M/J Earth/Space Science, Advanced   (#2001020)

Version for Academic Year:

Course Standards

General Course Information and Notes

General Notes

Laboratory investigations that include the use of scientific inquiry, research, measurement, problem solving, laboratory apparatus and technologies, experimental procedures, and safety procedures are an integral part of this course. The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) recommends that at the middle school level, all students should have multiple opportunities every week to explore science laboratory investigations (labs). School laboratory investigations are defined by the National Research Council (NRC) as an experience in the laboratory, classroom, or the field that provides students with opportunities to interact directly with natural phenomena or with data collected by others using tools, materials, data collection techniques, and models (NRC, 2006, p. 3). Laboratory investigations in the middle school classroom should help all students develop a growing understanding of the complexity and ambiguity of empirical work, as well as the skills to calibrate and troubleshoot equipment used to make observations. Learners should understand measurement error; and have the skills to aggregate, interpret, and present the resulting data (NRC 2006, p. 77; NSTA, 2007).

Honors and Advanced Level Course Note: Advanced courses require a greater demand on students through increased academic rigor.  Academic rigor is obtained through the application, analysis, evaluation, and creation of complex ideas that are often abstract and multi-faceted.  Students are challenged to think and collaborate critically on the content they are learning. Honors level rigor will be achieved by increasing text complexity through text selection, focus on high-level qualitative measures, and complexity of task. Instruction will be structured to give students a deeper understanding of conceptual themes and organization within and across disciplines. Academic rigor is more than simply assigning to students a greater quantity of work.

Special Notes: 

Instructional Practices 
Teaching from a range of complex text is optimized when teachers in all subject areas implement the following strategies on a routine basis:

  1. Ensuring wide reading from complex text that varies in length.
  2. Making close reading and rereading of texts central to lessons.
  3. Emphasizing text-specific complex questions, and cognitively complex tasks, reinforce focus on the text and cultivate independence.
  4. Emphasizing students supporting answers based upon evidence from the text.
  5. Providing extensive research and writing opportunities (claims and evidence).

Science and Engineering Practices (NRC Framework for K-12 Science Education, 2010)

  • Asking questions (for science) and defining problems (for engineering).
  • Developing and using models.
  • Planning and carrying out investigations.
  • Analyzing and interpreting data.
  • Using mathematics, information and computer technology, and computational thinking.
  • Constructing explanations (for science) and designing solutions (for engineering).
  • Engaging in argument from evidence.
  • Obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information.

Literacy Standards in Science
Secondary science courses include reading standards for literacy in science and technical subjects 6-12 and writing standards for literacy in history/social studies, science, and technical subjects 6-12. The courses also include speaking and listening standards. For a complete list of standards required for this course click on the blue tile labeled course standards. You may also download the complete course including all required standards and notes sections using the export function located at the top of this page.

English Language Development ELD Standards Special Notes Section:
Teachers are required to provide listening, speaking, reading and writing instruction that allows English language learners (ELL) to communicate information, ideas and concepts for academic success in the content area of Science. For the given level of English language proficiency and with visual, graphic, or interactive support, students will interact with grade level words, expressions, sentences and discourse to process or produce language necessary for academic success The ELD standard should specify a relevant content area concept or topic of study chosen by curriculum developers and teachers which maximizes an ELL's need for communication and social skills. To access an ELL supporting document which delineates performance definitions and descriptors, please click on the following link: http://www.cpalms.org/uploads/docs/standards/eld/SC.pdf

Additional Instructional Resources:
A.V.E. for Success Collection is provided by the Florida Association of School Administrators: http://www.fasa.net/4DCGI/cms/review.html?Action=CMS_Document&DocID=139. Please be aware that these resources have not been reviewed by CPALMS and there may be a charge for the use of some of them in this collection.

General Information

Course Number: 2001020
Course Path:
Abbreviated Title: M/J EARTH/SPA SCI ADV
Course Length: Year (Y)
Course Attributes:
  • Class Size Core Required
Course Level: 3
Course Status: Course Approved
Grade Level(s): 6,7,8

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this course.

