Curriculum Topic Study (CTS) Summary
Select a key lesson that allows you to see your students’ thinking or strands at an important
intersection for further learning. Use the Curriculum Topic Study Topic List to identify the topic
most relevant to this lesson. This topic will be the basis of your CTS summary.
CTS Topic Guide: _____________________________________ Page: ________
Curriculum: __________________________________________ Grade: _______
Accessing
Prior
Knowledge
1. What important ideas or skill make up this topic?
2. What is important for students to know and be able to do about this topic?
3. What learning opportunities or teaching strategies are most effective with
this topic?
4. What difficulties or misconceptions are associated with this topic?
Curriculum Topic Study (CTS) Summary
Using CTS: Choose a CTS study guide that best describes the topic covered in this set of lessons.
You will use this study guide to complete your CTS summary.
I.Identify
Adult
Content
Knowledge
1A: Science for All Americans
Readings: Chapter 11, Systems, pages 166-168
Systems
Any collection of things that have some influence on one another can be thought of as a
system. The things can be almost anything, including objects, organisms, machines,
processes, ideas, numbers, or organizations. Thinking of a collection of things as a system
draws our attention to what needs to be included among the parts to make sense of it, to
how its parts interact with one another, and to how the system as a whole relates to other
systems. Thinking in terms of systems implies that each part is fully understandable only
in relation to the rest of the system.
In defining a system – whether an ecosystem or a solar system, an educational or a
monetary system, a physiological or a weather system – we must include enough parts so
that their relationship to one another makes some kind of sense. And what makes sense
depends on what our purpose is. For example, if we were interested in the energy flow in
a forest ecosystem, we would have to include solar input and the decomposition of dead
organisms; however, if we were interested only in predator/prey relationships, those could
be ignored. If we were interested only in a very rough explanation of the earth’s tides, we
could neglect all other bodies in the universe except the earth and the moon; however, a
more accurate account would require that we also consider the sun as part of the system.
Drawing the boundary of a system well can make the difference between understanding
and not understanding what is going on. The conservation of mass during burning, for
instance, was not recognized for a long time because the gases produced were not included
in the system whose weight was measured. And people believed that maggots could grow
spontaneously from garbage until experiments were done in which egg-laying flies were
excluded from the system.
Thinking of everything within some boundary as being a system suggests the need to look
for certain kinds of influence and behavior. For example, we may consider a system’s
inputs and outputs. Air and fuel go into an engine; exhaust, heat, and mechanical work
come out. Information, sound energy, and electrical energy go into a telephone system;
information, sound energy, and heat come out. And we look for what goes into and comes
out of any part of the system- the outputs of some parts being inputs for others. For
example, fruit and oxygen that are outputs of plants in an ecosystem are inputs for some
animals in the system; the carbon dioxide and droppings that are the output of animals
may serve as inputs for the plants.
Some portion of the output of a system may be included in the system’s own input.
Generally, such feedback serves as a control on what goes on in the system. Feedback can
encourage more of what is already happening, discourage it, or modify it to make it
something different. For example, some of the amplified sound from a loudspeaker
system can feed back into the microphone, then be further amplified, and so on, driving
the system to an overload – the familiar feedback squeal. But feedback in a system is not
always so prompt. For example, if deer population in a particular location increases in one
year, the greater demand on the scarce winter food supply may result in an increased
starvation rate the following year, thus reducing the deer population in that location.
The way that the parts of a system influence one another is not only by transfers of
material but also by transfers of information. Such information feedback typically
involves a comparison mechanism as part of the system. For example, a thermostat
compares the measured temperature in a room to a set value and turns on a heating or
cooling device if the difference is too large. Another example is the way in which the
leaking of news about government plans before they are officially announced can provoke
reactions that cause the plans to be changed; people compare leaked plans to what they
would like and then endorse of object to the plans accordingly.
Any part of a system may itself be considered as a system – a subsystem – with its own
internal parts and interactions. A deer is both part of an ecosystem and also in itself a
system of interaction organs and cells, each of which can also be considered a system.
