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Better Lesson - BetterLesson

Grades
K to 12
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This site offers over 10,000 lessons aligned with the Common Core and the Next Generation Science Standards. The lessons were created by 130 Master Teachers. You can browse resources...more
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This site offers over 10,000 lessons aligned with the Common Core and the Next Generation Science Standards. The lessons were created by 130 Master Teachers. You can browse resources without registering. Click the blue "Browse" button to get started. Choose along the top from Common Core Math, Common Core ELA, or Next Generation Science. Lessons are arranged by grade level or Math, Language, and Science subjects. However, if you want to create your own resources, registration is required. After registering, create a class and then create a unit for that class. Finally, create a lesson for that unit, fill in an objective, select a state standard, and estimate the total time on task. Upload files (or drag and drop) to assign them to the lesson or keep them "unassigned" for later use. Additionally, simply add other users' files to your own curriculum. Search for files by keyword, age-level, and type of format. Click on a result to see every lesson plan using that file.

tag(s): commoncore (62), professional development (83)

In the Classroom

Use this site to create lessons for students to follow. Use this site to share inspirational lessons you create or to find inspiration in the work of others. Meet the Common Core goals by using the tools and lesson plans offered at this website. Though the site deals with the technical aspect of lesson planning, many ideas exist to reverse engineer to your own lessons. Create a course to maintain and tweak your lessons for your classes. Expand PD to others in your school or in other schools to learn from the best ideas of others!

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Build a Snowflake - Peter Hawkes

Grades
K to 10
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Create virtual snowflakes using the simple tools of this Flash-based interactive. Click New Snowflake to access the tools. Be sure to watch the sample snowflake first to understand...more
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Create virtual snowflakes using the simple tools of this Flash-based interactive. Click New Snowflake to access the tools. Be sure to watch the sample snowflake first to understand how to drag the nodes on the starter triangle. Click to add and drag nodes on each line of the triangle. Preview to see your shape replicated and rotated to make a full snowflake using radial symmetry. You can edit it to change how it looks. Add as many nodes as you wish to make more complex designs. Click to name and save your snowflake. You can also print it. Animate the snowflakes to see your creations "falling." Note that "saving" simply puts the snowflake information in the browser cache on your computer and may not actually "save" once you close your browser, depending on the computer settings. "Send to a friend" emails ONLY the website address (not your flake) for your friend to try the snowflake tool.

tag(s): snow (20), symmetry (51), weather (175)

In the Classroom

Explore geometric constructions or simply enjoy some winter fun with this tool. In math, geometry, or art class, explore what happens when a shape is repeated radially. Use this to demonstrate radial symmetry, figure/ground relationships, and the impact of obtuse/acute angles in creating snowflake shapes. Have students create flakes when studying angles. They can screenshot or print them, then write an explanation of why the angles they used created a successful flake. They can even create comparisons of two flakes. With younger students, use the snowflake builder as a writing prompt for a winter story or in lessons on crystals, weather, and more. Save printer ink by taking screenshots (Printscrn button on Windows or ShIft+Command+4 on Mac) to paste the flake images into a slideshow or save as images on your computer. Be sure to share this one on your class website for snow days!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Matthew, UT, Grades: 0 - 5

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IFL Science - IFL Science

Grades
7 to 12
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Discover a constantly changing, blog-style collection of articles about all areas of science, designed to engage readers in science and instill a desire to learn more. The articles...more
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Discover a constantly changing, blog-style collection of articles about all areas of science, designed to engage readers in science and instill a desire to learn more. The articles are grouped into headings such as Environment, Technology, Space, Health and Medicine, The Brain, Plants and Animals, Physics, and Chemistry. Articles share recent discoveries, timely experiments to try (such as cold weather explorations during winter), and intriguing (but true) revelations about scientific mysteries. There are topics of interest to almost any reader, such as "Why Most Food Labels Are Wrong About Calories" or "How Smartphones Can Lead The Fight Against Air Pollution." Click tags to find similar articles. Note that subject material is intended for adults, though our editors found nothing objectionable in the actual articles shared by IFLScience. Avoid clicking on ads and items under "More Stories" and "From the Web," as these lead to other sites of less predictable quality. If sharing this site with teens, be sure to point out which links stay within IFLScience. The site does allow reader comments from the general public. Preview if sharing in a classroom.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): brain (57), environment (291)

