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National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

NOAA's Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary has educational resources for learning about the effects of increased acidity in the oceans. Watch video lectures on ocean acidification, or download hands-on activities to explore the topic. For example, the game Help Nemo Find His Home! (grades...

Grade Level: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

In this lesson, students examine seismic evidence to determine a) Earth must have a layered internal structure and, b) estimate the size of Earth’s core. Using an inquiry approach, students are divided into two teams (theoreticians and seismologists) to test the simplest hypothesis for what is...

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

This manipulative by the National Weather Service has diagrams thatconnect the lunar phases to the tides.

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
2006, WGBH Educational Foundation, PBS LearningMedia
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Fossils provide a valuable record of the plant and animal life and environmental conditions from millions, even billions of years ago. In this lesson, students create their own fossils, and then use multimedia resources to learn how real fossils form and what scientists can learn from them.

Grade Level: 3, 4, 5
Geological Society of America (GSA), Earth Science Week (ESW), American Geosciences Institute (AGI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Petroleum geologists study Earth’s rock layers, looking for places where oil-generating rocks might occur. These geoscientists try to determine whether geologic structures trap the oil in reservoirs which can be drilled and pumped to recover the oil. One such type of trap occurs when rocks have...

Grade Level: 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
United States Department of Education (ED)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Find learning resources from more than 35 federal organizations. Resources include teaching ideas, learning activities, photos, maps, primary documents, data, paintings, sound recordings, and more -- on Earth Science, Geology , and Paleontology.

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Physics Central
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Follow the adventures of Spectra, a middle school superhero who possesses the powers of a laser beam. Through eight volumes (with a ninth on the way), Spectra and friends meet and overcome challenges and obstacles through physical science, addressing topics such as power, force, heat energy,...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

SciJinks's Weather Science Fair web page offers middle level students project ideas in several categories; those that test a hypothesis (e.g., How does the temperature change during the day? One possible hypothesis: The temperature is lowest at midnight and highest at high noon.); those that...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

In this activity, students will use California precipitation totals and evapotranspiration data to calculate and graph water deficits and surpluses. These spreadsheet models will help students understand droughts and the movement of water in the water cycle.

Grade Level: 5, 6, 7, 8
Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Phenomena is only as effective as the unit it is embedded within. The questions that students raise should be directly connected with the core ideas that you want the students to engage with using the science and engineering practices. For example, we all live seeing a volcano model explode --...

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
2016, Innovative Technology in Science Inquiry (ITSI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

A watershed is the area of land that water flows over to reach a river, lake, or a stream. Near the upslope edges of a watershed, small tributary streams (1st, 2nd and 3rd order) begin gathering water that flows downstream into larger rivers and eventually drains into a river, bay, or ocean....

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8
JOI Learning, Earth Science Week (ESW), American Geosciences Institute (AGI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

The JOIDES Resolution is an amazing ship that contains all the equipment necessary to drill into the ocean floor for samples of rock and sediment: a derrick, drill pipe, drilling tools, and drill bits. Once the cylindrical core sample arrives on the rig floor, the drill crew passes the 10 m core...

Grade Level: 5, 6, 7, 8
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

NASA For Educators provides astronomy news, signups for weekly emails, educational resources, and more stories from NASA's wprk in space.

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
2008, Thirteen/WNET, PBS LearningMedia
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

In this Nature lesson, students will learn about different types of volcanoes, how and why they erupt and the physical impact of volcanic eruptions.

Grade Level: 9, 10, 11
United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), Earth Science Week (ESW), American Geosciences Institute (AGI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Few schools are within walking distance of a federally designated wilderness. However, many schools are within walking distance of land with wild elements. Students can look for examples of places with wild elements on or near their school grounds. Then they can duplicate the activity in a...

Grade Level: 5, 6, 7, 8
2016, Comet MetEd
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Climate and Water Resources Management, Part 1: Climate Variability and change describes the terminology, global evidence, regional manifestations, and basic science of global climate variability and anthropogenic change, with a focus on water resources management. The lesson presents this...

Grade Level: 12
Colorado State University (CSU)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Earthquakes can provide a useful context for teaching or reviewing many basic physics concepts, such as sliding and static friction, forms of energy and conversion from one to another, and the elastic properties of materials. Conducting the following lesson provides an opportunity for students...

Grade Level: 7, 8, 9
HelioViewer.org
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Take a trip around the sun with this interactive site, HelioViewer.

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Steve Spangler Science
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Turn your eggs into beautiful alum-crystal geodes instead of frying or scrambling them.

