Integrated Mathematics, Science & Technology
The IMaST program consists of hundreds of activities that have been carefully designed and extensively tested to assure that students learn specific academic content. These activities are organized into "Learning Cycles" that allow the student to explore and apply the content. Throughout the process teachers provide guidance and monitor student understanding. Teachers are encouraged to ask appropriate questions rather than provide specific answers. The learning cycles are organized in a manner that promotes integration between disciplines. For example, as students are learning the best ways to organize and manipulate data in their math class, they are experimenting and gathering data on lift and drag of airplane wings in science class and using that data as they design and build model airplanes in the technology class.
The learning cycles are compiled into a series of 16 books. Together, they address all national standards in mathematics, science, and technology for the middle school grade levels.
IMaST: 5th-8th Grade Module Description Washington Academy
• Tools for Learning is the first module of the IMaST curriculum. This unit prepares students to learn mathematics, science, and technology concepts on their own through inquiry and discovery and sets the foundation for the rest of the IMaST modules. They will learn how to collect data, identify patterns, and communicate ideas. They will also gather knowledge about the natural and human-made world by controlling variables and designing solutions to problems. The Tools for Learning module begins with the challenge of designing, building and racing a student-sized car!
• Patterns of Mobility engages students in describing the structure and function of numbers, the movement of living organisms, and transportation devices as they relate to mobility. Classification systems, the history of transportation, human and animal movement, and migration patterns will all be explored. The module begins by engaging students in the challenge of working together and moving as a non-human blob!
• Patterns Above Us asks students to consider all of the patterns that exist between the Earth’s surface and the layers of our atmosphere. As they learn about these patterns, they will collect pollution, determine how much oxygen is around us and even make some good things to eat! Patterns Above Us begins with an opening challenge of designing, building, and flying a hot air balloon.
• Patterns in Weather asks students to use number relationships to identify and predict patterns of change in climate and weather. Students will have the opportunity to explore weather instruments, the use of tracking technology, and weather’s influence on architectural design during their activities including a simulation of a hurricane! Throughout the module, data collection and interpretation skills will be applied. The opening challenge sets the stage as students observe and reflect on weather’s influence during a natural disaster movie.
• Patterns Below Us gives students the opportunity to learn about earthquakes and volcanoes! They will explore how the Earth is always changing, both gradually and suddenly, and the dangers that these changes can bring. As students discover these patterns and look at the history of the Earth, they will gain a better understanding of their world and how to exist with it responsibly. The opening challenge allows students to explore the diversity of raw materials found in the ground and in a range of projects using reverse engineering.
• Patterns Around Us engages students in an exploration of three methods of purifying and cleaning water: filtering, distillation, and chemical treatments. Students will have hands-on practice in filtering and distilling water throughout the module’s learning cycles. The opening challenge presents a weekend hiking trip scenario that requires students to purify water using chemical treatments.
• Patterns Within Us explores how genetic patterns determine observable traits. During this module students will learn more about the concepts of genetic engineering, probability, and the connections between heredity and reproduction. Activities include comparing the structure and function of plant and animal cells, predicting hereditary traits through generations, and discussing appropriate applications of genetic engineering. Students will be required to put their understanding of fractions, decimals, percents, and probability into action. An opening challenge looks at the observable traits of a well-loved snack, popcorn!
• Shaping Our World engages students in exploring geometry, adaptation in nature, and transportation. Orienteering, topographical map development, and vehicle design are included in activities designed in the areas of math, science and engineering technology. The module begins with the challenge to identify and analyze the effects that time, movement, and geometry have on the safe transportation of a dropped egg. Students will need to use all that they learn during this module to engineer a vehicle that can travel on land and in water!
• The Body Works explores the key concepts of energy, exercise and nutrition, and pre-algebra. Students will look at nutritional labeling, conditioning of the body, and aerobic capacity to learn more about how mathematic equations and statistical analysis help us to interpret data. Students will then be tasked with communicating health information to the public through the development of nutrition logs, exercise plans and an informational brochure.
• Forecasting gives students the opportunity to learn more about flight and aerodynamics. Students will use data analysis as well as algebraic graphing to calculate slope, pressure, temperature and volume. The opening challenge engages students in building an airplane launcher and the ultimate paper airplane! Throughout the module, students will explore the engineering design process. These experiences will assist students in developing ideas on the future of transportation as well as the use of wind technology.
• Living on the Edge examines the effects that influence the relationships between human-made and natural worlds and between populations and their environment. Through the study of ecology, agriculture, biotechnology, and data analysis, students will formulate questions, design studies, and collect data. As students explore renewable energy sources, they will make decisions about the global distribution of natural resources and design devices that utilize appropriate technology.
• Human Settlements engages students in the challenge of designing a sustainable human settlement that considers the impacts of and the relationship among the built environment, human behavior, and the natural environment. Students will learn about structural design as it relates to capacity as well as energy efficiency and the environmental impacts of electrical generation.
• Communication Pathways explores the key concepts of electricity, magnetism, and light. Students will dive into how these forms of energy are used to transmit sound waves from one place to another. A study of physics is an the heart of this module.
• Systems gives students the opportunity to explore natural and human-made systems including number systems, the solar system, the systems humans develop as part of everyday living. Classroom activities engage students in exploring, modeling, and inventing systems.
• Animal Habitats centers on planning a balanced ecosystem that considers the impact of a relationship between the physical environment and the behavior of animals.