Online Activity Resources for Students

  • 3M Free Virtual Labs
    Spark students' interest in a scientific career. Make real world connections by designing a new electrical circuit, designing a heat resistant skillet handle or building an interactive wind turbine at: http://scienceofeverydaylife.com.
  • ARKive Wildlife Image Site
    This site promotes the conservation of the natural world through the power of wildlife imagery. Site features photographs of endangered and protected species worldwide. Includes information on habitat, status, descriptions, threats, and biology.
  • Apps for Kids Who Love Animal Facts
  • Astronomy from the Ground Up:
    The Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASTC) and the National Optical Astronomy Observatory are currently accepting applications for this National Science Foundation sponsored astronomy workshop for science center and other informal educators. Apply online to be considered for the free workshop. The time commitment is approximately five hours per week.
  • BatsLIVE Webcast Streaming for Free
    BatsLIVE is a distance learning opportunity. The organization provides a series of webinars on Bats. The May 17 webinar, with guests from the Organization for Bat Conservation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Division, is available online at http://batslive.pwnet.org/webcast/webcast_page_may17.php. Lesson plans are also available for teachers on the website. For more information, please see the Bats LIVE website at http://batslive.pwnet.org/index.php.
  • Bilingual EE News Service
    The Canadian Network for Environmental Education and Communication (EECOM) now has a bilingual service to share news of upcoming events, professional development opportunities, and new resources. The Web site, available in both English and French, is designed to support and develop competency in educators, communicators, learners and consumers, and build capacity for environmental learning and sustainability.
  • Bill Nye's Climate Laboratory
    Bill Nye the Science Guy has recently become Bill Nye the Climate Guy. Courtesy of Chabot Space & Science Center of Oakland, California, Bill Nye has been able to complete his Climate Lab creating awareness of environmental issues. Accompanying Bill's Climate Laboratory is an educational Web site created for elementary and middle school teachers, students, and families. Join Nye on fun missions and activities to reduce energy consumption and prevent climate change. You'll hunt down energy vampires, design a "green" home, grow a virtual garden, and compete to become a climate champion!
  • BioKIDS
    The BioKIDS/DeepThink research group is engaged in educational research to improve science learning in high-poverty, urban, elementary and middle school classrooms, with particular focus on the Detroit Public Schools. Their work centers on the fourth through eighth grades, a period when the performance of American students in science falls behind that of students in other countries. They work in two areas: the development of curricular units and associated technologies to promote students' deep understandings of current science topics, and the exploration of new ideas in educational assessment leading to tests that evaluate students' complex reasoning with science. Please visit: www.biokids.umich.edu to use their critter catalog and field guides. This is a wonderful way to provide an opportunity for kid's inquiry of diverse species.
  • Build a Better Paper Airplane!
    Airplanes, like kites and other flying objects, are of great interest to elementary children. Like the Wright brothers and countless other aviation pioneers, children seem to enjoy the process of designing, making, and modifying airplanes. The following activities introduce a few basic laws of physics and bring out the "inventor" in everyone as families experiment and test their own airplane models.
  • CEE Kids R Green
  • Centre for Environmental Education (CEE) site geared toward young students to explore various environmental issues and topics, educational activities and games about many aspects of the environment.
  • Center for the Advancement of the Steady State Economy
    This Web site includes material such as videos, slideshows and articles. This resource, for educators and students, explores the relationship between economic growth and environmental protection.
  • Change a Light, Change the World Campaign:
    According to the U.S. government's Energy Star program, by simply replacing a 60-watt incandescent light bulb with an equally bright 13-watt Energy Star qualified light bulb, a household will save more than $30 in energy costs over the lifetime of the bulb. Join the Campaign!
  • Clean Sweep USA Web Site
    This Keep America Beautiful Web site is an educational math and science classroom resource that was recently expanded to include litter prevention and beautification lessons. The Web site features interactive learning modules addressing real-world issues about waste. To receive a free copy of the promotional poster, contact KAB by email at cleansweepuse@kab.org.
  • Climate Kids
    Climate Kids is a NASA affiliated website used as a fun education resource for children to easily understand climate change and other environmental issues. It includes games, short videos, information about common green careers and green technologies, and other environmental topics kids can learn about. There is also an Educator Resources section with interactive activities to help families and teachers explain these topics to children. For details, visit the Climate Kids website.
  • Community Space for Educators
    Bioneers has a new community space for educators to provide inspirational and practical materials and events. Read articles and interviews with educational innovators and visionaries. Explore and share curriculum and teaching ideas. Create a blog to share articles and thoughts. Propose and conduct interviews with Bioneers speakers.
  • Counting Populations and Sampling
    You have probably participated in or seen a contest where you had to guess the number of jelly beans in a jar to win. Because you couldn't count all the jelly beans, you might have tried counting a small number and working out a reasonable guess or estimate from that number. You unknowingly used a technique common to mathematicians and scientists called sampling. Scientists use sampling to get an estimate of things they cannot easily count.
  • Create a Certified Wildlife Habitat
    Are you thinking about creating a vegetable, flower, or butterfly garden this spring or summer? If so, you may want to create a certified wildlife habitat. NWF's Certified Wildlife Habitat® can help you create a beautiful, wildlife-friendly habitat. When you turn your yard, garden or balcony into an official Certified Wildlife Habitat® site, you'll attract local wildlife AND receive great benefits from NWF! If you need help, you can contact the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) at: www.nwf.org/Get-Outside/Outdoor-Activities/Garden-for-Wildlife/Certify-Your-Wildlife-Garden.aspx.
  • CSI - The Experience: Web Adventure
    This collection of adventure games for middle level students, produced by Rice University, is based on the popular television series CSI. In Case One, students learn about forensic analysis as they work as rookie crime scene investigators alongside characters from the television series. Subsequent cases require students to apply what they learned in rookie training to solve a crime. An educator's guide presents classroom lessons in forensics, including Sticky Fingers (understanding fingerprints); I-Witness (How reliable is an eyewitness?); and The Writing on the Wall (handwriting analysis). The game is available at: http://forensics.rice.edu/.
