their own learning by defining learning goals and monitoring their progress in achieving them. (NRC, 2000)
Engage: Hook your students, discover their background knowledge, and develop the initial context for your lesson in Engage. A good engage peaks student interest and makes the students want to investigate further. Explore: Students have experiences on which they can build their understanding in the Explore through extensive hands-on, inquiry-based science investigations. Explain: Explain is the place in the learning cycle where the student can explain their understanding through question prompts and Communicate activities. It allows students to academically understand what they learn in the Explore through videos, vocabulary, Elaborate: Elaborate offers differentiation to the extreme through numerous cross-curricular connections to reading, math, engineering, and more. Evaluate: Assess your students using a variety of assessments, such as multiple choice, open ended response and performance assessment tasks, in Evaluate. Intervention: Help the students who have not yet mastered the content in your classroom with small-group pull out activities to give them more opportunities to interact with the content and help them get back on track in Intervention. Acceleration: Support your students who have already mastered the content and are ready to go above and beyond with project-based learning activities and art in Acceleration. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Bybee Research of the 5E Engage Students in Learning

5E Model Infographic Preview

The BSCS 5E Instructional Model is an effective way to engage students in learning. "Developed in the 1980s, the 5E Model consists of five phases: engagement, exploration, explanation, elaboration, and evaluation.

Each phase has a specific function and contributes to the teacher’s coherent instruction and to the learners’ formulation of a better understanding of scientific concepts." (Bybee et al., 2006) Using sequences of lessons that incorporate student-centered, hands-on investigations, the 5E Instructional Model is designed to challenge current conceptions and provide opportunities for reconstruction to occur. This can assist students in their development of understanding.

The 5E Instructional Model and the additional Intervention and Acceleration (+IA) within the resources, provide teachers with additional opportunities to identify and close the gaps in student content knowledge which can lead to achievement gains, as well as provide enrichment activities for other content areas linked to science.



There is no doubt that science — and therefore science education — is central to the lives of students all over the world. Never before has our environment been so complex, and scientific literacy is critical to making sense of it all. Science is also at the heart of innovation and future job creation. That’s why all students — regardless of whether they pursue STEM careers — should have access to high-quality science education.

Importance of Real-world Connections Bring the World to the Classroom

CNN go there
  • We can use our science knowledge to explain or predict real-world events. The goal of building knowledge in science is to develop general ideas, based on evidence, that can explain and predict various occurrences.
  • Engineering involves designing solutions to problems that arise from real-world problems and using explanations of those problems to design solutions.
  • In this way, real-world events are the context for the work of both the scientist and the engineer.
Grade 2
Quick Changes to Land

What is it like to spend the night in a volcano?

Grade 4
Energy and Speed

Think about a time that you watched or participated in a race. What are some factors that affected the outcome of the race?

Middle School - Earth and Space Science
Formation of the Solar System

Describe what happened to the Rosetta space probe that allowed us to see parts of the 67P/Churymov-Gerasimenko?

High School - Life Science

What are some reasons different species are diminishing?

Captivating Content Delivered Digitally

STEMscopes Science Powered by CNN resources are delivered digitally on an HTML5 platform, meaning you can access them from any device at any time. Digital learning allows for student ownership of content through a context in which 21st-century learners (digital natives) are comfortable and familiar. Whether viewing a Great Big Story or interacting and taking an online assessment, digital learning allows students to engage with material faster and more fluidly than ever before. As a teacher, you can receive instant feedback on their online work while supporting both struggling and advanced learners with small-group and one-on-one pull-outs.

CNN STEMscopes Science - Teacher Dashboard Preview


Using a combination of hands-on materials, videos, simulations and observation of the natural world, students can explore phenomena the way scientists do: through their five senses. Hands-on activities include teacher facilitation support, suggested materials lists and procedures. Short on time? With the click of a button, activities can be digitally assigned to students so they can conduct the exploration at home.


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