Original Student Tutorials

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions: How Does Science Fit In?:

You'll explore how science does and does not influence decision-making about climate change, sea turtles, and human health, in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

It All Makes Cents! The Two Rs in Science Research: Repetition and Replication :

Learn the importance of replication and repetition in science as you investigate the composition of a penny with this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science Innovation: Using Tools in New Ways to Make Discoveries:

Learn how innovation is important in moving scientific thinking forward with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Connections Between Science and Society, Economy, and Politics:

Explore the interconnected world of science, society, economy, and politics and how they all influence one another with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Scientific Theories Can Change:

Learn about scientific theories and how they can change when new information is presented with this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Math Models and Social Distancing:

Learn how math models can show why social distancing during a epidemic or pandemic is important in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Vast Universe:

The universe is so big it is hard to even imagine! Consider the vastness of space with this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science Research Part 2: Conducting an Experiment and Analyzing Results:

Continue your scientific experiment about ghost ant food preferences by collecting the data, analyzing the results, and forming a conclusion with this interactive tutorial.

This is Part 2 of a two-part series. Click HERE to open Part 1, Setting Up an Experiment. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science Research Part 1: Setting up an Experiment:

Learn how to design a scientific experiment involving ants and what food they prefer. In this interactive tutorial, you will learn about variables and scientific processes required to conduct an experiment.

This is Part 1 of a two-part series. Click HERE to open Part 2, Conducting an Experiment and Analyzing Results

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science Research: Evidence Through Observation:

Learn about different types of scientific investigations as you discover the Zebra Longwing, a special type of butterfly that calls Florida home. In this interactive tutorial, you'll also learn how scientists collaborate with each other and share empirical evidence. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Voyage Across the Universe:

Learn about the variety and amazing features of our universe in this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Think Like a Scientist:

Learn about the tools of science as we look at the mystery of bird migrations in this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Goldilocks and the Three...Planets?:

Compare conditions on Venus, Earth, and Mars, and learn why Earth is an ideal place for life in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Not Just Another Science Experiment:

Science isn't just about experiments! Learn about other ways to do science such as observational and comparative studies in this interactive tutorial. Science is varied and interesting as we use scientific skills to learn about the world!

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Is It Science or Pseudoscience?:

Learn the differences between science and pseudoscience in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Using Science to Make Informed Decisions:

Learn how science can help us make informed decisions that improve our lives as you complete this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Examine the Evidence: Earth Changes Over Time:

Explore multiple lines of evidence collected by scientists over time that support the claim that Earth has changed over time. This interactive tutorial includes multiple practice items and stunning images.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science in Action: Engineer:

Engineering and science may be similar but their goals are somewhat different. In this interactive tutorial, learn about engineers; some of the different fields of engineering, where engineers work, what they do, and some of their goals. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science in Action: Geoscientist:

Learn about the work of geo-scientists: What they do, where they work and the types of questions they strive to answer in this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science in Action: Physicist:

Learn about the world of physics and explore what physicists do. In this interactive tutorial, you'll discover where they work and what kinds of questions they try to answer. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science in Action: Chemist:

Learn about the work of chemists, various fields of chemistry, where chemists work and the types of questions they strive to answer in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Tides:

Explore the causes of tides as they occur along the coasts around the world in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science in Action: Biologist:

Learn about the varied job of a biologist; where they work, what they do and the types of questions they try to answer. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Castles, Catapults and Data: Histograms Part 2:

Learn how to interpret histograms to analyze data, and help an inventor predict the range of a catapult in part 2 of this interactive tutorial series. More specifically, you'll learn to describe the shape and spread of data distributions.

Click HERE to open part 1.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Castles, Catapults and Data: Histograms Part 1:

Learn how to create a histogram to display continuous data from projectiles launched by a catapult in this interactive tutorial. 

This is part 1 in a 2-part series. Click HERE to open part 2.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Sun Fuels Our Weather:

The Sun is integral in keeping us warm, but did you know the other ways that the Sun is essential to Earth? Learn about how the Sun is important in fueling our weather on Earth. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Solar and Lunar Eclipses:

Explore and contrast solar and lunar eclipses in this interactive tutorial. By the end, you'll learn how interactions between the Sun, Earth, and moon cause these cool phenomena. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

MacCoder’s Farm Part 3: If Statements:

Explore computer coding on the farm by using relational operators and IF statements to evaluate expressions. In this interactive tutorial, you'll also solve problems involving inequalities.

Click below to check out the other tutorials in the series.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Moving MADness:

Learn how to calculate and interpret the Mean Absolute Deviation (MAD) of data sets in this travel-themed, interactive statistics tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Human Impact: Desertification:

Explore desertification and the impact people have on it as you complete this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Technology is Essential in Science:

Technology is essential to scientific knowledge. In this interactive tutorial, you will learn how technology has helped us make scientific discoveries throughout history. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Hunt for Exoplanets:

Learn how science relies on creative and innovative thinking as we explore the science of discovering exoplanets in this interactive tutorial. Science is a problem solving endeavor as we try and figure out and learn new things. The answers are hard to find, but if we keep asking questions and building on what we know, then we can solve problems to things we once were thought were impossible!

