University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

NSTA 2015 (Jasti & Hug)

Math + Biology. It adds up!

Explore student-driven activities that integrate key science and math practices identified in NGSS and CCSS. Activities involve data collection & analysis, graphing, and scale concepts.


Integration of math into science classrooms is becoming increasingly important with the adoption of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and the Common Core State Standards for Math (CCSS-M). This session highlights two activities developed by NIH SEPA-funded Project NEURON that cover key science concepts and critical math and data analysis skills identified in NGSS and CCSS.

First, participants use Rat Recall, a simulated experiment, to test the effects of glucose and adrenalin on memory. Participants collect and analyze data, and discuss findings. The investigation addresses CCSS-M “Interpreting Categorical & Quantitative Data” and “Making Inferences & Justifying Conclusions.”

Second, participants construct a scaled “microbe mural” to learn about diversity of microbial sizes and to compare them to everyday objects. This activity addresses the NGSS practice “using mathematics & computational thinking.” It also addresses CCSS-M “Ratios & Proportional Relationships,” as students use ratio concepts and reasoning to solve problems.

Participants will reflect on the activities to discuss how they address the NGSS and CCSS math-related standards and how they might be modified to best support student learning in their own classrooms.


Sahid Rosado Lausell, Chandana Jasti*, and Barbara Hug*. (2015). Workshop at the National Science Teacher Association (NSTA) National Conference on Science Education, Chicago, IL.

*Conference presenter

Session Materials: 
Featured Lesson(s):