School Improvement in Maryland

This Week’s MSA Item

MSA Items of the week can be used in a variety of ways by teachers, students, parents, tutors and other interested parties. They may be used as warm-up activity at the beginning of the class or as a review at the end of instruction. Students and parents can use them as an ongoing review to ensure that students have mastered and retained the content they are expected to learn.

Select an Item to View

Use your mouse to select a grade from the subject categories below. This week’s MSA Item for that category will appear at right.




Student Handout with Answer Key, and Objective Information.

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Monitoring Reports

Students can keep a record of their progress on these assessment items by using the Monitoring Report, a tool that lists of of the grade level objectives assessed on MSA. The Monitoring Report contains space for entering multiple assessment results and diagnostic comments.

Monitoring Report for Science Grade 5

MSA Item of the Week

This item is one of the many resources available in the Science State Curriculum Toolkit.

Science Grade 5

Use the information and table below to answer the following:

Carbon is a pure element that is able to form different materials. The table below compares three forms of carbon.


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Some substances in coal make coal weak and breakable. The four main types of coal are listed below.


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Which type of coal is the strongest?

  1. anthracite
  2. bituminous
  3. lignite
  4. subbituminous

View answer and objective assessed