  • DataStreme Ocean
    Earn four graduate credit hours for FREE.  DataStreme Ocean is offering a 12 week online or textbook class starting the last week of August. Sign up through Ron Ferenczi at rjferenczi@aol.com.
  • Dawn Junior Wildlife Champions
    Dawn has committed itself to helping to save wildlife for more than 30 years. To continue this tradition, Dawn and Discovery Education have launched the Junior Wildlife Champions education and activity program to help teach student the importance of saving wildlife. The program gives access to new in-class lesson plans (available in English and Español) that range from investigative research projects to hands-on experiments and offer innovative and engaging ways to get involved. Participating teachers will also receive a free gift for the classroom from The Marine Mammal Center, in return for their honest feedback. For more information or to view lesson plans, visit the Dawn Junior Wildlife Champions Web site.
  • DIRT! The Movie
    There is a new film to enlighten us on the environmental, economic, social and political impacts of the ground beneath our feet. DIRT! The Movie helps further our understanding of soil and our responsibility to take care of it. To check out the trailer and sign up to find DIRT! The Movie in your community, visit DIRT! The Movie Web site.
  • Early Childhood Science from Grades PreK-2
    Early childhood science teachers, in grades PreK-2, need their own place to find resources and get support. This online site allows PreK-2 teachers to interact with colleagues and share the joys and challenges of your classroom.
  • Earn a Master of Environmental Management Online
    The Duke Environmental Leadership Program offers a two year Master of Environmental Management degree through both an online and on campus program. It provides a broad perspective of interdisciplinary and global themes, strategic approaches to environmental management, and effective leadership and communication skills.
  • Earth Charter in Action
    A variety of resources and material available, including a newsletter! Learn what steps you can take as well as what is needed for a sustainable future from a global consensus.
  • "Energy Hog" Energy Efficiency Campaign
    The U.S Department of Energy (DOE) launched a national public service advertising campaign directed towards children and their parents regarding energy efficient behavior. Featuring a new energy arch-villain known as the "energy-wasting Energy Hog," the campaign focuses around learning and teaching others about proper energy use. As the core of the campaign, the new Energy Hog website attracts children of all ages, but also has resources for parents and teachers. The site's main attraction is the Energy Hog Training Camp and its five intensive games where children can train to become Energy Hog Busters, while learning fun and easy ways to use energy more wisely.
  • Energy Use in the U.S.
    This is a new and exciting Web site brought to you by the US Energy Information Agency that shows how each state in the U.S. produces and uses energy.
  • Engineering - Free Resources to Spark Girls' Interest
    Engineer Your Life (EYL) has FREE resources you can use to spark girls' interest in engineering.  What is EYL? 1) A national campaign, EYL breaks down stereotypes about engineering and encourages college-bound young women to consider it as a career option. 2) A multimedia Web site EngineerYourLife.org features ten great reasons to become an engineer, streaming video of inspiring women engineers, descriptions of dream engineering jobs, and advice for parents, educators, and engineers on how to talk to girls about engineering; and, 3) Effective: An independent evaluation shows that 78.5% of girls, after exploring the EYL Web site, listed engineering as their number one career choice. For more information, please follow the link provided above or contact feedback@engineeryourlife.org.
  • Environmental Online Classes
    The National Center for Atmospheric Research is offering an online course for K-12 educators. These online courses include topic discussions concerning Earth system science, climate and global changes related to the science field. The courses are 6 weeks and the class sessions run throughout the year depending on the topic you are interested in. There are three focus areas in the classes that include, Introduction to Earth's Climate, Earth System Science: A Climate Change Perspective, and Understanding Climate Change Today. For more information and to register for the classes visit the Web site, http://ecourses.ncar.ucar.edu.
  • Envirovet: New Video
    This new video clip features mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda, one of the few national parks where mountain gorillas are found (world population of only 750). Envirovet is an organization that brings veterinary medicine to wildlife health issues. The web site offers webumentary video clips featuring interviews with Envirovet alumni offering expertise on a variety of wildlife issues.
  • Estuaries 101 Online Curriculum
    This new online science curriculum was developed by NOAA's National Estuarine Research Reserve System to help grade 9-12 science teachers incorporate coastal and estuarine science into their classrooms. The curriculum is comprised of four modules, which teach the subject through earth, life, or physical science domains.
  • Exploratorium Science Snacks
    These simple hands-on activities are based on popular exhibits at San Francisco's Exploratorium. Each "miniature exhibit" contains a photograph, materials list, instructions, science explanations, and interesting historical bits. With more than 100 online exhibits (such as Bicycle Wheel Gyroscope, a homemade phonograph, and Laser Jello), the Snacks serve as inspiration for any K-12 student, teacher, or science enthusiast looking to personally discover science concepts in an active way.
  • Facing the Future: Educating & Inspiring a Global Generation
    Are you interested in continuing professional development? Would you like to learn at your own pace? "Facing the Future: Educating & Inspiring a Global Generation" is an online, independent continuing education course for educators of grades 5-12, to build upon their teaching expertise and to think creatively about how to integrate global issues, sustainability, and local solutions into their curricula.
  • Fisher Science Education's YouTube Channel
    Fisher Science Education is committed to providing science education for all ages and making science matter. Now it is even easier to teach science with their official YouTube channel. They make available the most innovative tools, tips, and technologies to help make teaching as easy as possible. Video topics include green chemistry, biotechnology, forensics, electrophoresis, solutions, and much more. To subscribe and get the latest updates on new video's that are posted, visit The Fisher Science Education's YouTube Channel.
  • Fisheries Learning on the Web (FLOW)
    Free Great Lakes ecosystem lessons and activities available online for elementary and middle school educators. Explore food webs, fish and water in a fun, hands-on way.
  • Forests Now
    The Web site will help teachers and students find out how to help save the rainforest by shaping the outcome of the new climate change agreement. The nations of the world are negotiating a new climate change agreement this year that could include compensating developing countries for protecting their forests. The Web site provides news, case studies, and resources about forests and climate change.
