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5-ESS2-1 Earth’s Systems

Students who demonstrate understanding can: Develop a model using an example to describe ways the geosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, and/or atmosphere interact.
Clarification Statement: Examples could include the influence of the ocean on ecosystems, landform shape, and climate; the influence of the atmosphere on landforms and ecosystems through weather and climate; and the influence of mountain ranges on winds and clouds in the atmosphere. The geosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and biosphere are each a system.
Assessment Boundary: Assessment is limited to the interactions of two systems at a time.

Crosscutting Concepts

Science & Engineering Practices 

Disciplinary Core Ideas 

System and System Models:

  • A system can be described in terms of its components and their interactions.

Developing and Using Models:

  • Modeling in 3-5 builds on K-2 experiences and progresses to building and revising simple models and using models to represent events and design solutions.
  • Develop a model using an example to describe phenomena. 


Earth Materials and System:

  • Earth’s major systems are the geosphere (solid and molten rock, soil, and sediments), the hydrosphere (water and ice), the atmosphere (air), and the biosphere (living things, including humans). These systems interact in multiple ways to affect Earth’s surface materials and processes.
  • The ocean supports a variety of ecosystems and organisms, shapes landforms, and influences climate.
  • Winds and clouds in the atmosphere interact with the landforms to determine patterns of weather.


Introduction to the OKSci Framework

Return to Fifth Grade Introduction

Return to Water Systems and Earth Materials



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