Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Causal Patterns in Density

Use brass and aluminum cylinders while controlling for mass and volume to make the property of density more obvious.

Causal Patterns in Ecosystems

Demonstrate the invisible role of decomposers in a food web, using glass worm tank and bread mold activities.

Challenges with Sinkers

Manipulate aluminum foil and clay to make shapes that sink slowly.

Classifying Living Things

Record student observations on the similarities and differences between plants and animals on a Venn diagram and determine the basic needs of each.

Comparing Animal Skeletons

Dissect a “mystery object” – an owl pellet with bones in it. After studying the human skeleton, students can begin to identify the bones in the pellet.

Describe a New Substance

Weigh amounts of baking soda and vinegar then mix them together. Weigh them again afterwards. Try this with open and then closed containers.

Dissolving Race

Compare a sugar cube and an equivalent amount of granulated sugar, each dropped in an equal volume of water. Mix granulated sugar with cold and warm water.

Earth's Interior

Simulate the wave movement caused by earthquakes with a Slinky®, use Silly Putty® to show the qualities of both liquids and solids and illustrate convection currents with a specially designed fluid.

Electrostatics Exhibits

Rub a clear plastic tube with different kinds of cloth to see how many Styrofoam chips can be picked up or moved around.

Energy Flow in Communities

Begin a simple terrarium and maintain a Communities Chart to track the feeding relationships inside. Each time something is added, the impact is recorded on the increasingly complex chart.

Evaporation and Condensation

Take two wet paper towels and enclose one. What will happen the next day? Watch as water droplets condense on the outside of a plastic cup filled with cold water.

Exploratory Walk

Use all five senses and observation skills to explore a familiar location.


Draw what a groundwater table might look like. Then use groundwater models to test the drawing.

Life Cycles (Session 3)

Observe adult, larvae (mealworms), and pupae of the darkling beetle. Monitor over the next several days and determine the life cycle.

Life Cycles (Session 4)

“Mystery objects” – a brine shrimp egg and a seed that looks similar – are placed in both salt water and soil to see which thrives in each environment.

Living, Dead or Nonliving

Distribute a mystery material or “green stuff,” and ask students to determine what category it belongs to: living, dead or nonliving.

Melting Point of Ice

Take readings of a thermometer in a glass of ice and then in warm water. Watch the volume of the red liquid in the thermometer expand, to develop ideas about the effect of energy on the change of state of matter.

Moon's Distance from Earth

Work with models to represent the relative distance of the Moon from the Earth, then measure the angular size of the Moon with pinky fingers to check the estimate.

Observing Properties

Introduce a variety of solid objects and use senses to sort them. Then explain the criteria used for the sorting schemes.

Plate Tectonics

Use interactive, computer-based inquiry to create models of plate interactions and record explanations of the models.

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