Students design, build and test model race cars made from simple materials (lifesaver-shaped candies, plastic drinking straws, Popsicle sticks, index cards, tape) as a way to explore independent, dependent and control variables. They measure the changes in distance travelled with the addition of mass to the vehicles. Students also practice the steps of the engineering design process by brainstorming, planning, building, testing, and improving their “mint-mobiles.”
This lesson will allow students to explore an important role of environmental engineers: cleaning the environment. Students will learn details about the Exxon Valdez oil spill, which was one of the most publicized and studied environmental tragedies in history. In the accompanying activity, they will try many “engineered” strategies to clean up their own manufactured oil spill and learn the difficulties of dealing with oil released into our waters.
How Much Water Do You Use?
Students keep track of their own water usage for one week, gaining an understanding of how much water is used for various everyday activities. They relate their own water usages to the average residents of imaginary Thirsty County, and calculate the necessary water capacity of a dam that would provide residential water to the community.
Does Weight Matter?
Using the same method for measuring friction that was used in the previous lesson (Discovering Friction), students design and conduct an experiment to determine if weight added incrementally to an object affects the amount of friction encountered when it slides across a flat surface. After graphing the data from their experiments, students can calculate the coefficients of friction between the object and the surface it moved upon, for both static and kinetic friction.
The Need for Shelter
In this lesson, the students will build a shelter in order to protect themselves from the rain. After the shelters are built, the class will perform durability and water proof testing on the shelters.
Students will use their knowledge of scales and areas to cut out rectangular paper pieces to represent caverns to scale with the maps. These paper cutouts can then be placed on the maps to help students decide where the best locations.
Oceans, climate and weather
What is the difference between weather and climate? What do the oceans have to do with them? Weather is the day-to-day state of the atmosphere and its short-term (minutes to weeks) variation. Climate is typically described by the regional patterns of seasonal temperature and precipitation over 30 years. The averages of annual temperature, rainfall, cloud cover, and depth of frost penetration are all typical climate-related statistics. The oceans influence the worlds climate by storing solar ener
Life on the Moon
Sudents learn about the physical properties of the Moon. They compare these to the properties of the Earth to determine how life would be different for people living on the Moon. Using their understanding of these differences, they think about what types of products engineers would need to design for humans to live comfortably on the Moon.
What is Energy?
With an introduction to the ideas of energy, students discuss specific types of energy and the practical sources of energy. Hands-on activities help them identify types of energy in their surroundings and enhance their understanding of energy.
Taking the Boat to Manaus
In this activity, the students will apply the concepts they learned regarding mass, volume and density in the previous activities to design a boat.
Temperature and precipitation as limiting factors in ecosystems
This classroom activity is aimed at an understanding of different ecosystems by understanding the influence of temperature and precipitation. Students correlate graphs of vegetation vigor with those of temperature and precipitation data for four diverse ecosystems, ranging form near-equatorial to polar, and spanning both hemispheres to determine which climatic factor is limiting growth.
History and Mathematics: Magic Squares and Stars
In this activity, students research the history and legend of the Chinese mathematical puzzle known as the Magic Square, and explore various methods for reconstructing magic squares. Students will use number sense and arithmetic facts to find missing numbers in a magicsquare and/or magic star, and follow the directions given in words and diagrams to create a magic square of odd order.
Pi Day : Making a Pi Necklace
Diana Funke teaches mathematics at Davisville Middle School in North Kingstown, RI. Her students make a Pi necklace for Pi Day to reinforce the idea that some numbers never repeat or end. They assign a color to each digit (including 0) and then string beads of those colors into a necklace, using the digits of Pi as their guide.
Edd Presnell: Dulcimer Maker
Edd Presnell, a mountain craftsman and native of Watauga County, North Carolina, demonstrates and comments on the construction of a dulcimer. Presnell learned his craft from his father-in-law. Film includes a brief performance on a finished dulcimer by his wife, Nettie. This 16mm film is archived in the Thomas G. Burton and Jack Schrader collection in the Archives of Appalachia, East Tennesse State University.
Arts & Crafts, Traditional, Work / Appalachia / 1973
Investigating Organizational Dimensions of Middle School Curricular Leadership: Linkages to School E
This study explores the organizational nature of curricular leadership in middle schools.,Volume 26, Number 1
Teaching Middle School Life Science
Teaching Middle School Life Science is a graduate-level professional development course designed to enhance your understanding and teaching of life science. In eight sessions, you will investigate life science topics using hands-on activities and online resources including video segments, interactive activities, readings, and other multimedia materials. These resources are drawn from Teachers' Domain, WGBH's digital library service.
Rock Around the Clock
In this activity, students will explore probability simulations and use the Monte Carlo method to determine a reasonable number of packs of gum that need to be purchased to win a complete set of prizes.
Scope on Safety: Science storage requirements
Middle school science teachers need to address two issues concerning storage. First, if it is insufficient, they need to work with administrators to secure additional storage area(s). Second, whether sufficient or not, good housekeeping practices are in order for safety and liability reasons. This month’s column outlines some safe storage and housekeeping hints for the science classroom.
Titan Beetle--An Overview
This short video gives excellent real life, close up footage of a Titan Beetle. Probably the largest insect in the world, the adult titan beetle,Titanus giganteus, cuts an imposing figure. The adult beetle has a flattened body, long, soft wing cases covering a large abdomen, and long spiny legs. The mouthparts, or mandibles, are narrow, powerful, and distinctly longer than the head. This is a great resource to help build background knowledge and to help make real world connections
Otis: Share a Memory of the Woman's Building: Kathleen Forrest
Otis College: Doin' It In Public: Feminism and Art at the Woman's Building: Weekend of October 15-16, 2011: Still Doin' It: Fanning the Flames of the Woman's Building: Share a Memory of the Woman's Building During the Weekend of October 15-16, 2011, women gave their memories of their experiences at the Woman's Building. Some were there and participated in numerous activities, some were influenced by it. Otis College exhibition "Doin' It In Public: Feminism and Art at the Woman's Building"