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The Basics of Fusion - Princeton

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6 to 12
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In May, 2006, an unusual international consortium signed a treaty that could lead to the eventual construction of the world's first commercial fusion reactor. With it would come the...more
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In May, 2006, an unusual international consortium signed a treaty that could lead to the eventual construction of the world's first commercial fusion reactor. With it would come the key to almost limitless energy. This backgrounder from a similar European consortium provides a much more basic introduction to how fusion works and why it presents such a challenge.

tag(s): energy (198), nuclear energy (24)

In the Classroom

In addition to its obvious applications in physics, this issue could have widespread economic and environmental implications. There are lots of "What if..." questions you could develop around this one.

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RadTown USA - Environmental Protection Agency

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6 to 8
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Learn about radiation sources and uses in everyday life through the virtual community of RadTown. As students tour the town, they can click on specific locations to read about wireless...more
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Learn about radiation sources and uses in everyday life through the virtual community of RadTown. As students tour the town, they can click on specific locations to read about wireless networks, stadium lights, medical X-rays, and power plants that introduce varying levels of radiation into our environment. Each location is linked to a fact sheet containing information about the type of radiation, agencies that help to regulate it, and steps we can take to protect ourselves from it.

tag(s): radio (27), waves (21)

In the Classroom

After exploring this virtual town, invite students to identify sources of radiation in their own community and create a class "map" showing locations that contain, use, or have been treated with radiation.

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Einstein Light - University of New South Wales

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10 to 12
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Through a variety of animated illustrations and film clips, visitors to this creative site can gain a better understanding of Einstein's Theory of Special Relativity. Each animated...more
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Through a variety of animated illustrations and film clips, visitors to this creative site can gain a better understanding of Einstein's Theory of Special Relativity. Each animated module provides basic information and main ideas that can be pursued in greater depth by visiting the related links (with or without mathematical explanations).

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Newton's Laws of Motion

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6 to 8
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Newton's Laws of Motion are delightfully animated in this series of teacher-made lessons that combine animated stick figures and cars with easy-to-understand explanations. The brief...more
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Newton's Laws of Motion are delightfully animated in this series of teacher-made lessons that combine animated stick figures and cars with easy-to-understand explanations. The brief but effective lessons conclude with a review activity (answers provided), an eight-question quiz, and comprehensive instructions for designing two hands-on experiments.

tag(s): motion (59), newton (25)

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Flash Animations for Physics - University of Toronto

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10 to 12
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Use this collection of more than seventy Flash animations to illustrate important concepts in physics class. Topics include classical mechanics, vectors, waves, relativity, and more....more
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Use this collection of more than seventy Flash animations to illustrate important concepts in physics class. Topics include classical mechanics, vectors, waves, relativity, and more. For the adventuresome who like to tinker, the site also includes a tutorial on using Flash with mathematical equations to create controlled animations. Asa the title indicates, these animations REQUIRE FLASH. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): animation (63), vectors (25), waves (21)

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Golf Range

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9 to 12
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Using a golf course as a physics lab, this interactive site lets students experiment with angle and velocity as they learn about projectile motion and try to achieve a hole-in-one....more
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Using a golf course as a physics lab, this interactive site lets students experiment with angle and velocity as they learn about projectile motion and try to achieve a hole-in-one. You'll need to develop the lesson plan around this online activity.