  • Free Award-Winning Science Publications, Videos, and Materials
    The Howard Hughes Medical Institute makes science publications, videos and materials available to K12 teachers. These materials are intended to enhance science education at all levels. There is no specified deadline for applying for these materials.
  • Free Resources for Science Teachers
  • To find free resources and services can help you develop your teaching strategies for next year.
  • Free Scientific Method Poster
    This free classroom poster offers a great visual overview of the six steps of the scientific method as described on the Science Buddies Web site. Request a free copy for your classroom today. There are no shipping and handling charges and supplies are limited.
  • FUNDRED Dollar Bill Project
  • The FUNDRED Dollar Bill Project is a national project intended to support the rebuilding of New Orleans by making the environmental conditions safer for its residents. The FUNDRED Dollar Bill "artworks" created by students across the country will be collected by armored truck and delivered to Washington, DC. Those drawings will ultimately contribute to developing awareness and delivering solutions for the environmentally responsible rebuilding of New Orleans.
  • Getting Lost in the Great Indoors
    A Washington Post article about how Many adults worry nature is disappearing from children's lives.
  • GLOBIO Mapping Human Impact:
    This UNEP program, Global Methodology for Mapping Human Impacts on the Biosphere (GLOBIO), uses models and analysis to assess human impact on the biosphere. The Web site features maps, videos, and documents, as well as a description of the model and scenarios.
  • Going Green Educator's Toolkit
    The PBS Going to Green Educators' Toolkit contains 19 units of integrated curriculum including thematic, multidisciplinary lesson plans, real-life case studies on video, readings with discussion questions, activities, and other resources. Its lessons make it an invaluable resource to the environmentally conscious educator.
  • Habitable Planet Course
  • The Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics has joined with the Harvard University Center to provide educators with a very useful online tool. These online course are designed to assist educators with advancing their ability to transform their classroom. All of the materials presented are free of charge and hard copies are available at a nominal cost.
  • Hubble Web Site for Educators
    This web resource from NASA provides activities and resources to educators centered on the Hubble Space Telescope. The site offers activities and resources focused on three themes: Hubble Careers, From Galileo to the Great Observatories, and the Hubble Walk: Spacesuits and Spacewalks. The website will continually be updated as it follows the Hubble journey into 2010, Hubble's 20th anniversary year. This site celebrates Hubble as a unique tool of exploration and has been launched in conjunction with the fall 2008 launch of the space shuttle Atlantis as it goes to service the Hubble space telescope.
  • Hurricane Katrina Learning Module
    The U.S. National Ocean Service formed a task force that studies trends and impacts on coastal regions. Students in grades 5-12 can now conduct their own research to answer the question, "Is global warming causing an increase in hurricane frequency and intensity?" This is done by using a problem-based learning module created by NASA. This activity will stimulate students brains to gather data and come to their own conclusions as to what is happening in the atmosphere.
  • iNaturalist: Share your Observations of Nature!
    With iNaturalist, you can record what you have seen in nature and learn about the natural world. This social networking site for nature lovers also has a free app for android phones and the iPhone. These allow you to upload a picture, geo-locate it, and write your own observations. You can even ask the community to fill in any information you may not know. If you do not want to join the community, you can still view members' observations through the site's google map!
  • Investigations of Daily High-Low Temperatures
    The Web site is developed by ESRI Education Community - a living environment for the exchange of ideas and experiences, curriculum, software, and data between GIS educators around the globe. Using this particular online activity, students can analyze the spatial patterns of daily temperature extremes, examine the relationship of coasts, latitude, and altitude to temperature extremes across the USA in a hands-on, GIS-based environment.
  • Interactive Spring Tour
    Located in the Florida Panhandle near Tallahassee, Wakulla Spring is a colossal spring system. On average, more than 250 million gallons of water flow from Wakulla Spring every day forming an nine-mile river that reaches the Gulf of Mexico. Take a tour of Wakulla Spring in this special, in-depth Interactive Spring Feature. Learn about the history, people and geology that define this amazing spring system located within the Edward Ball Wakulla Springs State Park.
  • Introduction to Environmental Justice
    New course offered online from Harvard University. Teachers, college professors, city officials, civic leaders, social workers, community organizers, and citizens involved in civil rights and environmental activism will find much of direct relevance to their work in this course, and they will be provided with the tools for lifelong research in this realm.
  • Invitation for New Science Teachers
    Applications are now being accepted to participate in the online science-mentoring program, e-Mentoring for Student Success (eMSS). The deadline to apply is September 30, but space is limited. eMSS is becoming one of the nation's largest mentoring networks of secondary science teachers. Since its inception in 2002, the eMSS professional learning community has grown to over 300 mentees and mentors from 10 states. In 2008, eMSS will be available nationwide. Applications are currently being accepted from new science teachers in their first through third year of teaching in grades 6-12. In order to apply you must visit the Web site linked above. Click on Beginning Science Teachers and use the enrollment code: MI1S. Then you fill out the online application.
  • Jean-Michel Cousteau's Ocean Adventures
    The son of famed ocean explorer Jacques-Yves Cousteau, Jean-Michel is exploring a variety of locations around the world.
  • Join the ARCPS Educator Network
    Action-Research for the Community Problem Solving (ARCPS) is defined as a process that enables students and teachers to participate more fully in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of educational activities, aimed at resolving an issue that the learners have identified. Clause Poudrier has been using ARCPS with his 6th-grade students since September 1993, and over the past five years has directed a professional development ARCPS program in Canada for teachers and educators. Claude is forming a network of educators that are using the ARCPS model that will serve as a forum to share ideas, discuss lessons learned, and further develop the ARCPS model. To join contact: claude.poudrier@sympatico.ca, or for more information visit http://www3.sympatico.ca/claude.poudrier/.
  • K-12 Educational Online Seminars
    The National Science Teachers Association has come together with a group of providers to offer science educators a chance to engage in some exciting opportunities. A series of free 90-minuete online seminars are available to all those interested in furthering their understanding of many important science related issues. Teachers can learn about everything from coral ecosystems and polar bears, to Mars exploration and food science. To register for these events follow the link provided to the NSTA webpage.
