Alabama State Standards for Science

Instructor: A Ray Tatum

A. Ray has taught junior high, high school and college English and has a master's degree in curriculum.

This article is to help in the understanding of the Alabama science standards. Read about grade level studies and courses expected from kindergarten to high school.

Alabama Science Standards

The Alabama science standards are the framework by which students are expected to perform in their studies of scientific concepts, their ability to question and answer scientific problems and to apply what they learn in their daily lives.

Elementary Science Standards

Students in K-5 will slowly study what is basic to the standards and progress to an experimental stage of discovery through science. Projects, charts and visual aids will be the norm throughout these years.


In kindergarten, kids will learn about how objects are altered by movement and force; how plants, animals, and all living things thrive; how sunlight affects our world; and how weather is important to people on our planet.

1st Grade

Students will investigate waves (light and sound), learn about heredity from studying parents and their offspring, and delve into how living things use their external parts to grow and survive. First graders will also discover where our world fits in the universe.

2nd Grade

Second graders will observe objects and their physical make-up (size, color, texture, liquid, solid, etc.); investigate ecosystems; make inferences regarding land formations, rivers and seas, and catastrophic events; and cover causal effects by humans on the planet.

3rd Grade

Kids will begin basic physics study of force and reaction, motion and patterns, and cause and effect. They will also classify living and nonliving things in addition to looking at inherited traits in plants and animals. Students will use fossils to see why some organisms died out and others thrived while also examining the impact of the environment on all of them. In third grade, students will also chart weather conditions and climate change in addition to studying the effects of humans on the environment that alter the planet's surface.

4th Grade

Fourth graders will be asked to explain energy transference through heat, electricity, light and sound. They'll examine how waves are used to solve issues, such as transmitting messages through Morse code. They will understand the inner and outer workings of living things (plants: stems, petals, etc: animal: heart, brain, etc.). Students will use data to discuss the Earth's layers and the impacts of weather, erosion, volcanic activity, and more.

5th Grade

Students should study matter as particles and the outside influences that can make change. They will cover how matter can be dissolved and mixed with other particles to create substances. As 5th graders, they will look at how gravitation is important to the planet and how air, water, and light is important to every ecosystem. Topics related to how the solar system works in everyday life, such as the brightness of stars and how time is told by shadows, will be examined as well. Students will study how the Earth's varied spheres work and the effect of mankind and time itself on them. How each human footprint changes the planet by using more fossil fuel and less renewable sources will also be an area of focus.

Elementary Science Aids

For young, curious scientists in grades K-5 this Science for Kids course is ideal to open those minds to an even brighter scientific world around them. They are filled with engaging video lessons and ideas, plus fun-filled at home experiments the kids will enjoy.

Middle School Science Standards

In middle school students will be expected to utilize scientific inquiry as a method for experimentation and learning. More data and research will be done to go with any hands-on activities to meet the standards.

6th Grade: Earth and Space Science

In sixth grade students should be able to model in some form the rules of the universe: day/night, changes in the season, moon phases, and more. Geology will be introduced to help explain long-term changes in the planet from region to region. Fossils will be used to explain the changes in ecosystems. Students will use data to explain human effects on the planet in the areas of population change, food consumption, and water use.

7th Grade: Life Science

Cell theory and its importance to all living things is stressed in seventh grade. Kids will be able to explain the breakdown of foods to grow molecules within organisms. How species developed over time will be covered in this grade, as will the topic of humans using breeding practices to alter and enhance different plants and animals. They will use genetics to explain inherited traits and how genetic anomalies can have harmful effects on plants, animals and humans. Finally, through the study of anatomy and natural selection, 7th graders will be able to explain the similarities and differences between species.

8th Grade: Physical Science

Chemistry and the periodic table will be introduced to aid students in recognizing the purity of molecules and understanding how mixing molecules is used to create medicines, fuels, food additives, and other synthetic materials for societal use. These middle schoolers examine Newton's three laws as they pertain to motion and force. Also kids should recognize the types, effects, and conservation of energy. They will create wave (light or sound) models to demonstrate their behavior through various media and to understand wave applications, such as for communications.

Middle School Aids

Middle schoolers should cut their science teeth on the fundamentals of Earth science, life science, and physical science. These courses are designed with 6th-8th graders in mind to hold their interest and keep them engaged while they strengthen their science knowledge.

High School Science Standards

Alabama high school science standards are developed to assist them in being ready for college or the work market. Students should expect to be literate in many of the following subjects at the high school level. The standards will work in conjunction with high school graduation requirements, which include taking one biology class, one physical science class, and two credits of science electives over four years. These electives will be chosen from the local school's scheduled science offerings.

Physical Science

Students will engage in studies dealing with such areas as the periodic table and the reaction of certain chemicals, the combustive potential of certain elements, and Newton's laws as applied to force and motion. Students can enhance their knowledge with the Physical Science course offered here.


The structures within organisms, in-depth study of DNA, ecosystem hierarchies, and data-driven predictions of population variations through the study of genes and chromosomes will take up class time. High school students studying biology will also focus on developing a greater understanding of the classifications of living things. Our course on biology can be very helpful in gaining greater perspective on the subject.


Chemistry students will be made aware of the importance of historical events in the field and the greater understanding which took place due to those events. This knowledge will lead to more in-depth study of the periodic table and the reactions between certain chemicals in solid, liquid, and gaseous forms. These courses can be fun and helpful in your studies depending on your need: Intro to Chemistry, Fundamentals of Chemistry, and High School Chemistry. These courses all have video lessons, quizzes and chapter tests.


Their study of physics in high school will further students' knowledge and use of Newton's laws of motion, force and energy. They'll also examine the use of waves for such things as detection (SONAR) or communication (wireless telephones). These two physics courses may be helpful to students: Fundamental Physics and High School Physics.

Human Anatomy and Physiology

The human body and all its components -- from the skeleton to the organs -- will be looked at in depth during high school studies in anatomy and physiology. The Human Anatomy and Physiology: Help and Review Course should come in handy for all students as it breaks down the subject matter with lessons and study guides which can be printed out and used as check tests.

Earth and Space Science

The theories of Earth, its origin and its place in the universe will be discussed in high school courses dealing with Earth and space science. Knowledge from space theorists like Copernicus, Kepler, and Einstein are still relevant to the discussion. Geology will answer many questions involving Earth's formation and change over eons. Students will study continental shifting that formed the land masses as we know them in addition to examining topics such as how volcanic eruptions affect climate. This course on Earth science as well as the Intro to Astronomy: Help and Review course will be the ticket to better enlightenment of our planet and stars.

Environmental Science

This class stresses the use of and adaption of both renewable and nonrenewable energies. The effect of human activity on the biosphere will be discussed. Ecosystem changes due to the passage of time, as well as natural and man made environmental change, will be important as well. Taking time with the course Introduction to Environmental Science will engage students with videos and quizzes to help them gain better understanding of this ever-evolving subject.

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