ST 1.5

ST 1.5 - Students demonstrate their learning through performance-based assessments and express their conclusions through elaborated explanations of their thinking.

Animal Adaptations
Students in 6th grade science individually chose an animal and conducted online research on how the structural adaptations and processes of animals allow for defense, movement, or resource obtainment.  In small groups, they researched structural adaptations; such as animal eyes, ears, noses, hair and tails. The groups prepared a digital presentation of the different animals they researched and presented it to the rest of their classmates.  While classmates were presenting, students then chose their favorite structural adaptations. They then used those decisions to design and build 3D representations of ideally adapted animals. After their animals were built, they wrote a three paragraph essay explaining their animal's classification, structural adaptations and behavioral adaptations.

Animal Adaptations

Catapulting Beyond Enemy LinesCatapult
Interdisciplinary units/projects are utilized as a means to assess multiple aspects of learning and build connection for student understanding. In order to assess force and motion science standards as well as understanding of the need of catapults in Ancient Rome, sixth grade social studies students worked in collaborative groups to design catapults that would reach over the enemy wall.  Students designed, created, tested, and adjusted their catapults until it was time for the final assessment. Students used “boulders”/ pennies as Catapultweights to project over the “enemy” wall. With each successful launch teachers continued to add layers to the wall. Teams who were able to make a successful launch over the tallest wall were crowned “ the ultimate warriors.” After all the teams tested, the students were asked to reflect on their successes, support their findings with scientific evidence, and also explain how they would improve their designs to make their catapults more successful.

What's Our Angle?
Eighth Grade Geometry Honors students became urban designers when they were tasked to create a city design that used angle relationships (alternate interior, alternate exterior, corresponding and vertical angles). The design requires students to create a solution to traffic flow by the strategic placement of buildings. Along with a 3-D model, students had to create a map key to explain which buildings were located at which angle relationship using symbols, similar to those seen on real world maps. Students presented their cities and defended their choices through oral peer assessments.
Urban Planning

Interactive Science Journals
Students use a variety of techniques to collect and document information and data.  Students keep an interactive science journal to collect the data during lab explorations, for research findings and as a means for the teacher to formatively assess their understanding through a project. Students also have the ability to utilize their tablet for photo evidence and digital note-taking.


Triangle Inequality Theorem
Seventh grade students were challenged to determine if they could draw a triangle after receiving information that only included various specifications such as length of sides and the angle measurements. After spending some time working on developing possible drawings of triangles, the students were given cut-out strips of paper to make a model of their designs. This activity led the students to discover the Triangle Inequality Theorem, which states that the sum of the lengths of any two sides of a triangle is greater than the length of the third side,on their own.


Media Artist Statements
Media Art students complete an Artist Statement after each project to explain their process and analyze the results.  This metacognitive reflection calls for students to recount the steps they took and think about what they learned in terms of the technical aspects of creating the work.  They self-assess their strengths and weaknesses by describing what was easy or difficult throughout the process. They also analyze the final product by hypothesizing the reaction someone might have when looking at their work.  Students are encouraged to identify elements of art they have learned about when analyzing their own work and articulate the effects those elements could have on a viewer. Because students complete a similar reflection after each assignment, their self-reflection is ongoing throughout the course.