Similarly, any system is likely to be part of a larger system that it influences and that
influences it. For example, a state government can be thought of as a system that includes
county and city governments as components, but it is itself only one component in a
national system of government.
Systems are not mutually exclusive. Systems may be so closely related that there is no
way to draw boundaries that separate all parts of one from all parts of the other. Thus, the
communication system, the transportation system, and the social system are extensively
interrelated; one component – such as an airline pilot – can be part of all three.
1B: Science Matters – Achieving Scientific Literacy
Readings:
1. What big ideas and major concepts make up this topic?
2. What examples or contexts were used to explain the ideas?
3. What insights about the topic did you gain from this reading and how
might these insights inform your classroom practice?
Curriculum Topic Study (CTS) Summary
II. Consider
Instructional
Implications
IIA: Benchmarks for Science Literacy
Readings for selected grade levels: 11A, Systems general essay, pages 262-263;
grade span essays, pages 264-266
IIB: National Science Education Standards
Readings for selected grade levels: K-12, Unifying Concepts and Processes,
pages 115-116
Systems
One of the essential components of higher-order thinking is the ability to think about a
whole in terms of its parts and, alternatively, about parts in terms of how they relate to
one another and to the whole. People are accustomed to speak of political systems,
sewage systems, transportation systems, the respiratory system, the solar system, and so
on. If pressed, most people would say that a system is a collection of things and
processes (and often people) that interact to perform some function. The scientific idea
of a system implies detailed attention to inputs and outputs and to interactions among
the system components. If these can be specified quantitatively, a computer simulation
of the system might be run to study its theoretical behavior, and so provide a way to
define problems and investigate complex phenomena. But a system need not have a
“purpose” (e.g., an ecosystem or the solar system) and what a system includes can be
imagined in any way that is interesting or useful. Student in the elementary grades
study many different kinds of systems in the normal course of things, but they should
not be rushed into explicit talk about systems. That can and should come in middle and
high school.
Children tend to think of the properties of a system as belonging to individual parts of it
rather than as arising from the interaction of the parts. A system property that arises
from interaction of parts is therefore a difficult idea. Also, children often think of a
system only as something that is made and therefore as obviously defined. This notion
contrasts with the scientific view of systems as being defined with particular purposes in
mind. The main goal of having students learn about systems is not to have them talk
about systems in abstract terms, but to enhance their ability (and inclination) to attend
to various aspects of particular systems in attempting to understand or deal with the
whole system. Does the student troubleshoot a malfunctioning device by considering
connections and switches – whether using the terms input, output, or controls or not?
Does the student try to account for what becomes of all of the input in the water cycle –
whether using the term conservation or not/ The vocabulary will be helpful for students
once they have had a wide variety of experiences with systems thinking, but otherwise it
may mistakenly give the impression of understanding. Learning about systems in some
situations may not transfer well to other situations, so systems should be encountered
through a variety of approaches, including designing and troubleshooting. Simple
systems (a pencil or mousetrap), of course, should be encountered before complex ones
(a stereo system, a plant, the continuous manufacture of goods, ecosystems, or school
government.
A persistent student misconception is that the properties of an assembly are the same as
the properties of its parts (for example, that soft materials are made of soft molecules).
Sometimes it is true. For example, a politically conservative organization may be made
up entirely of conservative individuals. But some features of systems are unlike any of
their parts. Sugar is sweet, but its component atoms (carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen) are
not. The system property may result from what its parts are like, but the parts
themselves may not have that property. A grand example is life as a emergent property
of the complex interaction of complex molecules.
Kindergarten through Grade 2
Students in the elementary grades acquire the experiences that they will use in the
middle grades and beyond to develop an understanding of systems concepts and their
applications. They also can begin to attend to what affects what. Frequent discussion
of how one thing affects another lays the ground for recognizing interactions. Another
tack for focusing on interaction is to raise the question of when things work and when
they do not – owing, say, to missing or broken parts or the absence of a source of power
(batteries, gasoline).
