SC.6.N.3.1

Recognize and explain that a scientific theory is a well-supported and widely accepted explanation of nature and is not simply a claim posed by an individual.   Thus, the use of the term theory in science is very different than how it is used in everyday life.
General Information
Subject Area: Science
Grade: 6
Body of Knowledge: Nature of Science
Idea: Level 2: Basic Application of Skills & Concepts
Big Idea: The Role of Theories, Laws, Hypotheses, and Models - The terms that describe examples of scientific knowledge, for example; "theory," "law," "hypothesis," and "model" have very specific meanings and functions within science.
Date Adopted or Revised: 02/08
Date of Last Rating: 05/08
Status: State Board Approved
Assessed: Yes

Related Courses

This benchmark is part of these courses.
2002040: M/J Comprehensive Science 1 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
2002050: M/J Comprehensive Science 1, Advanced (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
2001010: M/J Earth/Space Science (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
2000010: M/J Life Science (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
2000020: M/J Life Science, Advanced (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
2003010: M/J Physical Science (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
7820015: Access M/J Comprehensive Science 1 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018, 2018 and beyond (current))
2002055: M/J Comprehensive Science 1 Accelerated Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
2003030: M/J STEM Physical Science (Specifically in versions: 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
2002200: M/J STEM Environmental Science (Specifically in versions: 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
2001025: M/J STEM Astronomy and Space Science (Specifically in versions: 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)
2000025: M/J STEM Life Science (Specifically in versions: 2015 - 2022 (current), 2022 and beyond)

Related Access Points

Alternate version of this benchmark for students with significant cognitive disabilities.
SC.6.N.3.In.1: Identify that a scientific theory is an explanation of nature supported by evidence.
SC.6.N.3.Su.1: Recognize that a scientific theory is an explanation of nature.
SC.6.N.3.Pa.1: Observe and recognize a predictable cause-effect relationship related to a science topic.

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Lesson Plans

Laws and Theories in Nature:

This lesson will begin with a presentation to discuss the major differences between hypotheses, theories and laws in science and society and identify several examples of laws and theories. The students will then go outside and make/write down/photograph examples of nature supporting these laws/theories.

Type: Lesson Plan

Investigate Cell Theory:

This lesson allows students to investigate the Cell Theory.

Type: Lesson Plan

Using Evidence to Support the Theory of Plate Tectonics:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text, a simulation and a video intended to support reading in the content area. The article addresses the use of computer models to predict that the Earth's tectonic plates will cease to move in the future. The evidence provided by these resources will be used to write an argument supporting the theory of plate tectonics. This lesson includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

Lesson Study Resource Kit

Exploring Diversity and Evolution grades 6-8:

This toolkit is designed to assist lesson study teams as they work to develop a unit on natural selection that conforms to the NGSSS for science and the State Standards for mathematics and English language arts.

Type: Lesson Study Resource Kit

Original Student Tutorial

As the Scientific Theory Turns:

Learn about scientific theories and how they can change in this space-themed, interactive tutorial

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Presentation/Slideshow

What is Science?:

Resource provides a succinct overview of the nature of science; what science is and is not. Information includes the aims of scientific pursuits, principles, process and thinking.

Type: Presentation/Slideshow

Text Resource

Earth's Tectonic Plates Won't Slide Forever:

This text is intended to support reading in the content area. The text describes future possible outcomes for the tectonic plates and the movement of the Earth’s crust. Using computer models, the article first discusses when crustal plate movement is thought to have begun. Then, it provides the reader with an account of some of the ways the Earth has changed due to the movement of plate tectonics. It then continues to use computer models to produce a simulation to show that these plate movements may stop millions of years from now.

Type: Text Resource

Original Student Tutorials Science - Grades K-8

As the Scientific Theory Turns:

Learn about scientific theories and how they can change in this space-themed, interactive tutorial

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Original Student Tutorial

As the Scientific Theory Turns:

Learn about scientific theories and how they can change in this space-themed, interactive tutorial

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Presentation/Slideshow

What is Science?:

Resource provides a succinct overview of the nature of science; what science is and is not. Information includes the aims of scientific pursuits, principles, process and thinking.

Type: Presentation/Slideshow

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.