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Dimension 1: Practices

Developing and using models

A practice of both science and engineering is to use and construct models as helpful tools for representing ideas and explanations. These tools include diagrams, drawings, physical replicas, mathematical representations, analogies, and computer simulations.

The field of science frequently utilizes a diverse range of models and simulations to aid in the understanding and explanation of natural occurrences. These models extend beyond what is directly observable, allowing scientists to envision a realm that has yet to be observed. Moreover, models facilitate the formulation of predictions through logical reasoning, enabling hypotheses to be tested using the "if ... then ... therefore" framework.
In the field of engineering, models and simulations play a crucial role in the analysis of existing systems. They allow engineers to identify potential flaws and test out possible solutions for new problems. Additionally, engineers utilize different types of models to evaluate proposed systems and gain insights into the strengths and limitations of their designs. These model-based approaches serve as valuable tools in the engineering process, enabling thorough examination and optimization for optimal outcomes.

The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) recognize and emphasize the importance of three main dimensions for learning science. These dimensions are essential components in forming each standard—or performance expectation. When taken together, they allow students a chance to gain a more cohesive understanding of science concepts as they progress through their courses.

Science Education

Three Dimensional Learning

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Kids Corner

Discover engaging NGSS-aligned lessons, activities, and resources designed to ignite curiosity and foster critical thinking in young minds. Explore hands-on experiments, interactive projects, and real-world applications that bring science and engineering practices to life for kids. Start inspiring the next generation of scientists and engineers today!

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