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The Science of (English) Football - BBC

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9 to 12
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Well, actually, it's the science of soccer. This motivating, interactive game puts an authentic spin on some important scientific principles of motion. Faced with a virtual soccer...more
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Well, actually, it's the science of soccer. This motivating, interactive game puts an authentic spin on some important scientific principles of motion. Faced with a virtual soccer ball and goalkeeper, students must select the specific direction and power of the kick that will result in a score.

tag(s): motion (59), newton (25)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of this free lesson plan and classroom activity from BBC. Be sure to save this site as a favorite on your classroom computer to allow for easy reference later on. This is a great way to hook students to the content in an original way!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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States of Matter

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3 to 6
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This incredibly comprehensive, downloadable lesson plan introduces students to the three states of matter and their characteristics, and demonstrates how matter changes from one state...more
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This incredibly comprehensive, downloadable lesson plan introduces students to the three states of matter and their characteristics, and demonstrates how matter changes from one state to another. Includes detailed instructions and guidance for carrying out classroom experiments and hands-on activities using simple materials. Links to additional downloadable materials are provided.You MUST have Acrobat Reader to open this page.

tag(s): matter (58), states (162)

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Energy Conservation for a Pendulum - American Association for the Advancement of Science

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9 to 12
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This animated illustration demonstrates the principle of mechanical energy conservation and the relationship between gravity and tension. An interactive quiz is included along with...more
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This animated illustration demonstrates the principle of mechanical energy conservation and the relationship between gravity and tension. An interactive quiz is included along with links to related topics. Aligned to National Standards.

tag(s): conservation (127), energy (198), gravity (46)

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Elements - Tom Lehrer

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10 to 12
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It's goofy, but it just might work! Imagine the elements of the periodic table. Now imagine them as lyrics set to the music of Arthur Sullivan (as in "The Pirates ...more
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It's goofy, but it just might work! Imagine the elements of the periodic table. Now imagine them as lyrics set to the music of Arthur Sullivan (as in "The Pirates of Penzance"), and you can begin to grasp the unique nature of this animated little gem. A perfect anticipatory set to liven up your science class. This site requires FLASH. If you see a blank screen, you need to install the Flash player. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): elements (36), periodic table (50)

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Conversion Maestro - Point Loma Nazarene University Department of Physics

Grades
5 to 12
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The next time your students must perform U.S.-metric conversions, send them to this helpful site. The online calculator handles length, area, mass, weight, liquid volume, and temperature...more
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The next time your students must perform U.S.-metric conversions, send them to this helpful site. The online calculator handles length, area, mass, weight, liquid volume, and temperature while showing users the conversion factor for each calculations.

tag(s): conversions (23)

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Physics Life - Institute of Physics

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4 to 7
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Explore the physics in the world around you with this outstanding interactive stroll through a virtual town. Investigate objects along the street, prowl through buildings and learn...more
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Explore the physics in the world around you with this outstanding interactive stroll through a virtual town. Investigate objects along the street, prowl through buildings and learn about how the principles of physics affect our daily lives. Great introductory activity to address the "Why do we need to know this stuff?" questions!

tag(s): scientists (69)

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Ology - American Museum of Natural History

Grades
2 to 8
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This site is filled with kid-friendly text and engaging interactive activities that introduce "ologies" and investigate topics including marine biology, astronomy, archeology, earth...more
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This site is filled with kid-friendly text and engaging interactive activities that introduce "ologies" and investigate topics including marine biology, astronomy, archeology, earth science, and more. Each topic section includes background information, virtual experiments and tours, and suggestions for in-class experiments. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): museums (49)

In the Classroom

Motivate your students by using an interactive whiteboard or projector to share these engaging, interactive, and educational resources.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Origins - The Exploratorium

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9 to 12
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This extensive site examines the search for origins of the universe, of matter, and of life, through the people, places, and tools that have contributed to human understanding of these...more
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This extensive site examines the search for origins of the universe, of matter, and of life, through the people, places, and tools that have contributed to human understanding of these mysteries. Visitors can explore space centers, jungle labs, and polar stations. Discover the secrets buried in Antarctica's ice and Belize's rainforest. Find out how knowledge of science from one field brings insight to others. Before leading students here, map out a plan of attack that best fits your curriculum.

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Don't Burn - Build!

