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What are Crosscutting Concepts?

The National Research Council's (NRC) "Framework for K-12 Science Education" describes a vision of what it means to be proficient in science; it rests on a view of science as both a body of knowledge and an evidence-based, model and theory building enterprise that continually extends, refines, and revises knowledge.

One of the three dimensions described in the Framework is "Crosscutting Concepts". Crosscutting concepts have application across all domains of science. As such, they are a way of linking the different domains of science. They include: Patterns, similarity, and diversity; Cause and effect; Scale, proportion and quantity; Systems and system models; Energy and matter; Structure and function; Stability and change. The Framework emphasizes that these concepts need to be made explicit for students because they provide an organizational schema for interrelating knowledge from various science fields into a coherent and scientifically-based view of the world.

At Crosscutting Concepts, LLC, our mission is to empower students by developing products that embody these concepts. We build realistic scenarios, like the Mystery of Lyle & Louise, to engage students in the process of learning how science can impact everyday life.

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