New Haven Public School Science

Department Vision:
Our goal is to ensure that all students at all levels achieve science literacy, for science is the key to their future.
Science is the Key to the Future!

  • Science is for all students.
  • Science literacy is a combination of concepts and skills.
  • Science has practical applications in the real world and for students' lives.
  • Learning science is an active process that students do.
  • Teachers of science facilitate and guide this process.

See November 2017 Board of Ed Presentation
Science Department:

  • Elementary Science: Science Experiments 2-3 periods a week with classroom teacher, using science kits. 3 science kits per year. Science NGSS Test in 5th Grade.
  • Middle School Science Science experiments and science textbooks with homework several times a week. Meets every day with science teacher. Science NGSS Test in 8th Grade.
  • High School Science 3 years required (PhyChem, Biology, Chemistry). Meets every day, with science teacher. Science experiments at least once a week, and science homework daily. Science NGSS Test in 11th grade.

District Curriculum For Grades K-8, PhyChem, Biology, Chemistry, Physics at .


Science Curriculum K-12 is being rewritten 2016 to 2019 to align with new state science standards and testing ), to be implemented in 2019. Teachers are piloting NGSS units in the midst of current curricular pacing and outlines:

Link to NHPS Science Curriculum Overview for the Public (with NGSS Practices) by Grade/Course

Link to NHPS Science WebPage, including draft NGSS units/pacing, and curricular resources/assessments by grade level for teachers.

Science and Common Core:
Science standards include concepts and higher order thinking skills that use literacy and mathematics.
Science inquiry skills and practices overlap with literacy and mathematics skills as described in the K-12 Common Core. (See overlap diagram)
There are specific reading and writing Common Core standards for literacy across the content areas in grades 7-12. (See CCSS standards)
Connecticut State Department Website on Science and Common Core
Overall Common Core Guide for Families
More info for Parents!
Some links for STEM Careers
Parent Guide to STEM K-12, (STEM Guia Para los Padres)  
Parent Science/STEM Presentation
Science is the Key to Your Future!
Further Science Vision:
 All students, regardless of age, sex, cultural or ethnic background, disabilities, aspirations, or interest and motivation in science, should have the opportunity to attain high levels of scientific literacy. Excellence in science education embodies the ideal that all students can achieve understanding of science if they are given the opportunity. Our goal is to ensure that all students at all levels achieve science literacy, for science is the key to their future.
 Science literacy is a combination of understanding major science concepts and theories, using scientific reasoning, and recognizing the complex interactions between science, technology and society. Scientific literacy requires the ability to apply critical thinking skills when dealing with science-related issues. A scientifically literate person is able to transfer knowledge of the academic theories and principles of science to practical applications in the real world. Scientific literacy also implies having the capacity to pose and evaluate arguments based on evidence and to apply logical conclusions from such arguments. Scientific literacy means that a person can ask, find, or determine answers to questions derived from curiosity about everyday experiences. It means that a person has the ability to describe, explain, and predict natural phenomena. Scientific literacy entails being able to read with understanding articles about science in the popular press and to engage in social conversation about the validity of the conclusions. Scientific literacy implies that a person can identify scientific issues underlying national and local decisions and express positions that are scientifically and technologically informed.
Learning science is something students do, not something that is done to them. In learning science, students describe objects and events, ask questions, acquire knowledge, construct explanations of natural phenomena, test those explanations in many different ways, and communicate their ideas to others. This term “active process” implies physical and mental activity. Hands-on activities are not enough—students also must have “minds-on” experiences. Science teaching must involve students in inquiry-oriented investigations in which they interact with their teachers and peers. Students establish connections between their current knowledge of science and the scientific knowledge found in many sources; they apply science content to new questions; they engage in problem solving, planning, decision making, and group discussions; and they experience assessments that are consistent with an active approach to learning. Emphasizing active science learning means shifting emphasis away from teachers presenting information and “covering” science topics. The perceived need to include all the topics, vocabulary, and information in textbooks is in direct conflict with the central goal of having students learn scientific knowledge with understanding. Inquiry into authentic questions generated from student experiences is the central strategy for teaching science.
In doing this, teachers: -Display and demand respect for the diverse ideas, skills, and experiences of all students. -Focus and support inquiries while interacting with students. -Encourage, model, and emphasize the skills, attitudes, and values of scientific inquiry, as well as the curiosity, openness to new ideas and data, and skepticism that characterize science. -Orchestrate discourse and ongoing discussion among students about scientific ideas. -Challenge students to accept and share responsibility for their own learning and the learning of all members of the community. -Recognize and respond to student diversity and encourage all students to participate fully in science learning -Enable students to have a significant voice in decisions about the content and context of their work. -Nurture collaboration among students.