Tool 1: Using the NGSS to plan a unit of instruction

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The purpose of Tool 1 is to help teachers develop an understanding of the three dimensions of the NGSS—disciplinary core ideas in science and engineering, science and engineering practices, and the crosscutting concepts in science and engineering— and to use these dimensions to develop a blueprint for designing an instructional unit. Teachers begin this process by thinking about how they currently teach a science topic. They work with an NGSS card deck that has all the elements on a standards page separated onto individual cards. As a result of the Tool 1 process, teachers end up with a unit blueprint that integrates performance expectations, disciplinary core ideas, science and engineering practices, crosscutting concepts, as well as connections to the nature of science.