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Biomimicry in Youth Education - Biomimicry 3.8 Institute

10 to 12
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Inspire your students to SEE the natural world differently! Biomimicry is the imitation of nature's best design ideas to solve human problems. This tool provides a free resource toolkit...more
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Inspire your students to SEE the natural world differently! Biomimicry is the imitation of nature's best design ideas to solve human problems. This tool provides a free resource toolkit for K-12 educators. View the desktop or mobile version of the toolkit. Immerse yourself in the lessons, videos, activities, and tools offered in this resource. Be sure to check out the links along the side that include Resource Types and Resource Audiences (Youth (K-12), and University). Be sure to notice the extensions, homework, assessments, and other ideas offered with each of the activities. Lessons in the toolkit are arranged in sections: Introduction (exploring what is Biomimicry), Exploring Nature (connecting students with nature), Case studies, Function (how strategies of other organisms can help with our own functioning), Pattern, and Design Projects (to teach the design process). Battle of the Beaks and Velcro Race Game are lesson examples in the Function section. Join the Biomomicry network and connect with others. Find examples of Biomimicry and Cool Biology topics under the Categories section of this resource. Note: Not sure what Biomimicry is? Learn more about Biomimicry in this article.

tag(s): design (89), engineering (131), STEM (219)

In the Classroom

It will be very beneficial to spend some time with the toolkit to see all that it offers. Use the resources to engage students in content that would otherwise be considered dull to some students. Use the lessons to change from teacher-led information about topics to research-driven student investigations. Use the lessons to provide a vital connection students need to the natural world that is becoming increasingly lost with each generation. Find simple activities found on the Core Concepts pages. Each section has articles and other resources for better understanding. Many of the resources encourage questioning, the creation of ideas, and formation of solutions. Other resources (such as in the Core Concepts), encourage students to look at nature differently and understand how we are part of nature and the biodiversity on Earth. Expand many of the Patterns lessons to identify how humans have copied patterns found in nature around us and how these patterns improve our designs (ex. the shape of an egg/strength of an arch). This resource would be a wonderful extension of the classroom for motivated students, especially gifted! Include it as a challenge level during a unit on plants and other science topics for your gifted middle schoolers. Assign each group a specific concept of Biomimicry to learn and understand. Enhance student learning by having students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Venngage, reviewed here.

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