Will Rogers Science Department

    Amplify Hall of Science


    Introduction to Amplify Science: All Rogers’ students enrolled in science classes will participate with a new phenomena-based curriculum that blends hands-on investigations, literacy-rich activities, and interactive digital tools to empower students to think, read, write, and argue like real scientists and engineers. Will Rogers Science teachers utilize the domain specific curriculum in AMPLIFY.


    Amplify Science Curriculum per Grade Level:


    Amplify Science Assessment Policy: The assessment system is grounded in the principle that students benefit from regular and varied opportunities to demonstrate understanding through performance. In practice, this means that for the overwhelming majority of assessment opportunities in each unit, student conceptual understanding is revealed through engagement in Science Engineering Practices. This commitment to multidimensional performance is clear in the embedded assessment opportunities that occur in nearly every lesson, as students investigate phenomena; construct explanations; develop, revise, and use models; and engage in scientific argumentation. Examples below:


    • Pre-Unit Assessment (formative): A combination of auto-scored multiple-choice questions and rubric-scored written responses. At the beginning of each unit, individually scorable assessment opportunities reveal students’ prior knowledge and preconceptions, and gauge their facility for using the SEPs and Guidance is provided to support teachers to use entry-level assessment information to monitor and support progress along the unit Progress Build, which is the learning progression that grounds each unit. Additional guidance is provided early in each unit to make use of students’ demonstrations of facility with SEPs and CCCs to guide instructional decisions and determine modifications for students.

    • On-the-Fly Assessments (OTFAs) (formative): Three-dimensional formative assessment opportunities integrated throughout the lessons. OTFAs are designed to help a teacher make sense of student activity during a learning experience (e.g., student-to-student talk, writing, model construction) and provide evidence of how a student is coming to understand core concepts and developing dexterity with SEPs and CCCs. Each OTFA includes a “Look for” and “Now what?” section to guide teacher use of assessment information. The “Look for” section provides a description of how a student might demonstrate understanding of a concept and/or practice through the activity (and, where appropriate, what evidence of common preconceptions would entail). Importantly, the “Now what?” section provide specific instructional suggestions for what to do in response to the assessment information gathered, and, where possible, highlights existing resources and opportunities within the unit for additional practice with the relevant ideas.

    • End-of-chapter assessments (formative): Student progress is assessed through a variety of multidimensional performance tasks, including: written scientific explanations, argumentation, developing and using models, and designing engineering solutions.

    • Student Self-Assessments (formative): One per chapter; brief meta-cognitive opportunities for students to reflect on their own learning, ask questions, and reveal ongoing thoughts about unit content.

    • Critical Juncture Assessment (CJ) (formative): Occurring toward the toward the midpoint of each unit, these help teachers to ensure all students are ready before moving on to a new phase of instruction. Furthermore, the CJs include recommendations for differentiating classroom instruction based on student performance on the assessment.

    • Science Seminar and final written argument (formative and summative components): Culminating performance task for each core unit where students in grades 6–8 are introduced to a new real-world problem, collect and analyze evidence, examine a number of claims, and then engage in a full-class discussion where they must state which claims are best supported by the evidence, all while making clear their reasoning that connects the evidence to the claims. After the seminar, students then individually write their final scientific argument, drawing on the DCIs, SEPs, and CCCs they have used over the course of the unit to develop a sophisticated and convincing argument that addresses the problem they’ve been investigating. Rubrics, scoring guides, and examples of student responses at each scoring level are provided to teachers to support the assessment of students’ understanding of concepts and specific practices.

    • End-of-Unit Assessment (summative): Combination of auto-scored multiple-choice questions and rubric-scored written responses. Summative assessments for each unit are designed to provide valid, reliable, and fair measures of students’ progress and attainment of three-dimensional learning.

    • Benchmark assessment (summative): Delivered three times per year in grades 6–8, benchmark assessments report on students’ facility with each of the grade-level appropriate DCIs, SEPs, CCCs, and performance expectations of the NGSS




Department Contacts


    Kristen Snyder    

    Department Chair & Amplify Science Educator
    NGSS Physical Science - 8th grade
    Room 37

    Naomi Harper

    NGSS Science & Amplify Science Educator
    NGSS Life Science -7th grade
    NGSS Earth Science - 6th grade
    Room 40

    Phillip Jackson

    Amplify Science Educator
    NGSS Earth Science - 6th grade
    Room 8

    Danielle Sassano

    Amplify Science Educator
    NGSS Earth Science - 6th grade
    Room 31

    Jason McKnight

    Amplify Science Educator
    NGSS Physical Science - 8th grade
    NGSS Life Science - 7th grade
    Room 11
Last Modified on February 13, 2023