Grades
9 to 12
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This well-organized WebQuest involves students in an authentic collaborative activity to design a new bridge for the city of Calcutta. Using skills involving critical thinking, research,...more
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This well-organized WebQuest involves students in an authentic collaborative activity to design a new bridge for the city of Calcutta. Using skills involving critical thinking, research, geometry and physics, students must assume specific roles and work together to create an engineering solution. Helpful solutions, links to Web resources and worksheets, and evaluation rubrics are provided. As with any webquest made by a teacher out there, sometimes links "go bad" while the teacher isn't looking. This one is mostly active and definitely worth tolerating the "bad spots."

In the Classroom

A few of the links on the main page don't work, so teachers will need to find replacements if necessary. Otherwise, the activity would be a great extension activity for a math or science class.

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Origins - NOVA

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9 to 12
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This creative awe-inspiring site examines Earth's life history and offers interactive modules, slide shows, and articles that take visitors back to the beginning of everything. Visitors...more
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This creative awe-inspiring site examines Earth's life history and offers interactive modules, slide shows, and articles that take visitors back to the beginning of everything. Visitors can decide for themselves if life exists on other planets, explore the role played by galaxies, and the most recent scientific discoveries of life's origins. Your students will be amazed as they analyze the fingerprints of a star, see how the Eagle Nebula was assembled from raw Hubble Telescope data, or check our where in the world scientist are finding their greatest discoveries in origins research. Stay tuned for a soon-to-be-developed teacher's guide.

tag(s): planets (123)

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Visionlearning

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6 to 12
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Complete a free online registration and begin to explore an impressive collection of learning modules that address chemistry, general science, physics, astronomy, and earth science....more
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Complete a free online registration and begin to explore an impressive collection of learning modules that address chemistry, general science, physics, astronomy, and earth science. Each module contains interactive animations, a glossary, related current events, practice exercises, and biographic information about scientists who worked with that particular concept. Registered users can personalize each module with comments, links, or notes. The free "MyClassroom" option allows teachers to post syllabi, and announcements, or store lesson plans.

tag(s): scientists (69)

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Universe Adventure - Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

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9 to 12
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Project this site in your classroom, and let your students be amazed! This interactive tour teaches students about the expansion of the universe, the Big Bang, dark matter, the ...more
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Project this site in your classroom, and let your students be amazed! This interactive tour teaches students about the expansion of the universe, the Big Bang, dark matter, the evolution of the galaxies, and SO much more. Check out the cosmic calendar that compresses the history of the universe into one year. A glossary of space science terms is can be easily accessed from any portion of the tour.

tag(s): solar system (119), stars (61)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. One way to insure students are following along with the content of the site is to create a graphic organizer or follow along to be turned in post-exploration. This site does a really good job of breaking down complex concepts into more manageable and understandable definitions. Use this site to review, to reinforce the major ideas or concepts.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Optics for Kids - Optical Research Associates

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6 to 12
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Add this simple and concise resource to a classroom unit on the science of light. Students can discover answers to questions like "Why is the sky blue?" and "How ...more
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Add this simple and concise resource to a classroom unit on the science of light. Students can discover answers to questions like "Why is the sky blue?" and "How does a magnifying glass make things look bigger?" In addition to optical basics, the site provides brief information about science and engineering careers, and links to other teaching and learning resources. Follow the link to A Gentle Introduction to Optical Design for a slightly more technical presentation, appropriate for older, more advanced students.

tag(s): light (46), optics (13)

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Exploring Magnetism - UC Berkeley

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6 to 9
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The mysteries of magnetic fields and electromagnetism are revealed in this on-line inquiry-based activity that places students in the role of NASA scientists, working to design a magnetometer...more
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The mysteries of magnetic fields and electromagnetism are revealed in this on-line inquiry-based activity that places students in the role of NASA scientists, working to design a magnetometer boom for a spacecraft. The site contains an introduction for teachers, background information that includes a glossary and list of Web resource, and three well-constructed lesson plans. Content may be views in either pdf or HTML format. Created by the University of California - Berkeley.

tag(s): magnetism (36)

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