Resources to Support the Teaching of Science


CAST Science Writer Primarily geared to meet the needs of Middle School and High School Science teachers and their students. This site guides students in the process of writing lab reports, research reports, and more. There are tools to guide students through the draft, edit, and rewriting process, sentence starters, checklists, and a text-to-speech tool at the top of every page. Students can listen to their writing being read back to them.

Create a Graph Provides examples of types of graphs as well as a graph creation tool to create graphs of all kinds which then can be downloaded and printed.

Online Converter Whether your measurement is length, volume, speed, area, or other scientific measures, this free site can handle the conversion of all scientific units of measurement.

Sixty Symbols: Videos about the Symbols of Physics and Astronomy Links to 5-10 minute videos about each symbol. These are good quality...but be aware that they are YOUTUBE hosted, so you will need to use your override password to access them through the filter.

PhET Simulations These simulations are fully downloadable and will help you to demonstrate science concepts that may be difficult or impossible to replicate in your classroom. From electricity and magnetism to buoyancy and collisions, it's all here.

Physics Games This site has many engaging games to get kids thinking about physics concepts. Be sure to check the games beforehand (a few can contain some mild violence) but overall, this site's a winner. Try playing these on your Interactive Whiteboard.

Science Friday Hosted by veteran science journalist and author Ira Flatow, this site for middle school teachers explores topics ranging from global warming to genetically modified foods. The site is updated weekly. Each topic contains a summary with references, suggested questions for students, activities, and related Web resources.

Science Notebooks in K12 classrooms - A practical guide to using notebooks in a science classroom.

Middle School Chemistry Developed by the American Chemical Society, this free, online, middle-school site introduces a chemistry curriculum that correlates with national standards. All of the experiments offer simple activities that teach the most important and some of the most abstract concepts of chemistry, such as how molecules attract each other. The site is filled with great animations and videos.

The R Project for Statistical Computing R is an integrated suite of software facilities for data manipulation, calculation and graphical display. The software is open source and is free for downloading. See your building's Tech Assistant for assistance with the download.

Chem Team This site is home to tons of tutorials and video clips illustrating important concepts and principles in Chemistry.

Natural Inquirer The Natural Inquirer is a middle school science education journal! Scientists report their research in journals, which enable scientists to share information with one another. This journal, the Natural Inquirer, was created so that scientists can share their research with middle school students. Each article tells you about scientific research conducted by scientists in the USDA Forest Service. Site includes lots of web links to valuable related Internet resources.

National Geographic Expeditions Xpeditions is home to the U.S. National Geography Standards—and to thousands of ideas, tools, and interactive adventures that bring them to life. Explore the depths of the world's oceans, take a closer look at the weather, look at maps of the world's active volcanoes...it's all here. Lesson plans, activities, and maps bring the world to life.

Earth Knowledge This site uses geographical, environmental, and social data in a mashup with Google Earth in an aim to support Eco-decisionmaking. You'll need to install the Google Earth add-on before you can use the site, but it provides a powerful user interface with graphical representations of data that makes it well worth your effort. Click on "Wissdom" in the top menu to get started.

Learning Science - A collection of science simulations organized using the National Science Education Standards.

Science Mystery is an amazing site where your students can read about a mystery, discuss it in class, and continue on to the conclusion, which asks students to make scientific decisions and follow clues to solve the mystery. For example, "Croak" takes an average reader a little over a half hour to get to the "solve-it" page. WHAT'S IT ABOUT? Frog extinctions! In your home town! IS IT SUSPENSEFUL? Oh yeah. Especially because once you submit your answer, you won't know if you're right for a week! (Answers are emailed a week later, to enhance classroom usefulness.) This is just one example of the mysteries you'll find on the site.

Join the NASA Expedition in Western Australia to discover if life existed on Mars. (Note: this site takes time to download.) Researchers are studying minerals containing fossils of stromatolites, the oldest life on Earth. Data from spacecraft exploring Mars show that water once flowed on the Red Planet, which might have supported life like the 3.5 billion-year-old microbial organisms. Virtual tourists get a 360-degree view of the red, dusty environment and can access videos where experts explain what the students see. Of course, you also will want to visit NASA's page for educators (grades 5-8) for full information on all NASA programs appropriate for your students.

