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STEM Lesson Creation Coaching Framework to Improve the Pedagogy of K-5 Teachers Implementing the NGSS


Research Team

Principal Investigator: Raymond Reichenberg

Funding Information

Funding Agency: U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Subcontract from: StarrMatica

Award Date: Sep 1, 2020

End Date: Aug 31, 2022


* This project is funded by a subcontract from StarrMatica.

Highly effective elementary school teachers are essential to a students’ future success in STEM fields — a potential problem for schools that have chronic issues hiring effective teachers.

These issues are sometimes compounded by the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), which include significant changes from previous science standards. 

Research suggests extensive, effective professional development is required to successfully implement NGSS. However, rural schools have more limited professional development opportunities because of financial and geographic limitations.

The Phase II development of StarrMatica NextGen Science (SNGS) is designed to offer a comprehensive, online science professional development solution to rural districts on tight budgets and with limited time for in-person professional development. This innovative framework acts as a virtual science coach to enhance K-5 science teachers' ability to facilitate NGSS lesson development regardless of their previous training, experience or curriculum materials.

Phase I of the project demonstrated the digital framework’s potential to effectively help elementary teachers create high-quality lessons with supplementary materials in less time and with greater alignment to the NGSS than a lesson created with their own methods and materials.

Phase II aims to further develop the platform to include three modules of videos, exemplars, templates and examples addressing the NGSS, science content knowledge, questioning strategies and every K-5 NGSS performance expectation.

Rural Schools and Communities, Research, Measurement and Evaluation Methods, Early Childhood Education and Development, Academic Intervention & Learning