Still have some questions? This page may answer your question. However, if you’re wondering about something that hasn’t been covered, just reach out to nvantassel@iexplorescience.com.

What does the Spark Subscription include?

The SOS System
Grow as an educator through The SOS System workshop series. Explore how to build your classroom on a foundation of curiosity and internal drive, learning partnerships, and student empowerment. Learn how to create flow and ease, while bringing joy back into education, through co-constructed learning journeys.

Begin your journey with The SOS System: Foundations Formula. Reevaluate how you launch science learning in order to better engage and motivate your students to step up and into their own learning journey. Rethink how you get your students from “A to Z” in order to reach curriculum goals while empowering students to take more responsibility for their experience and meet their own needs. Transform your role in the classroom from teacher to guide to create space for exploration and discovery in order to deepen learning and improve understanding and retention.

Get started today to take advantage of existing workshops and courses. Prepare for the next installment of The SOS System – Anchoring Science Experiences – releasing late spring/early summer 2022.

The Spark Curriculum Library
Access the Spark Curriculum Library to take advantage of Storyline Frameworks that:

use relevant phenomena and anchor experiences to spark student curiosity and wonder and launch learning journeys
provide foundational lessons that move students along potential pathways to your standards, while simultaneously empowering students and teachers to follow their own way there
engage students in authentic work while evaluating growth and mastery through three dimensional assessment tasks
Spark Storyline Frameworks are built on phenomena that light up your students’ sense of curiosity and wonder, provide pathways to the standards that empower you to follow your own way there, and culminate in three dimensional assessment tasks that engage students in authentic work while evaluating their growth and mastery.

The Spark Circle
Connect with a community of other teachers who “get it” to care for your own passion for teaching and your students’ love for science learning.

Give and take in the Spark Circle, our exclusive digital community – accessible on the web or through our private app – and experience the satisfaction and joy of collaborating and communicating with like-minded teachers who can share your values and experiences.

Participate in regular Q&A Support Sessions to troubleshoot challenges that arise as you transfer your learning into your own classroom experience.

Do you get access to previous Curiosity Sparks?

Yes! When you join, you get full access to the Spark Curriculum Library with all of the Storyline Frameworks, supplementary lessons, assessment tasks, and bonus materials. Oodles of three dimensional resources built from phenomena at your fingertips!

How is this different from a typical “lesson plan bank”?

The Spark Subscription is designed to help you build a cohesive, student-driven storyline. Traditional lesson plan banks often focus on only the content ideas — these activities are not typically three-dimensional, nor are they tied to a specific phenomenon. We know science isn’t about the content ideas — it’s about uncovering what’s happening in the natural world – so phenomena are key.

Spark Subscription activities provide a way to tie back to the Anchor Experience, the launching point for your unit. This allows you to create a cohesive experience for your students. Additionally, by starting with the Anchor Experience, you can truly co-construct a storyline with your students instead of “running them through” a one-size-fits-all curriculum.

Beyond that, the Spark Subscription is also a professional development program and professional learning community. We believe educators must have access to practical support and accountability in addition to ready-to-use resources in order to truly embrace new ways of teaching and understanding the educational experience.

Is it aligned to the standards?

Curiosity Sparks are built around phenomena, but that doesn’t mean we’ve abandoned the standards! Each Curiosity Spark bundle is designed to target specific Disciplinary Core Ideas and Performance Expectations through both learning activities throughout the unit and the provided assessments. This information is communicated to Spark teachers through the provided Educator Guides and Storyline Framework Overview Videos.

Additionally, every activity provided is three-dimensional in nature, engaging your students in Science and Engineering Practices and the Crosscutting Concepts while developing your students’ understanding of the Disciplinary Core Ideas.

So yes, Spark resources are aligned.

What if I have a specific scope and sequence I have to follow?

Ideally, Spark teachers can embrace the Curiosity Sparks as they are designed, building their responsive storylines from the various Storyline Frameworks. That said, sometimes, the resources may not match what you are assigned to teach.

If this is the case, you can first, keep the Curiosity Spark “in your back pocket” for later in the year when you will need it.

And in the meantime, you can utilize the bonus activities that do align to your current unit, as well as take advantage of the learning opportunities and community support.

Finally, you can speak up and help me tailor Spark to its membership by sharing with me what standards you would like to see addressed and the types of instructional support you would like to see expanded upon.

We can build this program together.

What is the commitment? Can I cancel my subscription?

While this is a recurring subscription, there is no commitment. You have total control of your membership via the Account Page inside your membership portal. (You don’t even have to talk to anyone! 😅) If you join Spark and find it’s not what you need, you can cancel at any time. You will have access to the resources and membership benefits until your current payment period expires.

Additionally, see the Terms Of Service for information about the money-back-guarantee we offer for new enrollments.

What is the cost?

The Spark Subscription is $47/month, $127/quarter or $477/year.

If you find this amount is not within your current budget but would like to be a part of Spark, we highly recommend you ask your school or district to fund your membership.

If you aren’t sure how to talk to your school decision-makers, check out this guide. Then, contact nvantassel@iexplorescience.com for an estimate or invoice to provide your administrators.

Is the Spark Subscription right for me?

Well, it depends.

  • if you want science units built from relevant, real world phenomena, then yes. 🙌🏻
  • if you want to engage your students in 3D exploration and discovery, then yes. 🤩
  • if you like the idea of more responsive, student-driven learning (but are afraid you don’t have the time to put it all together), then yes. 👭
  • if you want high-quality, ready-to-go lessons that engage students in science practices and tie back to your anchor, then yes. 👍🏻
  • if your content and standards align to the middle school NGSS grade-band, then yes. 📚
  • if you have some flexibility in your curriculum and pacing, then yes. ✅
  • if you are ready to learn and grow as an educator, then YES! 🎉🥳👏🏻

However,

  • if you’re dead-set on sticking to your textbooks, chapter-by-chapter, PowerPoint approach to teaching, then no no no. 😬
  • if you have no flexibility in your instructional strategies, pacing, scope, and sequence, then probably not. 😓
  • if you’re not teaching content/standards that align to the middle school grade band, then maybe not. 🤷‍♀️ (Let’s chat?)