In the Classroom

Share this site for students to explore informational articles related to what they are currently studying or to explore the many aspects of science not included in standard school curriculum. Challenge student partners to find an article they enjoy and share it creatively as a poster or mock interview with the scientists involved. They can use a simple tool such as Magazine Cover Maker (reviewed here) or actually make a video "interview" and share it on TeacherTube (reviewed here). Have your gifted students explore articles to extend required curriculum. Use this site for career day explorations about the many places where scientists work.

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Polar Palooza - Geoff Haines-Stiles Productions, Inc.

Grades
3 to 9
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Bring some polar science into your classroom! Find vodcasts (video podcasts) of penguins, polar bears, and more in the video podcasts section of this site. Be sure to review the ...more
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Bring some polar science into your classroom! Find vodcasts (video podcasts) of penguins, polar bears, and more in the video podcasts section of this site. Be sure to review the activities in the Educators Update. Learn the science of polar regions from the physical properties of melting ice to the adaptations of the animals that call the polar region their home. Meet the contributors to the site in the Travelers section.

tag(s): adaptations (13), animals (234), antarctica (22), arctic (36), polar (17)

In the Classroom

Plan a Polar Palooza with your classes! Students can brainstorm questions they have about the polar regions. For example, How do polar animals stay warm in their environment? Choose from activities in the Educators Corner such as "Life in the Cold and Dark" from the drop down menu. Activity pages include background information, objectives, activities to engage students, and exploration activities. Blubber Gloves is a great activity to learn about the physical adaptations of polar animals. Combine winter art projects with the Polar Palooza activities in class. For example, create a collage of animals that have blubber for warmth or a display of polar adaptations. Display artwork online using tools such as Artsonia, reviewed here or Dropr, reviewed here. In music, create handmade instruments that can mimic polar animals and create a one of a kind instrumental score! Record and publish music along with artwork using Roxio, reviewed here. Create awareness campaigns about polar animals and changes being seen as a result of climate change. Try combining activities with other subject areas for a cross-curricular unit. Try some nonfiction reading that focuses on polar animals or encourage students to create their own short stories complete with artwork using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Reading a Map - National Park Service

Grades
4 to 9
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This interactive site makes elementary map reading fun. Learn what maps mean and how to read maps. Answer questions using a simple map. Go from a photograph to a topographic ...more
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This interactive site makes elementary map reading fun. Learn what maps mean and how to read maps. Answer questions using a simple map. Go from a photograph to a topographic view. Learn how to use the legend, scale, and compass rose (also called a direction indicator). After a review session, interesting sounds indicate when you have answered the questions correctly and understand the parts of the map.

tag(s): geology (75), maps (251)

In the Classroom

After viewing this site, have students take a simple local map and add geologic details such as woods, hills or mountains, water features, etc. Challenge students to create online "tours" to explain their map enhancement using Screenjelly, reviewed here,to create simple, narrated recordings. Discuss the differences in perspective from the top and side views of the mountain shown here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Ice Trade Game - NOVA

Grades
4 to 12
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Test your skills at harvesting ice and selling it in a tropical area. Read the background information on the inspiration for this interactive. Choose the amount of ice to move, ...more
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Test your skills at harvesting ice and selling it in a tropical area. Read the background information on the inspiration for this interactive. Choose the amount of ice to move, sawdust insulation, and destination within your budget. Launch your boats to determine any profit. Follow the link to go to the Nova program Absolute Zero for more information about ice, temperature, and insulation. Find related resources along the left side. For example, apply these principles to how a refrigerator works.

tag(s): scientific method (51), temperature (26)

