Kyle Koyle


Fall 2021


Capstone Project

Degree Name



Karen Moroz and Jennifer Carlson

Content Expert

Chris Peterson and Donna Rainboth


Public School science educators are given the task to teach students dynamic, interpretable material based on grade level as well as national and state standards. Science is at the forefront of many jobs and future economic stability and also encompasses a wide range of disciplinary topics. Having educators use the best resources in curriculum development and teaching methodology is crucial to successfully empowering future scientific research and understanding. The Whole Ecosystems in Balance (WEB), A Natural Resource Curriculum, originally created in 1995, was used to support science teaching efforts in Eastern Oregon. In order to continue its relevance, the curriculum needed to be revised and aligned with current standards. In an attempt to use the most pertinent and current resources available in WEB curriculum revision, this capstone puts into practice findings in answer to the research question, How to develop a highquality sixth-grade science curriculum to meet Next Generation Science Standards while incorporating teaching best practices? Inquiry-based learning, Systems Thinking and Culturally Sustainable Practices (CSP) were identified through research as the most effective means by which to encourage student growth and comprehension. The WEB curriculum which was created as an Environmental Education (EE) resource developed for Public School use, incorporated these principles as they are part of founding EE principles. Next Generation Science Standards were developed in 2013 and adopted by the state of Oregon in 2014, were not included in the WEB curriculum. Considering the depth of science education and the constant need for highquality resources, Environmental and Public School education would benefit from a more cohesive bond between curriculum development and classroom incorporation. By so doing will help achieve the consistent use of teaching best practices and science education relevancy. As a result of this capstone, the WEB curriculum was successfully aligned with NGSS and revised to better meet the identified best practices for the sixth grade. It stands as an example of a highquality curriculum resource for teachers in Eastern Oregon and for future curriculum revision.

Project Type



Curriculum, Environmental Studies, Science, Teachers/ Teaching








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