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Science CASTL

Science CASTL

What is CASTL?

The Collaboration for Ambitious Science Teaching and Learning (CASTL) is a network (of ESD’s, school districts, and teachers) that supports and expands upon the work of the Partnership for Ambitious a Teacher Leaders (PASTL). This network focuses on equitable access to science learning through job-embedded collaborative learning and implementation of the Ambitious Science Teaching practices.

CASTL Application – let’s begin!

As a Curriculum Director or a Building Principal, getting teachers involved in CASTL is pretty straightforward.

Step 1: Download, read, and sign the CASTL Assurances Document and then complete the online application included in the assurances document.

Step 2: Recruit teachers by giving the CASTL Assurances Document to the teachers who want to be involved? Note: These should be volunteers and – whenever possible – teachers should have a buddy from their building (not necessarily the same grade level) so they have someone to talk with and work with during the school year.

Step 3: Your teachers take it from there! At the end of the CASTL Assurance Document is an online application that teachers will complete. It will instruct them to read, sign, scan, and send their completed CASTL Assurances Document to Nancy Menard.

Then What? Northwest ESD will fill our 32 available spots as equitably as we can for our region. When determinations are made, we will send acceptance letters to the teachers and to you to let you know.

2019 CASTL Summer Institute | August 13-15 2019

During these three days, Teachers will work with PASTL Teacher Leader Facilitators to engage as a learner through the Ambitious Science Teaching Practices. Participants will also use AST practices to consider and plan for their own instruction. Participants will learn about planning for engagement with important  science ideas; eliciting students’ ideas; supporting on-going changes in students’ thinking; and in pressing for evidence-based explanations. Integrated into this are phenomenon-anchored instruction, modeling of thinking, supporting discourse, and supporting claims with evidence. Participants will understand the context of creating phenomenon-anchored student-centred units and will be able to apply that understanding to their own units or to build upon any of the PASTL or AST unit starters that exist.

2019-20 Reflective Planning Days | Oct 15, Dec 5, 2018 and Mar 12, 2020)

Participants will:

  • Engage in common learning to further their science pedagogy and student engagement in the NGSS.
  • Share tools they have developed and evidence of student engagement in sense-making (often these are student modeling examples). Together with colleagues they will examine the tools and student thinking through the lens of how well the tool supported students and how they might respond instructionally or how they might revise the tool to better-support students.
  • Have time to reflect on their practice and to collaborate with colleagues in planning for next steps.


FREE! Registration, teacher stipends ($150 /day in summer), and school-year substitutes provided by NWESD’s Climate Science Proviso.

For More Information

Contact NWESD’s Regional Science Coordinator Brian MacNevin or our Science Assistant Nancy Menard.