Human Energy Systems | IM & Storyline

Here, we present two ways to think about how lessons are sequenced in the Human Energy Systems Unit. The Instructional Model, immediately below, emphasizes how students take on roles of questioner, investigator, and explainer to learn and apply scientific models in each section of the unit. Further below, the Unit Storyline Chart highlights the central question, activity, and answer that students engage with in each lesson of the Human Energy Systems Unit.

Instructional Model

Like all Carbon TIME units, this unit follows an Instructional Model (IM) designed to support teaching that helps students achieve mastery at answering the driving question through use of disciplinary content, science practices, and crosscutting concepts. To learn more about this design, see the Carbon TIME Instructional Model.

The instructional model for the Human Energy Systems Unit includes two phases, described in the Unit Overview, in which students play the role of questioners, investigators, and explainers. The first phase focuses on helping students to understand, analyze, and explain multiple phenomena associated with climate change (What is happening to the planet?). The second phase focuses on global carbon cycling (What causes changes in CO2?). Across the unit, classroom discourse is a necessary part of three-dimensional Carbon TIME learning. The Carbon TIME Discourse Routine document provides guidance for scaffolding this discourse in lessons.

Human Energy Systems Unit Map

The core of the Carbon TIME Instructional Model is the Observation, Patterns, Models (OPM) triangle, which summarizes key aspects to be attended to as the class engages in unit inquiry and explanation. The OPM triangle for the Human Energy Systems Unit, shown below, articulates the key observations students make during the unit investigation, the key patterns they identify through analyzing their investigation data, and the central scientific model that can be used to answer the unit’s driving question.