Welcome to Science at MNW Elementary!
Science instruction at MNW Elementary provides students with multiple opportunities for hands-on experiments and activities, where they are able to dig deeper into their topic of study. Students strive to develop a strong background knowledge to apply to the real world and their own lives. At MNW Elementary, we are passionate about teaching our students about science!

Below are some of the components of our science instruction at MNW - check it out!

Next Generation Science Standards
At MNW we use the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) to implement and develop our science curriculum K-12. Within the NGSS, there are 3 components that make up each standard or performance expectation:

1) Crosscutting Concepts
  • Held students explore connections in all 4 areas of science: Physical Science, Life Science, Earth and Space Science, and Engineering Design.
2) Science and Engineering Practices 
  • This component teaches students what scientists do to investigate the natural world and what engineers do to design and build systems.
3) Disciplinary Core Ideas 
  • There are four key ideas in science that build upon one another as students progress through each grade level: Physical Science, Life Science, Earth and Space Science, and Engineering.
You can find the Next Generation Science Standards here.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math)
As part of our science curriculum at MNW, we strive to teach students skills in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Rather than teaching each area separately, we intertwine the four areas. The STEM subjects also show students how the scientific method can be applied in real life situations and help students problem solve.

STEM at the elementary school looks different than at the middle and high school. Here at MNW Elementary, STEM is first introduced and students become familiar with STEM fields and occupations. The time to get students excited about STEM is when they are young, and we strive to do just that at MNW Elementary.

Project Lead The Way: Launch

At the MNW Elementary we have implemented the Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Launch program in grades K-5.  The PLTW Launch curriculum inspires, engages, and empowers our students to become innovators.  PLTW allows our students to be hands-on and in charge of their own learning.  

The Launch curriculum focuses on three different areas in the science field: computer science, engineering, and biomedical sciences.  Within these focus areas each grade level has modules aligned with our Next Generation Science Standards, which have been adopted by the Iowa Core.   Each module is set up with the same APB  (Activities, Project, Problem) Approach.  Students are given three activities, one project, and one problem in each module, each which builds upon the other.

1st Grade students learn about how sound travels with cup phones

First grade students built cup phones to learn about how sound waves travel from one place to another, in their Light & Sounds Module.

4th Grade students build a model of the brain to show the structure & function of the brain
 Fourth Grade students build a model brain showing 
the sections of the brain and their functions, in the
Input/Output: Human Brain Module.

FOSS (Full Option Science System) kits are part of a research-based science curriculum for the elementary and middle school classrooms. FOSS kits allow the gap between research and practice to decrease, by providing teachers and students with the necessary tools and strategies to develop a deep understanding of content knowledge. FOSS Kits allow students to learn through hands-on activities/experiments.  

Students used the Explain Everything iPad app and created a book about what they learned about the life cycle and any extra facts they wanted to add.  Here is Josie's and Jaylie's story!