Eratosthenes and the mystery of the stades
This article on the history of mathematics explains the famous measurement of the circumference of the Earth made by Eratosthenes, and discusses the mystery surrounding the accuracy of that measurement. A key element in the discussion is the ancient unit of length used in the measurement: the stade. The in-depth article uses diagrams as well as text to make its point.
users click to build dot plots of data and view how the mean, median, and mode change as numbers are added to the plot.
Quilt blocks: geometry with a cultural warmth
This lesson describes how quilting activities can be used to integrate geometry and lessons about various cultures into the classroom. Suggested ways of creating paper quilt blocks include Hawaiian techniques, where many different blocks are brought together to make a quilt; Amish techniques, where shapes are pieced together in an intricate pattern; and African techniques, which have an emphasis on strip textiles made on hand looms and religious symbols. The geometric concepts of symmetry, tilin
The CSI Effect: Changing The Face of Science
Until recently, the vast majority of female student images of scientists were versions of white males working alone in laboratory settings (Barman et al. 1997). As a result, the authors asked the question, ?What phenomenon is responsible for the recent change in female students? mental images of scientists?? They suggest that the popular Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) television series and other television programming have greatly influenced how students, especially female students, perceive sc
Idea Bank : A Big Bang Lab
The authors of "How Far are the Stars," featured in the February issue of The Science Teacher, showed how the measurement of parallax permits scientists to infer astronomic distances. Give your students the chance to make similar inferences through a free module available online that allows students to scale sizes and distances, and then create models from which they calculate inferences that, in simplified form, give results that astronomers obtained similarly in recent times.
What is a polymer, and what are some of its properties? This material is part of a series of hands-on science activities designed to arouse student interest. In this discovery activity students use white glue, water, and borax to make a vinyl polymer and study its properties. The activity includes a description, a list of science process skills and complex reasoning strategies being used, and a compilation of applicable K-12 national science education standards. Also provided are content topics,
Observe forest fires as seen from space
This Earth science resource shows students how atmospheric scientists use infrared imaging to detect and locate forest fires. The introduction explains how visible-light images recorded by satellites are unable to distinguish smoke from clouds. In contrast, infrared imaging, which detects heat, can detect hot spots that indicate the location of forest fires. The resource provides two different sets of satellite pictures. Students are instructed to toggle between the visible-light and infrared im
Whats It Like Where You Live? Desert
This site provides excellent background information on deserts. Large print and superb pictures make this site very appealing to younger students. Topics include: What is a Desert Like?, Types of Deserts, What causes Deserts?, Deserts of the World, Desert Plants, Desert Animals, and links to other desert sites.
How do you light up your bike without reflectors or lamps?
Bicycle safety is a critical matter. This riddle asks students how they can illuminate their bicycles without using reflectors or headlamps. Before they select their answer, students are given a clue. They read about and watch a video clip of two children's attempts to use glow-in-the-dark materials to light up their bikes. The riddle's final page presents students with three clickable answer choices. Brief feedback is given for the incorrect choices. When students select the best answer, a shor
Natural Resources, the Environment, and Ecosystems
This collection of teacher guides includes: Ecosystems and Climate, Wildlife - Just One Piece of the Picture, Integrated Pest Management, Soil and Ecosystems, Sustainable Agriculture, and The Web of Life - Understanding Ecosystems. Each guide includes a subject overview, objectives, and student activities. By the end, students should be able to understand the effect of climate on ecosystems; the interrelationships of animals with components of their natural ecosystem; how ecosystems benefit from
Factor tree (grades 6-8)
This virtual manipulative challenges the learner to find the prime factors for a pair of numbers. The factors for each number are displayed in a tree diagram from which the student drags the factors to the appropriate areas of a Venn diagram. The Venn diagram offers a useful visual display showing unique factors and common factors for the original pair of numbers. Using the display, the learner must find the pair's least common multiple (LCM) and greatest common factor (GCF). Buttons allow users
This math site contains seven interactive lessons and a solutions page dealing with percents. Included are lessons on the meaning of percent and writing ratios as fractions, decimals, and percents; writing fractions as percents; writing decimals as percents; writing percents as decimals; writing percents as fractions; and the understanding and writing of percents less than one and greater than a hundred. All contain examples and practice exercises. Challenge exercises are included and a percent
users can create a game spinner with one to twelve sectors to look at experimental and theoretical probabilities.
The Earth's Orbit
These eleven activities relate to the results of the motion and position of the Earth in its orbit, investigating both the causes and the effects of changing seasons. It starts simply by trying to quantify the observation that it is colder in the winter and ends by measuring the tilt of the Earth. This is chapter two of the online book Eyes on the Sky, Feet on the Ground, containing explorations into astronomy as a classroom tool for learning how to theorize, experiment, and analyze data. The ac
Inquiry and the National Science Education Standards: A Guide for Teaching and Learning
This book explores the dimensions of teaching and learning science as inquiry for K-12 students across a range of science topics. Detailed examples help clarify when teachers should use the inquiry-based approach and how much structure, guidance, and coaching they should provide. The book dispels myths that may have discouraged educators from the inquiry-based approach and illuminates the subtle interplay between concepts, processes, and science as it is experienced in the classroom. Inquiry and
Examine the sun at different wavelengths
This Earth science resource enables students to observe and compare the sun's appearance under different types of electromagnetic radiation. Students are instructed to move the cursor across the spectrum to see images of the sun under radio and microwaves; infrared, visible, and ultraviolet light; and gamma rays. Each image includes a label that indicates the portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, the wavelength in angstroms and meters, and the layer of the sun in view. Copyright 2005 Eisenhow
El Nino Returns
This web page is an online companion to CNN's special coverage on El Nino for the 1997-98 season. El Nino is a strange but powerful weather phenomenon; tracker and background reports provide the user with the science behind El Nino, its history and impact. Topics covered include: forecast; ground zero (Peru); strange brew (weather); prediction meter; the wet coast (California); and the trackers. Links to other web sites are provided, and users may access more up-to-date El Nino stories by clicki
This page contains links to one pagers on historical instruments of astronomy with photos of the following : Astronomy Slides, Celestial Globe, Cometarium, Globe, Gregorian Telescope, Kepler's Laws Demonstration, Orrery, Planetarium, Planisphere, Stereoscopic Pictures of the Moon, Tellurian, and Transit.
Ice Cube of Exotic Microbes
This article describes a permafrost subglacial lake discovered beneath Antarctica. The lake offers scientists a chance to test their sterile drilling techniques before exploring elsewhere in search of exotic microbes. Techniques that avoid contaminating a drill site with microbes, suggests the author, would prove useful for future drilling into Mars polar caps in search of life.
Evolution : Online Lessons for Students: Learning Evolution
These seven online lessons provide multimedia pathways to help students understand evolution and the nature of science. Each lesson focuses on an essential question and contains two to three engaging activities. The website includes both student lessons and teacher pages for each topic.