 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Stop the Zombie Virus by Interpreting Graphs:

Help scientists find the most effective vaccine for Zombie Virus vaccine by effectively analyzing and summarizing experimental data. In this interactive tutorial, you'll write a scientific question, a claim, supporting evidence and an explanation of what happened during the experiment.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science Research: Developing a Hypothesis:

Learn how to write an effective hypothesis with sharks as a focus in this interactive tutorial. A hypothesis should be testable and falsifiable. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Science Research: Writing a Conclusion:

Learn how to write a valid conclusion from a scientific investigation. In this interactive tutorial, you'll also learn how to answer questions using scientific reasoning. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Star Properties:

Discover how scientists classify stars according to their brightness, temperature, color, and size in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Challenges of Space Travel:

Explore the challenges related to space travel in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Law of Universal Gravitation:

Learn about Isaac Newton's Law of Universal Gravitation. This law helps calculate the force of gravity dependent on the mass of the objects and the distance between them. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Scientist's Next Top Model:

Come with me as we select Scientist's Next Top Model! When does an abstract idea become a real scientific model? When the model appears in scientific journals and textbooks all over the world. Before a model can grace the cover of these high profile, peer reviewed journals and textbooks it must go through a rigorous process. How does a model go from an idea to a scientific model? What took me 2000 years I am going to make happen for one lucky model in just 15 short minutes!

Competition is tough and each model will have to showcase why they are able to represent themselves as Scientist’s Next Top Model.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Universe:

Explore the universe and identify key facts about galaxies and stars, how scientists learn about the universe, and contemplate the massive size of the universe. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Transfer of Heat:

Explore the ways in which heat is transferred and some common examples of each type in our lives in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Characteristics of the Electromagnetic Spectrum:

Examine the electromagnetic spectrum and characteristics associated with different portions of the spectrum in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Tear Me Down and Build Me Up: The Story of Weathering, Erosion, and Deposition:

Weathering, erosion and deposition are driving forces in the development of land formations. Explore them in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Human Impact: Deforestation:

Explore the loss of forests due to human impacts in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Introduction to Probability:

Learn how to calculate the probability of simple events, that probability is the likeliness of an event occurring and that some events may be more likely than others to occur, in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Sunny With a Side of Photons: How to Build a Sun:

Explore the Sun and how energy goes from the Sun's core to our Earth in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Plate Tectonic Boundaries:

Investigate the type of boundaries that occur between plates on the Earth in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Repetition and Replication:

Learn to differentiate replication (by others) from repetition (multiple trials) in experimental design through the information and practice exercises in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Plate Tectonic Effects: A Ground Shaking Tutorial:

Learn about the types of effects that can occur as a result of plate tectonics in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Solving the Puzzle: Where Do Living Things Come From?:

Explore how scientists have used scientific thinking and methods to develop hypotheses about the development of life on Earth. Throughout this interactive tutorial, you'll see how learning through science requires retesting data, reconsidering evidence, and debate between scientists.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

It's Raining....Cats and Dogs:

Learn how to make and interpret boxplots in this pet-themed, interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Journey to the Center of the Earth:

Learn about the layers of Earth's interior and identify each layer's physical characteristics with this interactive tutorial. This includes the crust, mantle, inner core, and outer core. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Weathering, Erosion, and the Rock Cycle:

Learn how to sequence surface events that lead to the formation of sedimentary rock in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Identification of Variables:

Learn to identify the independent variable and the dependent variable in an experiment with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Our Atmospheric Blanket:

Explore how our atmosphere both insulates our planet and protects life on Earth in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Where Have All the Scrub-Jays Gone?:

Investigate the limiting factors of a Florida ecosystem and describe how these limiting factors affect one native population-the Florida Scrub-Jay-with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Mantle Convection and Earth's Features:

This tutorial covers movement of material within the Earth and the geologic processes and features associated with this movement.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Hot on the Trail:

Investigate how temperature affects the rate of chemical reactions in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Scientific Knowledge Changes:

Learn how scientific knowledge can change when new evidence is discovered or new ideas are developed. In this interactive tutorial, you'll look at some famous example from the history of science, including the cell theory and the theory of plate tectonics.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Yes or No to GMO?:

Learn what genetic engineering is and some of the applications of this technology. In this interactive tutorial, you’ll gain an understanding of some of the benefits and potential drawbacks of genetic engineering. Ultimately, you’ll be able to think critically about genetic engineering and write an argument describing your own perspective on its impacts.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Natural Disasters:

Learn to identify several types of natural disasters that occur in Florida and how these disasters can affect people living there as you complete this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Hey Rock, How Old Are You?:

Learn how to identify sedimentary rock from other types of rock formations and use the Law of Superposition to determine the relative age of rock layers with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Weather vs. Climate:

Learn to distinguish between weather and climate in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Earth's Spheres:

Explore and compare the different spheres of the Earth system, including the geosphere, biosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere and cryosphere. In this interactive tutorial, you'll also identify specific examples of the interactions between the Earth's spheres.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Center Stage: Models of the Solar System:

Compare and contrast the heliocentric and geocentric models of the Solar System in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Water in Our World:

Learn about the water cycle on Earth and how it affects weather and climate with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Arguing Mars :

Learn how to identify explicit evidence and understand implicit meaning in a text.

In this tutorial, you will learn how to identify a speaker’s argument or claim. You will also learn how to evaluate the evidence and reasoning presented in a speech.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

What Causes Weather?:

Explore the components of weather, including temperature, humidity, precipitation, wind direction and wind speed. In this interactive tutorial, you'll relate the jet stream and ocean circulation to the causes of these conditions, which are caused by the energy from the sun.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Main Event: Scientific Theories vs. Scientific Laws:

Learn to recognize and explain the difference between scientific theories and scientific laws in this interactive tutorial. You'll also explore several examples of scientific theories and the evidence that supports them.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

From Flowers To Freckles: Mendel's Mighty Model:

Learn how scientists use models to simplify and understand the world around us. In this interactive tutorial, you'll also explore the benefits and limitations of scientific models.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Educational Game

Stop Disasters Before They Happen:

Students attempt to save towns from damage prior to the arrival of several different natural disasters. Students will learn the importance of early prevention and actions to protect others, themselves and their property when faced with a natural disaster. Certain disasters are more appropriate for particular grade levels. Each scenario takes between 20 and 45 minutes to play, depending on the disaster for which your students are trying to prepare. There are five scenarios available, hurricane, tsunami, flood, earthquake, and wildfire. Each scenario can be played on easy, medium or hard difficulty levels. As with life, there are no "perfect solutions" to each scenario and no "perfect score", so students can play multiple times and the scenarios will still be slightly different.These simulation are part of a larger website that provides multiple links for natural disasters.

Type: Educational Game

Image/Photographs

Thunderstorms, Tornadoes, Lightning: A Preparedness Guide:

This PDF included at this site has information about family preparedness plans and safety rules, and information about thunderstorms, tornadoes, and lightning such as facts, when and where they occur, and how they form.

Type: Image/Photograph

View the Earth from a Satellite:

Choose a satellite to see the current view of Earth from that satellite.

Type: Image/Photograph

Hubble Satellite Telescope ePhoto Gallery:

This site offers images captured by Hubble, a telescope that orbits Earth! You will find images of planets, stars, galaxies, moons, nebulae, and more.

Type: Image/Photograph

Common Water Measurements USGS:

This site uses text and images to describe methods that the U.S. Geological Survey measures water temperature, pH, specific conductance, turbidity, dissolved oxygen, hardness, and suspended sediment.

Type: Image/Photograph

Lesson Plans

The Surprising World of Complex Systems:

This lesson introduces students to complex systems and to basic concepts from the field of system dynamics that lie at the heart of systems thinking. These concepts include stocks and flows, feedback loops, unintended consequences, and the basic principle that the behavior of complex systems can best be understood by looking at the system as a whole, and specifically by analyzing the system’s underlying structure. The lesson introduces these topics through an immersion in (and a role-play simulation of) the dynamics of urban recycling systems, many of which have been thrown into crisis in the past two years. Through this current-affairs example of complex systems in crisis, we identify some key structural features that help to explain how these systems behave over time. We also discover how well-intentioned action can cause negative unintended consequences when we try to intervene in a complex system without understanding how it operates.

Type: Lesson Plan

Sea Level Rise: The Ocean's Uplifting Experience:

The purpose of this lesson is to introduce students to the concept of sea level rise as it occurs through climate change by having them examine 3 specific parameters:  ice distribution, thermal expansion, and analyzing and interpreting data.  The lesson and activities within the lesson were designed using the three dimensions of the Framework for K-12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards – specifically crosscutting concepts, science and engineering practices, and disciplinary core ideas. While there isn’t any required pre-requisite learning required for this lesson, a general understanding of sea-level rise, glaciers, and climate may be beneficial to students. During classroom breaks, pairs of students will develop/discuss their models, revise their interpretations of their models or data, and think-pair-share their thoughts on the investigation segments.

