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Earth Day Trash Survey

Grades
4 to 12
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Here's a plan for a relatively simple study of how what we throw out affects the environment. This one's nice because it lets students collect "real data" without requiring a ...more
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Here's a plan for a relatively simple study of how what we throw out affects the environment. This one's nice because it lets students collect "real data" without requiring a lot of complex equipment.

tag(s): conservation (122), ecology (133), pollution (65)

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Secrets of the Ocean - Scripps Institute

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6 to 12
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This set of lesson units, designed by Scripps Institute, offers more than a dozen topics dealing with ocean environments and inhabitants. Many of these lessons include hands-on activities...more
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This set of lesson units, designed by Scripps Institute, offers more than a dozen topics dealing with ocean environments and inhabitants. Many of these lessons include hands-on activities that can require only minimal equipment. The units also include extension activities to make the content suitable for secondary or upper elementary students.

tag(s): oceans (165), whales (15)

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The Virtual Geosciences Professor

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9 to 12
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Select "Geophysics on the Internet" for guidance on using this site. Links listing geophysical data sites and suggestions for use in teaching are included. ...more
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Select "Geophysics on the Internet" for guidance on using this site. Links listing geophysical data sites and suggestions for use in teaching are included.

tag(s): geology (76)

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Environmental Education Resources

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9 to 12
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This is a database of curricula, handbooks, monographs, case studies, reports, and periodicals related to environmental education. ...more
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This is a database of curricula, handbooks, monographs, case studies, reports, and periodicals related to environmental education.

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Earthguide - Scripps Research Institute

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9 to 12
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Though apparently going through some revisions, this site's research content on oceanographic and atmospheric research could offer secondary teachers some interesting tools. There are...more
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Though apparently going through some revisions, this site's research content on oceanographic and atmospheric research could offer secondary teachers some interesting tools. There are also a number of sections on teaching techniques for these topics. From Scripps research institute.

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Zoo Lab - A Website for Animal Biology

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6 to 12
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This site from the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse offers on-line laboratory materials - primarily color photos of laboratory slides - which are sorted by major classifications....more
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This site from the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse offers on-line laboratory materials - primarily color photos of laboratory slides - which are sorted by major classifications. The result is an on-line resources which can supplement in class activities or help compensate when suitable laboratory facilities or materials are not available. The structure of the site makes it suitable for either sequential use of to reinforce specific topics.

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The Tree of Life

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6 to 12
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This site is a collection of data about the evolutionary history and characteristics of organisms using branches of a tree to link data. Very extensive database. ...more
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This site is a collection of data about the evolutionary history and characteristics of organisms using branches of a tree to link data. Very extensive database.

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The Gaia Hypothesis: an approach to problem solving in the environment - Yale University

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9 to 11
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Teach biology through this hypothesis which focuses either reductively on cell biology, biochemistry and genetics or holistically on an understanding of species in terms of its ecosystem...more
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Teach biology through this hypothesis which focuses either reductively on cell biology, biochemistry and genetics or holistically on an understanding of species in terms of its ecosystem or environment.

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Activities-to-Go - Genentech

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8 to 12
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Activities-to-Go is a collection of lessons at Genentech's outstanding Access Excellence site. These activities include dozens of experiments and lessons for, middle school, high school,...more
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Activities-to-Go is a collection of lessons at Genentech's outstanding Access Excellence site. These activities include dozens of experiments and lessons for, middle school, high school, and AP biology students. All have been submitted by teachers, and each comes with extensive notes.

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The Heart: An Online Exploration - Franklin Institute

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1 to 12
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...more
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tag(s): heart (40)

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Contrasts in Blue - Smithsonian Institution

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6 to 9
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This site, from the Smithsonian Institution's "Art to Zoo" series, contrasts two marine ecosystems: the coast of Maine and the reefs of the Carribean. The entire unit, including teacher...more
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This site, from the Smithsonian Institution's "Art to Zoo" series, contrasts two marine ecosystems: the coast of Maine and the reefs of the Carribean. The entire unit, including teacher guide, discussion questions, and lesson plans, is available as a series of downloadable Adobe Acrobat PDF files which can be printed and used in the classroom or at home. (A color printer works best, of course.) You can download the Adobe Acrobat reader from the TeachersFirst Toolbox.

tag(s): oceans (165)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these free lesson plans, activities, and worksheets on coral reefs and varying beaches. This site would be a great segway for a unit on conservation and differences in environments. These are straightforward lesson plans, but do give yourself some prep-time in order to edit a few details to tailor them to your specific classroom.

