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Educational Level:
Middle school  
Instructional Strategies:
Brainstorming  
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This is a lesson about the kinds of stars that are suitable for supporting human life. Learners will characterize stars on a HR diagram and identify the characteristics of those most suitable for supporting human life. They then explore the... (View More)

Audience: Middle school

This is an extension activity to "DAWN: Find a Meteorite." Learners will use a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) to look at a piece of the meteorite and try to determine if it has the Widemenstatten texture, chondrules, and/or a unique chemical... (View More)

This is a lesson about radiation and the use of the scientific method to solve problems of too much radiation. Learners will build snow goggles similar to those used by the Inuit (designed to block unwanted light, while increasing the viewer’s... (View More)

This is a activity about applying the scientific method to a design challenge. Learners will design and build a platform that will be placed on a heat source. The platform is expected to serve as an insulator for a cube of gelatin. The goal is to... (View More)

This is a lesson about infrared radiation. Learners will investigate invisible forms of light as they conduct William Herschel’s experiment and subsequent discovery of infrared radiation. They will construct a device to measure the presence of... (View More)

This is a detailed lesson about heat transfer and distance. Learners will design and conduct experiments to answer the question, "how does distance and inclination affect the amount of heat received from a heat source?" They will measure heat change... (View More)

This is an activity involving scientific inquiry. Using a constructed Mystery Light Box, learners will observe what is in the box without removing the object from the box, shining a light into the box, or reaching hands into the box, and they will... (View More)

In this activity, students perform a version of the experiment of 1801, in which ultraviolet light was first discovered by Johann Wilhelm Ritter. This experiment should be conducted outdoors on a sunny day - variable cloud conditions, such as patchy... (View More)

Audience: Middle school
Materials Cost: $5 - $10 per group of students

This is an activity about the rotation of the Sun. Learners examine images of the Sun taken by the Yohkoh satellite, use a grid overlay to mark the positions of the sunspots, and then calculate the rate at which the spots move to determine the... (View More)

In this activity, learners will explore the question, What is the chance that we are the only life in the universe? They determine what we need to know to predict the chances of extraterrestrial life. They then make estimates of the number of worlds... (View More)