Type: Lesson Plan

Perspectives Video: Experts

MicroGravity Sensors & Statistics:

Statistical analysis played an essential role in using microgravity sensors to determine location of caves in Wakulla County.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Severe Weather Formation:

In a fog about weather patterns? This climatologist will demystify the topic for you.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Monitoring Water Quality in the Florida Keys:

Water quality is extremely important to the aquatic ecosystem, and human activities all over the country can impact the water around the Florida Keys. Dive in and learn more!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Large-scale Environmental Modeling:

Some scientists' labs are outside! Learn all about a large-scale environmental model called LILA!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Technology and Oceanography:

Some places on Earth can be quite remote, like the depths of the ocean. Get there with technology.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Making Candy: Energy Transfer:

Candy production requires lots of heat. If you can't stand it, get out of the kitchen so you can watch this video on the couch instead.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Presentation/Slideshows

What is Science?:

Resource provides a succinct overview of the nature of science; what science is and is not. Information includes the aims of scientific pursuits, principles, process and thinking.

Type: Presentation/Slideshow

Water Science for Schools:

This interactive site allows you to learn all about the water cycle. The site provides hydrology data, examples, pictures, definitions, and more in multiple languages.

Type: Presentation/Slideshow

Problem-Solving Tasks

The Titanic 1:

This task asks students to calculate probabilities using information presented in a two-way frequency table.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Electoral College:

Students are given a context and a dotplot and are asked a number of questions regarding shape, center, and spread of the data.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Puppy Weights:

Using the information provided, create an appropriate graphical display and answer the questions regarding shape, center and variability.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Offensive Linemen:

In this task, students are able to conjecture about the differences and similarities in the two groups from a strictly visual perspective and then support their comparisons with appropriate measures of center and variability. This will reinforce that much can be gleaned simply from visual comparison of appropriate graphs, particularly those of similar scale.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Chocolate Bar Sales:

In this task students use different representations to analyze the relationship between two quantities and to solve a real world problem. The situation presented provides a good opportunity to make connections between the information provided by tables, graphs and equations. In the later part of the problem, the numbers are big enough so that using the formula is the most efficient way to solve the problem; however, creative use of the table or graph will also work.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Student Center Activity

Edcite: Mathematics Grade 6:

Students can practice answering mathematics questions on a variety of topics. With an account, students can save their work and send it to their teacher when complete.

Type: Student Center Activity

Text Resources

Understanding Invasive Aquatic Plants:

This web resource provides students with an explanation of the differences between native, nonnative, and invasive plants, along with information on three of Florida's aquatic invasive plants--the water hyacinth, hydrilla, and alligatorweed. Through text questions and activities, students will learn how these plants can impair aquatic and wetland ecosystems and inhibit human uses of Florida waters. Readers will gain a greater understanding of how important it is to monitor and control invasive aquatic plants.

Type: Text Resource

USGS: Geology in the Parks:

The US Geological Survey Geology in the Parks Web site is a cooperative project of the USGS Western Earth Surface Processes Team and the National Park Service. This extensive site covers geologic maps, plate tectonics, rocks and minerals, geologic time, US geologic provinces, park geology of the Mojave, Sunset Crater, Lake Mead, North Cascades, Death Valley, Yosemite National Park, and much more. Descriptions, graphics, photographs, and animations all contribute to this informative and interesting Web site making it a one stop, all encompassing, resource for everything geology and US national park related.

Type: Text Resource

Sinkholes:

Sink your teeth into learning about how sinkholes form. In the video clip, three students investigate sinkholes to determine their cause, and then construct a functioning model. Directions for replicating this model, text and student activities are included.

Type: Text Resource

Why Isn't Pluto A Planet?:

This Frequently Asked Question page can be used by educators and students as a scientific resource to answer the question, "Why isn't Pluto a planet?". From the International Astronomical Union, the definitive answer from the governing body that classified Pluto as a dwarf planet.

Type: Text Resource

Heat Transfer :

This is a great resource to review heat transfer through conduction, convection and radiation.

Type: Text Resource

Tutorials

Mean Absolute Deviation Example:

In this video, you will see two ways to find the Mean Absolute Deviation of a data set.

Type: Tutorial

The Limits of Probability:

This video discusses the limits of probability as between 0 and 1.

Type: Tutorial

Find a Missing Value Given the Mean:

This video shows how to find the value of a missing piece of data if you know the mean of the data set.

Type: Tutorial

Constructing a Box and Whisker Plot:

This video demonstrates how to construct a box and whisker plot.

