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  FOSS Information

Implementing FOSS

Staff Development
Materials Management
  Administrative Support
    K-6 Case Studies
        Case Study 1
        Case Study 2
        Case Study 3
        Case Study 4
        Case Study 5
    Middle School Case Studies
        Case Study 6
        Case Study 7

FOSS in Multiple Classrooms

  Using FOSS Technology
      Schools Using FOSS


  Frequently Asked Questions about the FOSS Program
    Teacher Preparation Videos
    Sales Info

Info for Teachers and Parents

Elementary School: Case Study 1Case Study 2Case Study 3Case Study 4Case Study 5
Middle School: Case Study 6Case Study 7

FOSS Implementation Case Study 4

7 elementary schools
6800 students K–6
Average of three teachers at each grade level per building
Suburban community

The previous science program was hands-on and created by the district from a variety of courses over a 20-year period.


Change Process

  • Teacher discontent dictated change.
  • Curriculum subcommittee studied available programs and recommended FOSS adoption.
  • Major factors in the choice were that it was hands-on, was appropriate for developmental states of students, included a variety of assessments, incorporated cooperative groups, and offered a complete set of materials.

Implementation Details

  • District has made a full commitment to the FOSS program.
  • Implemented in grades 3–6 for the first year.
  • Added units of combination grades and developed assessment focus in year 2.
  • Phased in K–2 modules as they became available.
  • Program phased in over a three-year period with full complement of materials, including teacher guides, equipment kits, teacher preparation videos, Science Essential Videos, and reading materials.


Science Teacher Trainers

  • Received strong support from district level administrators and clerical staff.
  • One classroom teacher per grade level became science specialist as mentorship; each team continued full time in classroom during school year and did extra summer work.
  • Received stipend and release days for responsibility.
  • Sold and disposed of the old science materials.
  • Ordered all necessary materials.
  • Prepared kits and teacher guides for distribution.
  • Organized the District Science Materials and Conference Center.
  • Planned and presented district in-services.
  • Attended national, state, and local meetings, including the FOSS Institute with LHS staff, the National Science Teachers Convention, the State Science Teachers Convention, and a conference on Teaching Science through Literature and Arts.
  • Responded to numerous inquiries from other districts.
  • Worked with district media coordinator to upgrade media collection to support the FOSS program.
  • Oversaw the science materials budget.
  • Began a collection of science curriculum resource materials.
  • Meet periodically to troubleshoot overall program implementation.

Teacher In-service Program

  • Each teacher attended session at beginning of each of the first three quarters, with the fourth-quarter session optional.
  • Combination of district in-service days (2), release time with substitutes (1), and after-school session. First three were half-day sessions and the last one was 2 hours.
  • Presentation of modules by grade-level science teacher trainers.
  • Future in-service of teachers new to FOSS or changing grade level will be done by a combination of science teacher trainers, teacher preparation videos, and mentor teachers.


FOSS Teacher Manuals

  • Manuals signed out to each teacher to use and personalize while teaching at a particular grade level.
  • Added Think Sheets for identified Science Essentials Videos.
  • Added Science Essentials Video listing with district order number.
  • Prepared district FOSS resource books for each module.

FOSS Modules/Kits

  • Set of 16 kits, 4 per grade level, housed in each elementary building.
  • Measurement kit shared by two teachers.
  • Added most teacher-provided materials.
  • Reduced cooperative group size from four to three and provided additional materials so all students have active role.
  • Added some materials from the Measurement kit directly to a few other kits.
  • Provided ten basins for each classroom for organizing materials for groups.
  • Repackaged materials in freezer zip bags with labels (kit name, grade, item description, and number enclosed) to facilitate organization, inventory, and ordering.
  • Designed inventory and order form for each kit.
  • Added available trade books to provide interdisciplinary dimension.
  • For in-service purposes, scheduled by science trainers the first year and by grade level within each school in following years.
  • Materials for resupply ordered from district Science Materials Center upon completion of the module and sent directly to the teacher with the kit.

District Science Materials Center

  • Inventory in database.
  • Materials organized according to kit with multiple-use materials stored together.
  • Staffed by part-time clerical position.
  • Inventoried in December and April. Order in January to reach maximum, and in April to reach maximum on nonconsumables and get consumables for the following year.


  • Science teacher trainers made special presentations to administrators, board members, principals, substitute teachers.
  • Received strong support from district level administrators and clerical staff.


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