Level 2

Alaska Science
Key Element

A student who meets the content standard should know how the words “fact,” “observation,” “concept,” “principle,” “law,” and “theory” are generally used in the scientific community.


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Performance Standard Level 2, Ages 8–10

Students will observe and record an event, then explore concepts associated with those observations and facts.

Sample Assessment Ideas

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Sample Assessment Ideas

  • Students attempt to roll a variety of differently shaped objects down a ramp; record their observations; generalize how the shape of the object is related to the way it rolls down the ramp.

  • Students pass sugar water and silty river water through separate coffee filters; hypothesize about the differences between the filtrates and the suspensions.

Expanded Sample Assessment Idea

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Expanded Sample Assessment Idea

  • Students grow plants under a variety of conditions and compare growth rates.


Students will:

  1. Divide into small groups.

  2. Grow plants under a variety of conditions (amount of light, amount of water, type of soil).

  3. Observe general appearance and measure the rate of growth; record observations in their science journals.

  4. Make graphs comparing growth rates.

  5. As a class talk about the difference between their observations and the measurements (identifying facts); discuss and generalize concepts from everyone’s data.

  6. Clarify the observations and facts in their findings.

Reflection and Revision

Discuss factors other than frequency of watering that will affect plant growth.


Levels of Performance

Stage 4
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Student observations are correct, complete, and appropriate, and contain elaboration, extension, and evidence of higher-order thinking and relevant knowledge. There is no evidence of misconceptions. Minor errors do not necessarily lower the score.
Stage 3
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Student observations are correct, complete, and appropriate; although minor inaccuracies are present. There may be limited evidence of elaboration, extension, higher-order thinking, and relevant knowledge; or there may be significant evidence of these traits, but other flaws (e.g. inaccuracies, omissions, inappropriateness) are evident.
Stage 2
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Student observations are inaccurate, incomplete or inappropriate, although may contain some elements of proficient work. There is little, if any, evidence of elaboration, extension, higher-order thinking or relevant knowledge. There may be evidence of significant misconceptions.
Stage 1
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Student work, although it may be on topic, fails to address the question, or addresses the question in a very limited way. There is evidence of serious misconceptions.
Standards Cross-Reference blue rule

Standards Cross-References
( Alaska Department of Education & Early Development Standards

National Science Education Standards

Scientists develop explanations using observations (evidence) and what they already know about the world (scientific knowledge). Good explanations are based on evidence from investigations. (Page 123)

Communicate scientific procedures and explanations. With practice, students, should become competent at communicating experimental methods, and following instructions, describing observations, summarizing the results of other groups, and telling other students about investigations and explanations. (Page 148)

Scientific explanations emphasize evidence, have logically consistent arguments, and use scientific principles, models, and theories. The scientific community accepts and uses such explanations until displaced by better scientific ones. When such displacement occurs, science advances. (Page 148)



Buttress their statements with facts found in books, articles, and databases and identify the sources used and expect others to do the same. (Page 299)

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