In the Classroom

Place a link to this interactive on your website for students to access. Allow time for students to collect data from their work on this interactive and complete a lab experiment where students can demonstrate what they learned. For some "non-technology" challenges provide various materials to use as insulation and different sizes of ice to determine the degree of melting. How would they measure it? Students should identify the procedures they will use first and then make a prediction. Research various types of insulation, make comparisons, and report about the history of insulation.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Science Dictionary - ScienceDictionary.org

Grades
6 to 12
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Science Dictionary offers definitions of terms for all fields of science. Although rather "plain vanilla" in appearance, this site has a lot to offer! Choose a category such as Agriculture,...more
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Science Dictionary offers definitions of terms for all fields of science. Although rather "plain vanilla" in appearance, this site has a lot to offer! Choose a category such as Agriculture, Chemistry, or Biology to begin your search or enter a keyword in the search box. Click on any word or term to view the short definition.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): dictionaries (49), paleontology (39), space (175), weather (175)

In the Classroom

Create a link on student computers for use throughout the year. Bookmark on your teacher computer for viewing of definitions on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) as needed. Share a link on your class website for students to access from home.

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Fort McMoney - David Dufresne

Grades
10 to 12
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Fort McMoney is a web video and strategy simulation based on the Fort McMurray oil sands development in Alberta, Canada. Watch the trailer for background information on the project...more
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Fort McMoney is a web video and strategy simulation based on the Fort McMurray oil sands development in Alberta, Canada. Watch the trailer for background information on the project before playing the game. Play three rounds with players from around the globe over a period of four weeks to reimagine Fort McMurray making strategic financial and environmental decisions. Be sure to scroll completely down the page to view and understand all instructions before beginning play. Also, each of the three episodes contains a trailer setting up the episode. Be sure to preview before sharing with less mature students, as the trailer for episode one contains drinking and party scenes that may not be appropriate for classroom viewing.

tag(s): canada (27), environment (291), oil (45)

In the Classroom

Explore and experiment with the simulation so you understand it or have a small team of students preview it to explain it to the class. Set up games for use on classroom computers to avoid students viewing the trailer for episode one. View the trailer for episode two together on your interactive whiteboard to introduce the activities to your class. Use the simulation of Fort McMoney as an ongoing classroom project while studying the environmental impact of government and business decisions. Create several groups in your class to participate and compare results of the different interactives. Have students create maps using Animaps (reviewed here) with locations facing important impact on the environment. Students can add text, images, and location stops!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Nature Notesno - Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Grades
1 to 8
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Nature Notes contains information and activities about plants, animals, and the world around us. Explore critters and habitats. Watch for seasonal changes. Test your identification...more
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Nature Notes contains information and activities about plants, animals, and the world around us. Explore critters and habitats. Watch for seasonal changes. Test your identification skills using dichotomous tree guides, a water critter key, and a frog identification guide. Find information about Wisconsin trees and plants and the state symbols. Learn about hibernation, migration, paw prints, fur, and more.

tag(s): animals (234), environment (291), habitats (72), plants (116)

In the Classroom

Show Nature Notes on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) and discuss the components included. As a final concluding project, place students in groups, and assign a different part to each group to explore about your own state. Some examples could include critters in your state, trees, or habitats. Be sure to include photos, videos, poetry, and songs. In science, discover the dichotomous key and apply. Look for any keys for plants or animals in your area. Inspire kids to to take a closer look at your environment. Have students make a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here. Be sure to read the appropriate grade levels for presentation tools.