  • LandScope America
  • This online resource for the land-protection community and the public is a collaborative project of Nature Serve and the National Geographic Society. It is an interactive conservation Web site linking maps, data, and stories about natural places of America's lands and waters.  Tour the site, sign-up for the newsletter, and learn more about conservation efforts and issues in the U.S.
  • Learn about the Moon through Games
    NASA is sponsoring this online game initiative to increase science education. Game players will be assessed on how much they are learning by how they play the game. This game is free and designed for students 13-18 years of age.
  • Learn About the Water Cycle
    Learn how to make your own mini-terrarium. It often seems to rain endlessly in spring. Although rainy days are a nuisance, they are actually vitally important to all living things. Rain showers are part of the continuous movement of water between Earth's surface and the atmosphere that is called the water cycle. The following will introduce you to the importance of water and the basics of the water cycle.
  • Learn How Much You Weigh And How Old You Are If You Lived On Another Planet
    From NASA! Use the Astro-Matic 3000 to learn how much you would weigh or how old you would be if you lived on another planet.  Students also learn facts about each planet.  Grades K-8.
  • Let's Fly Away Airplane Dodecahedron
    From NASA! In the interactive version, students click and drag the dodecahedron to see NASA aircraft.  They also can read about the aircraft and print full color pictures or a coloring page. In the Build Your Own activity, students print, color and construct their own dodecahedron featuring 12 different NASA aircraft. Grades K-8.
  • Lunar Construction Game: Free Video Game Teaches Students About the Moon
    Selene: A Lunar Construction Game was created at the Center for Educational Technologies at Wheeling Jesuit University. This game teaches students about basic geological processes on Earth and in the solar system. Researchers are also hoping this game will help them study how and when people learn though educational video games. In the game players will create their own moon and then change its surface with impact craters and flood it with lava. This project is being funded by NASA and the National Science Foundation, and now its creators are looking for players ages 9-18 to be part of its research on science and video game learning. To register your students, e-mail selene@cet.edu with your contact information and times you are available for a 30-minute orientation. Learn more about Selene by visiting http://selene.cet.edu.
  • M.S. In Ecological Teaching: Lesley University
    This Master program offered through Lesley University provides those seeking a continued education with a desirable option. Lesley University offers and academically rigorous program that challenges individuals to think progressively about the environmental concerns present today. This is a 32 credit program and it is designed to involve extensive hands on experience to assure the students are receiving a thorough educational experience. If you may be interested in this program, much more information is available online at www.lesley.edu/master-of-science/ecological-teaching-and-learning/.
  • Marine Fisheries Series Activities Guide
    This is an online activity guide geared for middle to high school students. It is a guide created by the Marine Fisheries Series project to help students dive deeper into the topics covered in the documentary series. The guide includes six engaging, peer-reviewed activities, correlated to national science and social studies education standards. These activities work well in classrooms as well as non-traditional educational settings such as nature or science centers, aquariums and zoos.
  • Math and Science Partnership Network
    MSPnet is an electronic learning community for the Math and Science Partnership Program. With the MSP program, the National Science Foundation implemented an important facet of the President's No Child Left Behind (NCLB) vision for K-12 education. A major research and development effort, the MSP program responds to concern over the performance of the nation's children in mathematics and science. Institutions of higher education partner with K-12 districts and others to effect deep, lasting improvement in K-12 mathematics and science education. To learn more and to receive regular informational updates, please visit: http://hub.mspnet.org/index.cfm.
  • Michigan Merit Curriculum Science
    In preparation for implementation of the new high school graduation requirements, the Michigan Department of Education, in collaboration with partners across the state, has developed Course/Credit Content Expectations to provide all educators with a common understanding of what high school students should know and be able to do at the completion of each credit/course.
  • Michigan Science Author Lucinda Mitchell
    Michigan Science Author Lucinda Mitchell is a Michigan Science Author and a 6th grade teacher who has self-published three books for children. Her books focus on constellations and space poetry. Ms. Mitchell is available to speak in both science and English classrooms. For more information please contact the author by email at lomitchell@lycos.com. Her books are available for purchase through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, www.authorhouse.com, and Borders bookstores.
  • Michigan Water Stewardship Program
    The Michigan Water Stewardship Program is a group of organizations that has joined together to help preserve the beauty and quality of Michigan waters. Their Web site offers plenty of information about water use, water conservation, and water quality, along with educational courses to be taken online for further learning in water stewardship. The "How Green Are You?" quiz illustrates to visitors how everyday actions affect the quality of drinking water.  With less than 1% of the world's water available for human use, the Michigan Water Stewardship Program promotes best practices for preserving this small amount for future generations.  With special sections for residents, children, and educators, the Michigan Water Stewardship Program Web site provides useful information for environmental conscious Michiganders.
  • Michigan's Rare Plant and Animal Tool
    Until now, learning about Michigan's more than 600 rare plant and animal species, their habitat needs and management considerations have meant using multiple books, guides and other reference sources. To give Michigan's residents, decision makers and resource managers a one-stop source for rare species information, the Michigan Natural Features Inventory (MNFI) has produced a new online tool called the "Rare Species Explorer." http://mnfi.anr.msu.edu/explorer/search.cfm.
  • Mission: Science Web Site
    This Web site is a one-stop shop for NASA Science and the educational resources created by NASA and its partners. Most appropriate for middle and high school students and teachers, the site offers resources in five categories: NASA Science, Be a Scientist, Get Involved, Games and Activities, and Multimedia. Each category spans several science disciplines. For example, in NASA Science, physics-oriented visitors can tour the electromagnetic spectrum or watch a video on planetary dynamics, while Earth science-minded visitors can explore tropical twisters or follow NASA weather satellites in real time.
  • MIT+K13 Videos Presents Science Out Loud Free Videos by Students for Students
    MIT students write, create, and host informational and creative videos for students to witness science and theory in action. Webisodes cover a range of STEM topics to inspire with entertaining education on key principles in addition to unusual discoveries. Examples include, "How To Discover A Planet," "Humanoid Robot Brains," and "The Physics of Invisibility Cloaks." Watch the videos at: http://k12videos.mit.edu/.
