In the early days of CAPSI/Pasadena (then
Project SEED), leaders decided to try to introduce four
kit-based modules per grade in the elementary schools
The choice of which modules to use was limited by what
was then available. Other influential factors included
what was in use in school districts such as Mesa,
Arizona's, where a module-based system of elementary
science education had been in place for a number of
Of the 28 modules eventually adopted for the Pasadena
program, some are taken directly or derived from three
National Science Foundation-funded programs: the Insights
series, developed by the Education
Development Center; the Science and
Technology for Children series, developed by the National Science Resources
Center; and the Full
Option Science System series, developed by the Lawrence
Hall of Science.
In addition, some of the modules in use in Pasadena
were adapted from modules developed by EDC's earlier
Elementary Science Study (ESS) project. Some of these
modules are still available from a company called Delta
and have been renamed the Delta Science modules. CAPSI
has also adapted some of the modules for Pasadena from
materials developed in the Mesa, Arizona, schools and the
Highline School District outside of Seattle. Finally,
some of the modules in use by Pasadena schools were
developed specifically for the CAPSI program.
In Pasadena, four modules are used per grade level.
The current science curriculum modules used by
Pasadena and their origins are as follows. For a short
description of the modules, go to the CAPSI
website. CAPSI/Pasadena do not necessarily recommend that
these same modules be used by other school districts. For
more on that point, see Materials Selection and CAPSI's
Recommendation below this list.
- Beginning Senses. CAPSI's
- Myself and Others. From EDC's
- Pond and Aquarium Life. CAPSI's
own, modified from a Delta unit.
- Sunlight and Shadows. CAPSI's own,
similar to Delta's Sunshine and
- Growing Seeds. Inspired by
ESS and Delta materials.
- Senses. From EDC's Insights.
- Frogs and Tadpoles. From ESS.
- Pollution and Ecology. CAPSI's own.
- Magnets. Inspired by manuals from
the Mesa, Arizona, and Highline, Washington,
- Weather. Similar to Delta's Weather
- Bu tterflies and Moths. CAPSI's
own, similar to ESS and Delta modules.
- Changes. CAPSI's own,
inspired by Mesa, Arizona's, manual and EDC's
- Clayboats. From the ESS
- Structures. CAPSI's own,
inspired by EDC's Insights and ESS
- Brine Shrimp. From ESS.
- Scientific Reasoning. CAPSI's own,
inspired by a module from FOSS and an ESS module
- The Environment and Its Pollution.
CAPSI's own, as authored by Pasadena Unified
School District teachers.
- Rocks and Charts. Inspired
by ESS and Delta.
- Behavior of Mealworms. Inspired by
ESS and Delta.
- Small Things. From ESS.
- Mystery Powders. CAPSI's own,
inspired by EDC 's Insights, ESS, and Delta.
- Batteries and Bulbs. From EDC's
- Crayfish. CAPSI's own, inspired by
- Daytime Astronomy. CAPSI's own,
inspired by ESS.
- Magnets and Motors. From the NSRC's
- Experiments with Plants. From the
- Human Body Systems. From the EDC's
- There Is No Away. From the EDC's
Materials Selection by Other School Districts. CAPSI/Pasadena
lists 14 curriculum units that it strongly believes
Center pilot schools should explore when they are in the
earliest phase of materials adoption. All 14 are drawn
from the three NSF-funded curriculum development programs
mentioned above: Insights, FOSS, and STC. The recommended
- for Grade K -- Insights' Myself and
Others and Balls &
- for Grade 1 -- Insights' Growing
Things and Senses
- for Grade 2 -- STC's Weather and Me
and Life Cycle of Butterflies
- for Grade 3 -- Insights' Structures
- for Grade 4 -- STC's Microworlds
and Insights' Changes of State
- for Grade 5 -- Insights' The
Mysterious Powder and Circuits
- for Grade 6 -- STC's Magnets and
Motors and Experiments
The CAPSI Recommendation. CAPSI/Pasadena
leaders recommend that final selection of modules by
school districts should be from the three NSF-funded
curriculum development programs responsible for the 14
modules they favor for initial exploration. The reasons
include the number of modules offered by these programs
(67 total for grades K-6), the range of disciplines and
topics covered--physical, life, and earth science,
technology, and scientific reasoning--and the
organization of modules to support teachers.