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A Curious Mind - Mario Livio, Space Telescope Science Institute

Grades
9 to 12
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Capture the interest of science students with the many interesting posts in this science blog (full of STEM/STEAM). This is a good example of how science CAN be blog material! ...more
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Capture the interest of science students with the many interesting posts in this science blog (full of STEM/STEAM). This is a good example of how science CAN be blog material! Find posts that are cross-disciplinary and informational. Choose from the two topics along the side of the blog: Art and Science. Use the search bar to find blog articles related to your content topic. Many of the science topics are upper high school to adult, with many blog comments from those who teach at the University level.

tag(s): scientists (48), STEM (68)

In the Classroom

Use this site with gifted students in a regular science class or on their own. Students will find the information and perspectives interesting and thought provoking. Use these passages for reading of informational texts and connecting information with other material learned in classes (science and other). Be sure to bookmark this site on your class webpage for students to use, particularly in any STEM or STEAM initiative at your school.

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Citizen Sort - Syracuse University School of Information Studies

Grades
6 to 12
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Explore engaging interactives to learn real science at Citizen Sort. Register using an email address to play and view the activities. Choose from several different options such as Happy...more
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Explore engaging interactives to learn real science at Citizen Sort. Register using an email address to play and view the activities. Choose from several different options such as Happy Match (to classify photos), Living Links (to identify living things), or Forgotten Island (to collect photos) to help scientists after a large explosion.

tag(s): animals (234), classification (24), insects (60), plants (116)

In the Classroom

Citizen Sort is perfect for use on your interactive whiteboard or projector during the appropriate science unit on classification. Play together and discuss options for identifying and classifying living things. Use Citizen Sort as a science center on classroom computers. Be sure to share a link to the site on your class website or blog for use at home. Have students create an online or printed comic demonstrating lessons learned using one of the tools and ideas included in this collection. Have students create an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here.
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Flying Classroom - Flying Classroom

Grades
K to 9
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Join a journey to eleven countries and three continents as part of a global STEM learning adventure aligned to Next Gen and Common Core Reading standards. The site navigation itself...more
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Join a journey to eleven countries and three continents as part of a global STEM learning adventure aligned to Next Gen and Common Core Reading standards. The site navigation itself takes a little "exploration," but the time is well worth it. Learn about locations around the world as you explore science and technology at each stop along the way. Learn about the captain and crew under Flight Briefing. Follow the clickable flight route under Flight Tracker. Take a flight tutorial at Fly with Us (under Flight Briefings). Explore videos on the Blog and under Flight Briefings. Watch the intro video on the home page. Some of the videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos 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.

tag(s): aircraft (20), animals (234), architecture (65), ecosystems (75), endangered species (31), flight (32), oceans (130), STEM (68), volcanoes (54), weather (175)

In the Classroom

Incorporate this expedition into your units on continents, exploration and explorers (to compare modern exploration with historic expeditions), or science units on flight, energy and more. See the Blog for specific scientific explorations your students can read in groups or as a class. Include this resource in a unit on scientists and what they do. Include some of the readings as informational texts that will generate high student interest. This is a great resource for your gifted students in a regular classroom to extend curriculum and share what they have learned with classmates. For more background for teachers, see the Executive Summary under "About." Have students use a class account to create maps using Animaps, reviewed here. Students can add text, images, and location stops! Middle school students can use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about any of the people on Captain Barrington's journey.
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Collapsus: The Energy Risk Conspiracy - Submarine Channel

Grades
8 to 12
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Collapsus is a simulation that combines interactivity, animation, fiction, and documentary to look into the future as an imminent energy crisis affects ten young people. Participants...more
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Collapsus is a simulation that combines interactivity, animation, fiction, and documentary to look into the future as an imminent energy crisis affects ten young people. Participants make decisions about solutions to the energy crisis and leave a mark on a national and global scale. Live action footage along with animation helps characters understand each situation while vlog posts offer up to date information about the world and personal situations.

tag(s): energy (168), environment (291), problem solving (197)

In the Classroom

Collapsus is a great way to make students think about and discuss a real-world issue in a science class or even in a government class where you talk about the role of public policy in energy use. Explore and play Collapsus on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) as you debate and discuss choices. Have students explore individually or in groups and compare the impact of different decisions. Use an online tool such as the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare and contrast two different decision choices. Create a quick poll (with no membership required) using using Kwiqpoll, reviewed here, to use when making decisions as a class.
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Earth Null School - Cameron Beccario