  • Molecular Workbench
    Developed by the Concord Consortium the molecular workbench is a free, open-source software tool that helps students grade 5 to college overcome challenges in understanding the science of atoms and molecules. The Molecular Workbench models electrons, atoms and molecules, which make it applicable across physics, chemistry, biology and engineering.
  • Moon Munchies Educator Guide for Grades K-4
    Plant growth will be an important part of space exploration in the future as NASA plans for long-duration missions to the moon. NASA scientists anticipate that astronauts may be able to grow plants on the moon, and the plants could be used to supplement meals. In anticipation of the need for research into lunar plant growth, NASA and the International Technology Education Association, or ITEA, present the NASA Engineering Design Challenge. Students design, build and evaluate lunar plant growth chambers -- while engaging in research- and standards-based learning experiences. The lesson plans in this guide encourage students to participate in the engineering design process and learn how to conduct a scientific experiment. The Moon Munchies Educator Guide is available as a complete guide or can be downloaded in easy-to-use individual lesson plans.
  • MEERA
    My Environmental Education Evaluation Resource Assistant (MEERA) is a new online resource aimed to help Educators evaluate the quality of their program. MEERA is designed to help educators with little, intermediate, or advanced evaluation experience. This tool was created at the University of Michigan in partnership with the US EPA and US Forest Service response to the growing need to report on program successes to funding agencies. MEERA helps educators choose an appropriate evaluation and provides a step-by-step guide through the process, including sample evaluations from other programs.
  • MY NASA DATA
    MY NASA DATA is an effort to develop microsets of Earth science data that are interesting and useful to the K-12 and citizen scientist communities. The datasets provide information on the atmosphere, ocean, and land surface and are available online, along with lesson plans, teacher-friendly documentation, computer tools, and an Earth science glossary. Science project starter ideas are also available. http://mynasadata.larc.nasa.gov/lesson-plans/unit-lessons/.
  • MyGarbology Online Waste Reduction Game
    MyGarbology is a new game developed by NatureBridge. It features ideas on how to reduce trash and stop pollution. The website features additional information and resource links, along with activities for teachers, students, and families. For more information, visit: www.naturebridge.org/garbology.php.
  • Mystery Class Geography, Science, and Math Project ~ Online
    Teachers and students in grades 4-12 are invited to participate this winter/spring in Journey North's Mystery Class project in which students try to find 10 secret classes hiding around the globe using the changing sunlight at each site as the clue. Students develop a deep understanding of important concepts by puzzling them out in real time.
  • NASA has a new Web site!
    This site provides in-depth information about NASA's past, future and current missions. Interactive science material is kid-friendly, easy to navigate and allows access to more resources behind NASA missions.
  • NASA's Kids Club Activity: Window to Earth
    This website allows you to experience the spectacular view of Earth that Astronauts have from space. Move through the pages of Window to Earth and see images taken from space of these geographical features: peninsula, glacier, lake, desert, cape, island, upheaval dome, strait, waterfall, reef and volcano. To take a peek and see how Earth looks from space, visit www.nasa.gov/audience/forkids/kidsclub/flash/clubhouse/Window_to_Earth.html.
  • National Geographic Global Population Video Clips
    National Geographic is undergoing a year-long investigation into global population and has posted two short clips to YouTube, "Seven Billion" and "Seven Billion: Are You Typical". These clips serve as a preview to their series and attempt to raise awareness of current population issues across the world.
  • National Public Lands Day:
    National Public Lands Day (NPLD) provides an opportunity for volunteers across the nation to work together in improving our public lands.
  • National Wildlife Federation - Educator E-Newsletter
    This monthly e-newsletter is designed to provide educators with hands-on activities, new ideas, resources, and strategies for getting kids outside to learn about the wonders of the natural world. Each newsletter also includes a link to download the latest Ranger Rick® Educator Guide.
  • Nature Works Everywhere
    This new Web site for middle level teachers, students, and families explores how nature helps our everyday existence and the importance of environmental conservation. Resources include video tours, lesson plans, and interactive games. Click on Conservation Connection to learn how nature connects to favorite things, such as ice cream, sand castles, and lemonade. Meet the Scientists presents videos of Nature Conservancy scientists working to keep nature thriving. Lessons focus on themes of food, clean water, clean air, and protection. Please check out the Nature Works Everywhere Web site at www.natureworkseverywhere.org.
  • NAVY STEM for the classroom
    Through the Navy's innovative science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) resources, high school students can learn different lessons such as Jets in Flight, The Science of Diving, Future Fleet, and Oceanography and Meteorology and learn how these lessons pertain to different STEM principles.
  • New Educational Materials Available from NASA
    The Educational Materials section of NASA's Web site offers classroom activities, educator guides, posters and other types of resources that are available for use in the classroom. Materials are listed by type, grade level and subject.
  • New Environmental Book Emphasizes Critical Thinking
    The National Science Teachers Association new title, Resources for Environmental Literacy, will help middle and high school teachers field tough questions about the environment. Teachers will be able to use this resource as a topic foundation, adding news stories and outside experiences as appropriate for their students. This is a supplementary text that helps build students' critical thinking and analytical skills on a current subject. The book is broken into five modules: Biodiversity; Global Climate Change; Earthquakes, Volcanoes, and Tsunamis; Genetically Modified Crops; and Radioactive Waste. The modules can be purchased individually or as a package included in the Resources for Environmental Literacy.
  • New NASA Global Climate Change Site
    This new Web site from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory is devoted to educating the public about Earth's changing climate, providing easy-to-understand information about climate change and how NASA studies it. Some features include a continuous snapshot of the condition of Earth's ice sheets, global average temperatures, sea level change, and concentrations of greenhouse gases.
