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Explore the Night Sky Simulator - Physic.org

Grades
5 to 12
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Struggling to find a way to teach astronomy during the day in the classroom? This night sky simulator is a great option to assigning star gazing as homework. This way ...more
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Struggling to find a way to teach astronomy during the day in the classroom? This night sky simulator is a great option to assigning star gazing as homework. This way you can ensure that your students are viewing accurate representations of the night sky. The best way to run this in class is to leave the lights off and make the room as dark as possible. The simulation is easy to interact with as it has onscreen instructions. The sky is a simulation of the sky over different parts of the United Kingdom. Of course you will want to ask your students on other continents how it may differ from the sky they see! Note: This site may take more than a few second to load. Be patient.

tag(s): planets (123), solar system (119), space (205)

In the Classroom

Have students use this simulation to discuss points such as light pollution and constellations. Try having students compare three different locations, taking screen shots of each location. Then, have them put the pictures into a single document or slide and have them make comparisons. Have students use an online tool to compare the locations such as the Interactive Three Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here). Students can hypothesis as to the causes of differences by investigating the geography, climate, and populations of the area that they are observing.
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Sixty symbols - The University of Nottingham

Grades
9 to 12
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Find excellent videos about a variety of physics and astronomy topics with this great site. Choose a symbol and view the video that explains and depicts the meaning of the ...more
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Find excellent videos about a variety of physics and astronomy topics with this great site. Choose a symbol and view the video that explains and depicts the meaning of the symbol. View a variety from total solar eclipse to pressure and vacuums to magnetic susceptibility. Videos are hosted on You Tube. Schools that have this resource blocked will need to ask for it to be unblocked to use in class. Click on planets to view great videos of each of those in our solar system. View information on scientists and the sixty symbols project by clicking on the tabs across the top.

Caution: Be sure to preview the videos before sharing them with your students. Our editors found one that included alcohol in the experiment, all others appeared appropriate.

tag(s): magnetism (36), motion (59)

In the Classroom

The videos are hosted on You Tube. If your district blocks You Tube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view that at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.

Use on a whiteboard or projector for the entire class to see if You Tube is blocked for student but not for teachers. Assign the viewing of a specific video as a homework assignment. Have students take notes on the topic for further discussion in class or to apply the information to laboratory activities or demonstrations in class. Encourage students to follow these clever videos to develop their own videos for teaching concepts to other students in and out of their school. Challenge students to create a video and share using a site such as SchoolTube (reviewed here).
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Science Animations - Sumanas, Inc.

Grades
6 to 12
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Looking for great science animations? Find amazing interactives, key vocabulary, overviews, and even quizzes on a variety of science topics. Choose from categories such as "General...more
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Looking for great science animations? Find amazing interactives, key vocabulary, overviews, and even quizzes on a variety of science topics. Choose from categories such as "General Biology," "Biotechnology," "Statistics," "Chemistry," "Astronomy," and "Ecology" to name a few. View a variety of animations in each of these topics. Choose to view as a complete animation, step by step, and even with narration if desired. Be sure to link to the actual animation in your site, wiki, or blog to satisfy copyright.

tag(s): animation (63), atoms (56), cells (102), meiosis (15), mitosis (11), molecules (43)

In the Classroom

Share the interactives on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Have small groups view the animations together and create online posters ("glogs") using Glogster EDU, reviewed here. Have groups share the topics they learned about on their "glog."

Use as an introductory activity with or without accompanying questions you create to get kids thinking. Discuss as small groups or a class what is happening throughout the animation and what they notice. Follow with lab activities or building their own models to demonstrate understanding out of simple art materials. Use this activity to reinforce complex and difficult to see concepts.
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Windows to the Universe - National Earth Science Teachers Association

Grades
4 to 12
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Though Windows to the Universe is basically a science site, it has many links that will connect science with language arts, history and math. Find an abundance of information and ...more
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Though Windows to the Universe is basically a science site, it has many links that will connect science with language arts, history and math. Find an abundance of information and activities for your classroom. There are numerous science categories, and within each category you can choose "Beginner," "Intermediate," or "Advanced." This site has excellent visuals and numerous topics, and several educational interactives (under "Games"). Don't miss it!

