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In this lesson, students observe the surface of rotating potatoes to help them understand how astronomers can sometimes determine the shape of asteroids from variations in reflective brightness.

In this laboratory activity, students observe what happens when a fluid of one density is placed in a fluid of a different density. The fluids are salt water and fresh water, cold water and warm water. They generalize their results to describe what... (View More)

This quantitative experiment involves lab teams in comparing a sample of room air with one of the greenhouse gases - carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, or methane - and measuring their heat capacity. The activity requires an infrared heat source, such... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Over $20 per group of students

In this laboratory investigation, student teams discover that the ocean's capacity to dissolve carbon dioxide depends on its temperature, and consider the effect of a warming ocean on CO² absorption. The activity requires Bromothymol blue indicator... (View More)

Students use a calorimeter made of common materials to demonstrate that energy can be measured and converted from one form to another. Hydrocarbons, such as paraffin, contain stored chemical energy; food contains stored chemical energy. The activity... (View More)

This is a hands-on lab activity about the chemical composition and conductivity of water. Working in groups, learners will: conduct an experiment involving the process of electrolysis, prepare an experiment to better understand the process of ion... (View More)

Keywords: Electrolytes; Salinity
Audience: High school
Materials Cost: $1 - $5 per group of students

This is a hands-on lab activity about the composition of salt. Learners will explain the general relationship between an element's Periodic Table Group Number and its tendency to gain or lose electron(s), and explain the difference between molecular... (View More)

These two hands-on labs are about the role of temperature and salinity in governing the density of seawater, a major factor controlling the ocean's vertical movements and layered circulation. In the first activity students work in groups to... (View More)

The purpose of this investigation is to understand the change that takes place when water condenses from a gas to a liquid, and how a change in pressure affects this transformation. Materials needed for the experiment include a large (2L) soda... (View More)

This experimental activity is designed to develop an understanding that air has mass. Students conduct an investigation and observe the change in the position of a bar balancing a balloon inflated with air on one end and a uninflated balloon on the... (View More)