Episode 003_NGSS Innovation #3: 3Dimensional Learning- (Viewing Glasses Optional)

Uncategorized Nov 01, 2018


Episode 003 Summary

 Today's episode about NGSS second innovation which is about three dimensional learning or that NGSS focuses on three dimensional learning.

(1:07) What are the three dimensions?

(1:28) First of all, you've got the science and engineering practices.

(4:30) The second dimension is called cross cutting concepts.

(5:15) How one teacher uses cross cutting concepts to organize his driving question board.

(6:41) How one teacher calls crosscutting concepts the "Keys to the Universe"

(9:55) The third dimension is the disciplinary core ideas. Some believe NGSS is missing important content. What do you think?  

(10:40) How the Disciplinary Core ideas were chosen and organized in NGSS.

(18:33) All three of these dimensions at some point existed in one way or the other in the old standards. So how is this innovative?

(23:27) What this looks like in the classroom--More this, Less this 

Innovation 2: Three-Dimensional Learning

                       Less This*

                  (*not never, just less)

                         More This*

            (*not always, just more)

  • Less using science practices and crosscutting concepts only to serve the purpose of students acquiring more DCI information.
  • More careful design to build student proficiency in all three dimensions of the standards.
  • Less posing questions that have one correct answer.
  • More posing open-ended questions.
  • More students discussing open-ended questions that focus on the strength of evidence used to generate claims.
  • Less additional assessments during instruction (e.g., vocabulary checks) that don’t have a clear feedback process to monitor or move student experiences to meet targeted learning goals.
  • More formative assessment processes embedded into instruction to capture changes in student thinking over time and adjust instruction


  • Less assessments that focus on one dimension at a time and are mostly concerned with measuring students’ ability to remember information.
  • More assessments that reflect each of the three dimensions and how they’re connected.
  • Less students learning the three dimensions in isolation from each other, i.e.:
  • A separate lesson or unit on science process/methods followed by a later lessons or units focused on delivering science knowledge.
  • Including crosscutting concepts only implicitly, or in sidebars with no attempt to build student proficiency in using them.
  • Rote memorization of facts and terminology; providing discrete facts and concepts in science disciplines, with limited application of practice or the interconnected nature of the disciplines.
  • Prioritizing science vocabulary and definitions that are introduced before (or instead of) students develop a conceptual understanding.
  • More Integrating the SEPs, CCCs, and DCIs in ways that instructionally make sense, as well as inform teachers about student progress toward the performance expectations, including:
  • Students actively engaged in scientific practices to develop an understanding of each of the three dimensions.
  • CCCs are included explicitly, and students learn to use them as tools to make sense of phenomena and make connections across disciplines.
  • Facts and terminology learned as needed while developing explanations and designing solutions supported by evidence-based arguments and reasoning.



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