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BALTIMORE COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS Dr. Joe A. Hairston s Superintendent s 6901 Charles Street sTowson, MD s 21204 DIVISION OF CURRICULUM AND INSTRUCTION Department of STEM John R. Quinn, Executive Director

Office: (410) 887-4671

Office of Science PreK-12 George Newberry, Director

Office: (410) 887-4251 Fax: (410) 687-1340

November 8, 2011

Dr. Claude Mayberry Science Weekly Magazine 2141 Industrial Parkway, Suite 103-A Silver Spring, MD 20904 Dear Dr. Mayberry, It was a pleasure talking to you, Mr. Blondell, and Ms. Smith last week about Science Weekly Magazine. Thank you for including us in the discussion of how Science Weekly can be used to support STEM. In our discussion, my team and I identified features of Science Weekly that, in our opinion, contribute to its value as a curriculum supplement and resource to support development of literacy in science, reading, and writing. I have recapped them for you in the following list: ·

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Each issue is colorful, eye-catching, and visually appealing. Graphics are professionally done, and the publisher utilizes cartoons, photographs, maps, graphs, and visual organizers appropriately for each grade or reading level. Topics are current, interesting, newsworthy, highly engaging, and are designed to stimulate and foster students’ natural curiosity about the world around them. Articles have relevancy and real-world connections. The information in each issue is well-organized and supports the Maryland State Curriculum for both science and language arts. In each issue, scientific experiments are used to help students understand challenging scientific concepts. Experiments provide hands-on opportunities at all grade levels. Experiments increase in complexity and sophistication across the grade levels. Student understanding evolves as related concepts are also incorporated into the lab activities. Each issue incorporates technology. Activities and approaches embrace the gamut of learning preferences. Content is interdisciplinary and clearly demonstrates the interrelationships among science, mathematics, language arts, social studies, and often the aesthetic arts. Each issue approaches science through discovery and inquiry.


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Concepts are introduced in an age-appropriate, developmental sequence and increase in complexity, depth, and sophistication at successive reading levels. This feature makes the publication appropriate for grade levels Kindergarten through Grade 6 and to differentiate at a particular grade level for students at different reading levels. Questions and activities provided to students address all levels of Bloom’s taxonomy. Students at all levels are encouraged to pose scientific questions. Each issue incorporates vocabulary development strategies to help students learn new words. These strategies include spelling exercises, puzzles, and opportunities to visualize vocabulary terms through drawings and manipulatives. Each issue incorporates story telling for the younger students and expository writing for the older students. The expository writing component includes short and extended writing, creative writing, journaling, writing conclusions based on details of evidence gleaned from laboratories, and Internet or other types of research. In each issue, students are asked to read for information, to perform a task, and for literary experience. In each issue, students are asked to apply knowledge learned to solve a problem or develop a deeper understanding about a complex concept or situation. Each issue of the magazine examines a different scientific topic. Over the course of a publication year, topics integrate all five goals of the state science curriculum.

Science Weekly is the only elementary science periodical provided by subscription to Baltimore County elementary schools. Our teachers are incorporating it into instruction in K through 5 and recognize its usefulness as a curriculum supplement and support. And, because Science Weekly integrates language arts, mathematics, and social studies with science, the magazine provides a vehicle by which students can incorporate a variety of skills as they explore their curiosity about the world around them. We look forward to our continued collaboration as you evolve Science Weekly to keep pace with school districts’ transition to Common Core Standards and Next Generation Science Standards. Thank you for your interest in and commitment to the students in Baltimore County. Sincerely yours,

George A. Newberry Director, PreK-12 Science C:

Eric Cromwell Connie Flowers Andrew Gaylor


 

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