This page features the ORAM protocol aligned to the Ohio Science Standards:  

Ohio Model Curriculum – Physical Science

Alignment with ORAM Protocol


1)  Overall Goals


• Know, use and interpret scientific explanations of the natural world;

-Hydrology, habitat alteration and development, and plant communities all relate to the creation of habitat for living organisms.  High scores correlate with better habitat improving biodiversity


• Generate and evaluate scientific evidence and explanations, distinguishing science from pseudoscience;

-The ORAM metric scores predict the category a wetland is (higher the score the better the wetland, meaning more biodiversity)

- Predictions for each metric are based on evidence that they collect while completing the ORAM


• Understand the nature and development of scientific knowledge;

-ORAM protocol is based on empirical evidence from wetlands across Ohio.  New evidence may change the protocols or their interpretations


• Participate productively in scientific practices and discourse.

- Students learn about common scientific protocols, metrics and how they are used to compare results gathered by anyone using the protocol.

- Students see how to interpret their results in light of the results gathered by others using the same protocols increasing discourse among scientists


2) Specific Curricular Goals

Science Inquiry and Application

• Identify questions and concepts that guide scientific investigations;

-Students determine the quality of wetland to support life using six metrics based evidence from observations. They identify questions and concepts that link biological findings to the physical environment, i.e. what type of plant species were prevalent? What was the coverage of invasive species in the wetland?


• Design and conduct scientific investigations;

- Students observe wetlands, and hypothesize the hydrology, habitat alteration and development, and plant communities present in the wetland. They follow a standardized protocol to gather data and score the wetland.


• Use technology and mathematics to improve investigations and communications;

- The use of QR Codes to connect the students to the six metrics allows the use of technology in the completion of the ORAM.


• Formulate and revise explanations and models using logic and evidence (critical thinking);

- Results are compared with other wetlands and other sites where the biological data does not support the physical data, and students have to hypothesize why.

- Results are used to determine the best place to sight future development and to conserve habitat.


• Recognize and analyze explanations and models; and

-Students relate habitat to the biology of organisms determining why specific habitats support organisms that are more sensitive to changes in high quality environments


• Communicate and support a scientific argument.

- Students use their own data to determine the quality of the wetland based on data.


Course Content


Study of Matter


Classification of matter

  • Heterogeneous vs. homogeneous

  • Properties of matter

  • States of matter and its changes



  • Models of the atom (components)

  • Ions (cations and anions)

  • Isotopes

The students can take a sample of the water source and determine the molecular structure of the particles contained within that source. When doing this the students can then model what the atom structure looks like. Through this discovery the students will be able to understand and gain the knowledge of protons and neutrons located in each atom’s nucleus.

Periodic trends of the elements

  • Periodic law

  • Representative groups

Students could test for certain levels of carbon, phosphorus, and nitrate existing within the wetland ecosystem. Students could also collect a sample of the hydric soil and determine the chemical properties of that soil. They could determine what compounds make up the hydric soil and develop their own projects/presentations on the specific compounds found.

Correlating Next Generation Science Standards:HS-PS1-1 HS-PS1-8

Bonding and compounds

  • Bonding (ionic and covalent)

  • Nomenclature

After the students collect and analyze the soil collections and identified where the elements that make up the soil are located on the periodic table the students can determine the compound formula for the contents of the soil.

Reactions of matter

  • Chemical reactions

  • Nuclear reactions


Energy and Waves

Students can identify the flow of energy through the wetland ecosystem as they are completing the ORAM

Correlating Next Generation Science Standards: HS-PS3-1 HS-PS4-5

Conservation of energy

  • Quantifying kinetic energy

  • Quantifying gravitational potential energy

  • Energy is relative


Transfer and transformation of energy (including work)



  • Refraction, reflection, diffraction, absorption, superposition

  • Radiant energy and the electromagnetic spectrum

  • Doppler shift

The students can hypothesize about the water color and ground color and how the color affects the absorption of light and energy from the sun. The students could also determine at what rate energy waves are being reflected, diffracted, and absorbed into the stream.

Correlating Next Generation Science Standards: HS-PS4-1. HS-PS4-5

Thermal energy

While testing the subrate of the bottom of the stream the student could also take the temperature of the ground and determine if the temperature of the ground and the temperature of the water have a correlation.


  • Movement of electrons

  • Current

  • Electric potential (voltage)

  • Resistors and transfer of energy

Correlating Next Generation Science Standards: HS-PS4-4

Forces and Motion

Correlating Next Generation Science Standards: HS-PS3-5, HS-PS2-1, HS-PS2-2, HS-PS2-4



  • Introduction to one-dimensional vectors

  • Displacement, velocity (constant, average and instantaneous) and acceleration

  • Interpreting position vs. time and velocity vs. time graphs

The students to place debris in the water and see how long it takes to get to a certain part of the stream and graph the solutions of the velocity time and position interactions.


  • Force diagrams

  • Types of forces (gravity, friction, normal, tension)

  • Field model for forces at a distance

Students can observe the forces that affect the growth of different wetland species

Dynamics (how forces affect motion)

  • Objects at rest

  • Objects moving with constant velocity

  • Accelerating objects


The Universe


History of the universe

Correlating Next Generation Science Standards:HS-ESS1-6

Galaxy formation



  • Formation, stages of evolution

  • Fusion in stars

Correlating Next Generation Science Standards:HS-ESS1-2, HS-ESS1-3,

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