There's no national curriculum or learning standards in the US, but there are standards created by organizations that are widely used. One of these is the Next Generation Science Standards. The Alabama standards are inspired/informed by NGSS, but are not identical.
Still you may find it interesting/inspiring to look at NGSS because they break down science and engineering not just in terms of disciplinary concepts, but also practices of science and engineering and cross-cutting concepts that connect students' learning across content areas and grade levels. Read more about the 3D standards here.
If you've never done "human subjects research" before or gone through the Institutional Review Board, it's a great idea to get training and understand it in depth before you plan or engage in an educational research project.
That said, developing lesson plans for teachers to adapt and use in their own classrooms is not considered research, but is exempt under the Common Rule as a "established or commonly accepted educational settings". Teachers can invite guest speakers to their classroom, consistent with school or district policies. They can also adopt quiz questions or assessment tools you have created for their classroom.
Where your project may become research is when you want to collect data from students or teachers for your use in research presentations and publications, not simply evaluating whether the lesson was effective. Consult with the IRB or someone with experience conducting human subjects research to decide if your plans constitute evaluating the lesson (may be exempt) or conducting research in an education setting (not exempt).
We'll post videos about how to use the state's Course of Study to see how your lesson can align to the state standards. But if you want to look at it in advance, here is the link to the COS for science.
What do I have to include? We'll provide training during the first event and with videos, but just to get a sense of what a K-12 lesson plan involves, we have created a lesson plan template to get you started.
SciREN Alabama Lesson Plan Template
If you are interested in learning more about this nationwide network of researchers and teachers, we highly recommend you check out official SciREN website. Here you can learn more about SciREN, the different SciREN teams (including SciREN Alabama) and events, and find resources for participating researchers, educators and sponsors.
Learn more today by visiting SciREN.org, we know you will be so glad you did!
Students who come from groups that are underrepresented STEM are more likely to feel like STEM is not “for” them. Groups of students who are less likely to feel engaged by STEM (generally) include girls, first-generation college students, rural students, and racially minoritized groups. Part of this detachment is that these groups of students are more likely to want to serve their community with their careers (altruistic career goals) and aren't as motivated by salary or prestige when choosing a career.