Astronomy Solar/Galactic   (#2001350)

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 high school level, all students should be in the science lab or field, collecting data every week. School laboratory investigations (labs) 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 high 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 (National Research Council, 2006, p.77; NSTA, 2007).

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

General Information

Course Number: 2001350
Abbreviated Title: ASTRONOMY S/G
Number of Credits: One (1) credit
Course Length: Year (Y)
Course Type: Elective Course
Course Level: 2
Course Status: Course Approved
Grade Level(s): 9,10,11,12

Educator Certifications

One of these educator certification options is required to teach this course.

Student Resources

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

Original Student Tutorials

How Viral Disease Spreads:

Learn how scientists measure viral spread and use this information to make recommendations for the public in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Evaluating Sources of Information:

Learn how to identify different sources of scientific claims and to evaluate their reliability in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Testing Scientific Claims:

Learn how to test scientific claims and judge competing hypotheses by understanding how they can be tested against one another in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Year-Round School Debate: Identifying Faulty Reasoning — Part Two:

Practice identifying faulty reasoning in this two-part, interactive, English Language Arts tutorial. You'll learn what some experts say about year-round schools, what research has been conducted about their effectiveness, and how arguments can be made for and against year-round education. Then, you'll read a speech in favor of year-round schools and identify faulty reasoning within the argument, specifically the use of hasty generalizations. 

Make sure to complete Part One before Part Two! Click HERE to launch Part One.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Year-Round School Debate: Identifying Faulty Reasoning – Part One:

Learn to identify faulty reasoning in this two-part interactive English Language Arts tutorial. You'll learn what some experts say about year-round schools, what research has been conducted about their effectiveness, and how arguments can be made for and against year-round education. Then, you'll read a speech in favor of year-round schools and identify faulty reasoning within the argument, specifically the use of hasty generalizations. 

Make sure to complete both parts of this series! Click HERE to open Part Two. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Evaluating an Argument – Part Four: JFK’s Inaugural Address:

Examine President John F. Kennedy's inaugural address in this interactive tutorial. You will examine Kennedy's argument, main claim, smaller claims, reasons, and evidence.

In Part Four, you'll use what you've learned throughout this series to evaluate Kennedy's overall argument.

Make sure to complete the previous parts of this series before beginning Part 4.

  • Click HERE to launch Part One.
  • Click HERE to launch Part Two.
  • Click HERE to launch Part Three.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Evaluating an Argument – Part Three: JFK’s Inaugural Address:

Examine President John F. Kennedy's inaugural address in this interactive tutorial. You will examine Kennedy's argument, main claim, smaller claims, reasons, and evidence. By the end of this four-part series, you should be able to evaluate his overall argument. 

In Part Three, you will read more of Kennedy's speech and identify a smaller claim in this section of his speech. You will also evaluate this smaller claim's relevancy to the main claim and evaluate Kennedy's reasons and evidence. 

Make sure to complete all four parts of this series!

  • Click HERE to launch Part One.
  • Click HERE to launch Part Two.
  • Click HERE to launch Part Four.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

States of Matter: Phase Transitions:

Explore how heat changes the temperature or the state of matter of a material in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Heat Transfer Processes:

Explore the three types of heat transfer that occur in our world as you complete this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Ready for Takeoff! -- Part Two:

Want to learn about Amelia Earhart, one of the most famous female aviators of all time? If so, then this interactive tutorial is for YOU! This tutorial is Part Two of a two-part series. In this series, you will study a speech by Amelia Earhart. You will practice identifying the purpose of her speech and practice identifying her use of rhetorical appeals (ethos, logos, pathos, Kairos). You will also evaluate the effectiveness of Earhart's rhetorical choices based on the purpose of her speech.

Please complete Part One before beginning Part Two. Click HERE to view Part One.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Ready for Takeoff! -- Part One:

Want to learn about Amelia Earhart, one of the most famous female aviators of all time? If so, then this interactive tutorial is for YOU! This tutorial is Part One of a two-part series. In this series, you will study a speech by Amelia Earhart. You will practice identifying the purpose of her speech and practice identifying her use of rhetorical appeals (ethos, logos, pathos, Kairos). You will also evaluate the effectiveness of Earhart's rhetorical choices based on the purpose of her speech.  