Grades
6 to 12
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Earth Null School is a visual compilation of winds plotted at many, many locations around the globe, updated every three hours. In addition, the globe shows ocean surface currents updated...more
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Earth Null School is a visual compilation of winds plotted at many, many locations around the globe, updated every three hours. In addition, the globe shows ocean surface currents updated every five days and ocean temperatures, updated daily. Click and rotate the globe to view any area in the world. Scroll in and out to zoom in on any location. Choose the word "earth" at the lower left side of the screen to view controls and additional data. Controls allow you to view data from previous days, adjust from air to ocean currents, and add overlays for temperature, humidity, and more.

tag(s): climate (91), oceans (130), temperature (26), weather (175)

In the Classroom

Introduce Earth Null School on your interactive whiteboard or projector during a unit on weather. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. View and track information from this site for your school's location. If you Skype with a class in a different location, Earth Null School is a perfect addition to comparing and contrasting weather information with your partner class! Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to compare weather at any two locations.

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A Guide to the Energy of the Earth - Joshua M. Sneideman

Grades
7 to 12
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This Ted-Ed Original lesson features a video and related activities to understand where energy goes on Earth. This lesson features a multidisciplinary approach to understanding energy:...more
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This Ted-Ed Original lesson features a video and related activities to understand where energy goes on Earth. This lesson features a multidisciplinary approach to understanding energy: using the natural science, social science, and economics to understand. Watch the video. Think by answering a series of questions. Dig Deeper with more information about the topic and join a discussion.

tag(s): conservation (115), energy (168), fossil fuels (13)

In the Classroom

Share the video using a projector or Interactive whiteboard. Use the questions in the lesson or develop your own to identify problems that students have in understanding the concept. Use the Dig Deeper information to understand more about the concept of energy and related problems from its use. Consider creating subtopics for students to research and report on to fellow classmates. Debate our current use of energy, problems for the future, and possible solutions using a discussion forum or in the classroom. Have students create energy posters using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here)
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Your Life on Earth - BBC

Grades
6 to 12
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We know our own lifetimes are but a tiny hiccup in the long history of the Earth. But what HAS happened since we were born? The BBC will tell you. ...more
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We know our own lifetimes are but a tiny hiccup in the long history of the Earth. But what HAS happened since we were born? The BBC will tell you. Simply enter your date of birth (using the day/month/year format) and some other information (you can choose either metric or Imperial/US measurement), and a wonderful series of charts appears! How many times has your heart beat? How old would you be on Venus? How has the Earth changed since you were born? How has humankind changed the Earth since you were born? How many volcanoes have erupted? What's happened to the sea levels? How many endangered species have become extinct? This site is created by the BBC (United Kingdom). American English speakers may notice some slights spelling differences. It is best viewed in Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer 10 and above.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): climate change (51), earth (216), earth day (106), earthquakes (42), planets (107), writing prompts (87)

In the Classroom

Look at the various metrics based on your age to gain perspective on many science and history topics. Look at the impact of human behavior on the environment or at the "big picture" of what one human can do in a lifetime. Consider comparing the changes on Earth based on a student's age versus a teacher's age (if you're brave enough to tell!). You can also dial back the clock 100 years, but choose times in modern history for the comparison. Don't forget to use the dropdown menus on each chart for more information. For example, pick any planet to see how old you'd be there. Small groups of students could discuss and analyze different components of the site and present their findings to the larger class. Include this in math class as a way to apply multiplication formulas or conversions. Use observations on this site to spark blog posts of evidence-based writing. Have students make visual representations of their life on Earth as an infographic. To learn more about infographics in the classroom, see TeachersFirst's Now I See!.
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My Science Box - Irene Salter