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
United States Department of Energy (DOE), Earth Science Week (ESW), American Geosciences Institute (AGI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

As far back as ancient Greek and Roman times, people built structures that created an indoor environment suited to growing plants throughout the year. This enabled the gardener to establish a measure of control over growing conditions and extend the growth period into the colder seasons of the...

Grade Level: 3, 4, 5
National Park Service (NPS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Studets will observe the process by which speleothems are formed and learn about the most common types of formations.

Grade Level: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
2013, Paleontological Research Institution (PRI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Prezi presentation on figuring out the phases of the moon using an orange.

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Soil Science Society of America (SSSA), Earth Science Week (ESW), American Geosciences Institute (AGI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

We walk around on soil all the time, but how often do we think about what's in it? If you have ever looked closely at soil, you probably saw that it is made up of various types of particles and has various materials mixed in with those particles (rocks, twigs, water, air, worms, insects, and...

Grade Level: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
American Chemical Society (ACS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Students will be able to explain that carbon dioxide from any source reacts chemically with water to form carbonic acidd. They will also be able to use the color changes of a universal indicator to monitor the changing pH of a solution during a chemical reaction.

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8
SaveOnEnergy
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Help students understand the science of electricity with this animated guide. Produced by SaveOnEnergy.com, the guide explains how electricity works, from atoms to power plants.

Grade Level: 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Sun-Earth Days is comprised of a series of programs and events that occur throughout the year. Each year we wrap a fresh new thematic approach around Heliophysics science while highlighting scientists, their missions, and research. We provide resources, programs and events that make the latest...

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), National Weather Service (NWS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

In a clean-air chamber (all solid particles are filtered out) a cloud will not form even with a relative humidity greater than 200%. While clouds are made up of droplets that are essentially distilled water, each droplet is not 100% pure. At the cloud droplet's core is a tiny water attracting...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
American Museum of Natural History (AMNH), PoLAR Partnership
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

These curricular unit plans help students explore and understand climate change with particular attention to the impact of climate change on the polar regions. Topics include the role of the polar regions in the global climate system, the impact of changing temperatures on ecosystems, and the...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
University of California, Museum of Paleontology (UCMP)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Students will create a two-dimensional contour map of a submerged area from a simulated survey using sounding techniques. This activity goes along with the "Building a Topographic Model" activity, where students built a 3-D model of a landform above sea level.

Grade Level: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Scripps Classroom Connection (SCC)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Understanding connections between spheres of the Earth as a Global System. In this lesson plan students will also recognize how a system functions. Students will be able to recognize that out planet contains four spheres, namely the hydrosphere, atmosphere, lithosphere (geosphere) and biosphere...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Journey North
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Mystery Class is a global game of hide-and-seek. Students track seasonal changes in sunlight and then investigate othe clues to find ten secret sites around the world. Track sunlight to solve a mystery -- and discover the reasons for the seasons along the way.

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8
Teach the Earth
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

This activity is a laboratory-style exercise that involves investigating the physical controls on viscosity by pouring different syrup mixtures down an inclined plane and using Jeffreys equation to calculate viscosity. Students time the syrup flows and then calculate viscosities. The four sets...

Grade Level: 11, 12
Esri, Earth Science Week (ESW), American Geosciences Institute (AGI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Earth’s climate is a product of and is affected by many things—and it’s changing. Long-term and short-term processes, such as plate tectonics and volcanism, contribute to climate. Likewise, human influences, such as rising CO2 levels from fossil fuel burning and deforestation, play active roles...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Polar Science Station
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

A team of scientists from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) is studying the presence of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in the Antarctic. Use this site to learn about POPs, the team, and different places where the scientists are working. In addition, the site contains learnign...

Grade Level: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

In this lesson, students examine seismic evidence to determine that the Earth must have a layered internal structure and to estimate the size of Earth's core. Students are divided into two teams (theoreticians and seismologists) to test the simplest hypothesis for what is inside of the Earth:...

Students Discover
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Improve place-consciousness and provide context for the importance of measuring light pollution in your students' neighborhoods. engage your students in a global citizen science project, Globe At Night.

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8
National Park Service (NPS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

In "Climate Science in Focus (Earth as a System)," students will learn about the four Earth systems and how they are connected. Broken into eight days, these lessons require 58 minutes to complete. Students explore topics including climate and weather, carrying capacity and animal adaptations,...

Grade Level: 9, 10, 11, 12
Innovative Technology in Science Inquiry (ITSI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

In this activity, you will use a model to learn how objects are launched into space.

