Back

STAAR Grade 5 Science Assessment

Reporting Category 1:

Matter and Energy

The student will demonstrate an understanding of the properties of matter and energy and their interactions.
Grade 5
(5.5) Matter and energy.

The student knows that matter has measurable physical properties and those properties determine how matter is classified, changed, and used. The student is expected to

  • A. classify matter based on physical properties, including mass, magnetism, physical state (solid, liquid, and gas), relative density (sinking and floating), solubility in water, and the ability to conduct or insulate thermal energy or electric energy; Readiness Standard
  • B. identify the boiling and freezing/melting points of water on the Celsius scale; Readiness Standard
  • C. demonstrate that some mixtures maintain physical properties of their ingredients such as iron filings and sand; and Supporting Standard
  • D. identify changes that can occur in the physical properties of the ingredients of solutions such as dissolving salt in water or adding lemon juice to water. Supporting Standard
Grade 3
(3.5) Matter and energy.

The student knows that matter has measurable physical properties and those properties determine how matter is classified, changed, and used. The student is expected to

  • C. predict, observe, and record changes in the state of matter caused by heating or cooling. Supporting Standard

Reporting Category 2:

Force, Motion, and Energy

The student will demonstrate an understanding of force, motion, and energy and their relationships.
Grade 5
(5.6)Force, motion, and energy.

The student knows that energy occurs in many forms and can be observed in cycles, patterns, and systems. The student is expected to

  • A. explore the uses of energy, including mechanical, light, thermal, electrical, and sound energy; Readiness Standard
  • B. demonstrate that the flow of electricity in circuits requires a complete path through which an electric current can pass and can produce light, heat, and sound; Readiness Standard
  • C. demonstrate that light travels in a straight line until it strikes an object or travels through one medium to another and demonstrate that light can be reflected such as the use of mirrors or other shiny surfaces and refracted such as the appearance of an object when observed through water; and Readiness Standard
  • D. design an experiment that tests the effect of force on an object. Supporting Standard
Grade 3
(3.6)Force, motion, and energy.

The student knows that forces cause change and that energy exists in many forms. The student is expected to

  • A. demonstrate and observe how position and motion can be changed by pushing and pulling objects to show work being done such as swings, balls, pulleys, and wagons. Supporting Standard

Reporting Category 3:

Earth and Space

The student will demonstrate an understanding of components, cycles, patterns, and natural events of Earth and space systems.
Grade 5
(5.7)Earth and space.

The student knows Earth’s surface is constantly changing and consists of useful resources. The student is expected to

  • A. explore the processes that led to the formation of sedimentary rocks and fossil fuels; Readiness Standard
  • B. recognize how landforms such as deltas, canyons, and sand dunes are the result of changes to Earth’s surface by wind, water, and ice; Readiness Standard
  • C. identify alternative energy resources such as wind, solar, hydroelectric, geothermal, and biofuels; and Readiness Standard
  • D. identify fossils as evidence of past living organisms and the nature of the environments at the time using models. Supporting Standard
(5.8)Earth and space.

The student knows that there are recognizable patterns in the natural world and among the Sun, Earth, and Moon system. The student is expected to

  • A. differentiate between weather and climate; Readiness Standard
  • B. explain how the Sun and the ocean interact in the water cycle; Supporting Standard
  • C. demonstrate that Earth rotates on its axis once approximately every 24 hours causing the day/night cycle and the apparent movement of the Sun across the sky; and Supporting Standard
  • D. identify and compare the physical characteristics of the Sun, Earth, and Moon. Supporting Standard
Grade 4
(4.7)Earth and space.

The student knows that Earth consists of useful resources and its surface is constantly changing. The student is expected to

  • A. examine properties of soils, including color and texture, capacity to retain water, and ability to support the growth of plants; and Supporting Standard
  • B. identify and classify Earth’s renewable resources, including air, plants, water, and animals; and nonrenewable resources, including coal, oil, and natural gas; and the importance of conservation. Supporting Standard
(4.8) Earth and space.

The student knows that there are recognizable patterns in the natural world and among the Sun, Earth, and Moon system. The student is expected to

  • A. measure and record changes in weather and make predictions using weather maps, weather symbols, and a map key;Supporting Standard
  • B. describe and illustrate the continuous movement of water above and on the surface of Earth through the water cycle and explain the role of the Sun as a major source of energy in this process; and Supporting Standard
  • C. collect and analyze data to identify sequences and predict patterns of change in shadows, tides, seasons, and the observable appearance of the Moon over time. Readiness Standard
(8.10) Earth and space.

The student knows that climatic interactions exist among Earth, ocean, and weather systems. The student is expected to

  • A. recognize that the Sun provides the energy that drives convection within the atmosphere and oceans, producing winds and ocean currents; Supporting Standard
  • B. identify how global patterns of atmospheric movement influence local weather using weather maps that show high and low pressures and fronts; and Supporting Standard
  • C. identify the role of the oceans in the formation of weather systems such as hurricanes. Supporting Standard
Grade 7
(7.8) Earth and space.

The student knows that natural events and human activity can impact Earth systems. The student is expected to

  • C. model the effects of human activity on groundwater and surface water in a watershed. Supporting Standard
Grade 6
(6.11) Earth and space.

The student understands the organization of our solar system and the relationships among the various bodies that comprise it. The student is expected to

  • B. understand that gravity is the force that governs the motion of our solar system. Supporting Standard

Reporting Category 4:

Organisms and Environments

The student will demonstrate an understanding of the structures and functions of living organisms and their interdependence on each other and on their environment.
Grade 8
(8.11)Organisms and environments.

