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Using common items - a glass soft drink bottle, a straw, clay and food coloring - students assemble and calibrate a thermometer and then use it to measure outdoor temperatures. Students record and graph the temperature data and, additionally,... (View More) complete scale conversion problems, a written assignment and an oral presentation. The Students' Cloud Observations On-Line (S'COOL) project engages students in making and reporting ground truth observations of clouds then comparing those observations with data from the CERES satellite instrument. (View Less)
In this activity, students will watch a short video on the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission, learn about the parts of the satellite, and then construct their own edible model of GPM. This lesson uses the 5E instructional model.
This is an activity about asteroids. Learners will shape mashed potatoes into their own odd-shaped asteroids. They can then bake them in the oven to turn them (more or less) asteroid color, and eat them for dinner.
This is a lesson about geologic history. Learners will work together to create models of volcanic lava flows and analyze the layers that form on a planet's surface. They will sequence lava flows produced by multiple eruptions. Students will be asked... (View More) to observe where the flows travel, make a model, and interpret the stratigraphy. Students will use their volcanic layering model to demonstrate the relative dating and geologic mapping principles to later be applied to satellite imagery. The lesson models scientific inquiry using the 5E instructional model and includes teacher notes and vocabulary. (View Less)
Clouds serve as a theme in a series of linked introductory explorations in math, language arts, and science. After participating in a demonstration of cloud formation, students are directed to create an acrostic poem (a poem that uses the letters in... (View More) a word to start each line of the poem) and peer review and edit each other's work. The class collects atmospheric temperature and cloud cover data over a period of days and then construct graphs to assist in analysis. This lesson is supported by observation protocols, teacher resources, and a glossary of scientific terms. This activity is related to the NASA CERES Students Cloud Observations Online (S'COOL) project. (View Less)
This is a lesson about the electromagnetic spectrum. Learners begin by arranging a set of picture cards; in the discussion afterwards, this activity is related to the electromagnetic spectrum as an arrangement of energy waves. Next, using a... (View More) clothesline to model a logarithmic scale, they add in the electromagnetic spectrum. Finally, learners conduct several simple tests to detect other types of radiation. This activity requires access to a sunny outdoor location and the use of ultraviolet light-sensitive beads. (View Less)
This activity is about the processes that have shaped the eastern coastline of the United States, specifically considering the impact of pollution. Learners will use model habitats to simulate the runoff of pollutants and consider how they might... (View More) affect the watershed. This is the second of three watershed activities in the "Climate Change, Wildlife and Wildlands: A Toolkit for Formal and Informal Educators." (View Less)
This activity is about the impact of climate change in aquatic ecosystems. Learners will build two aquatic habitats using soda bottles and other materials and simulate climate change conditions in one of the habitats. After making daily qualitative... (View More) and quantitative observations over a four-week period, students will be able to describe the effects of climate change on aquatic ecosystems. This activity is part of the "Climate Change, Wildlife and Wildlands: A Toolkit for Formal and Informal Educators." (View Less)
This is an activity about seasons. Learners begin by brainstorming a list of activities and events that occur in each season. Next, learners perform an experiment by comparing the temperature on thermometers left under a lamp for different lengths... (View More) of time to illustrate that Earth heats more when the Sun is in the sky longer. (View Less)