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In this lesson, students observe the surface of rotating potatoes to help them understand how astronomers can sometimes determine the shape of asteroids from variations in reflective brightness.

This is a lesson about discovering distant planets using an Earth-based observing technique called stellar occultation. Learners will explore how a stellar occultation occurs, how planetary atmospheres can be discovered, and how planetary diameters... (View More)

This is a lesson about the requirements for life on another planet. Learners will grow organisms in one of 12 classroom environments and identify common requirements (such as water, nutrients, and energy). They will also design a mission to identify... (View More)

This is a lesson about the formation of glaciers, ice layering and stratigraphy, and the cryosphere and cryobotics. Learners will collect evidence of layering, explore the science story that layering tells, study snow and ice for insights into... (View More)

In this data exploration activity, students will access, download and graph authentic ozone data for four different locations on Earth. The ozone levels at the four sites are compared and analyzed, and students investigate the cause of changes in... (View More)

Keywords: Dobson unit
Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This experimental activity is designed to develop a basic understanding of the relationship between temperature and pressure and that a barometer can be constructed to detect this relationship. Resources needed to build a simple barometer include a... (View More)

This is an activity about measuring angular size and understanding the solar and lunar proportions that result in solar eclipses. Learners will use triangles and proportions to create a shoebox eclipse simulator. They will then apply what they learn... (View More)

Students will use various objects in the classroom to experiment with nonstandard measurement. They will make estimates and test them out. Then, working in pairs or small groups, students will use a ruler or a measuring tape to become familiar with... (View More)

Keywords: Water; Scale; Size

Students will learn about magnification and how a magnifying lens works. They will examine a variety of different objects, first without a magnifier and then with a magnifier, and compare what they observe. They will practice observing details of... (View More)

Keywords: Hydrosphere

This is an activity about the declining strength of Earth's magnetic field. Learners will review a graph of magnetic field intensity and calculate the amount by which the field has changed its intensity in the last century, the rate of change of its... (View More)

Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free