Achieve.org has announced that Interactions, the 9th grade physical science curriculum developed through a collaboration between the MSU CREATE for STEM Institute, the Concord Consortium, and the Learning Partnership USA, has been awarded its first NGSS Design Badge. Interactions was recognized for the quality of its Unit 1, the example CREATE submitted for review. Using a special rubric designed to evaluate how well materials meet the Next Generation Science Standards, Achieve gave the Interactions unit its highest rating of "E: Example of high-quality NGSS design."
In announcing the award, Achieve notes that "many science instructional materials claim to be aligned to the NGSS with little or no evidence." It intends the NGSS Design Badge to enable educators to make "smarter decisions about which instructional materials to use."
Interactions helps high school students develop an integrated understanding of the forces and energetics involved in interactions that occur between atoms and molecules. It was one of the first projects funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF DRL 1232388) to develop instructional materials and strategies that focus on physical science core ideas identified in "A Framework for K-12 Science Education" (NRC, 2011), the "College Board Standards for College Success" (College Board, 2009), and the NGSS.