ESS3. Earth and Human Activity (Elementary)

Created by NASA Wavelength Last updated 7/14/2017

The investigations, lessons, and related resources listed below are taken from the NASA Wavelength collection as well as other sources. Each represents an opportunity to help students build their understanding of Earth and Space Sciences through student led investigations encompassing all three NGSS dimensions.
Customize this bundle by adding additional lessons and activities. To do so, simply register for a Wavelength account by clicking on the word “Register” on the right side of the blue bar above. Wavelength resources and external resources with URLs can be incorporated into your personalized list.

This list supports the following national standards:
Next Generation Science Standards

These bundled resources can be used to build toward a student understanding of Earth and Human Activity in all three dimensions.
  • What's Up in the Atmosphere? Exploring Colors in the Sky

    Join the book’s students as they investigate a natural phenomenon- the color variations of the sky. Throughout the story, the students model science practices: they make observations of the sky to obtain information, evaluate that information based on an explanation of aerosols and the scattering of light, and then share that information with their peers. The connection to natural and human sources of aerosols is presented. Reading the book and completing all four accompanying activities will require four to five hours.
  • MY NASA DATA: Rock Star Precipitation

    NASA satellites capture precipitation data. Over time, trends in that data can be identified and used to describe precipitation patterns in areas throughout the world. In this activity, students assume the role of musicians planning a series of worldwide outdoor concerts. They must use scientific information– in this case, monthly precipitation patterns- to predict the best schedule for their performances in Chile, Venezuela, Greenland and the United States (Maine).
    AAAS Benchmarks: 11C/E4, 12D/E3, 12D/E4, 12D/E5
  • S'COOL Lesson: Severe Weather Planning

    Earth’s weather ranges from mild to severe. Scientists can forecast severe weather; students and their families should know how to prepare for and respond to that forecast. In this lesson, students research the causes and effects of a severe weather event and describe the preparations and responses necessary to reduce the impact of that event. The activity requires 2-3 hours to complete.
    AAAS Benchmarks: 4B/E5
  • EO Kids: Fresh Water

    Geared to students aged 9-14, this booklet features articles, hands-on activities and experiments related to Earth’s fresh water. Beginning with the phenomenon of the “bathtub ring” around Lake Mead, students examine the importance of fresh water as a natural resource, while also considering the effects of both natural factors (air temperatures) and human factors (agricultural needs) on its supply.
  • NASA Space Place: Weather

    This collection of twelve resources engages upper-elementary students in short weather related articles, games and activities. Each of the twelve can be done independently; time required varies from approximately 15 to 45 minutes. The articles included discuss the cause and effect of three weather phenomena: La Niña, El Niño and solar weather.