The student knows that interdependence occurs among living systems and the environment and that human activities can affect these systems. The student is expected to

  • A. describe producer/consumer, predator/prey, and parasite/host relationships as they occur in food webs within marine, freshwater, and terrestrial ecosystems; Readiness Standard
  • B. investigate how organisms and populations in an ecosystem depend on and may compete for biotic and abiotic factors such as quantity of light, water, range of temperatures, or soil composition; Readiness Standard
  • C. explore how short- and long-term environmental changes affect organisms and traits in subsequent populations; and Readiness Standard
  • D. recognize human dependence on ocean systems and explain how human activities such as runoff, artificial reefs, or use of resources have modified these systems. Supporting Standard
Grade 7
(7.10) Organisms and environments.

The student knows that there is a relationship between organisms and the environment. The student is expected to

  • B. describe how biodiversity contributes to the sustainability of an ecosystem; and Supporting Standard
  • C. observe, record, and describe the role of ecological succession such as in a microhabitat of a garden with weeds. Supporting Standard
(7.11) Organisms and environments.

The student knows that populations and species demonstrate variation and inherit many of their unique traits through gradual processes over many generations. The student is expected to

  • A. examine organisms or their structures such as insects or leaves and use dichotomous keys for identification; and Supporting Standard
  • C. identify some changes in genetic traits that have occurred over several generations through natural selection and selective breeding such as the Galapagos Medium Ground Finch (Geospiza fortis) or domestic animals. Supporting Standard
(7.12) Organisms and environments.

The student knows that living systems at all levels of organization demonstrate the complementary nature of structure and function. The student is expected to

  • B. identify the main functions of the systems of the human organism, including the circulatory, respiratory, skeletal, muscular, digestive, excretory, reproductive, integumentary, nervous, and endocrine systems; Supporting Standard
  • D. differentiate between structure and function in plant and animal cell organelles, including cell membrane, cell wall, nucleus, cytoplasm, mitochondrion, chloroplast, and vacuole; and Supporting Standard
  • F. recognize that according to cell theory all organisms are composed of cells and cells carry on similar functions such as extracting energy from food to sustain life. Supporting Standard
(7.14) Organisms and environments.

The student knows that reproduction is a characteristic of living organisms and that the instructions for traits are governed in the genetic material. The student is expected to

  • B. compare the results of uniform or diverse offspring from sexual reproduction or asexual reproduction; and Supporting Standard
  • C. recognize that inherited traits of individuals are governed in the genetic material found in the genes within chromosomes in the nucleus. Supporting Standard
Grade 6
(6.12) Organisms and environments.

The student knows all organisms are classified into Domains and Kingdoms. Organisms within these taxonomic groups share similar characteristics which allow them to interact with the living and nonliving parts of their ecosystem. The student is expected to

  • D. identify the basic characteristics of organisms, including prokaryotic or eukaryotic, unicellular or multicellular, autotrophic or heterotrophic, and mode of reproduction, that further classify them in the currently recognized Kingdoms. Supporting Standard

Scientific Investigation and Reasoning Skills

These skills will not be listed under a separate reporting category. Instead, they will be incorporated into at least 40% of the test questions in reporting categories 1–4 and will be identified along with content standards.
Grade 8
(8.1)Scientific investigation and reasoning.

The student, for at least 40% of instructional time, conduct laboratory and field investigations following safety procedures and environmentally appropriate and ethical practices. The student is expected to

  • A. demonstrate safe practices during laboratory and field investigations as outlined in the Texas Safety Standards; and
  • B. practice appropriate use and conservation of resources, including disposal, reuse, or recycling of materials.
(8.2) Scientific investigation and reasoning.

The student uses scientific inquiry methods during laboratory and field investigations. The student is expected to

  • A. plan and implement comparative and descriptive investigations by making observations, asking well-defined questions, and using appropriate equipment and technology;
  • B. design and implement comparative and experimental investigations by making observations, asking well-defined questions, formulating testable hypotheses, and using appropriate equipment and technology;
  • C. collect and record data using the International System of Units (SI) and qualitative means such as labeled drawings, writing, and graphic organizers;
  • D. construct tables and graphs, using repeated trials and means, to organize data and identify patterns; and
  • E. analyze data to formulate reasonable explanations, communicate valid conclusions supported by the data, and predict trends.
(8.3) Scientific investigation and reasoning.

The student uses critical thinking, scientific reasoning, and problem solving to make informed decisions and know the contributions of relevant scientists. The student is expected to

  • A. in all fields of science, analyze, evaluate, and critique scientific explanations by using empirical evidence, logical reasoning, and experimental and observational testing, including examining all sides of scientific evidence of those scientific explanations, so as to encourage critical thinking by the student;
  • B. use models to represent aspects of the natural world such as an atom, a molecule, space, or a geologic feature;
  • C. identify advantages and limitations of models such as size, scale, properties, and materials; and
  • D. relate the impact of research on scientific thought and society, including the history of science and contributions of scientists as related to the content.
(8.4) Scientific investigation and reasoning.

The student knows how to use a variety of tools and safety equipment to conduct science inquiry. The student is expected to

  • A. use appropriate tools to collect, record, and analyze information, including lab journals/notebooks, beakers, meter sticks, graduated cylinders, anemometers, psychrometers, hot plates, test tubes, spring scales, balances, microscopes, thermometers, calculators, computers, spectroscopes, timing devices, and other equipment as needed to teach the curriculum; and
  • B. use preventative safety equipment, including chemical splash goggles, aprons, and gloves, and be prepared to use emergency safety equipment, including an eye/face wash, a fire blanket, and a fire extinguisher.