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A Better Fly Trap
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this activity, learners observe fly behavior and then build a flytrap. They make more observations, compare the effectiveness of different traps, and modify their traps to increase their effectiveness. In doing so, learners consider what variables make for an effective trap as well as learning how to study the behavior of an animal. Even pesky flies provide an interesting challenge.

Subject:
Engineering
Technology
Education
History, Law, Politics
Life Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
National Science Foundation
Date Added:
10/31/1979
Crayfish Investigations
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

This activity has learners interacting with live crayfish, but could be adapted for a variety of similar hardy and interesting organisms. Instructions are provided for facilitating free and guided observations, including how to make explicit things learners wonder and notice, and sharing them by posting them on index cards. There is extensive background about how to buy and maintain crayfish, along with general "Crayfish Information Cards" for learners.

Subject:
Education
Life Science
Geoscience
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
National Science Foundation
Date Added:
10/31/2009
Estimating: Counting Trees
Rating

This lesson unit is intended to help you assess how well students are able to: solve simple problems involving ratio and direct proportion; choose an appropriate sampling method; and collect discrete data and record them using a frequency table.

Subject:
Education
Geometry
Measurement and Data
Ratios and Proportions
Material Type:
Assessment
Lecture Notes
Lesson Plan
Teaching/Learning Strategy
Provider:
Florida Center for Research in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics
Shell Center for Mathematical Education
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
iCPALMS: A Standards-based K-12 Resources and Tools Pathway
Mathematics Assessment Project (MAP)
Mathematics Assessment Project (MAP)
Author:
http://map.mathshell.org/
Date Added:
04/26/2013
Finding the Size of the Sun and Moon
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this activity, learners build a simple pinhole viewer. They use this apparatus to project images from a variety of light sources, including a candle, the Sun, and the Moon. Learners will use the pinhole viewer to measure the size of the Sun and the Moon. This activity can also be used to demonstrate how cameras work in a basic sense.

Subject:
Engineering
Technology
Education
Mathematics
Algebra
Chemistry
Physics
Space Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Author:
Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
The Center for Science Education @ Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
Date Added:
10/30/2001
Flower Powder
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this outdoor activity, learners use artificial bees and paper models of flowers to find out how bees transfer pollen from one flower to another. Background information discusses bees and other pollinators such as hummingbirds and butterflies, and describes the way bees move pollen around. Learners use pollen boards to pick up pollen from real flowers, make paper flowers to learn how real flowers are structured, use model flowers and artificial bees to act out bees visiting flowers for pollen, and use artificial bees to collect real pollen. Learners are asked to consider other kinds of pollination (wind, water or larger animals) and the impact on pollination when bees are killed with insect poison.

Subject:
Engineering
Education
Life Science
Ecology
Forestry and Agriculture
Geoscience
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Data Set
Lesson Plan
Simulation
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
Date Added:
10/31/1979
Hold It
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this outdoor activity/field trip, learners investigate the special shapes, holding structures and holding behaviors that real organisms use in streams, rivers, creeks or coast intertidal zones to avoid being swept away by moving water. Learners then create their own "animal" with holding adaptations. The activity includes drawings that detail helpful equipment such as bug boxes and dip nets, as well as instructions for making a milk-carton observation tray and flow-through trough.

Subject:
Engineering
Life Science
Ecology
Forestry and Agriculture
Geoscience
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Data Set
Simulation
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
Date Added:
10/31/1980
Lichen Looking
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this outdoor activity, learners search for lichen, a combination of a fungus and an alga living together. Lichen grow where most other plants cannot, on rocks, the trunks of trees, logs and sand. As learners go "lichen looking", they investigate the numbers, locations and kinds of lichen in their area.

Subject:
Education
Life Science
Ecology
Forestry and Agriculture
Geoscience
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
Date Added:
10/31/1980
Magnetic Storms
Conditions of Use:
Remix and Share
Rating

This is a lesson to introduce the Kp index, a common numerical indicator of magnetic storminess. Learners will access and analyze Kp index plots of magnetic storm strength and determine the relative frequency of stronger versus weaker magnetic storms during years of maximum solar activity. This resource is activity 13 from the Magnetic Mysteries of the Aurora teachers guide. Internet access is required for this activity.

