ISI makes use of existing research-based curricular materials which were developed through a cycle that began with basic research on learning, and proceeded through pilot testing and revision based on evaluation data, field testing and further revision, publication and dissemination, and finally to continuous improvement as a result of research and feedback from curriculum users. Using a modified version of STEMworks science curricular materials were selected from among proven options such as FOSS, STC, etc. Materials were chosen based on developmental appropriateness, addressing important goals of K-8 teaching and learning, focusing on inquiry and activity as the basis of learning, helping students learn accurate science content aligned to academic standards, and significantly reducing the influence of cultural, racial, ethnic, gender, and age bias.
These materials include content rich resources that are tightly integrated with science activity modules and focus on core science concepts. Up to four modules are used per grade level. Each module includes all the materials, including developmentally appropriate reading selections, needed for a class of students to investigate particular science domains for nine to twelve weeks.