Grades
K to 12
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This free site uses a virtual teaching "box" to house activities, lessons, and more to teach any unit of Science. Choose a grade range to view lessons, or choose by ...more
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This free site uses a virtual teaching "box" to house activities, lessons, and more to teach any unit of Science. Choose a grade range to view lessons, or choose by science concept. Lessons are sorted into Classroom Activity, Labs and Projects, Curriculum Unit, and Computer Activity. Actively engage your students in scientific discovery and questioning using these activities that also use modeling, questioning, and more to learn content. Activities are aligned to the California State Science Standards. Every lesson has been "kid tested" in a real school.

tag(s): atoms (52), cells (97), commoncore (62), earth (216), forces (28), geology (75), gravity (42), inquiry (34), measurement (149), modeling (10), molecules (37), plate tectonics (24)

In the Classroom

Be sure to check out all of the materials available for the various science topics. Materials can be easily downloaded and printed for adaptation and use. Use the materials for investigations before studying the topic. For example, Testing for Life's Molecules uses simple chemical tests to identify which foods contain carbohydrates, fats, or proteins. Ask students to write down what they know about these molecules. Use the activity to experiment with various everyday foods. Follow with other materials to learn about these various molecules that make up every living thing. Find activities for Physical Science/Physics, Chemistry, Life Science/Biology, Geology, Evolution, Ecology, and more!

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Kids TryScience - TeachersTryScience.org

Grades
K to 6
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Kids TryScience offers a large choice of experiments in several categories just for kids. Choose from STEM categories such as Technology & Engineering, Physical Science, Mathematics,...more
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Kids TryScience offers a large choice of experiments in several categories just for kids. Choose from STEM categories such as Technology & Engineering, Physical Science, Mathematics, Space Sciences, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Medicine & Heath, and more. Within each group, find quick and easy experiments with complete directions and objectives as well as parent/teacher tips for reinforcing concepts.

tag(s): animals (234), density (21), engineering (85), human body (94), oceans (130), plants (116), senses (25), STEM (68), water cycle (28)

In the Classroom

Use experiments found on this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos of experiments and share them on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here.

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The All-Star River Explorers - University of Illinois Extension

Grades
3 to 6
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Discover the basics of rivers and how they form with this kid-friendly adventure. Read and listen to facts about rivers. View and compare maps from previous centuries to today's maps...more
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Discover the basics of rivers and how they form with this kid-friendly adventure. Read and listen to facts about rivers. View and compare maps from previous centuries to today's maps and learn about changes to rivers through natural and unnatural changes. Explore several in-depth sections including River Basics, River Dollars & Sense, and Ooze, Good & Other Nasty Things.

tag(s): ecology (130), explorers (53), maps (251), rivers (17)

In the Classroom

Have students try out this site on individual computers or as a learning center. Turn sound off or on according to your needs. Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on a projector or interactive whiteboard. This is a great find for gifted students. Explore the logic or unusual topics (for example, a site where students can do more in-depth investigation related to a "standard" curriculum topic)! This site is excellent for enrichment. Include it on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Down the Drain Project - The Center for Innovation in Science and Engineering

Grades
3 to 12
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Down the Drain is a free Internet-based collaborative project that has classes around the world share and compare their water consumption. For a detailed explanation, visit the New...more
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Down the Drain is a free Internet-based collaborative project that has classes around the world share and compare their water consumption. For a detailed explanation, visit the New to the Project link. The project includes a hypothesis, prediction, data collection, and comparing results. The data collection period lasts one week. There is a link for Student Activities. The Teacher Guide link offers an overview of the project, publishing policy information, and extension activities. The project says it is designed for grades 4-8 but can be used in upper grades, as well.

tag(s): environment (291), recycling (51), water (113)

In the Classroom

Bring problem-based learning into your classroom and share the results globally. Encourage multiple classrooms or schools in your area to participate. Extend the project by having collaborative groups find water saving ideas to employ in school, at home, or in the community. Find ways to share results locally in newspapers or news channels to encourage community involvement. Present findings with a variety of multimedia: PowerPoint, Prezi, reviewed here, video, podOmatic podcast, reviewed here, artwork, poetry, or song.

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