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Claim - Evidence - Reasoning provides a framework for students to Construct an Explanation (sometimes it helps when engaging in argumentation as well). It is important to distinguish between the two practices. While the framework outlines CER, it is not necessary the process in which students will craft their explanation. They may gather evidence, to construct a claim supported by their evidence, and use reasoning to justify their response. In this module, you'll explore structures and gain insight as to how to best support students in this practice. 


Graphic Organizers




The best way to plan for a CER is to do it yourself. What evidence will students gather? How might they think about the reasoning? Will they develop claims to select a claim best supported?


Be sure to share your completed planning tool with me ( for credit in this module..


Put it into action! This is a key structure and skillset for students to master in their science learning. While it may not be critical for them to always use the graphic organizer, a good constructed response will be able to speak to the ideas of evidence, reasoning, and claims. 


Building strong science minded students is key for so many reasons. It is essential that students can review a source (text, video, investigation, model, etc.) and identify evidence. Then being able to reason why that evidence is important and what claim it might support (or refute). Students will use aspects of this learning in Constructing Explanations and Engaging in Argumentation (although in different ways). 

As a department or team, how will you gradually build the skills needed for CER? What does this look like from the beginning of the year to the end? What does it look like from earlier grades to high school? Consider taking your team through the activity you did with your students, what are their thoughts? How do they support students constructing explanations? 

What changes or supports will you put in place as a science department or team? 

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