tag(s): geology (81), planets (123)

In the Classroom

You will want to preview the categories and levels your students are to explore. Investigate categories with your students, using your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have small groups of students choose a subcategory to further explore. Have your students create an interactive online poster ("glog") using Glogster EDU, reviewed here to share what they learn.
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New York Times Science Lesson Plans - New York Times

Grades
6 to 12
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Looking for ways to link current science events and skills such as reading and writing across the curriculum in your science classroom? Visit this ideal internet location! Created by...more
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Looking for ways to link current science events and skills such as reading and writing across the curriculum in your science classroom? Visit this ideal internet location! Created by the people of the New York Times, this lesson plan idea page has all the tools to put together quick, technology, reading and science based lessons in a fraction of the time it would take to pool the resources on your own.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (115), main idea (9), news (261)

In the Classroom

Scan the lessons. Choose topics appropriate to your content, and then incorporate into your classroom at will. Break lessons apart into both classroom and online discussions for students. A little disclaimer: some of these cutting edge science topics can be controversial so make sure to adequately prepare your students before embarking on these learning adventures.
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1000s of Museums Online - Discovery Media

Grades
6 to 12
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Looking for an online museum exhibit for a specific subject? Want to broaden your students' perspectives on what resources are available to them? If the answer is yes, this is ...more
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Looking for an online museum exhibit for a specific subject? Want to broaden your students' perspectives on what resources are available to them? If the answer is yes, this is a great site for you. There are 1000's of museums listed by topic and search able by term. The site includes science, history, art, world, and USA museums. Don't miss the "Fun" link. There you will find some interesting museum topics such as American Immigration Data, Darwinia + Evolution, Hot Wheels Collectors Virtual Museum, White House + Presidential History, and several others.

tag(s): ceramics (5), evolution (100), geology (81), museums (49), painting (66), sculpture (21), zoology (7)

In the Classroom

Plan virtual field trips for your students, or put the research in their hands and have them create their own online field trips. Have them post their trip to the classroom wiki. Follow up by requiring students to try out other students trips. Not comfortable with wikis? Have no wiki worries - check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through. Or, have students view online exhibits from the site, and then have them create their own exhibits.

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Watch Know Learn - Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi

Grades
K to 12
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What is Watch Know? Short for "You Watch, You Know," it provides explanations for students. Finding bits of information to help students can be frustrating as resources are disorganized...more
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What is Watch Know? Short for "You Watch, You Know," it provides explanations for students. Finding bits of information to help students can be frustrating as resources are disorganized on the web and may be hard to find." Watch Know" is a free site that organizes small video clips to help with the understanding of a variety of topics in subject areas. Search by age (3-18+). You can click and drag the age filter to the youngest and oldest ages to include. Videos are also organized by sequence of topics taught. The site is an ongoing project with input from educators and organizations interested in education of children. Registration is not required to view the videos. Creating and saving videos to the site, as well as commenting, require registration. You can monitor site recent changes and additions using the "Change Log."

tag(s): computers (95), crafts (41), decimals (133), environment (317), ethics (16), fractions (239), holidays (147), scientific method (64), vocabulary development (126), writing (359)

In the Classroom

Search for videos relevant to your upcoming units or share the link with older students to search on their own. Use clips as engaging openings to units or as a review at the end. Have students identify the main points in the video and relate it back to class information. Students can use the examples on the site to create their own videos about a topic they have studied that could be beneficial to others.

If you do join the site to submit videos (for more adventurous technology users), we recommend uploading, commenting, and participating in the project (the creation and growth of WatchKnow) as a whole-class collaborative activity. If your students create videos, critique them locally before submitting them to the site as the "bests" from your class.