Type: Tutorial

Interpreting box and whisker plots:

Students will interpret data presented in a box and whisker plot.

Type: Tutorial

Frequency tables and dot plots:

In this video, we organize data into frequency tables and dot plots (sometimes called line plots).

Type: Tutorial

Histograms:

Learn how to create histograms, which summarize data by sorting it into groups (buckets).

Type: Tutorial

Dependent and Independent Variables Exercise: The Basics:

In an equation with 2 variables, we will be able to determine which is the dependent variable, and which is the independent variable.

Type: Tutorial

Dependent and Independent Variables Exercise: Express the Graph as an Equation:

Given a graph, we will be able to find the equation it represents.

Type: Tutorial

Thinking About the Changing Values of Variables and Expressions:

Explore how the value of an algebraic expression changes as the value of its variable changes.

Type: Tutorial

How to combine like terms:

This tutorial is a good explanation on how to combine like terms in algebra.

Type: Tutorial

Rock 'n Roll Weather:

This resource is a basic introduction to the types of severe weather. Students will learn about the formation of tornadoes, lightning, floods, and hurricanes. Images of each weather system also accompany each section.

Type: Tutorial

How the Earth's Tilt Causes Seasons:

This tutorial discusses how the Earth's tilt causes the different seasons. The tutorial supports student learning with visual representations of how the tilt of the Earth as it orbits the Sun influences the seasons in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.

Type: Tutorial

Seasons and Temperatures:

Spring, summer, fall and winter. Many places on the Earth have seasons. Others do not. What causes the seasons? This tutorial discusses seasonal changes and describes that they are caused by the movement of the Earth around the sun, the tilt of the Earth, and how high the sun will get in the sky.

Type: Tutorial

Greenhouse Effect:

This video will help the learners with their understanding of atmospheric composition and the greenhouse effect.

Type: Tutorial

Erosion and Deposition:

This tutorial for student audiences covers information about erosion and deposition including the factors related to these conditions. The tutorial also briefly covers the Geologic cycle.

Type: Tutorial

Primary Additive Colors:

This resource helps the user learn the three primary colors that are fundamental to human vision, learn the different colors in the visible spectrum, observe the resulting colors when two colors are added, and learn what white light is. A combination of text and a virtual manipulative allows the user to explore these concepts in multiple ways.

Type: Tutorial

Primary Subtractive Colors:

The user will learn the three primary subtractive colors in the visible spectrum, explore the resulting colors when two subtractive colors interact with each other and explore the formation of black color.

Type: Tutorial

Properties of the Solar System:

This website contains numerous interesting facts, images and activities intended to support greater understanding of properties of our solar system.

Type: Tutorial

Video/Audio/Animations

Will an Ice Cube Melt Faster in Freshwater or Saltwater?:

With an often unexpected outcome from a simple experiment, students can discover the factors that cause and influence thermohaline circulation in our oceans. In two 45-minute class periods, students complete activities where they observe the melting of ice cubes in saltwater and freshwater, using basic materials: clear plastic cups, ice cubes, water, salt, food coloring, and thermometers. There are no prerequisites for this lesson but it is helpful if students are familiar with the concepts of density and buoyancy as well as the salinity of seawater. It is also helpful if students understand that dissolving salt in water will lower the freezing point of water. There are additional follow up investigations that help students appreciate and understand the importance of the ocean's influence on Earth's climate.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Creating New Tools for Exploration:

In this video, new observation technologies are presented. National Geographic is developing and using these technologies to better capture the world.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Plate Tectonics:

This short informational text, diagrams, a video, and guided questions from the CK-12 Foundation discusses plate motions and the role of convection.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Inquiry and Ocean Exploration:

Ocean explorer Robert Ballard gives a TED Talk relating to the mysteries of the ocean, and the importance of its continued exploration.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Billion-Pixel View of Mars from Curiosity Rover:

  • This interactive tool contains views of Mars taken from Curiosity Rover
  • Students get to observe the a close view of the surface of Mars
  • Snap shots of different things identified on the surface are also displayed

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Supermodels of Science:

This game aims at showing the use of model organisms in behavioral studies and in detecting the causes of certain diseases

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

What is a Planet?:

This video provides a historical background about the definition of a planet and how different objects discovered in space were classified as planets or fir into a different category

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Mars Science Laboratory-Curiosity Rover-Mission Animation:

This animation depicts key events of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission, which launched in late 2011 and landed a rover, Curiosity, on Mars in August 2012.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Science Crossword Puzzles:

A collection of crossword puzzles that test the knowledge of students about some of the terms, processes, and classifications covered in science topics

