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Science Curriculum Coordinator Contact Information

Name: Renee Devlin


Phone: 215-944-1168

Primary Location of Coordinator: Council Rock South High School  

Science Curriculum Overview

The Council Rock School District delivers an inquiry-based science curriculum to students in grades K-12. Students acquire a knowledge in the core disciplines of Life Sciences, Physical Sciences, and Earth and Space Sciences consistent with PA STEELS* Standards. Through Technology & Engineering Practices and authentic learning, students develop observational skills, scientific appreciation for evidence, respect for living things, scientific reasoning, problem solving and critical thinking skills. Students follow the constructive approace to learning which includes: engagement, exploration, explanation, elaboration and evaluation.

*STEELS - Science, Technology & Engineering, and Environmental Literacy & Sustainability Standards

Science K-6: 

The elementary science curriculum has an inquiry-based approach, which follows Best Practice in the teaching of science as recommended by the National Science Foundation.  Students learn scientific concepts that align with Pennsylvania Department of Education Standards: STEELS (Science, Technology & Engineering, Environmental Literacy & Sustainability). Content is presented in a hands-on approach utilizing Smithsonian Science and School Speciality/Delta/FOSS kits along with supplemental resources.  The kits contribute to the student's conceptual understanding of science at a level that is appropriate to their stage of development. Students will develop scientific attitudes and habits of mind, such as curiosity, respect for evidence, and the capacity for critical reflection, flexibility, and sensitivity to living things, as well as develop scientific reasoning and critical thinking skills. Instructional content spirals at every grade level to include the major branches of science. 

Science 7-8: 

The science curriculum builds upon the foundations of elementary school science in a more in-depth approach to the material with an emphasis on lab activities. A sound scientific background strengthens skills such as creative problem solving, critical thinking, working cooperatively in teams, using technology effectively and valuing life-long learning. The ultimate goal is to help students acquire the knowledge and skills to become scientifically literate citizens.

The 7th-grade program focuses PA Academic Content Standards (STEELS), including Ecology and Environmental standards. Topics of the course include the Nature of Science, Scientific Method, Measurements, Tools of Science, Ecology, Cells, Cycles, Natural Resources, and Human Impact on Ecosystems.

The 8th-grade program focuses  PA Academic Content Standards (STEELS), including Earth Science. Topics of the course include an in depth study of Geology, Meterology, Astronomy and the Fundamentals of Physical Science.  

Middle school students are encouraged to participate in local, regional and state science fairs.

Science 9-12:The high school science curriculum consists of a broad selection of courses designed to meet the needs, interests, and abilities of all students. Teacher recommendation and previous achievements in the science curriculum guide course selection. Academic rigor is inherent in the high school science curriculum to prepare students for the next level of science. The intent of the course structures and requirements is to offer a solid foundation in all areas of science, which are challenging and appropriate, and which will serve all students as they prepare to face their changing world.

Students must complete 3 credits in science as a graduation requirement.  After completion of Biology, all students take a Keystone Biology State Assessment in the spring of that year.  AP courses include AP Biology, AP Environmental Science, AP E& M, Physics, AP M, Physics, and AP Chemistry. Some electives include Honors Anatomy & Physiology, Honors Experimental Research in STEM, Accelerated Behavioral Science, Accelerated Forensics I and II, Accelerated STEM Concepts in Biotechnology, Astronomy, Meteorology, Environmental Science, Plant and Animal Science. 

Science Enrichment Opportunities

You Be The Chemist- (5th-8th) You Be The Chemist 

YBTC is an innovative academic competition that engages grade 5-8 students in learning about important chemistry concepts, scientific discoveries, and laboratory safety. Challenge competitions are exciting events that take place across the country, encouraging the collaboration of industry members, schools, and community organizations, as together, they educate students about the value of science education and the role of chemistry in their everyday lives.

2024 HMS First Place State Winners: 

Secondary Science Fair Opportunities (7-12th grade) Science Fair Opportunities

Content Area Standards

K-12 STEELS Standards updated May 2023

Priority Standards

The priority standards denote the essential learning that is most critical for all students to understand and do in the particular subject, grade or course. Teachers will teach all standards, but will work collaboratively to ensure students learn the priority standards as they are critical to the next grade, next course, or post-secondary success.

Priority Standards for High School

Priority Standards for Middle School

Science textbook series by grade & course

Science Textbooks 2024-2025:

 Middle Level and High School Course Content Guides 

Middle School Program Planning Guide

High School Program Planning Guide