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Case studies in science - State University of New York at Buffalo

Grades
9 to 16
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Looking for a way to introduce inquiry into your science classes? Use case studies to introduce relevant and real-life problems that require students to question and search for information...more
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Looking for a way to introduce inquiry into your science classes? Use case studies to introduce relevant and real-life problems that require students to question and search for information that sheds light on the answer to the questions. Each case study is an interrupted one. Each case study is divided into sections with guiding questions to help ask questions and find pertinent information. Example case studies include: "Driving Can Be Dangerous To Your Health" or "Sweet Indigestion: A Directed Case Study on Carbohydrates." The general topics of the cases include everything from Anatomy & Physiology to Geology to Psychology (and about 20+ other topics).

tag(s): anthropology (11), ecology (135), engineering (125), genetics (90), geology (81), inquiry (37), nutrition (154)

In the Classroom

Use a case study to introduce a unit and set the tone for what will be learned. As students ask questions, use them to introduce or make sense of the content. For example, the "Sweet Indigestion" case study introduces a type of diet and raises questions about the role of different biomolecules in the structure and functioning of the body. Investigate fuel for body cells, respiration, nutrition, foods around the world, and even cultures and customs. Have access to experts in related fields? Use skype or other technologies to connect students with the outside world. Learn more about skype (reviewed here).

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ScribbleMaps - Scribble Maps

Grades
2 to 12
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Use this tool to "draw" on and label any map available through Google Maps, including maps of the night sky! No registration or email required! Create a colorful, personalized map ...more
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Use this tool to "draw" on and label any map available through Google Maps, including maps of the night sky! No registration or email required! Create a colorful, personalized map with added scribbles and labels. Add your choice of placemarker labels for geology locations, people, etc. There are even little icons available to use. Your drawing or "Scribble Map" is then available to share by URL, email, or print. Slightly more savvy users can download, save as a kml file (readable in Google Maps or Google Earth), or embed the map in another site. The tools include sharing the map on Facebook and Twitter, as well. Add images by pasting in their urls. Drawing tools include lines, circles, place pointers, text labels, and color/size/transparency controls for all tools. Place pointers can be edited by selecting them (arrow tool), then clicking the small pencil. This site does include Google Ads and all the normal controls of Google maps, including satellite, map, terrain, hybrid views and Night Sky. See a sample Scribble Map created by the TeachersFirst editors (drag the map with your mouse!). Explore the tools and MENU options at the top left when you start out. Try the different Maps views (lower right) and zoom controls. Search for a starter location using the search at the top left, just below the tools. There is no help available, but it is easy to do basic maps. Share, save, etc. by clicking Menu (top left). When you first save a map, it will ask you to create a password for that map to use to edit it later. Note that if you SAVE a map and share it by URL, those accessing it will be able to use the tools and change the map. If you want them to see it without changing it, you will need to embed it in a blog, wiki, or other web site. The map ID can be changed and customized by simply typing in your own choice of ID when you are saving the map.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): directions (20), geology (81), landforms (45), landmarks (26), map skills (79), maps (287), space (205)

In the Classroom

Students and teachers will want to keep a written record or map URLS and passwords for future reference. Model this for students so they do not lose hours of work! Teachers can prepare partially-made maps or maps for students to make corrections and changes by giving the students the URL, then having them SAVE the map with a NEW ID. To SAVE the map with a new name and URL, click "Save map" in the menu, then enter your OWN map ID. Students could use a code including their initials, such as SJ12-3-09 for a map made by Sally Jones on Dec 3, 2009. Teachers should PASSWORD protect their originals so changes can only be saved under a new name. Similarly, if a student saves the map with a map password, they don't have to worry about other students vandalizing their work. But they DO need to remember the password! Wise teachers will keep a class list of maps and passwords for forgetful students! In primary grades, make maps of your local community together on your interactive whiteboard as you teach basic map skills. Create your own "key" with symbols you choose for playgrounds, etc. Have students help map locations of favorite playgrounds, grandparents' houses, stores, etc. as they gain basic understanding of map skills. Make sure you allow students to operate the tools! Save the map and share it as a link from your class web site (or embed it there). Keep names generic so it is "safe." Other ideas to challenge gifted student beyond the curriculum or elevate challenge for small groups include: natural resource maps, immigration maps, maps of civil war battles day by day, maps of key sites in the life of a famous person, artist, or author, maps of the settings in a novel, landform maps of a continent or state, "My life" maps of places important to an elementary student's family, annotated watershed maps of pollution sources, maps of the water cycle, maps of constellations in the night sky created by students to demonstrate understanding, maps of a dream community to be built in a vacant area (desert), including the water sources, etc. that will be needed, maps of a redesigned city/town on top of its current map. Teachers can provide map challenges or templates to be completed or corrected, including maps where students must label distances and cardinal directions between points (using map scale and skills). Or provide a teacher-created map with labels in the wrong places for students to correct the landforms, resources, etc. What will YOU do with Scribble Maps?
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Solar Symphony Game: Sounds of the Solar System - Discovery Channel