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Reviled and Revered: Toads, Turtles, Snakes, Salamanders, and Other Creepers - Smithsonian Institution

Grades
3 to 8
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Starts with an essay including an overview to help students better understand these creatures that are often misunderstood. This lesson also has a section titled "What you can do to...more
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Starts with an essay including an overview to help students better understand these creatures that are often misunderstood. This lesson also has a section titled "What you can do to help." Offers grade levels and educational standards. Five lessons and loads of resources with links. From the Smithsonian's lesson collections.

tag(s): amphibians (21), reptiles (12)

In the Classroom

Use these free lesson plans as a way to help students better understand ill-reputed snakes. The lesson plans are all pretty straightforward, and cross-bridge art, language arts, and the science of the squirmy animals.

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On the Wings of a Dragonfly

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4 to 6
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This site from the University of Tennessee is composed of several short text-based paragraphs. The page focuses on the mechanics of a dragonfly's wings. A good site to begin a ...more
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This site from the University of Tennessee is composed of several short text-based paragraphs. The page focuses on the mechanics of a dragonfly's wings. A good site to begin a discussion on the relationship of engineering and nature.

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The Journey North - CPB/Annenberg

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4 to 9
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This Internet-based project tracks the coming of spring and the resulting migration of animals in the northern hemisphere. Teachers may complete a free registration to participate actively...more
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This Internet-based project tracks the coming of spring and the resulting migration of animals in the northern hemisphere. Teachers may complete a free registration to participate actively in the project's three main areas of focus - Sunlight and Seasons, Plants and Seasons, and Seasonal Migrations.

tag(s): birds (52), butterflies (12), mammals (34), migration (58)

In the Classroom

Check out the Teaching Resources for ideas on incorporating this project into your curriculum, correlations to standards, and professional development opportunities. A great way for students to learn about the complex and dynamic ecosystem that surrounds and connects us all.

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Arctic National Wildlife Reserve - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Grades
6 to 12
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Much in the news as a possible site for oil drilling, this official site about the ANWR provides brief summaries of the habitats and ecosystem of this unique arctic environment. ...more
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Much in the news as a possible site for oil drilling, this official site about the ANWR provides brief summaries of the habitats and ecosystem of this unique arctic environment. Useful as an example of efforts to preserve fragile ecosystems, and also as a supplement to the study of arctic biomes.

tag(s): arctic (46)

In the Classroom

Include this site with materials you use to teach about biomes, ecosystems, and animals. Ask students to annotate an image of the Arctic using ThingLink, reviewed here to highlight and share information learned.

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Monarch Watch - University of Kansas

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4 to 8
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Here's the complete site for those interested in learning about Monarch butterflies. It offers Monarch information on dozens of topics, at a variety of levels. You can find out about...more
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Here's the complete site for those interested in learning about Monarch butterflies. It offers Monarch information on dozens of topics, at a variety of levels. You can find out about migration, mating habits, even how to raise monarchs. This is a great starting point for a butterfly study.

tag(s): butterflies (12)

In the Classroom

Share this site on classroom computers or at a learning center. If you are beginning the process of integrating technology, replace pen and paper and have students create blogs sharing their learning and understanding using Loose Leaves, reviewed here. This blog creator requires no registration. If you are teaching younger students and looking for an easy way to integrate technology and check for understanding, challenge your students to create a blog using Edublog, reviewed here. If you and your students are comfortable with using computors, take this a step further and redefine learning by having small groups create and interactive poster or infographic using Genial.ly, reviewed here, where you can insert maps, surveys, video, audio and more.

