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NGSS Navigator

Supporting Equity in the Classroom

Posted on 2020-04-03

Supporting Equity in the Classroom

This month’s Next Gen Navigator is focused on Supporting Equity in the Classroom. Many educators have heard the term equity, but some confusion still exists about how it looks in the classroom.

In this issue, the contributing writers discuss how they ensure their lessons are accessible and fair for all of their students. They also examine how educators empower students to access and lead their own learning when equity is a driving force in a unit/lesson design. The writers share their successes in implementing accessible and fair assessments, allowing every student an opportunity to demonstrate the science ideas they have learned.

I hope that readers of these pieces understand that equity is neither an afterthought nor something to inject into our lessons after they are designed. Rather, equity is something to focus on when we choose relevant, authentic phenomena, and it impacts how we engage students with the science and engineering practices and crosscutting concepts, as well as how we ensure students understand the science ideas. When we make equity a priority, we communicate to our students that we have considered each and every one of them before they even enter our classrooms. We show them that who they are and how they learn is just as important as what they are learning.

Jessica Holman


Jessica Holman

Next Gen Navigator Guest Editor

Jessica Holman is a K-8 Curriculum Assessment Specialist with Great Minds. She has worked as a special education teacher for 11 years in North Carolina and Kentucky. Holman holds a bachelor’s degree in special education from Winston-Salem State University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and a master’s degree in teacher leadership with a certification in instructional technology from Georgetown College in Georgetown, Kentucky. She served as an active science teacher leader in her school district; she collaborates with peers and integrates instruction into her blended learning classroom. Holman has worked with educators across Kentucky to communicate educational strategies that support the learning and growing of fellow educators. She is motivated by the opportunity for equitable education through the implementation of the NGSS and strives to ensure every student feels accepted and encouraged to learn science.

Using Senses in Nature to Experience Equity

Veteran educator Julia Deevers-Rich shares how she promotes equitable, nature-based learning opportunities for all through one of her favorite lessons, taking her kindergarten students outside to explore the school yard. Read more>>

NGSS: Planning for Science Success for All Students

Eighth grade science teacher Hallie Booth explains why she believes all students can be successful when lessons are designed to use the three dimensions to make sense of phenomena. Read more>>

Achieving Equity Through Assessments

Boone County High School science teachers Laura Littrell and Kevin Williams discuss how they implement multimodal, phenomenon-based assessments to ensure educational equity in their classrooms. Read more>>

Assessment Multilingual Learners Equity NGSS Preservice Science Education Professional Learning old Teacher Preparation Teaching Strategies Middle School Elementary High School

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