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8
United States Geological Survey (USGS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

This activity creates a mini globe that shows the major plate boundaries of the world. It provides each student with his or her own physical model of the Earth's plates and helps teach how hard it is to accurately portray a sphere (three-dimensional) on a flat map (two-dimensional). Students...

Grade Level: 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Department of geology/Environmental Science, James Madison University (JMU)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Paper models of crystals and cleavage. PDF, printable. 

Grade Level: 9, 10, 11, 12
United States Department of Energy (DOE)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

This lesson from the DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy can be adapted for all grades levels K-12 and provides instructions for building a solar oven from a pizza box and other inexpensive materials. The oven will not generate enough heat to bake something, but it will become...

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

This activity uses the Earthquake Machine, a mechanical model that illustrates the earthquake cycle, as a tool to investigate the behavior of fault systems. In the activity groups of students are presented with a claim about earthquakes. Using the Earthquake Machine, students design an...

Grade Level: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

There are a variety of details in understanding tides. For elementary students, simply understanding what tides are and their frequency is appropriate (each day typically has two high tides and two low tides). Tying this to a model of gravity and the Moon’s motion and phases to understand tides...

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
2006, WGBH Educational Foundation, PBS LearningMedia
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

In this lesson, students explore the causes of earthquakes and their impact on the geology of an area and on human societies. They begin by looking at the role tectonic plates play in creating the forces that cause earthquakes, to help them understand why earthquakes occur when and where they do...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources (NMBGMR)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Basic geometric forms such as cubes, octahedra, rhombohedra, and tetrahedra may be made by folding flat paper or envelopes, both reasonably priced starting materials. These may be used to help visualize solid forms in crystallography and mineralogy and numbers of them may be used to create unit...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Tags: geology
United States Geological Survey (USGS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

This Web site contains selected USGS educational resources that may be useful to educators in primary school grades (Kindergarten to Grade 6). Many of these resources can be used directly in the classroom (see Resource Symbols) or will be useful in classroom lessons or demonstration activities...

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
Listenwise
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

Teachers often want help finding stories, aligning them with the curriculum, and writing lesson plans. Listenwise, a listening and comprehension tool available online, helps teachers do just that by bringing authentic voices and compelling nonfiction stories to the classroom. Targeted for middle...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), United States Department of Commerce ..
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

You and your fellow players are the leaders -- citizens, policymakers, business leaders, nonprofit leaders, and researchers -- of a coastal city. Your job is to make smart decisions that will increase the city's resilience to climate change. This Beat the Uncertainty activity includes...

Grade Level: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

The process of switching to cleaner forms of energy is a complex issue. Think Green allows students to break the issue down into more manageable pieces and to explore solar energy. Students will model solar energy inputs at different locations, analyze the cost effectiveness of installing solar...

Grade Level: 9, 10, 11, 12
American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
Resource Type: Classroom Activities

WeatherSchool @ AAAS was developed by researchers at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) to help you explore how different factors -- time of year, location, or elevation -- work together to produce the day-to-day weather you experience in your local community as well...

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

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Iron precipitation in Montana wetland
Classroom Activities
United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

This website is designed to broadly educate students about acid rain, including: its definition; its cause; the various effects that is has on humans, the environment, and buildings and objects; what is being done to reduce its occurrence. In addition it offers students several ways that they...

Students stufying soil at an NRCS educational event in Missouri
Classroom Activities
United States Department of Energy (DOE)

The School Energy Survey is designed to give students the necessary background and framework to conduct an energy survey of their school building. The step-by-step approach guides students through the process of analyzing energy consuming appliances and systems. After gathering data, students...

Mojave Desert Fault Zones
Curriculum Materials
Annenberg Learner

What happens as boundaries diverge? Watch a continental rift, volcanoes and lakes form as two continental plates move apart.

Students observing a fault model
Curriculum Materials
Annenberg Learner

What are convergent boundaries? Examine how collisions of oceanic and continental plates can create volcanoes, island arcs, and earthquakes.

North American crustal plates and earthquake epicenters
Classroom Activities
Annenberg Learner

In this game, you will see a series of five images showing the positions of earth's continents during different geologic periods. You will have two minutes to arrange them in the correct order.

About the Education Resources Network

The Education Resources Network aggregates geoscience education resources from a variety of providers. The goal is to provide visitors with the widest possible collection of curricula, classroom activities, teacher professional development opportunities, science education standards, virtual field trips, teaching ancillaries and much more.

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