  • New STEM on Station Page for Educators and Students
    NASA Education is launching a new Web resource for students and educators titled STEM on Station. The new pages present videos that were filmed on the space station about science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM. Students can follow astronauts as they demonstrate principles such as Newton's Laws of Motion, surface tension and advances in technology. NASA lesson plans and other resources supplement the STEM videos. STEM on Station is part of the Teach Station site that is the platform for space-station-focused education resources, science and research information for students and teachers, crew updates and current education news. Visit often and watch for opportunities to connect with the expedition crew members and for other NASA education opportunities. Visit STEM on Station at www.nasa.gov/audience/foreducators/expeditions/stem/index.html
  • New Year of Free Science Safety Training
    Safety training from Flinn Scientific is again being provided for free. Through this amazing offer, you will be sent a safety training program every month! That's 10 safety training programs--a different topic each month, August through May. These safety trainings can be included in department meetings and are a great resource for teachers. Each program helps you learn about the laws that govern science education safety. Please visit the Web site for more information.
  • NOAA Online Ocean Exploration and Research Workshop
    From October 5-16 NOAA will be offering a workshop introducing the new Okeanos Explorer Education Materials Collection built around the themes: Why Do We Explore? How Do We Explore? and What Do We Expect to Find? The workshop is free for all participants and will be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Educators will have the option to receive graduate credit (fee for the credit) or obtain a certificate of completion.
  • NOAA Photo Library Photostream
    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has launched a new social media photo sharing Web site, "NOAA Photo Library Photostream" on Flickr. A selection of over 4,000 photos have been uploaded onto the NOAA Flickr Web site, a subset of the 47,000 public domain images presently on the NOAA Photo Library. The photos can be viewed in collections, sets, in slideshow format, and by using the Flickr search engine to search for imagery thematically.
  • NOVA's Tsunami Exploration for Students
    PBS NOVA has created two interactive tsunami simulators to help student understand how tsunamis work and the devastation they can cause. The first, Anatomy of a Tsunami, teaches students how tsunamis are created and carries them through the process of devastation.  The second, Once and Future Tsunamis, students can explore key tsunamis dating from 3.5 billion years ago and investigate possible future events. NOVA aims to help student understand the power of these waves and what experts have learned and continue to learn from studying them.
  • On Being a Scientist
    Based on the book, On Being a Scientist, this seven-minute video includes interviews with Stephanie J. Bird, co-editor-in-chief of Science and Engineering Ethics at Georgetown University and several new Ph.D.s from a variety of disciplines. Watch the video on YouTube.
  • PBS The Shape of Life
    Public Broadcasting System (PBS) hosts the Shape of Life website, a project of Sea Studios Foundation, features activities, explorations, and experiments for K-12 formal and informal educators, students, and families. Includes accompanying downloadable activity guide.
  • Plastiki Blog
    The Plastiki is a 60 foot boat made out of 12,500 reclaimed plastic bottles and other recycled PET plastic and waste products. The craft was built using cradle to cradle design philosophies and features many renewable energy systems, including solar panels, wind and trailing propeller turbines, and bicycle generators. Six people will be sailing this boat to Sydney, Australia, to raise awareness about how plastic is destroying our planet and people can avoid using it through sustainable practices. The Plastiki plans to visit several sites during the expedition that are of ecological importance. For more information about Plastiki's trip and the ecological sites it is exploring, visit the Plastiki Blog.
  • PreK-4th Grade Activities Needed
    U.S. EPA is looking for preK-4th grade activities to be used in its new Kids Club. In the club, kids receive recognition for completing environmental projects and activities. Previous activities have been on water conservation (turning off the water while brushing your teeth) and energy conservation (turning off the lights when leaving a room). We are also looking for activities a teacher can do within their classroom. Recognition will be given on the Web site: www.epa.gov/students/
  • Premiere Presentations of the Cleaning for Healthy Schools Toolkit
    The free, online Cleaning for Healthy Schools Toolkit will educate you about green cleaning. It can also be tailored to create state or local educational programs for agencies, education officials, workers, and parents and communities. The externally reviewed training tools are also ‘open-source' and ‘industry-free'-- in short, a unique, comprehensive program to advance policy and practices that help safeguard child and adult health, reduce the use of toxic chemicals, cost-effectively improve cleaning, and improve school IAQ.
  • Primer for Effective Campaign Strategies
    The Great Lakes Connecting Communities Communications Toolbox and Communications Primer provides a simple methodology for creating an effective campaign strategy-designed for Grassroots organizers. The primer was created by Biodiversity Project and distributed by the Great Lakes Aquatic Habitat Network & Fund (GLAHNF). 
  • Rock Around the World
  • Arizona State University's (ASU) Mars Space Flight Facility is getting students of all ages involved in real-world science with this citizen science project. Students get to send their rock samples (either from home or a classroom) to ASU for analysis in their Thermal Infrared Spectral Laboratory; showing what the rock is made of. The student will even get to compare the "Earth" rocks to "Mars" rocks. For more information and to get your student involved, visit http://ratw.asu.edu/.
  • Science Buddies
    Science Buddies is an award-winning, non-profit that provides free information on science fair project ideas, answers, and resources targeted for students and teachers. It provides over 1,000 different project ideas to choose from. The student resource section provides a place to ask the experts anything about science fair projects, tips for preparing for an advanced science competition, and much more. Parents also have resources to help encourage their children's scientific interests. For the latest updates and more information, visit the Science Buddies Web site.
  • Science Explorations and Adventures
    A web site designed by Paul Doherty, a science teacher, writer and winner of the NSTA's Faraday Award for science communication, which offers hundreds of scientific explorations for all grade levels, indexed alphabetically and by topic.
  • Science of Spring
    Sponsored by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the Science of Spring website allows children to learn about seeds and plants. Through guided hands-on activity, children learn how to care for their seeds, observe the progress of plant growth, and share the information with others. Participants can upload photos of their plants, write observation notes, and see a wide variety of plants grown by kids around the country.
  • Sea Turtles and the Quest to Nest
  • This online sea turtle game, developed by NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service and the National Ocean Service, is designed to help students understand how they can help protect turtles and their habitat. The game takes place in the southeastern United States. Students are introduced to all of the people and animals that play a role in the life of loggerhead turtles. 
  • Sibley Nature Center Web site
    The Sibley Nature Center Web site is dedicated to improving teachers' and students' knowledge about Texas. The Web site has 600 plus essays and 100 photo essays with over 4000 photographs of the Llano Estacado.
