Water – Standards


The activities in this unit help children understand the basic concepts in the Disciplinary Core Ideas listed here. You can use the following list as a guide for lesson planning. These Disciplinary Core Ideas are taken from Grade Band Endpoints in A Framework for K-12 Science Education. Additionally, our activities give children opportunities to engage in many of the Science and Engineering Practices and reflect on the Crosscutting Concepts as identified in the Next Generation Science Standards.

Grades K-2 Disciplinary Core Ideas
PS1A: Different kinds of matter exist and many of them can be either solid or liquid, depending on temperature. p.108
PS1B: Heating or cooling a substance may cause changes that can be observed. Sometimes these changes are reversible (melting and freezing), & sometimes they are not (burning fuel). p.110
PS2B: When objects touch or collide, they push on one another and can change motion or shape. p.117
PS3B: Sunlight warms Earth’s surface. p.125
ESS2C: Water is found in the ocean, rivers, lakes, and ponds. Water exists as solid ice and in liquid form. p.184

Grades 3-5 Disciplinary Core Ideas
PS1A: Matter of any type can be subdivided into particles that are too small to see, but even then the matter still exists and can be detected by other means. For example a model showing that gases are made from matter particles that are too small to see and are moving freely around in space can explain many observations, including the appearance of visible scale water droplets in condensation, fog, and by extension, also in clouds or the contrails of a jet. p.108
PS2B: Objects in contact exert forces on each other (friction, elastic pushes and pulls). p.117
ESS2A: Earth’s major systems are the geosphere, the hydrosphere, the atmosphere, & the biosphere. These systems interact in multiple ways… The ocean supports a variety of ecosystems and organisms, shapes landforms, and influences climate. Winds and clouds in the atmosphere interact with the landforms to determine patterns of weather. Rainfall helps shape the land and affects the types of living things found in a region. Human activities affect Earth’s systems and their interactions at its surface. p.181
ESS2C: Water is found almost everywhere on Earth: as vapor; as fog or clouds in the atmosphere; as rain or snow falling from clouds; as ice, snow, and running water on land and in the ocean; and as groundwater beneath the surface. … Nearly all of Earth’s available water is in the ocean. Most fresh water is in glaciers or underground; only a tiny fraction is in streams, lakes, wetlands, and the atmosphere. p.185
ESS3A: All materials, energy, and fuels that humans use are derived from natural sources, and their use affects the environment in multiple ways. Some resources are renewable over time, and others are not. p.192
ESS3C: Human activities in agriculture, industry, and everyday life have had major effects on the land, vegetation, streams, ocean, air, and even outer space. But individuals and communities are doing things to help protect Earth’s resources and environments. p.196

Grades 6-8 Disciplinary Core Ideas
PS1A: Gases and liquids are made of molecules or inert atoms that are moving about relative to each other. In a liquid, the molecules are constantly in contact with each other. The changes of state that occur with variations in temperature or pressure can be described and predicted using these models of matter. p.108-109
ESS2C: Water continually cycles among land, ocean, & atmosphere via transpiration, evaporation, condensation, & precipitation as well as downhill flows on land. p.185
ESS3A: Humans depend on Earth’s land, ocean, atmosphere, and biosphere for many different resources. Minerals, fresh water, and biosphere resources are limited and many are not renewable or replaceable over human lifetimes. These resources are distributed unevenly around the planet as a result of past geological processes. p.192


In addition to science content, activities in this unit also can help students to practice the following mathematics and language arts concepts. The Common Core Standards listed here are in addition to the ones that our activities typically address, as listed in the Four Winds document, The Nature Program: Alignment with Learning Standards.

Grades K-2 Common Core Standards
Writing Standard 3: Write narratives in which they recount a well-elaborated event or short sequence of events, include details to describe actions, thoughts, and feelings, use temporal words to signal event order, and provide a sense of closure.
Mathematics Standard K.CC: Count to 100 by ones and tens. Understand the relationship between numbers and quantities; connect counting to cardinality. Count to answer “how many?” questions about as many as 20 things.

Grades 3-5 Common Core Standards
Writing Standard 3: Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, descriptive details, and clear event sequences.

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