Students should practice identifying the parts of things and how one part connects to
and affects another. Classrooms can have available a variety of dissectible and
rearrange able objects, such as gear trains and toy vehicles and animals, as well as
conventional blocks, dolls, and doll houses. Students should predict the effects of
removing or changing parts.
By the end of the second grade, students should know that:
Most things are made of parts.
Something may not work if some of its parts are missing.
When parts are put together, they can do things that they couldn’t do by
themselves.
Grades 3 through 5
Hands-on experience with a variety of mechanical systems should increase. Classrooms
can have “take-apart” stations where a variety of familiar hardware devices can be taken
apart (and perhaps put back together) with hand tools. Devices that are commonly
purchased disassembled can be provided, along with assemble instructions, to
emphasize the importance of the proper arrangement of parts (and incidentally, the
importance of language-arts skills, which are needed to read and follow instructions).
By the end of the 5th grade, students should know that:
In something that consists of many parts, the parts usually influence one another.
Something may not work as well (or not at all) if a part of it is missing, broken,
worn out, mismatched, or misconnected.
Grades 6 through 8
Systems thinking can now be made explicit – suggesting analysis of parts, subsystems,
interactions, and matching. But descriptions of parts and their interaction are more
important than just calling everything a system.
Student projects should now entail analyzing, designing, assembling, and
troubleshooting systems – mechanical, electrical, and biological – with easily
discernable components. Students can take apart and reassemble such things as
bicycles, clocks, and mechanical toys and build battery-driven electrical circuits that
actually operate something. They can assemble a sound system and then judge how
changing different components affects the system’s output, or observe aquariums and
gardens while changing some parts of the system or adding new parts. The idea of
system should be expanded to include connections among systems. For example, a can
opener and a can may be thought of as a system, but they both – together with the
person using them – form a larger system without which neither can be put to its
intended use.
By the end of the 8th grade, students should know that:
A system can include processes as well as things.
Thinking about things as systems means looking for how every part relates to
others. The output from one part of a system (which can include material, energy,
or information) can become the input to other parts. Such feedback can serve to
control what goes on in the system as a whole.
Any system is usually connected to other systems, both internally and externally.
Thus a system may be thought of as containing subsystems and as being a
subsystem of a larger system.
K-12, Unifying Concepts and Processes
Standard: As a result of activities in grades K-12, all students should develop
understanding and abilities aligned with the following concepts and processes:
Systems, order, and organization
Evidence, models, and explanation
Constancy, change, and measurement
Evolution and equilibrium
Form and function
Grades 9 through 12
Students should have opportunities – in seminars, projects, readings, and experiments –
to reflect on the value of thinking in terms of systems and to apply the concept in
diverse situations. They should often discuss what properties of a system are the same
as the properties of its parts and what properties arise from the interactions of its parts or
from the sheer number of parts. They should to see feedback as a standard aspect of
systems. The definitions of positive and negative feedback may be too subtle, but
students can understand that feedback may oppose changes that do occur (and lead to
stability), or may encourage more change (and so drive the system toward one extreme
or another). Eventually, they see how some delay in feedback can produce cycles in a
system’s behavior.
By the end of the 12th grade, students should know:
A system usually has some properties that are different from those of its parts, but
appear because of the interaction of those parts.
Understanding how things work and designing solutions to problems of almost
any kind can be facilitated by systems analysis. In defining a system, it is
important to specify its boundaries and subsystems, indicate its relation to other
systems, and identify what its inputs and its outputs are expected to be.
The successful operation of a designed system usually involves feedback. The
feedback of output from some parts of a system to input for other parts can be
used to encourage what is going on in a system, discourage it, or reduce its
discrepancy from some desired value. The stability of a system can be greater
when it includes appropriate feedback mechanisms.
Even in some very simple systems, it may not always be possible to predict
accurately the result of changing some part or connection.
Developing Student Understanding
This standard presents broad unifying concepts and processes that compliment the
analytic, more disciplined-based perspective presented in the other content standards.
