Scientific observation has its own special place in the 4-5s’ classroom. Students are learning to examine and investigate the constant and exciting changes of the physical world around them. This is accomplished primarily through our weekly visits to Central Park where students engage in both teacher-directed explorations as well as independent play-based interactions with the natural world.  As students see the seasons change outside, they also experience change and growth in the classroom. In the fall, they witness the metamorphosis of the monarch caterpillar becoming a butterfly. Later in the spring, the 4-5s incubate duck eggs to experience the wonder of nature as the ducklings hatch and grow. Caring for, watching, and nurturing plants and animals in their classroom are important parts of the 4-5s science curriculum. Students are continually learning how to be scientists as they ask questions about what they observe and note the changes that occur around them all the time.
The 5-6s’ science curriculum encourages students to notice and begin to document the changes in the natural world around them. Students engage in hands-on investigations and nature play in the green spaces in our neighborhood. In our courtyard garden on the 4th floor of the school building, students tend to plants, utilize various gardening tools, and learn about the composting process by contributing their own food scraps to be composted. This creates myriad opportunities for science jobs and the practice of care for our school community. Students investigate the different parts of plants and monitor how our plants are growing and changing over time. In the winter, the curriculum turns to physical science, investigating simple machines such as ramps, levers and pulleys. In the spring, students plant seeds indoors in our Growlab and, when they are ready, they transplant them outside.
The 6-7s' science curriculum challenges students to investigate, observe, record and share their findings as well as complete their first research project for their bird study. They begin the year by working on skills of observation and notation, learning how to make a scientific drawing and to write descriptive sentences. Students study insects in the classroom and natural spaces in our school’s neighborhood and document the complete metamorphosis of the monarch butterfly. In the winter, the 6-7s turn to physical science and experiment with objects that sink and float. In the spring, they learn about the physical and behavioral characteristics of birds, hatch chicks in the classroom, and birdwatch in Central Park. 
The 6-7s engage in scientific discussions, where they share their observations and raise questions that lead to further investigation. We use Central Park, the school’s courtyard, and other natural spaces in the community as part of our laboratory. Students return to specific locations throughout the school year, which allow them to become connected to a place and notice all the minute changes that occur throughout the year in nature.
The 7-8s’ science curriculum focuses on the interconnectedness of living things and activates students as environmentalists. Classes make weekly trips to Central Park, a place where students can formally extend their scientific learning as well as informally make a close bond with the natural world. In the fall, we utilize the park to study the lives of trees. During the winter, we move into the classroom and investigate the decomposition process. Students work with and care for various decomposers, such as pill bugs, worms, and millipedes. We inoculate logs with mushroom spores and cook with our harvest. Outdoors, students hunt for fungi, search for insects in rotting logs, and observe natural decay firsthand.
In the spring, students explore human habitats through electrical circuits, learning about energy and its cycles and consumption. In the spring, we return to our outdoor classroom, Central Park, and engage in a sustainability project facilitated through Imaginative Inquiry.
The  8-9s’ science curriculum shifts students’ focus to systems and interdependence in nature. Students investigate human relationships to and their impact on the environment as well as complete their second research project for their mammal study. The science curriculum complements the social studies unit about Indigenous Peoples of the U.S. They learn about the ecology of the Eastern woodlands, including how the Manhattan landscape looked before the arrival of Europeans. Students spend time building shelters in Central Park as well as at the Farm. 
The 8-9s explore different ecosystems, habitats, and food webs while following the flight of the monarch butterfly from Canada to Mexico. Through integrated collaboration with Spanish, art, and science, students dive into the science, environmental impact, beauty, and lore of these butterflies. Next, 8-9s learn about animal classification and begin their large mammal study which is also integrated into social studies, Spanish, and art. 
In the spring, the 8-9s return to their study of ecology, this time focusing on waterways, river ecology, and topography. They learn about interdependent relationships in our local waterways, including those of NYC citizens.
The 9-10s science program introduces students to experimental design and engages students in their first year-long citizen science project. Students continue to construct understanding of scientific concepts through discovery and problem solving during hands-on experimentation with light, sound, the human body, and simple machines. Students will further their understanding of the scientific process by asking questions, designing experiments, making predictions, and recording and analyzing data to come up with logical conclusions. During this process, the 9-10s will delve into drawing detailed diagrams, creating models, and writing and talking about their scientific thinking in a group as well as individually.
Students begin the year with a focus on light and sound, and they learn to manipulate both to see how their qualities can be changed. Using their powers of observation, they look at ways that light and sound function in our everyday world, both natural and built. This leads into the study of the human body. Through models, dissection, and close observation, 9-10s will explore the various systems that keep our bodies functioning and healthy. In keeping with the theme of systems, the 9-10s move into simple machines and how humans use them to multiply the efficiency of the work we do. At key points through the year, students learn how to collect data pertaining to street trees' seasonal changes and then submit their data to an online citizen science site to help inform scientists about larger seasonal trends happening with NYC trees. 
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