Exploring Florida Science
The Exploring Florida Science modules are designed to help teachers improve their content knowledge and more effectively communicate science concepts to their students. The modules focus on technology-rich science content and teaching materials that allow educators to simultaneously address multiple strands in the Sunshine State Standards for Science. Suggested lesson plans offer ideas for how teachers can incorporate these concepts in their classrooms. The table below shows how the modules relate to the Sunshine State Standards for Science.
Science Resource Modules
- Module 1: Bioremediation
- This module provides resources and information to support the teaching of bioremediation - the utilization of organisms such as plants and microbes to clean up environmental contaminants. Resources include (i) an explanation of the science behind bioremediation, told by a specialist in the field, Dr. Sabrina Powell; (ii) hands-on lessons to engage students in learning about the topic; and (iii) FCAT passages and practice items to support student confidence in standardized testing about scientific topics. Bioremediation is an important area of scientific research in Florida because of the pervasive need for effective mechanisms to resolve soil and water pollution. Images from the FCIT support student understanding of how this topic is relevant to students in their state and community.
- Module 2: Coastal Dynamics
- This module provides resources and information to support the teaching of physical and earth science concepts related to coastal systems. The focus of the materials is on natural forces that change beaches and other coastal areas. These forces include normal tidal action as well as storms. Resources include (i) an explanation of the science behind coastal dynamics, told by specialists in the field, Dr. Corene Matyas (Geography), Dr. Pete Adams (Coastal Geology), and Dr. Arnoldo Valle-Levinson (Coastal Engineering); (ii) hands-on lessons to engage students in learning about the topic; and (iii) FCAT passages and practice items to support student confidence in standardized testing about scientific topics. Coastal dynamics is an important area of scientific research in Florida because of the benefits provided by this fragile zone. Digital resources from the FCIT support student understanding of the relevance of this topic in their state and communities.
- Module 3: Atoms, Elements, and Molecules
- This module provides resources and information to support the teaching of chemistry. This fundamental science is at the center of all life sciences. Interactive content addresses topics in the areas of atomic theory, chemical compounds, stoichiometry, and chemical periodicity. Digital resources help students to understand the relevance of chemistry to their everyday lives. The introductory video for this module features graduate student Sarah Stefan, who works in Physical Chemistry.
- Module 4: Using Exploring Florida in the Science Classroom
- This module provides examples of ways teachers in grades 6-12 science classes can bring the digital resources from Exploring Florida into the hands of students in classroom activities that support the science standards. Resources include a range of activity ideas, each of which addresses one or more science standards and which makes use of one or more digital resources in a student-centered approach.
Each module includes the following components:
- A 3-minute video narrated by the feature scientist(s) that overviews the module topic and its real-world relevance.
- A storybook-style account of the featured scientist(s) and how they developed their interest and expertise in Science.
- Documents that align the module to the Sunshine State Standards.
- A bulleted list of student misconceptions educators will likely encounter as they integrate this content into their classrooms.
- Practice FCAT items related to the content.
- Hands-on lessons, activities and experiments teacher may want to use in their classrooms as well as documents written by scientists to extend teachers' content knowledge.
- Digital resources consisting of maps, virtual reality tours, photographs, video clips, clipart drawings, and primary source documents and data sets.
- Pre- and post-tests that educators may use to measure gains in content area learning. These tests will be particularly helpful if these modules are used in formal professional development settings.
Sunshine State Science Standards addressed in each module
|Standard||Bioremediation||Coastal Dynamics||Atoms, Elements, and Molecules|
|The Nature of Matter||X|
|Force and Motion||X|
|Processes that Shape the Earth||X||X|
|Earth and Space||X|
|Processes of Life||X||X|
|How Living Things Interact with Their Environment||X||X|
|The Nature of Science||X||X||X|