The conceptual and procedural schemes in this standard provide students with
productive and insightful ways of thinking about and integrating a range of basic ideas
that explain the natural and designed world.
The unifying concepts and processes in this standard are a subset of the many unifying
ideas in science and technology. Some of the criteria used in the selection and
organization of the standard are:
The concepts and processes provide connections between and among traditional
scientific disciplines.
The concepts and processes are fundamental and comprehensive.
The concepts and processes are understandable and usable by people who will
implement science programs.
The concepts and processes cab be expressed and experienced in a developmentally
appropriate manner during K-12 science education.
Each of the concepts and processes of this standard has a continuum of complexity that
lends itself to the K-4, 5-8, and 9-12 grade level clusters used in the other content
standards. In this standard, however, the boundaries of disciplines and grade-level
divisions are not distinct – teachers should develop student’s understandings
continuously across grades K-12.
Systems and subsystems, the nature of models, and conservation are fundamental
concepts and processes included in this standard. Young students tend to interpret
phenomena separately rather than in terms of a system. Force, for example, is perceived
as a property of an object rather than the result of interacting bodies. Students do not
recognize the differences between parts and whole systems, but view them as similar.
Therefore, teachers of science need to help students recognize the properties of objects,
as emphasized in grade-level content standards, while helping them to understand
systems.
As another example, students in middle school and high school view models as physical
copies of reality and not as conceptual representations. Teachers should help students
understand that models are developed and tested by comparing the model with
observations of reality.
Teachers in elementary grades should recognize that students’ reports of changes in
such things as volume, mass, and space can represent errors common to well-recognized
developmental stages of children.
Examine the
resources
indicated in
section two of
the CTS study
guide.
1. What suggestions are provided for effective instruction at your grade
level?
2.
What insights about the topic did you gain from this reading and how
might these insights inform your classroom practice.
Curriculum Topic Study (CTS) Summary
III. Identify
Concepts and
Specific Ideas
IIIA: Benchmarks for Science Literacy
Readings for selected grade levels: 11A, Systems, pages 264-266
IIIB: National Science Education Standards
Readings for selected grade levels: K-12, Systems, Order, and Organization,
pages 116-117
Kindergarten through Grade 2
Students in the elementary grades acquire the experiences that they will use in the
middle grades and beyond to develop an understanding of systems concepts and their
applications. They also can begin to attend to what affects what. Frequent discussion
of how one thing affects another lays the ground for recognizing interactions. Another
tack for focusing on interaction is to raise the question of when things work and when
they do not – owing, say, to missing or broken parts or the absence of a source of power
(batteries, gasoline).
Students should practice identifying the parts of things and how one part connects to
and affects another. Classrooms can have available a variety of dissectible and
rearrange able objects, such as gear trains and toy vehicles and animals, as well as
conventional blocks, dolls, and doll houses. Students should predict the effects of
removing or changing parts.
By the end of the second grade, students should know that:
Most things are made of parts.
Something may not work if some of its parts are missing.
When parts are put together, they can do things that they couldn’t do by
themselves.
Grades 3 through 5
Hands-on experience with a variety of mechanical systems should increase. Classrooms
can have “take-apart” stations where a variety of familiar hardware devices can be taken
apart (and perhaps put back together) with hand tools. Devices that are commonly
purchased disassembled can be provided, along with assemble instructions, to
emphasize the importance of the proper arrangement of parts (and incidentally, the
importance of language-arts skills, which are needed to read and follow instructions).
By the end of the 5th grade, students should know that:
In something that consists of many parts, the parts usually influence one another.
Something may not work as well (or not at all) if a part of it is missing, broken,
worn out, mismatched, or misconnected.
Grades 6 through 8
Systems thinking can now be made explicit – suggesting analysis of parts, subsystems,
interactions, and matching. But descriptions of parts and their interaction are more
important than just calling everything a system.
