• 1)  Science, as defined by the National Academy of Sciences, is the "use of evidence to construct testable explanations and predictions of natural phenomena, as well as the knowledge generated through this process."

    (2)  Recurring themes are pervasive in sciences, mathematics, and technology. These ideas transcend disciplinary boundaries and include patterns, cycles, systems, models, and change and constancy.

    (3)  The study of elementary science includes planning and safely implementing classroom and outdoor investigations using scientific processes, including inquiry methods, analyzing information, making informed decisions, and using tools to collect and record information, while addressing the major concepts and vocabulary, in the context of physical, earth, and life sciences. Districts are encouraged to facilitate classroom and outdoor investigations for at least 80% of instructional time.

    (4)  In Kindergarten, students observe and describe the natural world using their five senses. Students do science as inquiry in order to develop and enrich their abilities to understand scientific concepts and processes. Students develop vocabulary through their experiences investigating properties of common objects, earth materials, and organisms.

    (A)  A central theme throughout the study of scientific investigation and reasoning; matter and energy; force, motion, and energy; Earth and space; and organisms and environment is active engagement in asking questions, communicating ideas, and exploring with scientific tools. Scientific investigation and reasoning involves practicing safe procedures, asking questions about the natural world, and seeking answers to those questions through simple observations and descriptive investigations.

    (B)  Matter is described in terms of its physical properties, including relative size and mass, shape, color, and texture. The importance of light, heat, and sound energy is identified as it relates to the students' everyday life. The location and motion of objects are explored.

    (C)  Weather is recorded and discussed on a daily basis so students may begin to recognize patterns in the weather. Other patterns are observed in the appearance of objects in the sky.

    (D)  In life science, students recognize the interdependence of organisms in the natural world. They understand that all organisms have basic needs that can be satisfied through interactions with living and nonliving things. Students will investigate the life cycle of plants and identify likenesses between parents and offspring.

    (b)  Knowledge and skills.

    (1)  Scientific investigation and reasoning. The student conducts classroom and outdoor investigations following home and school safety procedures and uses environmentally appropriate and responsible practices. The student is expected to:

    (A)  identify and demonstrate safe practices as described in the Texas Safety Standards during classroom and outdoor investigations, including wearing safety goggles, washing hands, and using materials appropriately;

    (B)  discuss the importance of safe practices to keep self and others safe and healthy; and

    (C)  demonstrate how to use, conserve, and dispose of natural resources and materials such as conserving water and reusing or recycling paper, plastic, and metal.

    (2)  Scientific investigation and reasoning. The student develops abilities to ask questions and seek answers in classroom and outdoor investigations. The student is expected to:

    (A)  ask questions about organisms, objects, and events observed in the natural world;

    (B)  plan and conduct simple descriptive investigations such as ways objects move;

    (C)  collect data and make observations using simple equipment such as hand lenses, primary balances, and non-standard measurement tools;

    (D)  record and organize data and observations using pictures, numbers, and words; and

    (E)  communicate observations with others about simple descriptive investigations.

    (3)  Scientific investigation and reasoning. The student knows that information and critical thinking are used in scientific problem solving. The student is expected to:

    (A)  identify and explain a problem such as the impact of littering on the playground and propose a solution in his/her own words;

    (B)  make predictions based on observable patterns in nature such as the shapes of leaves; and

    (C)  explore that scientists investigate different things in the natural world and use tools to help in their investigations.

    (4)  Scientific investigation and reasoning. The student uses age-appropriate tools and models to investigate the natural world. The student is expected to:

    (A)  collect information using tools, including computers, hand lenses, primary balances, cups, bowls, magnets, collecting nets, and notebooks; timing devices, including clocks and timers; non-standard measuring items such as paper clips and clothespins; weather instruments such as demonstration thermometers and wind socks; and materials to support observations of habitats of organisms such as terrariums and aquariums; and

    (B)  use senses as a tool of observation to identify properties and patterns of organisms, objects, and events in the environment.

    (5)  Matter and energy. The student knows that objects have properties and patterns. The student is expected to:

    (A)  observe and record properties of objects, including relative size and mass, such as bigger or smaller and heavier or lighter, shape, color, and texture; and

    (B)  observe, record, and discuss how materials can be changed by heating or cooling.

    (6)  Force, motion, and energy. The student knows that energy, force, and motion are related and are a part of their everyday life. The student is expected to:

    (A)  use the five senses to explore different forms of energy such as light, heat, and sound;

    (B)  explore interactions between magnets and various materials;

    (C)  observe and describe the location of an object in relation to another such as above, below, behind, in front of, and beside; and

    (D)  observe and describe the ways that objects can move such as in a straight line, zigzag, up and down, back and forth, round and round, and fast and slow.

    (7)  Earth and space. The student knows that the natural world includes earth materials. The student is expected to:

    (A)  observe, describe, compare, and sort rocks by size, shape, color, and texture;

    (B)  observe and describe physical properties of natural sources of water, including color and clarity; and

    (C)  give examples of ways rocks, soil, and water are useful.

    (8)  Earth and space. The student knows that there are recognizable patterns in the natural world and among objects in the sky. The student is expected to:

    (A)  observe and describe weather changes from day to day and over seasons;

    (B)  identify events that have repeating patterns, including seasons of the year and day and night; and

    (C)  observe, describe, and illustrate objects in the sky such as the clouds, Moon, and stars, including the Sun.

    (9)  Organisms and environments. The student knows that plants and animals have basic needs and depend on the living and nonliving things around them for survival. The student is expected to:

    (A)  differentiate between living and nonliving things based upon whether they have basic needs and produce offspring; and

    (B)  examine evidence that living organisms have basic needs such as food, water, and shelter for animals and air, water, nutrients, sunlight, and space for plants.

    (10)  Organisms and environments. The student knows that organisms resemble their parents and have structures and processes that help them survive within their environments. The student is expected to:

    (A)  sort plants and animals into groups based on physical characteristics such as color, size, body covering, or leaf shape;

    (B)  identify parts of plants such as roots, stem, and leaves and parts of animals such as head, eyes, and limbs;

    (C)  identify ways that young plants resemble the parent plant; and

    (D)  observe changes that are part of a simple life cycle of a plant: seed, seedling, plant, flower, and fruit.

    Source: The provisions of this §112.11 adopted to be effective August 4, 2009, 34 TexReg 5063.