Please complete Part Two after completing this tutorial. Click HERE to view Part Two.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Drones and Glaciers: Eyes in the Sky (Part 2 of 4):

Learn how to identify the central idea and key details of a text, as well as how to write an effective summary in this interactive tutorial. This tutorial is the second tutorial in a four-part series that examines how scientists are using drones to explore glaciers in Peru. 

This tutorial is part 1 of a four-part series. Click below to open the other tutorials in this series.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Drones and Glaciers: Eyes in the Sky (Part 1 of 4):

Learn about how researchers are using drones, also called unmanned aerial vehicles or UAVs, to study glaciers in Peru. In this interactive tutorial you will practice citing text evidence when answering questions about a text.

This tutorial is part 1 of a four-part series. Click below to open the other tutorials in this series.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Untangling Food Webs:

Learn how living organisms can be organized into food webs and how energy is transferred through a food web from producers to consumers to decomposers. This interactive tutorial also includes interactive knowledge checks.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Ecological Data Analysis:

See how data are interpreted to better understand the reproductive strategies taken by sea anemones with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Ecology Sampling Strategies:

Examine field sampling strategies used to gather data and avoid bias in ecology research. This interactive tutorial features the CPALMS Perspectives video Sampling Strategies for Ecology Research in the Intertidal Zone.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

The Mystery of Muscle Cell Metabolism:

Explore the mystery of muscle cell metabolism and how cells are able to meet the need for a constant supply of energy. In this interactive tutorial, you'll identify the basic structure of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), explain how ATP’s structure is related it its job in the cell, and connect this role to energy transfers in living things.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Eliminating Exotics: Identifying and Assessing Research for Quality and Usefulness:

Explore the topic of invasive exotics in Florida while you learn to distinguish relevant from irrelevant information in research sources, identify authoritative sources from a group of varied resources, and dissect a research question in order to identify keywords for a search of resources. With this interactive tutorial, you'll also learn to use advanced search features to find appropriate sources to address a research question and assess the usefulness of sources when addressing a specific research question. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Comparing Mitosis and Meiosis:

Compare and contrast mitosis and meiosis in this interactive tutorial. You'll also relate them to the processes of sexual and asexual reproduction and their consequences for genetic variation.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Evolution: Examining the Evidence:

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

You should be able to explain how different types of scientific evidence support the theory of evolution, including direct observation, fossils, DNA, biogeography, and comparative anatomy and embryology.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Scientific Laws and Theories:

Learn what scientific laws and scientific theories are and how they are different from what we commonly call laws and theories outside of science with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Changing with the Times: Variation within Ecosystems:

 Explore how environmental changes at different time scales affect living organisms within ecosystems.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Graphing Quadratic Functions:

The graph of a quadratic equation is called a parabola [puh-ra-bow-luh]. The key features we will focus on in this tutorial are the vertex (a maximum or minimum extreme) and the direction of its opening. You will learn how to examine a quadratic equation written in vertex form in order to distinguish each of these key features. 

 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Observation vs. Inference:

Learn how to identify explicit evidence and understand implicit meaning in a text and demonstrate how and why scientific inferences are drawn from scientific observation and be able to identify examples in biology.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Cool Case Files:

Learn that a scientific theory is the culmination of many experiments and supplies the most powerful explanation that scientists have to offer with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Cancer: Mutated Cells Gone Wild!:

Explore the relationship between mutations, the cell cycle, and uncontrolled cell growth which may result in cancer with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Defining Science:

Learn how to define what science is and what it is not. In this interactive tutorial, you will identify why certain ways of exploring the universe can and cannot be considered scientific practices.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Question Quest:

Learn to distinguish between questions that can be answered by science and questions that science cannot answer. This interactive tutorial will help you distinguish between science and other ways of knowing, including art, religion, and philosophy.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Diving the Depths of Underwater Life:

Learn how the distribution of aquatic life forms is affected by light, temperature, and salinity with this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Climbing Around the Hominin Family Tree:

Learn to identify basic trends in the evolutionary history of humans, including walking upright, brain size, jaw size, and tool use in "Climbing Around the Hominin Family Tree" online tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Image/Photograph

NASA Flyer: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and ecomonic impacts of space research:

This flyer describes how NASA partners with small businesses for research and development to further space exploration. It directly discusses the impact of research on the economy and provides specific examples of innovations that resulted from partnerships with small businesses.

Type: Image/Photograph

Lesson Plans

CO2: Find Out What It Means to You:

This BLOSSOMS lesson discusses Carbon Dioxide, and its impact on climate change. The main learning objective is for students to become more familiar with human production of Carbon Dioxide gas, as well as to gain an awareness of the potential for this gas to effect the temperature of Earth’s atmosphere. This lesson should take about an hour to complete. In order to complete the lesson, the teacher will need: printed copies of signs representing the different products and processes that take place in the carbon cycle (included), samples of matter that represent those products, handouts for the students to create a graphic of the carbon cycle (included) and graph paper or graphing software for students to create graphs. In the breaks of this BLOSSOMS lesson, students will be creating models of the carbon cycle as well as observing experiments and analyzing data from them. It is hoped that this lesson will familiarize students with ways in which carbon moves through our environment and provide them with some personal connection to the impact that an increased concentration of CO2 can have on air temperature. The goal is to spark their interest and hopefully to encourage them to ask and investigate more questions about the climate. 

Type: Lesson Plan

An Introduction to the Physics of Sailing:

The goal of this lesson is to explain how sailboats work by exploring basic physics principles. At the end of this lesson, students will be able to identify the forces acting on a sailboat and explain how the combination of these forces results in the forward motion of a sailboat. Students should be familiar with vectors and be able to use them to represent forces and moments, and also should be familiar with using free body diagrams to represent forces and moments. The classroom activity challenges are centered around small-group discussions based on the questions posed before each break. Free body diagrams, or another conceptual representation of his or her answer, should support each student’s solution to the questions posed in the video.

Type: Lesson Plan

Perspectives Video: Experts

Jumping Robots and Quadratics:

Jump to it and learn more about how quadratic equations are used in robot navigation problem solving!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Mathematically Exploring the Wakulla Caves:

The tide is high!  How can we statistically prove there is a relationship between the tides on the Gulf Coast and in a fresh water spring 20 miles from each other?

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Properties and Structures of Subatomic Particles:

Do you know everything about protons? Are you positive?

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Light Spectrum for Growing Plants:

Plants need visible light, just not all of it. Learn how space plants and their lights strive for efficiency.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Oil Fingerprinting:

Humans aren't the only ones who get their fingerprints taken. Learn how this scientist is like a crime scene investigator using oil "fingerprints" to explain the orgins of spilled oil.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiasts

Unit Conversions:

Get fired up as you learn more about ceramic glaze recipes and mathematical units.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Shape Affects Sound:

Learn how the shape of a didgeridoo affects its sound in this totally tubular video.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Seeing into Atoms with Electromagnetic Energy:

If you want to understand the atom, you'll need a lot of energy. Learn how physicists use high energy light and electrons to study atomic structure.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Using Infrared Light to Analyze Materials:

One way to figure out what something is made of is to see what kinds of wavelengths of electromagnetic energy it can absorb.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Wave Frequency and Audio Engineering:

Want to watch a video on audio engineering and frequency? Sounds good to me.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

See the Four States of Matter in Welding!:

A welder wields a plasma torch to cut solid metal like a hot knife through butter. It's one-stop shopping to see all four states of matter.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Using X-rays in Archeology:

An archaeologist explains how he is using x-rays to reconstruct a nineteenth-century battle!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Oceans and Energy Transfer:

Dive deep into science as an oceanographer describes conduction, convection, and radiation and their relationship to oceanic systems.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Blacksmithing and Heat Transfer:

Forge a new understanding of metallurgy and heat transfer by learning how this blacksmith and collier make nails.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Bring Frequencies to Life with Balinese Music:

It's okay if you're not on quite the same wavelength as this ethnomusicologist. In Balinese gamelan tuning, that's a good thing!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Plan Your Archaeological Excavations with Radar Waves! :

Archaeologists can see underground trends before everyone else with ground penetrating radar (GPR).

