Education Technology

Engaging Students in Science: Using Crosscutting Concepts to Prompt Student Sensemaking of Phenomena

May 4, 2022

Session overview

“A Framework for K–12 Science Education” identifies three dimensions around which K–12 science instruction must be built [1]. One of these dimensions, crosscutting concepts (CCC), unifies the study of science and engineering across all domains of both disciplines. Though the dimension of CCC is essential to support students in learning science and engineering, it is also the least understood.

This TI STEM Exchange session provided attendees with meaningful insights on how to implement the dimension of crosscutting concepts to structure student thinking, using prompts that engage them in reasoning about how and why phenomena occur. The session presenters shared how embedding the CCC in classroom questions and prompts can provide formative assessment opportunities that focus student thinking and support their making sense of phenomena.

Learn from our panel of professionals

Peter McLaren

National Science Consultant
Next Gen Education, LLC

Photo of Stacey van der Veen

Stacey van der Veen

Founder and Lead Consultant
Leadership in Science, LLC

photo of Rachael Manzer

Rachael Manzer

STEM Coach
Winchester Public Schools

photo of Brett Moulding

Brett Moulding

Director of Professional Development
Partnership for Effective Science Teaching and Learning

photo of Candace Penrod

Candace Penrod

Science Supervisor
Teaching and Learning
Salt Lake City School District


Who should attend?

  • K–12 science educators


Please contact Wendy Peel, or 214.405.2779.

[1] National Research Council. 2012. "A Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas." Washington, D.C.: The National Academies Press.