Grades
3 to 12
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This visually exciting site offers both background information on the planets and a unique way for students to remember the order of the planets. To play the game, students hit ...more
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This visually exciting site offers both background information on the planets and a unique way for students to remember the order of the planets. To play the game, students hit the letter key that corresponds to the beginning letter of the planet name whenever the planet, rotating around the sun, hits the "hot zone." The music, flashing lights, planetary movement, and other effects make this activity extremely engaging. Students will love the excitement of this game so much they will not even know they are learning something! This site is up to date (Pluto is not included). Gustav Holst's famous composition, The Planets serves as the musical accompaniment! The site has some minor advertisements.

tag(s): planets (123), solar system (119)

In the Classroom

Share HOW to use this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students try out the site on individual computers. Make sure you provide headsets! Be sure to list this site on your class website, blog, or wiki for students to use as a review for their study of planet names, solar system planet order, and speed of rotation. Music teachers can use this site as an example of musical description as students explore the planets. Be sure to turn up the speakers!
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Toys from trash - Arvind Gupta

Grades
K to 10
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Looking for simple ways to showcase simple math and science concepts? No money for classroom materials? Look no further. Use these simple instructions for making educational toys using...more
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Looking for simple ways to showcase simple math and science concepts? No money for classroom materials? Look no further. Use these simple instructions for making educational toys using everyday materials. Each toy easily demonstrates concepts that are basic for understanding processes of science. View an unbelievable amount of toys under the following categories: "Amazing Astronomy," "Pumps from the Dump," "Math Magic," "Paper Fun," Tipping Toppling Toys," Motor and Generator," "Electricity and Magnetism," "Newton Unplugged," "Fun with Pressure," "Fun with Light," "Toys from Trash," "Simple Sounds," "Strong Structures," "Flying Toys," "Force Fun," "Spinning Toys," and others. View annotated photos of the construction process or download detailed instructions. This site requires adobe Acrobat. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): light (46), newton (25), sound (101)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Use the simple directions and pictures for students to make their own manipulatives. After creating and observing, students can share their observations and the math and science processes can be uncovered. Use these to uncover misconceptions and dispel myths that undermine understanding of processes. Group students to choose one manipulative and present the concept to the class. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create their own "Toy From Trash." Have the groups create videos to share their "toys" and instructions. Share the video clips using a site such as Teachers.TV reviewed here.
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The Problem site - The problem site

Grades
K to 12
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Play interesting word, math, and other games with this free site. Specific topics include "Strategy Games and Quests," "Problems and Brainteasers," "Zero Gravity," "Entrapment," "Junior...more
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Play interesting word, math, and other games with this free site. Specific topics include "Strategy Games and Quests," "Problems and Brainteasers," "Zero Gravity," "Entrapment," "Junior Edition Games," and several others.

Membership is not required though members receive additional benefits. Find an interesting activity to try. On its page, click to play the game, read the directions for play, bookmark the specific game, or generate a link for embedding in a website, wiki, or blog. Printable game worksheets that can be customized can also be found on this site. Note: Ads appear along the side and students should be cautioned in clicking on these ads. Teachers should decide whether you are willing tolerate the extensive ads in light of the high-value site content.

tag(s): integers (41), solar system (119)

In the Classroom

Use these activities for problem solving drills and interest in words or numbers. Many of the activities could also be used for science class, research, or math extension activities. These interactives can be used for review that is both educational and engaging. Save this site in your favorites, as it is useful in many subject areas. Share this link with your students on your class website or wiki.
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We Choose the Moon - John F. Kennedy Library

