Students will engage in the exploration of the four disciplinary core ideas in science; life sciences, earth sciences, physical sciences, and the scientific process and scientific applications. In each grade, the use of technology, engineering and art is integrated within the science curriculum. In the Early Elementary years, students are introduced to scientific patterns, such as cycles. They eagerly explore and answer questions relevant to the world around them as they engage in explorations of mammals, fish, reptiles, insects, weather, trees, seeds, biomes, solids and liquids, and the water cycle.
Science continues to be inquiry based in the Middle Elementary years. Students continue to study the four disciplinary core ideas, as well as use technology to connect their work at The Cooper School to the work of student scientists around the globe. Students compare and collect data, begin writing lab reports detailing their use of the scientific process, and explore science tools of investigation. Students collaborate on projects that are meaningful and purposeful to them, all while charting growth and change, structure and function, and cause and effect. Students are expected to apply a scientific concept to content knowledge.
In the Upper Elementary years, the four disciplinary core ideas continue to be examined. Students are expected to reach performance standards based on understanding and application. Students independently engage in scientific practices, and design experiments using the scientific method to present during the science fair. Our older students delve deeper into engineering design methods and model construction. In addition, our outdoor education program supports the integration of science learning in our backyard biome and local community. Students graduate with the skills, practices and concepts necessary to demonstrate developmentally appropriate proficiency as they gather, describe, interpret and use data about the world. Our students develop a passion for environmental stewardship and conservation through our environmental science strand. Students learn through hands on investigation of our backyard biome, compost and garden area. Students in all grade levels seek practical solutions to environmental problems as they learn how to integrate and apply background knowledge. Fifth graders culminate their environmental studies unit by a weeklong trip to Green River Preserve in Cedar Mountain, NC.