Author Archives: MrMusselman

About MrMusselman

K-5 Science Specialist for the Burlington Public Schools of Burlington, MA.

A more practical approach to self-assessment rubrics (?)

Self-assessment rubrics sound like a great idea in theory.  [My] thinking goes something like this… “I’ll have my students complete the rubric themselves first! It will make them reflect thoughtfully on their work and will save me some painful conversations about … Continue reading

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A week of learning as @NGSS_tweeps

This past week I was honored with the title of “guest tweeter” for @NGSS_tweeps, a rotating account of K-12 science teachers and administrators managed by middle school teacher and NGSS implementer, Patrick Goff. So after updating the account’s avatar and personal … Continue reading

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Using PhET Simulations to Explore the Cause and Effect Relationship between Forces and Motion

One of my goals this year is to develop a third grade forces and motion curriculum with a team of Burlington elementary teachers.  While this work is only in its infancy I am optimistic then at least one of the … Continue reading

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Modeling Celestial Motions and Next Generation Professional Development

The video, “Private Universe” showcasing Harvard graduates stumbling over the reasons for the seasons has thousands of views on YouTube and has been shared countless other times in science-ed classrooms. The sometimes laughable explanation are enough to make any space science educator … Continue reading

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Assessing Human Impact in the Cafeteria

Hundreds of mouths stood agape as six students in white “haz-mat” suits picked through a mountainous pile of trays, plastic wrappers, tater tots and pizza sticks. Shrieks and “ewwwwwww”s carried through the gymnasium. Students and teachers collectively held their noses. … Continue reading

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Engineering Pollinators (and Next Generation Engineering Curriculum!)

To bolster our curriculum council’s understanding of how engineering will be better integrated into our science curriculum, the focus of today’s extended PD was an agricultural engineering challenge to be implemented into our future 4th grade “Structure and Function” unit. The council meeting’s was … Continue reading

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Developing an Understanding of Light Energy through PhET Models

“Light moves in the form of waves” and is “reflected, refracted, and absorbed” are all traditional statements of light energy that become staples of assessment for student understanding. But whether students can apply this understanding is a big question. The NGSS … Continue reading

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