  • Soil-Net:
    Soil-Net.com is an educational resource about soil, with extensive teacher aids supporting many curriculum-based interactive student activities.
  • Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History - Virtual Tour
    Ever dreamed of taking a tour of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History? Is it too far away but you wish you could still go? Well now you can, and you can take your students right along with you on a virtual field trip to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. The tour is a 3-D virtual, room-by-room walking tour of the whole museum, all while remaining in the classroom on a desktop computer or mobile device. The systems that are compatible include; Windows, Mac, Linux, iPad, iPhone, or Android. This self-guided tour allows visitors to navigate room to room in a manner in which they choose, and at a pace that is comfortable to them. But do not worry, there are maps and arrows to follow if one gets turned around. If used on a desktop, there are camera icons that show certain areas in which a close-up view may be seen.
  • Solar and Wind Energy Production at Schools
    A total of 34 renewable energy systems have been installed at 28 schools statewide participating in Energy Works Michigan's Renewable Energy Program. The Renewable Energy Program provided incentives for schools that installed one or both of the solar PV or wind systems. Students can compare the daily performance of the solar PV or wind systems that were installed at different schools throughout the state. The performance data is collected by a data logger and weather station that are installed at each school. For more information or to view the live production, visit the Energy Works Michigan Solar and Wind Systems Web site.
  • SOPHIA
    SOPHIA is a first-of-its-kind social education platform that offers more than 25,000 free tutorials created by multiple teachers. The activities encourage students to learn in their own way. For more information or to enter the SOPHIA Summer Challenge please visit their Web site www.sophia.org/
  • Summer Activity for Kids
    Play the Wild Weather Adventure Game! This online game has the look and feel of a real board game. It actually started life as a printed board game, created by The Space Place Team. Then they reincarnated it online, staying faithful to the original, but adding a few bells and whistles. The game board is a map of the world. In your own weather research blimp, you travel the world, have adventures, make rescues, solve problems, and strive to beat your opponents to the Finish. This game can be played by up to four players. If you are playing alone, your opponent is the computer, and you can even choose how smart your opponent will be! Some turns present the player with a question about weather, other Earth science topics, or geography. For geography questions, players can consult a reference map and find the answer. It's a fun learning tool for all ages.
  • Sustainable Farmer
    As food and fuel prices rise, a new generation of farmers is looking to sustainable agriculture as a way to provide fresh local food to local consumers in ways that protect the planet. Sustainable Farmer is a new multimedia online magazine for people raising food and fiber with respect for the future of all living things.
  • The Canary Project
    The Canary Project is an organization that uses visual art to communicate the impact of climate change. The organization started in 2006 photographing landscapes that are greatly affected by climate change and have since expanded the project to include other artists and media.
  • The Chances of the World Changing POV (Point of View)
    A PBS acclaimed independent non-fiction film series presents: An extraordinary chronicle of two years in the life with Richard Ogust, whose life turns into strange territory as he shares his Manhattan loft with 1,200 turtles he is trying to save.
  • The Ecotipping Points Project
    The EcoTipping Points Project is "Disseminating a New Paradigm for Strategic Sustainability." The Web site features environmental success stories from around the world, educational materials, regional planning, and more. Resources page includes Educational Materials.
  • The Encyclopedia of Earth
    The Encyclopedia of Earth is an electronic reference about the Earth, its natural environments, and their interaction with society. The goal of the experts who contribute to this Web site is to make it "the largest reliable information resource on the environment in history."
  • The GREENS Activity Guide
    MeetTheGreens.org kids' guide to looking after the planet has just added a new activity guide. It pairs hands-on activities to deepen kids' understanding of topics like recycling and global warming with campaigns to reduce junk mail and get drivers to stop idling cars. This innovative, Web-only project comes from WGBH in Boston, the producer of shows like ZOOM, ARTHUR, Frontline, & NOVA.
  • The Online Science Assessment Tool
    This site provides access to released items from various state and national standardized tests. All items have been coded to current Michigan Benchmarks and Assessment Standards. The database contains both multiple choice and constructed response questions and can be searched to develop a test built around specific content or assessment standards. After making your selections, a test will be created as an editable Word document. http://www.misd.net/scienceassessment/.
  • The Physics Classroom
    In this online physics tutorial for high school students, 14 topics are addressed, including kinematics, Newton's laws, vectors, electricity, momentum, thermal physics, work energy and power, refraction, and reflection. Click on any lesson in a topic to access background information and real-world applications of the principles discussed. Most pages include graphics, animations, and assessment opportunities to check students' understanding.
  • Thumbs are Handy Digits
    Hold your hand out in front of you and look at it carefully. The human hand is made up of four fingers and one thumb. Have you ever thought about how much you use your thumb? This month's Home Connections activity will help you understand the importance of your thumb for doing simple, everyday activities.
  • Tour the Solar System
    For those wanna-be astronauts and space travelers out there, this interactive model of the solar system could prove to be highly addictive. With one click, you can visit Saturn, Venus, or the other planets and then spin and explore them in three dimensions. The interface uses NASA calculations to precisely position all celestial bodies. Click the play button at the bottom of the screen to watch the positions of the planets and moon change as time passes or, if you're impatient, you can click ahead to see how the stars align in the year 2100. Please visit: www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/space/tour-solar-system.html
  • A Collection of the Best STEM Resources for Teens
    Sparticl is a new web and mobile service for teens, a collection of the very best the web has to offer in science, technology, engineering, and math or STEM. Sparticl includes answers to science questions, images, videos, games, and hands-on activities, all curated by a team of experts. But it's also a place where teens play a critical part – ranking content, sharing it, and recommending new content, all the while earning points and badges. Check it out at: http://www.sparticl.org
  • Tox Town
    Tox Town helps high-school students and teachers learn about environmental health concerns and toxic chemicals pictured in an imaginary town. Includes a text version and some Spanish-language resources.
  • Universal Awareness for Young Children
    This Web site is part of the 2009 International Year of Astronomy outreach program using "the beauty and scale of the universe to inspire very young children in underprivileged environments." Site offers a wide variety of educational materials such as online activities, games, animations, films, and teachers' materials.