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Physics of Bass Guitar:

If physics has you down, don't fret - this musician covers all the bases.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Frequencies and Communities in the Music of Bali:

Physical science and social science connect in this discussion of Balinese gamelan. Full STEAM ahead!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Using the Electromagnetic Spectrum to Detect Hydrogen Fires:

Learn more about how splitting light beams helps researchers detect hydrogen fires for the space program.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Optical Spectroscopy: Using Electromagnetic Waves to Detect Fires:

Hydrogen is used to launch spacecraft, but accidental fires are difficult to see. Learn about the physics of these fires and how we detect them.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Shaping Pottery with Angular Momentum:

Factors to consider when making pottery on the wheel are discussed, but not in a way that would make your head spin.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Presentation/Slideshow

What Killed the Dinosaurs?:

It is often difficult, sometimes impossible, to get a definitive answer to some of life's most enduring questions. Scientific processes provide alternative explanations for a wide variety of phenomena by piecing together all the available information. This interactive activity on the Evolution website explores four possible hypotheses to explain what caused the extinction of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago, inviting the viewer to consider the evidence and come to their own decision.

Type: Presentation/Slideshow

Problem-Solving Tasks

Finding Parabolas through Two Points:

This problem-solving task challenges students to find all quadratic functions described by given equation and coordinates, and describe how the graphs of those functions are related to one another.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Weed Killer:

The principal purpose of the task is to explore a real-world application problem with algebra, working with units and maintaining reasonable levels of accuracy throughout. Students are asked to determine which product will be the most economical to meet the requirements given in the problem.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Dinosaur Bones:

The purpose of this task is to illustrate through an absurd example the fact that in real life quantities are reported to a certain level of accuracy, and it does not make sense to treat them as having greater accuracy.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Bus and Car:

This task operates at two levels. In part it is a simple exploration of the relationship between speed, distance, and time. Part (c) requires understanding of the idea of average speed, and gives an opportunity to address the common confusion between average speed and the average of the speeds for the two segments of the trip.

At a higher level, the task addresses MAFS.912.N-Q.1.3, since realistically neither the car nor the bus is going to travel at exactly the same speed from beginning to end of each segment; there is time traveling through traffic in cities, and even on the autobahn the speed is not constant. Thus students must make judgments about the level of accuracy with which to report the result.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Accuracy of Carbon 14 Dating I:

This task examines, from a mathematical and statistical point of view, how scientists measure the age of organic materials by measuring the ratio of Carbon 14 to Carbon 12. The focus here is on the statistical nature of such dating.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Accuracy of Carbon 14 Dating II:

This task examines, from a mathematical and statistical point of view, how scientists measure the age of organic materials by measuring the ratio of Carbon 14 to Carbon 12. The focus here is on the statistical nature of such dating.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Fuel Efficiency:

The problem requires students to not only convert miles to kilometers and gallons to liters but they also have to deal with the added complication of finding the reciprocal at some point.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

How Much Is a Penny Worth?:

This task asks students to calculate the cost of materials to make a penny, utilizing rates of grams of copper.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Runner's World:

Students are asked to use units to determine if the given statement is valid.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Harvesting the Fields:

This is a challenging task, suitable for extended work, and reaching into a deep understanding of units. Students are given a scenario and asked to determine the number of people required to complete the amount of work in the time described. The task requires students to exhibit MAFS.K12.MP.1.1, Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them. An algebraic solution is possible but complicated; a numerical solution is both simpler and more sophisticated, requiring skilled use of units and quantitative reasoning. Thus the task aligns with either MAFS.912.A-CED.1.1 or MAFS.912.N-Q.1.1, depending on the approach.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Graphs of Quadratic Functions:

Students compare graphs of different quadratic functions, then produce equations of their own to satisfy given conditions.

