At the elementary level, science instruction takes place during 2-3 hour-long blocks per week taught within students’ regular classrooms.  The units of study are aligned with the grade-level content prescribed in the Massachusetts curriculum frameworks.  Instruction during the science blocks are hands-on, inquiry-based, and exploratory, with the goal of developing in students the knowledge, skills, and habits of scientists.  Science content is also embedded into literacy instruction through the use of non-fiction texts related to the science content that students are currently studying.


As part of the district's continual curriculum review process, during the 2015-2016 school year, the Westwood Public Schools engaged in a PreK-12 review of its science curriculum to assess program strengths, identify areas for improvement, and establish a process for aligning our curriculum to the state's newly adopted learning standards for Science, Technology, and Engineering.  As a result of that process, the Science Curriculum Review Committee articulated a vision for science education in Westwood that will guide our work in classrooms:


  • Students in the Westwood Public Schools engage in an inquiry-based approach to science: they ask good questions, and the systematic pursuit of answers leads them to more questions.   
  • Students work in teams to observe and analyze, design and refine, and they use a wide array of technologies and tools to support their creations and investigations.   
  • Students discover and draw on the connections among the sciences as well as the connections between science and other disciplines.  In addition to learning science concepts, they learn to think, listen, read, write and speak like scientists.  
  • Most importantly, students enjoy exploring their world and universe through science.  They follow the trail of their curiosity as they investigate questions and problems that matter both locally and globally.  


The district will be aligning curriculum and instruction to the new learning standards over the next 3 years, focusing on one core discipline per year.  For the 2016-2017 school year, the focus will be Physical Science.  The district has identified STEM Scopes as the foundational program.  

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