Grades
K to 12
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Relive the Apollo 11 moon mission in rich multimedia format. Follow the mission in "real time" exactly 40 years later, including all transmissions. For those who are not old enough...more
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Relive the Apollo 11 moon mission in rich multimedia format. Follow the mission in "real time" exactly 40 years later, including all transmissions. For those who are not old enough to remember the 1969 mission, the real experience is powerful. For those who do remember, this site can spark personal commentary and oral history of the historic days during the summer of 1969. Offered by the John F. Kennedy library, this re-enactment started in 40-year-old "real time in July, 2009, but can be accessed and experienced in all or in part at any time after its "conclusion" on July 20, 2009. This is the ultimate "primary source"!

tag(s): kennedy (27), moon (72), space (205)

In the Classroom

Bring your class into the space exploration era on a projector or interactive whiteboard (be sure to turn on speakers!). Include this experience as part of a unit on the 1960s, a science study and comparison of technologies since the 1960s, or as part of a unit about the moon. Allow students to explore and navigate the site on their own, then write a "blog post" as an astronaut or a NASA worker in 1969. "Follow" the mission in real time over a period of several days, letting it run on your classroom computer, and assigning different students to report on the day's events. Explore some of the actual flight data in physics class as a practical application of some of Newton's laws. Use this site as a spark for students to collect oral histories on this and other events of the 1960s, using media resources as prompts to talk with family and friends about their recollections.
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Geometry Games - Jeff Weeks

Grades
K to 12
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Download free shareware games to encourage thinking and practice identifying geometric shapes. Many of the downloads are games, while others provide opportunities to view computer art...more
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Download free shareware games to encourage thinking and practice identifying geometric shapes. Many of the downloads are games, while others provide opportunities to view computer art and find the hidden geometry or for students to create their own! There are also activities connecting math to physics and astronomy.

Be sure to check with your technology department about the ability to download these applications to school computers. Many districts have restrictions on the ability to download. Click on each game icon to read a description of the games included and some uses. Games are Mac and Windows compatible. Read their FAQ link with each set of games for the most asked questions about the shareware. Once downloaded, to "stop" a program, click Esc. If you are not allowed to install software on your own, share these powerful games with your math or art supervisors so they can advocate for you with the tech folks.

tag(s): geometric shapes (163), symmetry (55), tessellations (6)

In the Classroom

Use many of the images as an introductory inquiry activity to get students thinking about shapes and space. In art class, use the tiling activity and others on a projector before having student create their own on paper. Share the activities on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Provide images to groups to explore and identify the underlying math concepts present in the artwork. Provide an opportunity for some groups to create their own work with a geometric shape that they are investigating. Follow up with student projects of the geometric shape or photographs of geometric shapes in nature and man-made structures.

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Equinox, Eclipse, & Space Vocabulary - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
5 to 12
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Come to this site to learn more about space! This site features several interactive puzzles, a word bank of about 30 vocabulary words, an "alphalary" of solar system terms, and ...more
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Come to this site to learn more about space! This site features several interactive puzzles, a word bank of about 30 vocabulary words, an "alphalary" of solar system terms, and more. Many of the activities are able to be printed FREE of charge.

tag(s): solar system (119), space (205), vocabulary (324)

In the Classroom

Use this site to enhance your astronomy lessons. The word bank could easily be used as vocabulary words for students to research on their own. Share the word puzzles on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students attempt to create their own word puzzles about an astronomy topic that your class is studying. Use an online puzzle creation tool such as Just Crosswords reviewed here or Puzzlemaker, reviewed here.

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Planets - Gunn.co.nz

Grades
6 to 12
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Think you know about the motion of the planets? Use this simulation to show the movements of Earth, Venus, Sun, or other planets. Create trails of the orbits to look ...more
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Think you know about the motion of the planets? Use this simulation to show the movements of Earth, Venus, Sun, or other planets. Create trails of the orbits to look at motion. View retrograde motion and movement of other planets from using a different planet as the "center." Controls on the left change the scale, speed, and brightness as well as other viewing controls. Click on "Introductory Tour" to learn the controls and what they do.