This exploration can be done in class near the beginning of a unit on graphing parabolas. Students need to be familiar with intercepts, and need to know what the vertex is. It is effective after students have graphed parabolas in vertex form (y=a(x–h)2+k), but have not yet explored graphing other forms.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Traffic Jam:

This resource poses the question, "how many vehicles might be involved in a traffic jam 12 miles long?"

This task, while involving relatively simple arithmetic, promps students to practice modeling (MP4), work with units and conversion (N-Q.1), and develop a new unit (N-Q.2). Students will also consider the appropriate level of accuracy to use in their conclusions (N-Q.3).

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Selling Fuel Oil at a Loss:

The task is a modeling problem which ties in to financial decisions faced routinely by businesses, namely the balance between maintaining inventory and raising short-term capital for investment or re-investment in developing the business.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Felicia's Drive:

This task provides students the opportunity to make use of units to find the gas needed (MAFS.912.N-Q.1.1). It also requires them to make some sensible approximations (e.g., 2.92 gallons is not a good answer to part (a)) and to recognize that Felicia's situation requires her to round up. Various answers to (a) are possible, depending on how much students think is a safe amount for Felicia to have left in the tank when she arrives at the gas station. The key point is for them to explain their choices. This task provides an opportunity for students to practice MAFS.K12.MP.2.1: Reason abstractly and quantitatively, and MAFS.K12.MP.3.1: Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Graphs of Power Functions:

This task requires students to recognize the graphs of different (positive) powers of x.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Calories in a Sports Drink:

This problem involves the meaning of numbers found on labels. When the level of accuracy is not given we need to make assumptions based on how the information is reported. An unexpected surprise awaits in this case, however, as no reasonable interpretation of the level of accuracy makes sense of the information reported on the bottles in parts (b) and (c). Either a miscalculation has been made or the numbers have been rounded in a very odd way.

Type: Problem-Solving Task

Text Resource

Beginner's Guide to Aerodynamics:

NASA's "Beginner's Guide to Aerodynamics" provides some general information on the basics of aerodynamics. The site allows users to explore at their own pace and level of interest. The topics available include equations of motion, free falling, air resistance, force, gas properties, and atmosphere. Movies, reading materials, and activities are all available to accommodate a variety of different learning styles.

Type: Text Resource

Tutorials

Graphs and Solutions of Functions in Quadratic Equations:

You will learn how the parent function for a quadratic function is affected when f(x) = x2.

Type: Tutorial

Graphing Quadractic Functions in Vertex Form:

This tutorial will help the students to identify the vertex of a parabola from the equation, and then graph the parabola.

Type: Tutorial

Graphing Quadratic Equations:

This tutorial will help the learners to graph the equation of the quadratic function using the coordinates of the vertex of a parabola adn its x- intercepts.

Type: Tutorial

Graphing Exponential Equations:

This tutorial will help you to learn about the exponential functions by graphing various equations representing exponential growth and decay.

Type: Tutorial

Gravitational Forces: Brick vs. Feather:

Would a brick or feather fall faster? What would fall faster on the moon?

Would a brick or feather fall faster?: What would fall faster on the moon?

Type: Tutorial

Projectile at an angle:

This video discusses how to figure out the horizontal displacement for a projectile launched at an angle.

Type: Tutorial

Projectile Motion:

This tutorial is about projectile motion. This powerpoint lecture discusses the independence of the vertical and horizontal motion of projectiles. Students will be asked to solve problems involving projectile motion of both projectiles fired horizontally and at an angle. This tutorial is geared for advanced students.

