Embracing an inclusive and challenging curriculum
Amplify Science, our science curriculum for all grades, blends hands-on investigations, literacy-rich activities, and interactive digital tools to empower students to think, read, write, and argue like real scientists and engineers. Here are a few of the current Amplify projects happening in KIPP Chicago Middle Schools.
Each Amplify middle school unit has two engineering internships. For the first engineering internship in 7th grade, students used a virtual design tool to create a tsunami warning system for the country of Sri Lanka. Students use their knowledge on plate motion to create a system that would have a low cost, 0-1 false alarms, and give the people of Sri Lanka enough evacuation time if and when a tsunami approaches.
At the end of every unit, students participate in science seminar where they create and present their arguments to a scientific phenomenon. In the Science Seminar sequence, students apply their knowledge of plate motion to make an argument about whether divergent or convergent movement best explains the pattern of geologic activity in an area in Mexico known in geology as the Jalisco Block. Students learn that one of Dr. Moraga’s colleagues in Guadalajara needs their help communicating to local residents about plate motion in the area. Students then review evidence about plate motion in the region. The purpose of this lesson is to introduce students to the context of the Science Seminar and to acquaint them with the evidence that they will use to support one of two claims.