Welcome to the NROC Environmental Science course. This course is designed to acquaint you with the physical, ecological, social, and political principles of environmental science. The scientific method is used to analyze and understand the inter-relationships between humans and the natural environment. The course shows how ecological realities and the material desires of humans often clash, leading to environmental degradation and pollution. The course covers the following topics: Earth's System
Entomology in Action
Lesson 1 introduces students to the blow fly's life cycle and the accumulated degree hour (ADH) used by forensic entomologists for estimating the time of death. Lesson 2 introduces Dr. Krinsky's entomological work in solving a murder case in 1986. Students access several primary-source documents related to Dr. Krinsky's entomological work. Both lessons help students expand their understanding of a forensic entomologist's work and appreciate how scientists account for environmental/variable facto
ToxMystery was created by the United States National Library of Medicine to help children from 7-11 years old learn about household chemical hazards. Toxie the Cat helps kids find the hazards hidden in each room and offers hints when needed. When all the risky spots in the house have been discovered, Toxie dances and celebrates and players can print a personalized certificate of completion. ToxMystery has been usability tested by kids and educators, receiving high grades by all. ToxMystery is
ToxMystery Lesson Plan 1: Introduction to Common Household Chemicals
This lesson plan will introduce students to potential environmental health hazards in their day-to-day environment. Students will be introduced to ToxMystery, a computer game activity, and either individually or in groups, they will find potential environmental health hazards in each room of the house that is presented by the game. They will then answer multiple choice uestions posed by the game about the hazards they encounter and complete assigned activity sheets.
Human Genetic Variation
This curriculum supplement offers activities exploring how genes and the environment influence human diversity, what role DNA sequences play in genetic differences, and more. Students are invited to assume the role of employees at a pharmaceutical company developing new drugs. A game helps show the links between genetic variation, environmental factors, and disease prevention. A family's case study on genetic variation testing exemplifies difficult moral and social questions for society.
The Brain: Understanding Neurobiology Through the Study of Addiction
This site helps students discover the fundamentals of neurobiology and how drugs change the brain. Among the topics: functions of specific brain areas; anatomy of the neuron; neurotransmission; drug action on neurons; genetic, behavioral, and environmental influences on drug addiction; and addiction as a chronic disease.
Art and Ecology
Artists are often particularly keen observers and precise recorders of the physical conditions of the natural world. As a result, paintings can be good resources for learning about ecology. Teachers can use this lesson to examine with students the interrelationship of geography, natural resources, and climate and their effects on daily life. It also addresses the roles students can take in caring for the environment. Students will look at paintings that represent cool temperate, warm temperate,
Global Warming WebQuest
Global warming has become one of the most pressing issues facing the United States and the world. The following webquest, based on the Koshland Science Museum's exhibit Global Warming: Facts and Our Future, was designed primarily to introduce high school and middle school students to the complicated issues surrounding global warming and climate change. Through participating in a fictitious scenario, students will take an active role in determining how and why climate is changing and how humans m
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Environmental Catalyst Module
In the Environmental Catalysis Module, a joint project with the Institute for Environmental Catalysis at Northwestern University, students learn what a catalyst is and become aware of the use of catalysis to promote environmental protection. Besides introducing the concept of catalysis, the module also focuses other issues such as catalytic selectivity, specificity, poisoning, condition optimization, and waste minimization. The first activity of the module introduces the concept of catalysis in
Mike Durant discusses the Battle of Mogadishu
Retired Chief Warrant Officer 4 Mike Durant, a Black Hawk helicopter pilot who was shot down and held captive in Mogadishu, Somalia in 1993 spoke at the Army War College Feb. 15 about the events leading up to the battle and how it affected him personally and professionally.
Digging Up the Dirt on Soil Microbes
This hands-on exercise introduces students, grades K-8, to the idea of soil as a habitat for many different organisms, links between the biological adaptation of an organism and the physical demands of its habitat, and identification of soil and aquatic organisms. The activity includes objectives, standards addressed, materials needed, teaching tips, procedure, questions with potential answers, summary of learned material, and additional resources. The exercise was a product of the Soil and Envi
Where Do We Grow From Here?
This package of resources and lesson plans was developed to support social studies and science teachers in integrating these topics within the regular curriculum. Government, policy and planning, economics, geography, and a myriad of environmental issues are encompassed with the Smart Growth concept, and Smart Growth provides a rich source of topics for classroom investigations. Our goal is to facilitate the involvement of teachers and students in authentic government and environmental issues. T
Berkeley Lab's Environmental Energy Technologies Division develops technology that uses, converts and stores energy more efficiently and with less environmental impact, and studies the link between energy use and the environment. An important outcome of its work is the development of technologies and processes to mitigate the environmental effects of energy use.
GLOBE 1987 Global Patterns Poster
The purpose of the ESS activities associated with the GLOBE 1987 Global Patterns Poster is to help students understand the broader global context for local GLOBE measurements. Students discover patterns in global maps of environmental data, interpret those patterns, and draw conclusions and make predictions based on them; communicate those interpretations and predictions; and develop an understanding that the components of the Earth system interact. By completing this activity, students will gai
AP Environmental Science Course Material
One of the most rewarding and challenging aspects of teaching an advanced placement environmental science course is finding enriching field and lab activities for your students. These labs have been developed by an experienced team of environmental science educators in partnership with the Environmental Literacy Council. Each lab has been the subject of an extensive peer review by a number of experienced environmental science educators. The content of this initial collection is varied, and APES
Detecting Genetically Modified Food by PCR
Genetic engineering is responsible for the so-called "second green revolution." Genes that encode herbicide resistance, insect resistance, drought tolerance, frost tolerance, and other traits have been added to many plants of commercial importance. In 2003, 167 million acres of farmland worldwide were planted in genetically modified (GM) crops equal to one fourth of total land under cultivation. The most widely planted GM crops are soybeans, corn, cotton, canola, and papaya. Two important tr
HazDat, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry's (ATSDR) Hazardous Substance Release/Health Effects Database, is the scientific and administrative database developed to provide access to information on the release of hazardous substances from Superfund sites or from emergency events and on the effects of hazardous substances on the health of human populations. The following information is included in HazDat: site characteristics, activities and site events, contaminants found, cont
COSEE Great Lakes Workshops
These asynchronous workshops focus on environmental topics related to the Great Lakes region. Subjects covered include: The solid earth system; The bedrock and formation of the Great Lakes; Life and Rocks: Current geological processes; Human impacts [vice-versa!]; and Ocean/lake deep exploration (sink holes, underwater archeology, NOAA's exploration book) studying the bottom, characteristics of the water at depth.