Type: Tutorial

Not All Scientific Studies are Created Equal:

Every day, we are bombarded by attention grabbing headlines that promise miracle cures to all of our ailments -- often backed up by a "scientific study." But what are these studies, and how do we know if they are reliable? David H. Schwartz dissects two types of studies that scientists use, illuminating why you should always approach the claims with a critical eye.

Type: Tutorial

Our Solar System:


This tutorial will help the learners to understand the solar system and will learn how it was discovered from the historical astronomy perspective.

Type: Tutorial

Forces:

This tutorial provides the learners with detailed information about forces. Topics covered include Newton's Laws, friction, gravity, balanced and unbalanced forces, vectors, weight, motion and momentum.

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

Characteristics of Waves:

This tutorial contains information about the characteristics of longitudinal, transverse, and surface waves. This tutorial will also provide information about the amplitude, frequency, wavelength, speed, refraction, reflection, diffraction, and constructive and destructive interference of the waves.

Type: Tutorial

Sound:

This tutorial provides information about the sound and how it travels. It also includes information on the anatomy and physiology of the human ear for the learners to understand how sound passes through the ear.

Type: Tutorial

Refraction of Light:

This resource explores the electromagnetic spectrum and waves by allowing the learner to observe the refraction of light as it passes from one medium to another, study the relation between refraction of light and the refractive index of the medium, select from a list of materials with different refractive indicecs, and change the light beam from white to monochromatic and observe the difference.

Type: Tutorial

Human Eye Accommodation:

  • Observe how the eye's muscles change the shape of the lens in accordance with the distance to the object being viewed
  • Indicate the parts of the eye that are responsible for vision
  • View how images are formed in the eye

Type: Tutorial

Concave Spherical Mirrors:

  • Learn how a concave spherical mirror generates an image
  • Observe how the size and position of the image changes with the object distance from the mirror
  • Learn the difference between a real image and a virtual image
  • Learn some applications of concave mirrors

Type: Tutorial

Convex Spherical Mirrors:

  • Learn how a convex mirror forms the image of an object
  • Understand why convex mirrors form small virtual images
  • Observe the change in size and position of the image with the change in object's distance from the mirror
  • Learn some practical applications of convex mirrors

Type: Tutorial

Color Temperature in a Virtual Radiator:

  • Observe the change of color of a black body radiator upon changes in temperature
  • Understand that at 0 Kelvin or Absolute Zero there is no molecular motion

Type: Tutorial

Basic Electromagnetic Wave Properties:

  • Explore the relationship between wavelength, frequency, amplitude and energy of an electromagnetic wave
  • Compare the characteristics of waves of different wavelengths

Type: Tutorial

Geometrical Construction of Ray Diagrams:

  • Learn to trace the path of propagating light waves using geometrical optics
  • Observe the effect of changing parameters such as focal length, object dimensions and position on image properties
  • Learn the equations used in determining the size and locations of images formed by thin lenses

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

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

Element Math Game:

Students determine the number of protons, electrons, neutrons, and nucleons for different atoms

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

Light is a Particle:

This video contains a demo that can be performed to show that light consists of particles
It also uses Lasers with different wavelengths

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

LASERS:

  • Explain the processes of absorption and emission
  • Describe how a laser works
  • Determine the factors affecting lasing

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Graphing Lines 1:

Khan Academy video tutorial on graphing linear equations: "Algebra: Graphing Lines 1"

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Science of the Olympic Winter Games - Aerial Physics:

A 4-minute video in which an Olympic freestyle skier and a physicist discuss the physics behind freestyle skiing.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Evolving Ideas: Isn't evolution just a theory?:

This video examines the vocabulary essential for understanding the nature of science and evolution and illustrates how evolution is a powerful, well-supported scientific explanation for the relatedness of all life. A clear definition and description of scientific theory is given.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Citizen Science:

In this National Science Foundation video and reading selection lab ecologist Janis Dickinson explains how she depends on citizen scientists to help her track the effects of disease, land-use change and environmental contaminants on the nesting success of birds.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Virtual Manipulatives

Black body Spectrum:

In this simulation, learn about the black body spectrum of the sun, a light bulb, an oven and the earth. Adjust the temperature to see how the wavelength and intensity of the spectrum are affected.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Collision lab:

Learn more about collisions with the use of a virtual air hockey table. Investigate simple and complex collisions in one and two dimensions.Experiment with the number of discs, masses and initial conditions. Vary the elasticity and see how the total momentum and kinetic energy changes during collisions.

Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Draw "Before and After" pictures of collisions.
  • Construct momentum vector representations of "Before and After" collisions.
  • Apply law of conservation of momentum to solve problems with collisions.
  • Explain why energy is not conserved and varies in some collisions.
  • Determine the change in mechanical energy in collisions of varying "elasticity".
  • What does "elasticity" mean?

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Build an Atom:

Build an atom out of protons, neutrons, and electrons, and see how the element, charge, and mass change. Then play a game to test your ideas!

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Slope Slider:

In this activity, students adjust slider bars which adjust the coefficients and constants of a linear function and examine how their changes affect the graph. The equation of the line can be in slope-intercept form or standard form. This activity allows students to explore linear equations, slopes, and y-intercepts and their visual representation on a graph. 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

Graphing Equations Using Intercepts:

This resource provides linear functions in standard form and asks the user to graph it using intercepts on an interactive graph below the problem. Immediate feedback is provided, and for incorrect responses, each step of the solution is thoroughly modeled.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Split Brain Experiments:

The split brain experiments revealed that the right and the left hemisphere in the brain are good at different things. For instance, the right hemisphere is good at space perception tasks and music while the left is good at verbal and analytic tasks. This game guides students through some examples of the split-brain phenomenon and how the differences are understood.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Photoelectric Effect:


This virtual manipulative will help the students to understand how the light shines on a metal surface. Students will recognize a process called as photoelectric effect wherein light can be used to push electrons from the surface of a solid.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Visualize and describe the photoelectric effect experiment.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the intensity of light is changed and its effects on the current and energy of the electrons.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the wavelength of the light is changed and its effects on the current and the energy of the electrons.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the voltage of the light is changed and its effects on the current and energy of electrons.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Geometric Optics:


This virtual manipulative will allow the students to understand how does a lens form an image. Students can see how light rays are refracted by a lens. Students can recognize that the image changes when they adjust the focal length of the lens, move the object, move the lens, or move the screen.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Explain how an image is formed by a converging lens using ray diagrams.
  • How changing the lens (radius, index, and diameter) effects where the image appears and ho it looks it terms of magnification, brightness and inversion.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Neon Lights and Other Discharge Lamps:

This virtual manipulative will allow you to produce light by bombarding atoms with electrons. You can also visualize how the characteristic spectra of different elements are produced, and configure your own element's energy states to produce light of different colors.

Other areas to investigate:

  • Provide a basic design for a discharge lamp and explain the function of the different components.
  • Explain the basic structure of an atom and relate it to the color of light produced by discharge lamps.
  • Explain why discharge lamps emit only certain colors.
  • Design a discharge lamp to emit any desired spectrum of colors.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

The Moving Man:

This virtual manipulative will the students learn about position, velocity and acceleration. Acceleration is the derivative of velocity with respect to time and the velocity is the derivative of position with respect to time. With the elimination of time, the relationship between the acceleration, velocity and position can be represented as x = v2 / 2a. In the stimulation, students will be able to move the man back and forth with the mouse and plot his motion.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Interpret, predict and draw charts (position, velocity, and acceleration) for common situations.
  • Provide reasoning used to make sense of the charts.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Graphing Lines:

Allows students access to a Cartesian Coordinate System where linear equations can be graphed and details of the line and the slope can be observed.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Beta Decay:

This is a virtual manipulative to understand beta decay. In the Beta decay process, a neutron decays into a proton and an electron (beta radiation). The process also requires the emission of a neutrino to maintain momentum and energy balance. Beta decay allows the atom to obtain the optimal ratio of protons and neutrons.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Alpha decay:

This virtual manipulative will help you to understand the process of alpha decay. Watch alpha particles escape from a polonium nucleus, causing radioactive alpha decay. See how random decay times relate to the half life.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Gravity Force Lab:

This virtual manipulative will allow you to visualize the gravitational force that two objects exert on each other. By changing the properties of the objects, you can see how the gravitational force changes.
Some areas to explore:

  • Relate gravitational force to masses of objects and distance between objects.
  • Explain Newton's third law for gravitational forces.
  • Design experiments that allow you to derive an equation that related mass, distance, and gravitational force.
  • Use measurements to determine the universal gravitational constant.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Molecules and Light:

This activity will help to investigate how a greenhouse gas affects the climate, or why the ozone layer is important. Using this simulation, explore how light interacts with molecules in our atmosphere.

Areas to explore:

  • How light interacts with molecules in our atmosphere.
  • Identify that absorption of light depends on the molecule and the type of light.
  • Relate the energy of the light to the resulting motion.
  • Identify that energy increases from microwave to ultraviolet.
  • Predict the motion of a molecule based on the type of light it absorbs.
  • Identify how the structure of a molecule affects how it interacts with light.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Gas Properties:


Students will pump gas molecules to a box and see what happens as they change the volume, add or remove heat, change gravity, and more. Measure the temperature and pressure, and discover how the properties of the gas vary in relation to each other.

  • Students can predict how changing a variable among pressure, volume, temperature and number influences other gas properties.
  • Students can predict how changing temperature will affect the speed of molecules.
  • Students can rank the speed of molecules in thermal equilibrium based on the relative masses of molecules.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Under Pressure:

Explore pressure under and above water. See how pressure changes as one change fluids, gravity, container shapes, and volume.
With this simulation you can:

  • Investigate how pressure changes in air and water.
  • Discover how to change pressure.
  • Predict pressure in a variety of situations.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Data Flyer:

Using this virtual manipulative, students are able to graph a function and a set of ordered pairs on the same coordinate plane. The constants, coefficients, and exponents can be adjusted using slider bars, so the student can explore the affect on the graph as the function parameters are changed. Students can also examine the deviation of the data from the function. 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

Function Flyer:

In this online tool, students input a function to create a graph where the constants, coefficients, and exponents can be adjusted by slider bars. This tool allows students to explore graphs of functions and how adjusting the numbers in the function affect the graph. Using tabs at the top of the page you can also access 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

Sound:

The students will see and hear the effects of changing the frequency and/or amplitude of a sound wave. This animation may also be used to demonstrate the Doppler effect, reflection and interference of sound waves.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Motion in 2D:

The students will drag a red point across the screen in any direction they please and, in the process, will be able to see the forces that are being put on that point at any given moment.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Maze Game:

The students will try to move a red ball into a blue goal without touching the walls. They will have fun competing amongst themselves to get the best time but at the same time they will also be learning about vectors, velocity, and acceleration.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Projectile Motion:

This simulation demonstrates the physics of projectile motion. The user can fire different objects through a cannon, set its speed, angle and mass and observe the resultant motion.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Curve Fitting:

With a mouse, students will drag data points (with their error bars) and watch the best-fit polynomial curve form instantly. Students can choose the type of fit: linear, quadratic, cubic, or quartic. Best fit or adjustable fit can be displayed.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Equation Grapher:

This interactive simulation investigates graphing linear and quadratic equations. Users are given the ability to define and change the coefficients and constants in order to observe resulting changes in the graph(s).

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Nuclear Fission:

Complete this virtual manipulative to gain a better understanding of nuclear fission. Study the basic principles behind chain reactions and a nuclear reactor.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

The Greenhouse Effect:

The students will watch as gases become trapped by the Earth's surface. They can examine different variables and the relationship between concentration of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane, and temperature.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

States of Matter:

Watch different types of molecules form a solid, liquid, or gas. Add or remove heat and watch the phase change. Change the temperature or volume of a container and see a pressure-temperature diagram respond in real time.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Parent Resources

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