Student projects should now entail analyzing, designing, assembling, and
troubleshooting systems – mechanical, electrical, and biological – with easily
discernable components. Students can take apart and reassemble such things as
bicycles, clocks, and mechanical toys and build battery-driven electrical circuits that
actually operate something. They can assemble a sound system and then judge how
changing different components affects the system’s output, or observe aquariums and
gardens while changing some parts of the system or adding new parts. The idea of
system should be expanded to include connections among systems. For example, a can
opener and a can may be thought of as a system, but they both – together with the
person using them – form a larger system without which neither can be put to its
intended use.
By the end of the 8th grade, students should know that:
A system can include processes as well as things.
Thinking about things as systems means looking for how every part relates to
others. The output from one part of a system (which can include material, energy,
or information) can become the input to other parts. Such feedback can serve to
control what goes on in the system as a whole.
Any system is usually connected to other systems, both internally and externally.
Thus a system may be thought of as containing subsystems and as being a
subsystem of a larger system.
K-12, Unifying Concepts and Processes
Standard: As a result of activities in grades K-12, all students should develop
understanding and abilities aligned with the following concepts and processes:
Systems, order, and organization
Evidence, models, and explanation
Constancy, change, and measurement
Evolution and equilibrium
Form and function
Grades 9 through 12
Students should have opportunities – in seminars, projects, readings, and experiments –
to reflect on the value of thinking in terms of systems and to apply the concept in
diverse situations. They should often discuss what properties of a system are the same
as the properties of its parts and what properties arise from the interactions of its parts or
from the sheer number of parts. They should to see feedback as a standard aspect of
systems. The definitions of positive and negative feedback may be too subtle, but
students can understand that feedback may oppose changes that do occur (and lead to
stability), or may encourage more change (and so drive the system toward one extreme
or another). Eventually, they see how some delay in feedback can produce cycles in a
system’s behavior.
By the end of the 12th grade, students should know:
A system usually has some properties that are different from those of its parts, but
appear because of the interaction of those parts.
Understanding how things work and designing solutions to problems of almost
any kind can be facilitated by systems analysis. In defining a system, it is
important to specify its boundaries and subsystems, indicate its relation to other
systems, and identify what its inputs and its outputs are expected to be.
The successful operation of a designed system usually involves feedback. The
feedback of output from some parts of a system to input for other parts can be
used to encourage what is going on in a system, discourage it, or reduce its
discrepancy from some desired value. The stability of a system can be greater
when it includes appropriate feedback mechanisms.
Even in some very simple systems, it may not always be possible to predict
accurately the result of changing some part or connection.
K-12, Systems, Order, and Organization
The natural and designed world is complex; it is too large and complimented to
investigate and comprehend all at once. Scientists and students learn to define small
portions for the convenience of investigation. The units of investigation can be referred
to as “systems.” A system is an organized group of related objects or components that
form a whole. Systems can consist, for example. Of organisms, machines, fundamental
particles, galaxies, ideas, numbers, transportation, and education. Systems have
boundaries, components, resources flow (input and output), and feedback.
The goal of this standard is to think and analyze in terms systems. Thinking and
analyzing in terms of systems will help students keep track of mass, energy, objects,
organisms, and events referred to in the other content standards. The idea of simple
systems encompasses subsystems as well as identifying the structure and function of
systems, feedback and equilibrium, and the distinction between open and closed
systems.
Science assumes that the behavior of the universe is not capricious, that nature is the
same everywhere, and that it is understandable and predictable. Students can develop
an understanding of regularities in systems, and by extension, the universe; they then
can develop understanding of basic laws, theories, and models that explain the world.
Newton’s Laws of force and motion, Kepler’s Laws of planetary motion, conservation
laws, Darwin’s theory of natural selection, and chaos theory all exemplify the idea of
order and regularity. An assumption of order establishes the basis for cause-effect
relationships and predictability.
Prediction is the use of knowledge to identify and explain observations, or changes, in
advance. The use of mathematics, especially probability, allows for greater or lessor
certainty of predictions.