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Deep Sea Vents and Life:

Excerpted from NOVA: "Volcanoes of the Deep", this video segment reveals strange and luminescent forms of life, such as giant tube worms, spider crabs, and billions of microbes clumped together like a cottony web. The site where life began on Earth may have been where black smokers stream from hydrothermal vents and chimneys along the sea floor.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Autism Genes:

This 13-minute video segment produced by NOVA Science Now explores the work by one committed family and researchers to identify patterns in the genetic information of autism patients.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Natural Climate Change in Djibouti, Africa:

This video clip explains how the position of the Earth relative to the Sun might be responsible for the dramatic climate shift in what is now known as the Saharan nation of Djibouti. Even though it seems that a geographic feature such as a desert would be permanent, Earth's climate and landscape are dynamic and change constantly. According to geologic evidence, parts of the Sahara were once lush and held many animal species now associated with the savannas to the south.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Antarctica: A Challenging Work Day:

In this NOVA-adapted video clip, members of a research team deal with the inhospitable climate and other hazards while researching in Antarctica. Many scientists consider the opportunity to do their research in Antarctica a dream come true. The extreme environment and remoteness make it one of the most untouched regions on the planet. There is a treaty that allows more than 20 nations to maintain research facilities, and dedicates the entire continent to peaceful scientific investigation.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Towers in the Tempest:

'Towers in the Tempest' is a 4.5 minute narrated animation that explains recent scientific insights into how hurricanes intensify. This intensification can be caused by a phenomenon called a 'hot tower'. For the first time, research meteorologists have run complex simulations using a very fine temporal resolution of 3 minutes. Combining this simulation data with satellite observations enables detailed study of 'hot towers'. The science of 'hot towers' is described using: observed hurricane data from a satellite, descriptive illustrations, and volumetric visualizations of simulation data.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

27 Storms: Arlene to Zeta:

This video from NASA presents the 2005 hurricane season with actual data that NASA and NOAA satellites measured. Sea surface temperatures, clouds, storm tracks, and hurricane category labels are shown as the hurricane season progresses.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Solar Eclipses:

Every now and then, the Sun, Earth, and Moon align so that, when viewed from parts of the Earth, the Moon eclipses the Sun's light. Solar eclipses are fairly common -- the Moon will block out some portion of the Sun at least twice a year. However, it is still a special event to be able to witness a total solar eclipse. In this video segment adapted from NASA, learn how solar eclipses happen and why they are so difficult to witness.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Jupiter: Earth's Shield:

More than 155 planets have been found outside of our solar system since the first extra-solar planet was identified in 1995. The search has long been heavily biased towards finding massive planets with short orbits. Now, to find an Earth-like planet, scientists are looking for a planetary setup that is similar to our own, in which a Jupiter-like planet lies a good distance away from its sun. This video segment adapted from NOVA explores how the arrangement of planets in our solar system may have affected the development of life on Earth.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Photosynthesis:

This 2-1/2 minute video segment from Interactive NOVA: "Earth" explores the history of plant biology. The video takes the viewer from the earliest scientific hypotheses that plants "eat" dirt, to our present-day understanding of photosynthesis, the process by which plants use the sun's energy to convert carbon dioxide and water into carbohydrates, a storable form of chemical energy.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

How do Hurricanes Form - NASA Spaceplace:

This site describes how hurricanes (tropical cyclones) form. The site includes text, diagrams, and satellite images in a movie.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Solar Wind's Effect on Earth:

The Sun produces a solar wind — a continuous flow of charged particles — that can affect us on Earth. It can, for example, disrupt communications, navigation systems, and satellites. Solar activity can also cause power outages, such as the extensive Canadian blackout in 1989. In this video segment adapted from NASA, learn about solar storms and their effects on Earth.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Eclipse of the Century:

In July 1991, the alignment of the Sun, Moon, and Earth produced a rare opportunity — a total solar eclipse with a particularly long duration and a path that crossed easily accessible locations, including a major astronomical observatory in Hawaii. In this video segment adapted from NOVA, learn about the mechanics of solar eclipses and observe the rare 1991 eclipse from the top of Mauna Kea.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Space School Musical:

Join teenager Hannah on a trip through the solar system in this "hip-hopera" that uses song and dance to introduce the planets, moons, asteroids and more. Download the lyrics for students to learn and perform or just play the videos in class.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Distances Between the Planets Animation:

This animation simulates a voyage from the sun past all nine planets. For convenience, the planets are lined up in the same direction. The animation shows each planet's average distance from the sun.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Virtual Manipulatives

