Building Blocks of Science | 3DSmithsonian Programs

Smithsonian Program Resources

Smithsonian Science for the Classroom: Science and Engineering Practices
Smithsonian Science for the Classroom: Science and Engineering Practices
The work of engineers is concerned with solving problems. The goal of scientists is to explain phenomena (events in nature) and achieve a better understanding of the universe. In keeping with this, Smithsonian Science for the Classroom provides students with experiences in working toward both purposes.
Download the Infographic
Science and Engineering Practices
STCMS™: Science and Engineering Practices
One of the best ways to see how science and engineering are natural partners is to consider the Science and Engineering Practices. Each practice is used in similar ways in both fields, with a few key exceptions due to the differing purposes of engineers (designing solutions) and scientists (understanding phenomena).
Download the Infographic
White Paper: How Teachers Learn Through Lesson Study
White Paper: How Teachers Learn Through Lesson Study
Learn why an increasing number of schools are exploring lesson study as an approach to their teacher professional development programs.
Download the whitepaper
Smithsonian i3 LASER Research Video
Smithsonian i3 LASER Research Video
The Smithsonian Science Education Center recently completed a five-year validation study funded by the US Department of Education (U396B100097) to test its theory of action—which it calls LASER (Leadership and Assistance for Science Education Reform). Evidence from the study supports the efficacy claims of hands-on science learning in K–8.
Watch the video
Innovative STEM Funding Program Engages Local Community
Innovative STEM Funding Program Engages Local Community
See how one educator uses creative funding to provide her district's students with quality STEM materials.
Download the case study
What Middle School Assessment Should Look Like
What Middle School Assessment Should Look Like
Learn how a great middle school assessment system can positively impact students' learning of the multidimensional standards of the NGSS.
Download the whitepaper
Inquiry-Based Science Fosters 21st Century Skills
Inquiry-Based Science Fosters 21st Century Skills
The Smithsonian's 5-year LASER i3 validation study provided evidence that grades 1–8 students learning through inquiry-based science education demonstrated real-life skills needed for the workforce.
Learn more
Inquiry-Based Science Narrows the Learning Gap for At-Risk Students
Inquiry-Based Science Narrows the Learning Gap for At-Risk Students
The Smithsonian's 5-year LASER i3 validation study revealed that the Smithsonian Science Education Center's hands-on programs helped ELLs, students with IEPs, and FRLs outperform students in comparison schools in PASS assessments.
Learn more
Hands-on Science Raises Scores in Science, Reading, and Math
Hands-on Science Raises Scores in Science, Reading, and Math
The Smithsonian's 5-year LASER i3 validation study revealed that the Smithsonian Science Education Center's inquiry-based programs helped raise student achievement on science, reading, and math assessments.
Learn more
Summer School Engineering with Smithsonian Science
Summer School Engineering with Smithsonian Science
Bring the power of the Smithsonian into your summer program through engaging, problem-based modules that will improve reading and math while making science fun!
Learn more
Hands-On Science in a Digital World
Hands-On Science in a Digital World
The Smithsonian's Dr. Carol O'Donnell shares why you should focus on "the stuff" and how to order physical and digital experiences to drive learning and engagement.
Download the whitepaper
Smithsonian i3 LASER Study
Smithsonian i3 LASER Research Study
The Smithsonian Science Education Center recently completed a five-year validation study funded by the US Department of Education to test its theory of action—which it calls LASER (Leadership and Assistance for Science Education Reform). Evidence from the study supports the efficacy claims of hands-on science learning in K–8.
Download the study
Coherent Learning Progression: Easy as 1-2-3
Coherent Learning Progression: Easy as 1-2-3
For students to truly grasp science concepts, learning must logically progress lesson by lesson, unit by unit. The Smithsonian’s STCMS™ from Carolina does just that.
Download the concept storyline
Smithsonian Science Grade 1 Sampler
Smithsonian Science Grade 1 Sampler
From the all-new Smithsonian Science for the Classroom, the How Do We Send a Message Using Sound? lesson sampler highlights Lesson 2: Zoo Game. Students design a solution to the problem of sending a message a short distance without speaking. They use a pattern of drum beats to help a zookeeper feed the animals in a simple board game.
Download the sampler
Smithsonian Science Grade 2 Sampler
Smithsonian Science Grade 2 Sampler
From the all-new Smithsonian Science for the Classroom, the How Do We Stop Soil From Washing Away? lesson sampler highlights Lesson 2: Wind and Water. Students develop a model that represents land and how it is affected by wind and water. They carry out an investigation to provide evidence for how wind and water can change the shape of the soil and sand.
Download the sampler
STCMS™ Earth's Dynamic Systems Unit Sampler
STCMS™ Sampler: Earth’s Dynamic Systems
From the all-new STC Middle School, the Earth’s Dynamic Systems unit sampler highlights three lessons that build understanding of how dynamic systems change Earth’s surface. These lessons focus on analyzing and interpreting geological events, particularly volcanoes; the relationship between volcanic activity and earthquakes; and developing preparedness plans for geodynamic events.
Download the sampler
STCMS™ Structure and Function Unit Sampler
STCMS™ Sampler: Structure and Function
From the all-new STC Middle School, the Structure and Function unit sampler highlights three lessons that build understanding about cells. Students explore cell specialization and functions, the role that cells play in the development and survival of an organism, and unique structures that allow animals to better survive in their environment.
Download the sampler
STCMS™ Matter and Its Interactions Unit Sampler
STCMS™ Sampler: Matter and Its Interactions
From the all-new STC Middle School, the Matter and Its Interactions unit sampler highlights three lessons that build understanding of volume, mass, and density of liquids and solids. Students apply this information to design a solution to the challenge of recreating a density bottle with mystery liquids.
Download the sampler
STCMS™ Investigation: Genes and Molecular Machines
STCMS™ Investigation: Genes and Their Molecular Machines
With this sample investigation from STC Middle School, students design a flower, a pollinator, the resulting seed, and germination conditions.
Download the lesson
STCMS™ Investigation: Effects of Planetary Mass on an Orbiting Body
STCMS™ Investigation: Effects of Planetary Mass on an Orbiting Body
Explore gravity's role in the universe with this sample investigation from STC Middle School.
Download the lesson
Smithsonian STCMS™ Brochure
Smithsonian STCMS™ and the NGSS
The Smithsonian's STCMS™ is research-based science instruction focused on experiential phenomena, engineering, and design. Learn how it meets and exceeds the NGSS.
Download the brochure
Smithsonian STCMS™ Brochure
Smithsonian STCMS™ Brochure
The Smithsonian's STCMS™ is research-based science instruction focused on experiential phenomena, engineering, and design. Learn how it's built to meet your state standards.
Download the brochure
STCMS™ Lesson Example: Standards Alignment
STCMS™ Lesson Example: Standards Alignment
See how thoroughly standards are woven into each STCMS™ lesson.
Download the standards
STCMS™ Investigation: Modeling the Water Cycle on Earth
STCMS™ Investigation: Modeling the Water Cycle on Earth
Ignite your students' curiosity and potential with this hands-on investigation.
Download the lesson
STCMS™ Student Reading Selection: Medieval Warfare in Modern Times
STCMS™ Student Reading Selection: Medieval Warfare in Modern Times
An understanding of medieval warfare can enhance science understanding and literacy skills.
Download the lesson