Subject:
Geoscience
Space Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
NASA
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
NASA Wavelength
Date Added:
08/04/2014
Making a Simple Astrolabe
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this activity, learners make an astrolabe, a device used for measuring altitude, including the height of objects in the sky. This activity guide includes instructions for constructing the device as well as brief background information about when the astrolabe was first invented. The "Using a Simple Astrolabe" activity includes instructions on how to use it (see related resource).

Subject:
Engineering
Technology
History, Law, Politics
Mathematics
Physics
Space Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Author:
Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
The Center for Science Education @ Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
Date Added:
10/30/2001
Mean, Median, Mode, and Range
Rating

This lesson unit is intended to help you assess how well students are able to: Calculate the mean, median, mode, and range from a frequency chart; and to use a frequency chart to describe a possible data set, given information on the mean, median, mode, and range.

Subject:
Education
Mathematics
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Assessment
Lesson Plan
Provider:
Maryland Public Television
Shell Center for Mathematical Education
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
Mathlanding: Elementary Mathematics Pathway
Mathematics Assessment Project (MAP)
Mathematics Assessment Project (MAP)
Author:
Shell Center Team
Date Added:
01/17/2013
Meteorsoids and the Craters They Make
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this activity, learners investigate the formation of craters. Learners will examine how the size, angle and speed of a Meteorsite's impact affects the properties of craters. Learners will measure and collect data on a data sheet and draw conclusions about their observations. Use this activity to familiarize learners with the terms Meteors, Meteorsoid, and Meteorsite.

Subject:
Education
Mathematics
Geometry
Chemistry
Geoscience
Physics
Space Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Simulation
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Author:
Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
The Center for Science Education @ Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
Date Added:
10/30/2001
Metric Capers
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this outdoor activity, learners measure familiar objects in nature to practice working with the metric system. The goal is for learners to develop their "metric senses" by measuring and estimating in metric units the mass, length, temperature, and volume of familiar objects. Can be adapted into an indoor activity on a rainy day.

Subject:
Life Science
Mathematics
Geoscience
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
Date Added:
10/31/1979
Plants Around a Building
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this outdoor activity, learners discover how the environment around a building affects the growth of plants. Learners observe patterns of plant growth such as size, thickness, weeds, and damage to plants by humans, then share their observations verbally and combine all their observations on a large outline map. The activity can be extended or adapted for higher grades by assigning each learner or team to look for specific aspects affecting plant growth, such as soil composition, moisture, and how location and design of the building affect growth patterns. (More quantitative measurement of environmental factors is available in the Terrestrial Hi-Lo Hunt activity from the same source.)

Subject:
Life Science
Ecology
Forestry and Agriculture
Mathematics
Geoscience
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
Date Added:
10/31/1980
Rockets Away
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this activity, learners build a simple "rocket" with ordinary household materials to demonstrate the basic principles behind rocketry and the principle of reaction. This activity can be completed indoors or experimented with outdoors using a much longer piece of string.

Subject:
Engineering
Technology
Education
Chemistry
Geoscience
Physics
Space Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Author:
Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
The Center for Science Education @ Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
Date Added:
10/30/2001
Roots and Shoots
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this outdoor activity, learners discover that plants aren't just shoots (stem, branches, leaves, and flowers) growing above ground, but contain plenty of roots growing underground--more than half the mass of a plant can be its roots. Learners dig up "mystery" plants to investigate their root structures, and match them to different types of root systems. Learners also learn about animals found near plant roots and how humans use roots.

Subject:
Life Science
Ecology
Forestry and Agriculture
Geoscience
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
Date Added:
10/31/2008
Shadow Dance
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this activity, learners experiment with shadows and light sources to understand the relationship between the angle illumination and the shadow's length. Learners create a testing tool out of two pieces of cardboard and a toothpick. Then, learners shine a flashlight on the toothpick to create a shadow line. They experiment by moving the flashlight, toothpick, or using sunlight to change the direction and length of the shadow.