  • Using Sensors in the Life Sciences
    This week-long workshop will be held at the Knabusch Math and Science Center. It is designed for teachers who are interested in studying the local environment and the life sciences utilizing technological tools such as Vernier Sensors, TI84 plus calculators, GPS, labpros/CBL2 and laptops in the life sciences. Teachers will learn how to use both "hand-held" and computer technology to do life science studies. The cost of the workshop is $100. To register, please visit the link above. For questions, please contact Tom Green at greent@monroe.k12.mi.us.
  • Virtual Museum
    University of Michigan Museum of Zoology online virtual museum with a searchable encyclopedia of animal natural history, distribution, classification, and conservation biology designed to facilitate inquiry-driven education.
  • Visualize Life Cycles of Plants and Animals
    Students can use the USA National Phenology Network map to view plant and animal life in the United States. They can search the map by animal, plant or locations or add climate overlays to the map. The map also includes a time slider that students can use to visualize the life cycles of the plants and animals. Please visit: www.usanpn.org/files/viz/index.html.
  • Water Life Game
    This virtual game for students in grades 5-8 takes place in an unhealthy ecosystem in an estuary on the west coast of the United States. Players help Valerie and Oscar the sea otter complete challenges to bring the estuary back to health. Along the way, students learn about food webs, the factors for producing healthy estuaries, and the reasons estuaries are essential to ocean life and humans. The site presents information about marine science careers and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) role in protecting estuaries, and ideas for getting involved in estuary protection.
  • Wander, Root, and Grow Learning
    Students can learn and interact with the world's biomes through the new iPad and iPhone app PLANTS by Tinybop's. Learning how flora and fungi germinate, pollinate, and decompose, students can create their own understanding of ecosystem development and deconstruction. The app is available in more than 50 languages, enhanced with the scientific names in Latin, and includes a recording tool that allows messaging between students to be saved and shared. Cost of the app is $1.99, with the next two biomes offered free when purchased now. See the app in action at http://tinybop.com/products/plants.
  • WetlandsLIVE
  • WetlandsLIVE is a distance learning opportunity. The organization provides a year-long series of webinars on wetlands. These webinars are free and the Web site provides lesson plans to go along side with these webinars. The webinars will be aired on October 10, 2012: Wading into Wetlands; on March 8, 2013: Wetland Connection; and on May 9, 2013: Discover Wetlands. For more information please visit their website http://wetlandslive.pwnet.org/program_info/goals.php.
  • World Ecosystems Beyond Borders (WEBB)
    Free Web-based curriculum to help teachers bring global environmental issues to science and social studies classrooms. The WEBB curriculum engages students in a dynamic study of local and global issues to prepare them for citizenship in an increasingly interconnected world. Sponsored by Global Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. 
  • YouthXchange Training Kit on Responsible Consumption
    A collaboration between the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the training kit is a train-the-trainer tool that aims to promote sustainable consumption patterns in youth worldwide. The YouthXchange online guide features over 84 pages of information on sustainable consumption.
  • Zoey's Room: Fun Science Resource for Girls
    Middle school girls can now take part in Zoey's Room, an award-winning online science resource and community sponsored by the non-profit organization, Platform Shoes Forum. This website is a community that encourages creativity through science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Through Zoey's Room, girls can explore tech gadgets and girl-friendly links, participate in safe and friendly chat rooms, and earn points redeemable for prizes with Tec-Treks, girl-friendly challenges in STEM. Some of the Tec-Treks include learning Internet research, databases, word-processing, nanotechnology and biotechnology, business math, credit-card debt, digital and video proficiency, robotics, engineering and Web site design. Visit the Zoey's Room Web site for more information.
  • Twitter Links for Teens
    • InsideClimate News @insideclimate
      Green States & Black States: Obama's Climate Plan Paints U.S. in New Colors, @jackcushmanjr reports: ow.ly/xEQOP
    • Exploratorium @exploratorium
      #HappyBirthday DSV Alvin, you've seen a lot over 50 years in the deep - even octopus attack! #Alvin50 photo from @NOAA pic.twitter.com/vIcbyLthja
    • 350 dot org @350
      TransCanada is about to lose a crucial permit for the Keystone XL pipeline in South Dakota. No permit, no pipeline. go.350.org/1nR36lA
    • The Climate Group @ClimateGroup
      Quick Fact: Solar price in India falls 60% in 3 years ow.ly/ydjk6 #CleanRevolution #infographic pic.twitter.com/iynhkqCvPQ
    • NOAA NCDC @NOAANCDC
      On average, how many tornadoes does your state see per year? #TornadoClimatology 1.usa.gov/1nPx7C8 pic.twitter.com/fPlQNLg6KG
    • Jim McDonald @jimscienceguy
      This is why children need science in school! This is a great invention. Please share and comment. fb.me/2Lsg1QJle
    • ESPP @ESPP
      GVSU studies honey bee decline ow.ly/y8eXj fb.me/18QjkNHFd
    • Nature Conservancy @nature_org The immense, untapped potential of young women in the natural sciences nature.ly/1vAwUWR via @TreeHugger pic.twitter.com/W2ZzGao4iB
    • Dr. Justin Tarte @justintarte We send kids home with $500 worth of textbooks, but we cringe at the idea of sending them home with a device. #edchat pic.twitter.com/14eHAONETH
    • NOAA Satellites @NOAASatellites @ONELONEDOLPHIN Directing you to the latest public advisory from the National Hurricane Center: nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/M… @NHC_Pacific
    • TLC @TLC_edu "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." - Nelson Mandela #sk12 pic.twitter.com/RykMa1kh8y
    • Gary G. Abud, Jr. @MR_ABUD
      #michED & MI educators @techsavvyed @JoeVercellino @bushjms @dreambition @ErinMastin make headlines in @detroitnews: pic.twitter.com/uQtYvYd63o
    • StateDeptOES @StateDeptOES
      Seawater reacting with CO2 = carbonic acid, which hurts marine life like this pteropod. #OurOcean2014 @NOAA pic.twitter.com/Q3tbtkNLtB