Watch alpha particles escape from a polonium nucleus, causing radioactive alpha decay. See how random decay times relate to the half life.
Middle School Science
Experiment with a helium balloon, a hot air balloon, or a rigid sphere filled with different gases. Discover what makes some balloons float and others sink.
Look inside a battery to see how it works. Select the battery voltage and little stick figures move charges from one end of the battery to the other. A voltmeter tells you the resulting battery voltage.
In this 1-2 week engineering design lesson, students will design and build water filters out of natural materials to simulate a filter system (bioswales) that cleans storm-water runoff before it soaks into the ground or enters a city’s storm-drain system. Their ultimate goal is to determine the combination and sequence of materials that best clean polluted water. Using materials easily found in pet stores and garden centers, students use the scientific method, students design to test and retest their designs and record, display and analyze their results.
When will objects float and when will they sink? Learn how buoyancy works with blocks. Arrows show the applied forces, and you can modify the properties of the blocks and the fluid.
8th grade student will apply Newton’s Laws to design, test and evaluate materials to create the most protective helmet for an activity of their choice. Students will use force sensors and Vernier software to analyze the force reduction for their helmets. The culmination of this project is for students to write and present a sales pitch to promote their helmet to their peers at an annual "conference."
With your mouse, drag data points and their error bars, and watch the best-fit polynomial curve update instantly. You choose the type of fit: linear, quadratic, cubic, or quartic. The reduced chi-square statistic shows you when the fit is good. Or you can try to find the best fit by manually adjusting fit parameters.
This Super Lesson utilizes Project Based Learning to assist learners with designing, building, and testing flying contraptions as an introduction to Engineering. The goal of this project is to engage students in collaborative team work and to introduce students to the Science and Engineering Practices: Asking Questions and Defining Problems, Planning and Carrying Out Investigations, and Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions.
We have offered this Super Lesson as an 8-week elective course, developing and strengthening student interest in applied Math and Science topics. It could also be offered within upper elementary or middle school Science and Math courses. In addition, each week’s topic could be used as a stand alone mini-lesson if time is limited. We have worked to include multiple options within this unit to make it accessible to both general education and special education programs, including recommendations for modifications and extensions.
An engineering and design lesson for middle school (our 7th grade standards).
In the aftermath of a natural disaster, can you engineer a device that will keep medicine within a 40-60°F range using natural resources from the biome you live in, and/or debris created by the disaster for three days, until the Red Cross can arrive?
You are a team of relief workers in __________________after a major earthquake/tsunami has occurred. Your team lead as just told you about a young women with diabetes has been injured and needs insulin to be delivered __________ miles away (no open roads). Your team will need to research, design, and build a portable device to keep the insulin between _____ and ______ °(F/C) for _____ days. Once you return you will present the effectiveness of your device to your lead and a team other relief workers showing your both your design/device and explaining the process.
Explore what it means for a mathematical statement to be balanced or unbalanced by interacting with objects on a balance. Discover the rules for keeping it balanced. Collect stars by playing the game!
Learn about graphing polynomials. The shape of the curve changes as the constants are adjusted. View the curves for the individual terms (e.g. y=bx ) to see how they add to generate the polynomial curve.
Students will observe/investigate the movement of water through the different stages of the water cycle and determine what drives this cycle. Students are asked to think about what precipitation is then watch a video about why the water cycle is important. They observe a simple version of the water cycle and take some notes. Students are asked what stages require solar radiation, which require water to give off heat, and which are driven by the force of gravity. The teacher does several different demonstrations while students fill in a sheet that has the students recording their observations of different processes in the water cycle and how energy is involved. Students build their understanding of the water cycle through the different models that are shown or experienced. The culminating activity has them create their own model of the water cycle from the viewpoint of a water molecule including the processes, the energy involved, and gravity.
Using an Arduino microprocessor, students will build an automated fish food feeder so fish can be fed when no one is at school?
This project involves learning how to do simple wiring of an LED, a buzzer, and a servo (motor) to a simple-to-use Arduino microprocessor.
Light a light bulb by waving a magnet. This demonstration of Faraday's Law shows you how to reduce your power bill at the expense of your grocery bill.
This project will be focused on designing, constructing and evaluating different containers to determine the optimal design for heat retention. After students have constructed their designs and collected and shared data, students will evaluate the class data to create an optimal design for our culminating event: warming ooey, gooey chocolate chip cookies to perfection! Through this activity, students will learn about energy transfer, engineering design process, data collection, graphing, rate of change, optimization, surface area and proportions. The students will test the effectiveness of their design using Vernier Probes to gather quantitative data and graphing the rate of temperature change. They will then create a poster presentation to share their data to the class. Students will use their mathematical skills to quantitatively analyze the strength and weaknesses of their designs while enjoying some delicious, toasty, warm cookies.
We plan to facilitate several engineering lessons that requires students to design, build ROV controllers, calculate weight, underwater thrust and buoyancy.
This is a 21 day unit on the topic of floods. Students will plan and prepare for what might happen in the event of a flood in our area. We have had floods in the past that have affected the Walterville School, its campus, and the surrounding areas. Using this as a springboard, students will discuss the effects of flooding, do research and interview family members who have experienced flooding, and then discuss possible ways to prevent significant damage on the buildings and surrounding areas. They will then design a barrier that could protect an area from damage for a period of time. Students will need materials to conduct experiments. We have listed these in the lesson plan. We have also included a trip to the Leaburg Dam so that students can learn about dams and their uses. We plan on teaching this unit in the fall.
Explore the forces at work when you try to push a filing cabinet. Create an applied force and see the resulting friction force and total force acting on the cabinet. Charts show the forces, position, velocity, and acceleration vs. time. View a Free Body Diagram of all the forces (including gravitational and normal forces).
Students will be able to design and defend a salmon rearing tank for the highest survival rate. They will measure temperature, ph and ammonia on daily basis and make needed adjustments. Given unit ending data students will be able to determine the optimal design for a salmon rearing tank using patterns between water conditions and survival rates.
Move the sun, earth, moon and space station to see how it affects their gravitational forces and orbital paths. Visualize the sizes and distances between different heavenly bodies, and turn off gravity to see what would happen without it!