Subject:
Engineering
Education
Mathematics
Chemistry
Physics
Space Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
AMSER: Applied Math and Science Education Repository
ComPADRE Digital Library
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
AMSER: Applied Math and Science Education Repository
ComPADRE: Resources for Physics and Astronomy Education
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Author:
Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
The Center for Science Education @ Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
Date Added:
06/13/2006
The Size and Distance of the Planets
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this activity, learners investigate the concepts of relative size and distance by creating a basic model of the solar system. Learners will work at one end of a hallway, large room or outdoor space. Learners will predict the distance of each planet from the Sun and then use toilet paper to measure the actual distances. This activity will help learners comprehend the immense scale of the solar system.

Subject:
Mathematics
Space Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Data Set
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Author:
Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
The Center for Science Education @ Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley
Date Added:
10/30/2001
Snug as a Bug
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this outdoor activity, learners make models of homes that might protect small animals from the elements, then search living plants for real structures made by small animals. Learners examine what materials real animals use to make their homes, and consider the adaptations that allow animals to construct homes that really protect themfrom wind, wetness, and predators. Learners also explore whether certain animal homes damage animals' host plants. At the end of the activity, all animals are released to their "home" plants.

Subject:
Engineering
Education
Life Science
Geoscience
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Data Set
Lesson Plan
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
Date Added:
10/31/1982
Swell Homes
Conditions of Use:
Read the Fine Print
Rating

In this outdoor activity, learners find the swollen bumps known as "galls" on various plants and get a closeup look at the parasitic animals living inside. Galls form on various plants including rosebushes, oaks, elms and willows after a female insect places one or more eggs into the living tissue of a branch or leaf. Learners explore what the galls provide, such as food or protection, as eggs become larvae, and what effects larvae have on their specific host plants.

Subject:
Life Science
Ecology
Forestry and Agriculture
Geoscience
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science and Math Informal Learning Educators (SMILE)
U.C. Berkeley
Provider Set:
SMILE Pathway: Science and Math Activities in One Search
Lawrence Hall of Science
Author:
Lawrence Hall of Science
Date Added:
10/31/1982
Understanding Science: How science really works
Rating

The mission of Understanding Science is to provide a fun, accessible, and free resource that accurately communicates what science is and how it really works. The process of science is exciting, but standard explanations often miss its dynamic nature. Science affects us all everyday, but people often feel cut off from science. Science is an intensely human endeavor, but many portrayals gloss over the passion, curiosity, and even rivalries and pitfalls that characterize all human ventures. Understanding Science gives users an inside look at the general principles, methods, and motivations that underlie all of science. This project has at its heart a re-engagement with science that begins with teacher preparation and ends with broader public understanding. Its immediate goals are to (1) improve teacher understanding of the nature of the scientific enterprise, (2) provide resources and strategies that encourage and enable K-16 teachers to reinforce the nature of science throughout their science teaching, and (3) provide a clear and informative reference for students and the general public that accurately portrays the scientific endeavor. The Understanding Science site was produced by the UC Museum of Paleontology of the University of California at Berkeley, in collaboration with a diverse group of scientists and teachers, and was funded by the National Science Foundation1. Understanding Science was informed and initially inspired by our work on the Understanding Evolution project, which highlighted the fact that many misconceptions regarding evolution spring from misunderstandings of the nature of science. Furthermore, research indicates that students and teachers at all grade levels have inadequate understandings of the nature and process of science, which may be traced to classrooms in which science is taught as a simple, linear, and non-generative process. This false and impoverished depiction disengages students, discourages public support, and may help explain current indications that the U.S. is losing its global edge in science. Even beyond the health of the U.S. economy, the public has a genuine need to critically assess conflicting representations of scientific evidence in the media. To do this, they need to understand the strengths, limitations, and basic methods of the enterprise that has produced those claims. Understanding Science takes an important step towards meeting these needs.

Subject:
Education
History, Law, Politics
Life Science
Chemistry
Geoscience
Physics
Space Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Diagram/Illustration
Homework/Assignment
Interactive
Lecture Notes
Lesson Plan
Reading
Teaching/Learning Strategy
Provider:
AMSER: Applied Math and Science Education Repository
Internet Scout Project
U.C. Berkeley
University Corporation for Atmospheric Research
Provider Set:
AMSER: Applied Math and Science Education Repository
Internet Scout Project
Individual Authors
DLESE Community Collection
Author:
Individual Authors
Date Added:
02/16/2011