Order – the behavior of units of matter, objects, organisms, or events in the universe –
can be described statistically. Probability is the relative certainty (or uncertainty) that
individuals can assign to selected events happening (or not happening) in a specified
space or time. In science, reduction of uncertainty occurs through such processes as the
development of knowledge about factors influencing objects, organisms, systems, or
events; better and more observations; and better explanatory models.
Types and levels of organization provide useful ways of thinking about the world.
Types of organization include the periodic table of elements and the classification of
organisms. Physical systems can be described at different levels of organization – such
as fundamental particles, atoms, and molecules. Living systems also have different
levels of organization – for example, cells, tissues, organs, organisms, populations, and
communities. The complexity and number of fundamental units change in extended
hierarchies of organization. Within these systems, interactions between components
occur. Further, systems at different levels of organization can manifest different
properties and functions.
Examine the
resources
indicated in
section three
of the CTS
study guide.
1. What learning goals align well with this topic?
2. How do these goals help you clarify what is important to teach in this
topic?
3. How does the learning goal change from one grade span to the next?
4. What insights about the topic did you gain from this reading and how
might these insights inform your classroom practice?
Curriculum Topic Study (CTS) Summary
IV. Examine
Research on
Student
Learning
IVA: Benchmarks for Science Literacy
Readings: 11A, Systems, pages 355-356
11a. Systems
The Science Curriculum Improvement Study (SCIS) curriculum led children to
approach observation and analysis of natural phenomena by thinking of them
as systems of interacting objects (Karplus & Thier, 1969). Research done in
connection with SCIS indicates elementary students may believe that a system
of objects must be doing something (interacting) in order to be a system or that
a system that loses a part of itself is still the same system (Garigliano, 1975; Hill
& Redden, 1985). Studies of student thinking show that, at all ages, they tend to
interpret phenomena by noting the qualities of separate objects rather than by
seeing the interactions between the parts of a system (Driver et al., 1985).
Force, for instance, is considered as a property of bodies (forcefulness) rather
than as an interaction between bodies. Similarly, students tend to think that
whether a substance burns or not is being solely decided by the substance
itself, whereas from a scientist's perspective, the process of burning involves
the interaction of the burning substance and oxygen.
When students explain changes, they tend to postulate a cause that produces a
chain of effects one after another (Driver et al., 1985). In considering a
container being heated, students think of the process in directional terms with a
source applying heat to the receptor. From a scientific point of view, of course,
the situation is symmetrical, with two systems interacting, one gaining energy
and the other losing it (Driver et al., 1985). Concentrating on the inputs and
outputs of a system often requires a different, time-independent view, which
students may not take to be an explanation. Students often do not seem to
appreciate that the idea of energy conservation may help explain phenomena.
Studies reporting students' difficulties with energy conservation suggest
students should have opportunities to describe systems both as sequences of
changes over time and as energy inputs and outputs (a systems approach)
(Brook & Driver, 1984).
Student explanations of material change seldom include certain kinds of causes
that are central to a scientific understanding of the world (Brosnan, 1990); for
instance, that parts interact to produce wholes that have properties the parts do
not. For children, wholes are like their parts. Brosnan (1990) summarizes all this
by presenting two stereotypical views of the nature of change—the commonsense view and the scientific view (pp. 208-209):
Characteristics of a common-sense view of change:




Properties belong to objects.
The properties of an object are the same as those of the bits that make
it up—not all of which may be visible at any one time.
There are many kinds of stuff.
Changes in macroscopic properties are the result of equivalent changes
in the microscopic particles.

If properties change it is because the bits that cause that property have
moved away, come into view, changed from, grown or disappeared.
New properties can be caused by the arrival of new bits.
Characteristics of a scientific view of change:





Examine the
resources
indicated in
section four of
the CTS study
guide.
Properties belong to systems.
The properties of an object are different in kind from those bits that
make it up.
There are fundamentally only a few kinds of stuff.
Changes in macroscopic properties are the results of changes in
arrangements of unchanging microscopic particles.
