Invent a Backscratcher from Everyday Materials
Being able to recognize a problem and design a potential solution is the first step in the development of new and useful products. In this activity, students create a device to get "that pesky itch in the center of your back." Once the idea is thought through, students produce design schematics (sketches). They are given a variety of everyday materials and recyclables, from which they create back-scratching devices.
IBM: Electrochemical Technology in Microelectronics
The current issue of the bimonthly IBM Journal of Research and Development features articles on electrochemical technology in microelectronics. Most of the articles address some of the issues that have arisen in this rapidly expanding field, especially as the dimensions of the features of microelectronic components have decreased. Other articles discuss cache prefetching, logic-based embedded DRAM (eDRAM), and register-renaming mappers for IBM POWER4 processors. Members of the IBM technical comm
Bioprospecting: Medicine Quest
Actionbioscience (last mentioned in the September 20, 2002 Scout Report) offers two lesson plans on ethnobotany and biodiversity based on an interview with Mark Plotkin, author of the popular book A Tale of a Shaman's Apprentice. The lesson plans that accompany this interview can be found under Educator's Resources at the bottom of the page, along with numerous links to additional resources and related articles. The two lessons are available in one PDF document; the first intended for grades 9-1
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: Computational Astrophysics: Digital Demo Room
This University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign website features four computer simulations to increase the understanding of astrophysics: Disk Galaxy Dynamics, One Dimensional Hydrodynamics, Stellar Structure and Evolution, and Two Dimensional Hydrodynamics. Each simulation offers beginner, intermediate, and advanced modes. At the Stellar Structure and Evolution Simulator link, individuals can find a tutorial describing the basic physics concepts related to the topic along with the interactive m
Association for Tree-Ring Research
This Association for Tree-Ring Research (ATR) website serves as an information resource for scientists and others working in the field of dendrochronology. The scope of ATR is aimed particularly "at research groups and individual scientists of Europe working without a detailed knowledge of what is going on in the many different corners of Europe, but also of course, for everybody interested in this field." The ATR site contains a number of helpful information-sharing services including Discussio
Fairly Fundamental Facts about Forces and Structures
Students are introduced to the five fundamental loads: compression, tension, shear, bending and torsion.
Build Your Own Mobile
This activity allows children to construct something themselves and be creative while learning about the concept of the center of mass.
Observe images of different climate zones
This Earth science resource shows students the location of 10 different climate zones on a world map. Red dots mark the location of deserts, highlands, and ice caps, as well as tundra, tropical wet and dry zones, and subtropical areas. Students are instructed to click on each red dot to see a photograph from that region. Each photograph includes a caption that describes its location. Copyright 2005 Eisenhower National Clearinghouse
Who Needs Algebra? Everyone! : Northwest Teacher, volume 6 number 1
Learning algebra doesn't have to be painful, and researchers are finding that the process is easier if children are introduced to algebraic reasoning early on. This issue of NW Teacher points out that students who begin learning algebra at the elementary level have a stronger foundation for higher-level mathematics. Algebra also helps pave the way for college and increased career opportunities. This issue helps schools explore new ways of bringing algebra to all students.
Meteor crater map
A Landsat image of the world with crater locations flagged. One can zoom in on any location.
Fases de la luna (Alternate title: Lunar phases)
What causes the phases of the moon? This informational piece, part of an interactive laboratory series for grades 8-12, introduces students to three interactive lab activities about moon phases. In the first activity, students virtually view the moon from a fixed location in space to determine which half of the moon is lighted by the sun as it moves through its phases. In the second activity, students choose the shading of the moon as it would appear from the Earth. Nine questions with printable
Variation about the mean
This workshop session, part of a free online course developed for elementary and middle school teachers, explores the mean in depth. Participants work together to investigate the mean as the balancing point of a data set and come to understand how to measure variation from the mean. Video segments, interactive practice, problem sets, and discussion questions involve participants in active exploration.
This collection of images shows several types of plant seeds, each with a different mechanism for dispersing from the parent plant.
Mystery Mud : Exploring Changes in States of Matter
Join a group of middle-school students on a visit to a laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where they experiment with mystery mud and learn about the relationships between magnetism, particle motion, and changes in the state of matter.
Engineering in Sports
Imagining themselves arriving at the Olympic gold medal soccer game in Beijing, students begin to think about how engineering is involved in sports. After a discussion of kinetic and potential energy, an associated hands-on activity gives students an opportunity to explore energy absorbing materials as they try to protect an egg from being crushed.
Two Sides of One Force
Students learn more about magnetism, and how magnetism and electricity are related in electromagnets. They learn the fundamentals about how simple electric motors and electromagnets work. Students also learn about hybrid gasoline-electric cars and their advantages over conventional gasoline-only-powered cars.
Go with the Energy Flow
Students learn about energy and nutrient flow in various biosphere climates and environments. They learn about herbivores, carnivores, omnivores, food chains and food webs, seeing the interdependence between producers, consumers and decomposers. Students are introduced to the roles of the hydrologic (water), carbon, and nitrogen cycles in sustaining the worlds’ ecosystems so living organisms survive. This lesson is part of a series of six lessons in which students use their growing understandi
The Advantage of Machines
In this lesson, students learn about work as defined by physical science and see that work is made easier through the use of simple machines. Already encountering simple machines everyday, students will be learn about their widespread uses in improving everyday life. This lesson serves as the starting point for the Simple Machines Unit.
How Lead Batteries are Made
Batteries are great examples of chemical potential energy, energy that is stored up. Find out how lead batteries are made and what causes the chemical reaction as we take a trip to the Superior Battery Manufacturing Company on Discovery Channel's "HowStuffWorks" show. (02:49)
This unit introduces the topic of vectors. The subject is developed without assuming you have come across it before, but the unit assumes that you have previously had a basic grounding in algebra and trigonometry, and how to use Cartesian coordinates for specifying a point in a plane.