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Maggie's Earth Adventures - Maggie's Earth Adventures

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K to 5
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Take students around the world visiting environmental global issues. Find a variety of activities designed for a variety of levels. Find lessons focusing on critical thinking activities...more
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Take students around the world visiting environmental global issues. Find a variety of activities designed for a variety of levels. Find lessons focusing on critical thinking activities in cooperative learning situations. Register with your email to receive free Weekly Activity packets that present environmental skills and critical thinking. Photographs offer weekly writing prompts. In the kid's section, find games like GeoSpy, Spanish English Cycle Race, Around the World in 80 seconds, Super Match Game, Science Labeling, Short Circuit, Fish 'um up, Edit Dan's Copy, and Clean up your Grammar.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): environment (321)

In the Classroom

Stay up to date in the latest environmental issues infused with language arts and critical thinking skills. Introduce on your interactive whiteboard or projector and offer as enrichment at centers or for home use. Use to inspire children for science fair ideas. Feature at Earth Day activities. Post this on your class website for a great site for educational enrichment.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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My Favourite Scientist - Brady Haran, Nottingham Trent University

Grades
6 to 12
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Learn about the life and careers of many famous scientists by viewing intriguing videos. Find out about scientists such as Richard Feynman, Rosalind Franklin, and Gregor Mendel through...more
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Learn about the life and careers of many famous scientists by viewing intriguing videos. Find out about scientists such as Richard Feynman, Rosalind Franklin, and Gregor Mendel through interviews with scientists in their field today. Don't let the cartoon figures fool you: these videos are not "juvenile." The scientists included may not be household names to everyone, but the videos make their work accessible and interesting. At the time of this review, there were over a dozen scientists included, and more were being added regularly. Note that the actual videos are hosted on YouTube so may not be accessible in some schools.

tag(s): biographies (87), darwin (10), scientists (69)

In the Classroom

Use as a resource for finding more information about a variety of different scientists told from a scientist's perspective. Share the videos on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Consider having students create their own report about the importance of research and not just the biographical information about a scientist. Encourage students to make their own videos (or other presentation tool) about scientists to place on a wiki, site, or blog. Have students use one of the many TeachersFirst Edge multimedia tools reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Ocean Adventures: Debris Dilemmas - KQED and Ocean Futures Society

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5 to 8
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This lesson explores the large amount of debris that washes up on the most remote islands in the world and the effect of this garbage on ocean animals. The lesson ...more
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This lesson explores the large amount of debris that washes up on the most remote islands in the world and the effect of this garbage on ocean animals. The lesson features the video, "Trash on the Spin Cycle" and includes pre-viewing activities, focus questions, and post-viewing questions. Be sure to also check out the many additional resources included on the site.

tag(s): environment (321), oceans (165)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this lesson to use during your units on oceans or the environment. Share on your interactive whiteboard and watch together as a class, or include a link on classroom computers for students to view on their own. Instead of having a pre-made vocabulary list for your unit, have students create a word cloud of the important terms they learn from this site using a tool such as Wordle (reviewed here), Tagxedo (reviewed here), or WordItOut (reviewed here). Enhance your students' video experience by using EdPuzzle (reviewed here) to insert questions directly into specific portions of the video. At the end of your lesson, ask students to create a presentation using Sway (reviewed here). Sway offers the ability to create interactive presentations using drag and drop features to include images, text, video, and more.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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BrainPOP Free Stuff - BrainPop

Grades
K to 12
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Visit this fabulously FREE site, created by BrainPop, to find a wealth of interactives, videos, lesson plans, and more. Wow - doesn't even begin to describe the wide array of ...more
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Visit this fabulously FREE site, created by BrainPop, to find a wealth of interactives, videos, lesson plans, and more. Wow - doesn't even begin to describe the wide array of topics and subjects. The best part is the FREE stuff for BrainPop Espanol, BrainPop Jr, and BrainPop ESL. Some of the specific topics include: Harlem Renaissance, Civil War, Blogs, Angles, DNA, Stocks & Shares, Digital Animation, and MANY others. These were the FREE topics at the time of this review, and of course is subject to change.

tag(s): angles (87), blogs (83), charts and graphs (199), civil war (140), digital storytelling (151), dna (64), energy (210), grammar (208), harlem (8), internet safety (116), main idea (8), mars (41), martin luther king (35), nutrition (157), shakespeare (110), stock market (14), women (99)

In the Classroom

Use this tool to find lessons and/or animations in a variety of topic areas. There are "ready to go" movies and more in health, social studies, art & music, engineering & technology, and other topics. Share the sites on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Provide this link on your class website for students to access both in and out of the class. Save this link in your favorites and check back to see "what's new."
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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