Plate Tectonics:

In this resource, you can explore how tectonic plates move on the surface of the Earth. The interactive simulation takes you through 0-50 millions years of movement.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram Virtual Lab:

This interactive lab explores the Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram in areas of spectrum, classification, luminosity, and temperature. The simulator plots stars according to the areas you chose to explore.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Spinner:

In this activity, students adjust how many sections there are on a fair spinner then run simulated trials on that spinner as a way to develop concepts of probability. A table next to the spinner displays the theoretical probability for each color section of the spinner and records the experimental probability from the spinning trials. This activity allows students to explore the topics of experimental and theoretical probability by seeing them displayed side by side for the spinner they have created. This activity includes supplemental materials, including background information about the topics covered, a description of how to use the application, and exploration questions for use with the java applet.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Seasons and Ecliptic Simulator:

  • Observe the orbit of the earth around the sun and its relationship to seasons
  • Understand the factors affecting Earth's climate
  • Observe the effect of Earth's tilt on the seasons

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Solar System Exploration:

This resource provides an interactive tool for the exploration of the solar system. To navigate the interactive solar system move the mouse to hover the target over different objects, to learn more about each click to access images, information about scientists, homework help, articles, news, missions, time lines, and important facts.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Box Plot:

In this activity, students use preset data or enter in their own data to be represented in a box plot. This activity allows students to explore single as well as side-by-side box plots of different data. This activity includes supplemental materials, including background information about the topics covered, a description of how to use the application, and exploration questions for use with the Java applet.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Advanced Data Grapher:

This is an online graphing utility that can be used to create box plots, bubble graphs, scatterplots, histograms, and stem-and-leaf plots.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Radioactive Dating Game:

This simulation demonstrates the principles of radioactive dating. Users can also determine the age of different objects such as fossils and rocks by percentage of parent nuclei remaining.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

My Solar System:

This simulation demonstrates the effect of gravitation in determining planetary orbits as well as that of comets and satellites. This simulation allows you to change initial positions, velocities and masses of bodies and see the resulting orbit.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Box Plotter:

Users select a data set or enter their own data to generate a box plot.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Telescopes from the Ground Up:

In this interactive site, navigate through the fascinating history and science of telescopes. Learn about Galileo, Newton, refractors, reflectors, lenses, light, and telescope engineering and technology.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

How Fast do Objects Move in the Solar Sytem?:

This interactive demonstrates the impacts of the gravitational force of the sun on motion of objects in the solar system.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Web Mapping Portal:

A web mapping portal with real-time observations. This National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration site allows teachers and students to use tools to generate maps, establish relationships between maps and databases, and learn the utility of Geographic Information Systems (GIS).

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Random Drawing Tool - Individual Trials (Probability Simulation):

This virtual manipulative allows one to make a random drawing box, putting up to 21 tickets with the numbers 0-11 on them. After selecting which tickets to put in the box, the applet will choose tickets at random. There is also an option which will show the theoretical probability for each ticket.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Histogram Tool:

This virtual manipulative histogram tool can aid in analyzing the distribution of a dataset. It has 6 preset datasets and a function to add your own data for analysis.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Exploring Mean and Median Using Box Plots:

Using an interactive applet, students can compare and contrast properties of measures of central tendency, specifically the influence of changes in data values on the mean and median. As students change the data values by dragging the red points to the left or right, the interactive figure dynamically adjusts the mean and median of the new data set.
(NCTM's Illuminations)

Type: Virtual Manipulative

The Disaster Area: FEMA for Kids:

Through this website, students learn about different weather disasters and what to do before, during, and after an emergency.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

The Life Cycle of the Star/H-R Diagram:

This is a great resource with online lessons providing inquiry as you learn about the life cycle of the star as well as the usages of the H-R diagram. The images provide a conceptual understanding of the life cycle of the star and how it applies to the H-R diagram. You will enjoy the interactive lab tools as well as the online formative assessment questions.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Histogram:

In this activity, students can create and view a histogram using existing data sets or original data entered. Students can adjust the interval size using a slider bar, and they can also adjust the other scales on the graph. This activity allows students to explore histograms as a way to represent data as well as the concepts of mean, standard deviation, and scale. This activity includes supplemental materials, including background information about the topics covered, a description of how to use the application, and exploration questions for use with the java applet.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this course.

Use grade appropriate Nature of Science benchmarks (i.e. if this course is offered to seventh grade students, then the SC.7.N benchmarks should be integrated into the course content, and SC.6.N and SC.8.N benchmarks should be omitted from the seventh grade course).