If properties appear or disappear it is because the arrangement of an
unchanging set of continuing particles has altered—at a fundamental
level substance is always conserved.
1. What specific misconceptions or alternative ideas might a student have
about this topic?
2. Which ideas might be more resistant to change?
3. Are there examples of questions or tasks that could be used to find out
what students know about this topic? (Science Probes, etc)
4. What insights about the topic did you gain from this reading and how
might these insights inform your classroom practice?
Curriculum Topic Study (CTS) Summary
V. Examine
Coherency
and
Articulation
V: Atlas of Science Literacy
Selected maps to read: Designed Systems, pages 34-35
Systems, pages 132-133
People may not be able to actually make or do everything that they can design. 3B/1
Even a good design may fail. Sometimes steps can be taken ahead of time to reduce the
likelihood of failure, but it cannot be entirely eliminated. 3B/2
Systems fail because they have faulty or poorly matched parts, are used in ways that
exceed what was intended by the design, or were poorly designed to begin with. 3B/4…
Something may not work as well (or at all) if a part of it is missing, broken, worn out, or
misconnected. 11A/2
Something may not work if some of its parts are missing. 11A/2
The successful operation of a designed system often involves feedback. Such feedback
can be used to encourage what is going on in a system, discourage it, or reduce its
discrepancy from some desired value. The stability of a system can be greater when it
includes appropriate feedback mechanisms. 11A/3
The output from one part of a system (which can include material, energy, or
information) can become the input to other parts. …11A/2…
The essence of control is comparing information about what is happening to what
people want to happen and then making appropriate adjustments. This procedure
requires sensing information, processing it, and making changes. …3B/3…
Complex systems have layers of controls. Some controls operate particular parts of the
system and some control other controls. Even fully automatic systems require human
controlat some point. 3B/3
Computer control of mechanical systems can be much quicker than human control. In
situations where events happen faster than people can react, there is little choice but to
rely on computers. Most complex systems still require human oversight, however, to
make certain kinds of judgments … to react to unexpected failures, and to
evaluate how well the system is serving its intended purposes. 8E/3
Most things are made of parts. 11A/1
Thinking about things as systems means looking for how every part relates to others.
11A/2…
In almost all modern machines, microprocessors serve as centers of performance
control. …3B/3
The more parts and connections a system has, the more ways it can go wrong. Complex
systems usually have components to detect, back up, bypass, or compensate for
minor failures. 3B/5
In something that consists of many parts, the parts usually influence one another.
11A/1
Inspect, disassemble, and reassemble simple mechanical devices and describe what the
various parts are for; estimate the effect that making a change in one part of the system
is likely to have on the system as a whole. 12C/5
Mathematical modeling aids in technological design by simulating how a proposed
system would theoretically behave. 2B/1
Examine the
resources
indicated in
section five of
the CTS study
guide.
1. What connections can you identify among concepts or skills in the
topic?
2. What prerequisite ideas can you identify for learning the topic at your
grade level?
3. What insights about the topic did you gain from this reading and how
might these insights inform your classroom practice?
Curriculum Topic Study (CTS) Summary
VI. Clarify
State
Standards
and District
Expectations
Examine the
state
standards
document
and your
district
expectations.
Cross-cutting
EALR 1
Systems
The Big Ideas of
Science
…is a way of thinking that makes it
possible to analyze and understand
complex phenomena.
Grades
Predictability
9-12
and Feedback
Create realistic models with feedback loops,
and recognize that all models are limited in
their predictive power.
Grades
6-8
Inputs, Outputs,
Boundaries & Flows
Look at a complex situation and see how it can
be analyzed as a system with boundaries, inputs
outputs, and flows.
Grades
Complex
4-5
Systems
Analyze a system in terms of subsystems
functions as well as inputs and outputs.
Grades
2-3
Role of Each Part
in a System
See how parts of objects, plants, and animals
are connected and work together.
Grades
K-1
Part-Whole
Relationships
Identify parts of living and non-living systems.
Download

Curriculum Topic Study (CTS) Summary