Organization of the Standards
Ohio Standards (PDF 2.2 MB) (Entire Document)
Ohio's academic content standards for science are organized into the following six categories:
- Life Sciences Standard : [K-2] , [3-5] , [6-8] , [9-10] , [11-12]
Students demonstrate an understanding of how living systems function and how they interact with the physical environment. This includes an understanding of the cycling of matter and flow of energy in living systems. An understanding of the characteristics, structure and function of cells, organisms and living systems will be developed. Students will also develope a deeper understanding of the principles of heredity, biological evolution, and the diversity and interdependence of life. Students demonstrate an understanding of different historical perspectivesk, scientific approaches and emerging scientific issues associated with the life sciences.
- Physical Sciences Standard : [K-2] , [3-5] , [6-8] , [9-10] , [11-12]
Students demonstrate an understanding of the composition of physical systems and the concepts and principles that describe and predict physical interactions and events in the natural world. This includes demonstrating an understanding of the structure and properties of matter, the properties of materials and objects, chemical reactions and the conservation of matter. In addition, it includes understanding the nature, transfer and conservation of energy; motion and the forces affecting motion; and the nature of waves and interactions of matter and energy. Students demonstrate an understanding of the historical perspectives, scientific approaches and emerging scientific issues associated with the physical sciences.
- Earth & Space Sciences Standard : [K-2], [3-5] , [6-8] , [9-10], [11-12]
Students demonstrate an understanding about how Earth systems and processes interact in the geosphere resulting in the habitability of Earth. This includes demonstrating an understanding of the composition of the universe, the solar system and Earth. In addition, it includes understanding the properties and the interconnected nature of Earth's systems, processes that shape Earth and Earth's history. Students also demonstrate an understanding of how the concepts and principles of energy, matter, motion and forces explain Earth systems, the solar system and the universe. Finally, they grasp an understanding of the historical perspectives, scientific approaches and emerging scientific issues associated with Earth and space sciences.
- Science & Technology Standard : [K-2] , [3-5] , [6-8] , [9-10] , [11-12]
Students recognize that science and technology are interconnected and that using technology involves assessment of the benefits, risks and costs. Students should build scientific and technological knowledge, as well as the skill required to design and construct devices. In addition, they should develop the processes to solve problems and understand that problems may be solved in several ways.
- Scientific Ways of Knowing Standard : [K-2] , [3-5] , [6-8] , [9-10] , [11-12]
Students realize that the current body of scientific knowledge must be based on evidence, be predictive, logical, subject to modification and limited to the natural world. This includes demonstrating an understanding that scientific knowledge grows and advances as new evidence is discovered to support or modify existing theories, as well as to encourage the development of new theories. Students are able to reflect on ethical scientific practices and demonstrate an understanding of how the current body of scientific knowledge reflects the historical and cultural contributions of women and men who provide us with a more reliable and comprehensive understanding of the natural world.
- Scientific Inquiry Standard : [K-2] , [3-5] , [6-8] , [9-10] , [11-12]
Students develop scientific habits of mind as they use the processes of scientific inquiry to ask valid questions and to gather and analyze information. They understand how to develop hypotheses and make predictions. They are able to reflect on scientific practices as they develop plans of action to create and evaluate a variety of conclusions. Students are also able to demonstrate the ability to communicate their findings to others.
Scope and Sequence
Kindergarten provides students with the opportunity to develop the scientific skills of wondering, questioning, investigating and communicating to enable them to begin to develop a sense of the world. Kindergartners learn through discovery about changes on Earth, in the sky, plants, animals, their habitats and non-living things in their local community. Through hands-on exploration, students learn the characteristics of objects, tools, materials, how they move, and whether or not they are natural or man-made. Students explore the different ways people learn about science and interact with living things and the environment to promote respect for nature. To complete this year, students show knowledge of scientific concepts through demonstration of verbal and non-verbal skills and activities.
Science instruction in the first grade builds upon the science skills developed in kindergarten and from the child's life experiences. Students have increasing opportunities to explore how living things change, how they interact with their environment and how they acquire food. Students discover that many objects are made of different parts and characteristics. Students learn ways objects change, move, the materials of which they are composed and their physical properties. Students recognize and realize that natural resources are limited and can be extended by recycling or decreasing use. First-graders explore ways people learn about science through questioning, comparing, investigating and observing to conclude year one.
Second-graders continue to relate science concepts and skills to their life experiences. They compare similarities and differences between people, animals and plants. Living system functions and the interactions they have with their physical environment are explained. Focus is placed upon habits, and the interdependence and survival of plants and animals in Ohio. Weather changes both short term and long term are observed, described and measured. Second-graders discover how cycles are present in their everyday lives through investigations of Earth and sky, sound and light, and plants and animals. Students recognize the purpose, process and effects of technology, simple equipment and instruments used in learning about science. Students develop an awareness of repeated scientific investigations and understand that under the same conditions the results are similar or the same, which will build skills for grade two.
The scientific skills of observation, measuring and classification serve as focal points for the third grade. Students learn to read and interpret simple tables and graphs, conduct safe investigations in which they collect and analyze data, and communicate the results. Third-graders explore the properties and composition of rocks and soils and the interaction of forces and motion. They also compare the life cycles of animals, classifications of animals according to their characteristics, descriptions of their habitat and adaptations to their environment. Students examine results of technology and explore careers in science, as well as scientific contributions from a diversity of cultures.