Be advised: Pluto appears to be included as a planet at this site. How long do you think it will take for your students to notice?

tag(s): motion (59), planets (123)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Have students go through the screens that provide information along with the movement of the planets. Students can devise their own explanation of retrograde motion and observe and describe the motion of other orbits from a different planets viewpoint. After viewing the interactive, have students create their own multimedia presentation about the planets, retrograde motion, or another astronomy topic.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Exploring Planets in the Classroom - Univ. of Hawaii

Grades
3 to 12
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This site offers a collection of activities to explore the planets and solar system. They were developed by K-12 teachers in Hawaii as part of a summer continuing education program....more
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This site offers a collection of activities to explore the planets and solar system. They were developed by K-12 teachers in Hawaii as part of a summer continuing education program. While there are a number of attractive units here, the lack of specified grade levels will require that you sample for yourself before determining whether any of these items might be useful in your science class. Still, if the planets are the topic, this collection is worth a look

tag(s): planets (123), solar system (119)

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Science Fair Projects World - Solar System 3D Simulator - Science Fair Projects World

Grades
2 to 12
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Use this free application to create accurate 3D models of the solar system. Show the planets and orbits as well as the sun and the moon. View detailed information of ...more
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Use this free application to create accurate 3D models of the solar system. Show the planets and orbits as well as the sun and the moon. View detailed information of the physical and chemical make-up of the planets, the energy of the sun, and details of solar eclipse. View all images in great color. Change orbit views or tilt and rotate orbits to other angles. Speed up or slow down the movement of the solar system. Application download is for Windows PC only and appears NOT to work with Vista.

tag(s): planets (123), solar system (119)

In the Classroom

Users will need the skills of downloading and finding and managing applications. The software is easy to use and has a wonderful interface for finding great information about the planets. The only safety concern is whether your school's policy allows you to install this free software. If not, try approaching an administrator or department head to show them the descriptions and request installation at least on you teacher computer for sharing on projector and/or whiteboard.

Use this free model to understand the physics of the universe or learn astronomy. Use as a science fair project, to ask questions or find answers, and to create material for presentation online or in class. Share the model on your interactive whiteboard or projector.

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Scientific American slideshows - Scientific American

Grades
2 to 12
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View slideshow pictures of science topics with captions. Looking for more information? Links on each slideshow page lead to related articles on the topic. Categories of slideshows include:...more
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View slideshow pictures of science topics with captions. Looking for more information? Links on each slideshow page lead to related articles on the topic. Categories of slideshows include: Health, Space, Technology, Environment, Energy, Physics, Math, and History of Science, among others. New slideshows are added frequently. Some of the newer additions (at the time of this review) included "Was Einstein Wrong?: A Quantum Threat to Special Relativity," "Anatomy Lessons Through The Ages," "150 Years Ago: The Birth of the Industrial Revolution," "How Meat Contributes to Global Warming," and many others. You can search by category on the right side of the site.

tag(s): slides (63)

In the Classroom

Use these beautiful images without copyright worries by accessing this site live in class. Make science come alive visually as an activator or anticipatory set to your lessons. With younger students, share simply the pictures! Share the relevant slideshows on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Follow the slideshows with reading of related articles and topics. Challenge students to reflect and discuss as groups or individually in a blog post or conventional writing assignment. Relate material in the slideshow or articles to other material discussed in class or in the current news headlines. Assign one student a week to share a "science in our world" two-minute synopsis of his/her slideshow choice on interactive whiteboard to highlight the use and excitement of real science in the world today, sort of "current events" for science class.

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SCOPE videos - Network Ten Australia and CSIRO

Grades
2 to 12
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Check out these great Science videos and resources! Each topic has video clips, external web links to great information, and additional resources. Video clips use Windows Media Player...more
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Check out these great Science videos and resources! Each topic has video clips, external web links to great information, and additional resources. Video clips use Windows Media Player available on the website. Search through many topics in "Earth and Space," "Energy and Force," "Engineering and Technology," "Living Things," and "Matter."

tag(s): caves (5), disasters (39), energy (198), forensics (27), natural disasters (20), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Capture students' attention using these great video clips and activities. Use the clips for pre-lessons for students to observe and ask questions (sort of a video KWL activity). Use this to discuss important information and as an opportunity to research, experiment, and learn more about the concepts. Make a video one of your centers with elementary science units.

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