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In this lesson, students will explore the density of substances as a model for understanding the mass to light ratio as a predictor of dark matter. They will measure and calculate mass and volume to calculate the density of a foam ball. Students... (View More)

In this lesson, students explore how eclipses happen and why Einstein needed a total eclipse to image stars near the Sun in order to demonstrate how the Sun's mass bends the light from a far away star. Using a foam ball and a lamp, learners create a... (View More)

Audience: Middle school
Materials Cost: $1 - $5 per group of students

In this lesson, students measure the size of several galaxies to reproduce a plot of Hubble's Law. The goal of this lesson is to give students the chance to simulate the process that led to the notion that the universe is expanding, provide insight... (View More)

Keywords: Data graphing

Hurricane Katrina serves as the focus for this lesson on the relationship between sea surface temperatures and hurricane intensity. Students assume the roles of Senior Science Advisors for the Louisiana Environmental Agency to research and plot the... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is an activity about using what you can see to identify what you cannot see. Learners will use the criteria they developed in the previous activity in this sequence and analyze whole Sun magnetic map data sets in order to find suspected... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school, Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is an activity about using what you can see to identify what you cannot see. Learners will examine images of the Sun taken over one complete solar rotation and look for data features that appear on the farside of the Sun which persist at the... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school, Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

In this lesson, students hypothesize what types of clouds they believe will create the most precipitation (rainfall) over Nashville, TN. Scientists have studied the physical properties of clouds and have developed instruments onboard satellites to... (View More)

Keywords: Authentic Data Use
Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

In this two-part investigation, students explore the concept of transits. In the first part, they discover that a transit is an event where one body crosses in front of another, like when a planet goes in front of a star. In the second part,... (View More)

Keywords: NSTA2013

In this activity, students compare two images of the Crab Nebula taken more than 40 years apart. By measuring the motion of some of the knots of glowing gas in the neubla, students will be able to determine the date of the supernova explosion that... (View More)

The strength of the historic 1997-1999 El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) event was captured and recorded by NASA Earth observing satellites. By downloading and plotting that satellite data, students will observe and analyze El Niño's effect on... (View More)

Keywords: Water cycle; ENSO
Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free