Fourth-graders continue to safely conduct investigations, choose appropriate tools, measure, collect, formulate conclusions and communicate findings. They draw inferences from simple experiments and study the physical and chemical changes of matter. Properties of materials and the discovery of new materials formed by combining two or more materials are explored. Students expand the study of life cycles of plants by examining characteristics, growth and functions. Students gather information on the weather and its patterns and how weather impacts the Earth's surface, land, air and water. They explore how utilizing technology affects human lives and how technology and inventions change to meet people's needs.
Earth and space sciences are investigated in more detail in grade five. Earth's characteristics, resources and location in the solar system are identified and their implications explored. Students also learn about the interrelationship of organisms and ecosystems and simple food chains and food webs. Energy and energy transfer through an electrical current are addressed. Fifth-graders describe and illustrate the design process and describe the positive and negative impacts of human activity and technology on the environment. Students observe, measure and collect data when conducting a scientific investigation; students use this information to formulate inferences and conclusions; and students develop skills to communicate the results.
Students in grade six continue to conduct investigations and begin to apply mathematical skills in evaluating and analyzing variables of data. They identify basic skills of the scientific inquiry process, such as how thinking scientifically is helpful in daily life and how technological advances affect the quality of life. Students research how men and women of other countries and cultures contribute to science. Sixth-grade students identify rocks, their distinct properties and formation and characteristic properties of the minerals that form them. They learn to recognize that a cell continually divides to create new cells, reproduction of cells occur, similar cells have special functions, and characteristics of an organism are a result of inherited traits. Students acquire knowledge of the uses, properties and chemical processes of the small particles that compose matter. They learn the renewable and nonrenewable sources of energy as part of the grade six indicators.
Students learn to describe interactions of matter and energy throughout the lithosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere. They continue to develop skills of scientific inquiry, explain how matter can change forms and describe how energy is potential or kinetic and takes many forms. Students apply math skills to evaluate and analyze variables and data from investigations as they draw conclusions from scientific evidence. Seventh-grade students are able to recognize that technology can create environmental and economic conflicts, affect the quality of life, and that science and technology cannot answer all questions and cannot solve all human problems. Students access knowledge to explain how energy entering the ecosystems, such as sunlight, supports the life of organisms through photosynthesis and the transfer of energy through the interactions of organisms and the environment.
Students in the eighth grade explore space and plate tectonics as they continue to draw conclusions from scientific evidence that support theories related to the change of Earth's surface. They acquire knowledge to describe how positions and motions of objects in the universe cause predictable and cyclic events. Students explain that the universe is composed of vast amounts of matter and that it is held together by gravitational force. They explore equipment to study the universe - telescopes, probes, satellites and spacecraft. Motion of objects, effects of forces on objects, and how waves (sound, water and earthquake) transfer energy are explored. Students will be able to explain how extinction of a species occurs when the environment changes and its adaptive characteristics are insufficient to allow survival. Students design a solution to a problem or design and build a product, given certain constraints. Technological influences on the quality of life are also explored in this grade level.
The ninth-grade year addresses physical science and related principles in Earth and space sciences. Physical science concepts include the nature of matter and energy; identifiable physical properties of substances; and properties of forces that act on objects. Ninth-graders learn about forces and motions, structures and properties of atoms, how atoms react with each other to form other substances, and how molecules react with each other or other atoms. Earth and space science topics include processes that move and shape Earth, Earth's interaction with the solar system, and gravitational forces and weather. Students continue to develop a deeper understanding of the processes of scientific inquiry and how these processes use evidence to support conclusions based on logical reasoning. Students investigate ways in which science and technologies combine to meet human needs and solve human problems. Ninth-graders trace the historical development of scientific theories and ideas, explore scientific theories and develop their scientific literacy to become knowledgeable citizens.
The tenth grade year emphasizes the concepts, principles and theories that enable people to understand the living environment. Students study life science concepts such as cells and their structure and function, the genetic and molecular bases of inheritance, biological evolution, and the diversity and interdependence of life. Students explain the Earth's history using geologic evidence, identifying the Earth's resources, and exploring processes that shape the Earth. The flow of energy and the cycling of matter through biological and ecological systems are addressed in the tenth grade. Embedded throughout this study are the basic science processes of inquiry, modeling investigations and the nature of science. Students learn to trace the historical development of scientific theories, ideas, ethical guidelines in science, the interdependence of science and technology, and the study of emerging issues to become scientifically literate citizens.
In grade eleven, students draw on their previous experience and connect Earth, space, life and physical sciences into a coherent study of the environment. Emphasis is placed on the interactions between humans and Earth, ecosystems, biological evolution, populations and diversity. Students also explore matter and energy relationships. The human interactions with science and technology are discussed, as well as how man has modified current ecosystems and natural systems. Students have the opportunity to use basic science processes of inquiry, scientific investigation, and the nature of science to examine past events, current situations, and to develop and revise scientific predictions, ideas or theories.
Grade twelve focuses on advanced topics in biological and physical sciences. Biological topic clusters include cell specialization, biotechnology, DNA and evolutionary theory. In the physical sciences, students study equilibrium of systems, electromagnetic radiation, isotopes, radioactive decay, concepts of forces and motion as applied to large and small objects and energy levels. Integrated with these topics are historical perspectives, the process of inquiry, nature of science, ethical practices and use of appropriate technology. Twelfth-graders learn to apply principles of forces and motion to mathematically analyze, describe and predict the net effects of forces and motion of objects or systems. Students explore science research, scientific literature, and the relationship of science and society.