Sloan Digital Sky Survey Student Projects in Astronomy Links to a host of quality projects for younger students through high school on the Basic Projects page. Includes research challenge activities, a scavenger hunt, and other activities to give students a taste of the real work of astronomers.

Java Applets for Physics Sometimes a simulation will serve as well as a live experiment, and may save time as well. Try these! The site contains 51 applets.

EPA Environmental Kids Club Explore the environment and learn how to protect it using games, pictures, and stories. Main topics are: Air, Water, Garbage & Recycling, Plants & Animals, and Environment. The Art Room, Game Room, and Science Room link to games and activities. Use the Teaching Center to get ideas on how to use the site and further resources such as community service projects, scholarships, lesson plans, and grants. There's a lot here, take your time!

Energy Quest This award-winning site explores how electricity, coal, oil, natural gas, and hydropower work. Study alternative energy sources such as biomass, geothermal, nuclear, solar, and wind. Click Movie Room to view a vintage 1953 animated classic A is for Atom. Behind the Bright Lights is a 1935 piece that explains how the giant electric Chevrolet sign in downtown Chicago works. Energy Vampires provides an interactive investigation of the appliances that suck the most energy out of the grid. Take a trip in the Time Machine to explore the history of electricity. Finally, learn what can be done to conserve power and save energy through the Change a Light, Change the World campaign.

Amusement Park Science Explores how the laws of physics play a role in the design of amusement park rides. Design a roller coaster, determine the outcome of bumper car collisions, and more.

Brain Pop Brainpop is a really cool and unique site full of animated health and science movies, and fun quizzes. Although not all of the resources on this site are free, it is still worth a look! (Our Middle School has purchased a subscription to the full site. They love it!)

Bill Nye the Science Guy Learn about Bill Nye the Science Guy and his show, choose from 40 'Home Demos' you can try, watch video clips, and more.

Jonathan Bird's Blue World Use your classroom computer to explore the ocean with Emmy award-winning underwater cinematographer and naturalist Jonathan Bird. This site is a "magazine style" underwater adventure series with short, 7-10 minute segments, each containing a complete story with an educational component. Segments include stories about marine animals, research and researchers, underwater exploration, and recent discoveries. Each segment includes a downloadable study guide for teachers.

Color Matters Budding artists and anyone interested in color will want to see how color affects our mind and body, its use in design and art, plus lots more. Explains additive and subtractive color systems, how the eye sees colors, and how other cultures view and use colors.

Dr. Bob's Interesting Science Stuff Investigate interesting (hence the name) and unusual scientific topics. Includes 'Ask Dr. Bob' and 'Did You Know' sections.

Exploring Leonardo Learn about Leonardo da Vinci, his futuristic inventions, and unique way of looking at the world at this attractive site.

Extreme Science Where is the deepest spot in the ocean? Which creature is the strongest? Want to know what the fastest land animal is? Take a look at this site for answers to these and other scientific record-breakers!

FT Exploring Science and Technology A fun-filled science site that explores energy and other basic scientific principles. Topics include sections on "superbugs", photosynthesis, marine science, and more. Know-it-all tortoise, Dr. Galapagos provides humorous and insightful answers to science questions.

Funology! At Funology, science is all about having fun! But that's not all. Besides fun facts and experiments you can perform, you'll also find crafts, recipes, magic tricks, jokes, and a whole lot more.

Greatest Engineering Achievements of the 20th Century In 1900, life was a constant struggle. 100 years later, the world was a healthier, safer, and more productive place, due to the hard work of engineers and scientists. From electrification, to the automobile, to computers, learn how engineering has changed and improved our lives.

Human Anatomy Online Take a tour of the human body. This site offers a fun, interactive way to learn about skeletal, digestive, muscular, and other body systems.

How Stuff Works Curious about what makes things tick? How Stuff Works brings you hundreds of articles that cover a wide range of subjects like 3-D graphics, animals, video games, engines, roller coasters, toys, electricity, computers, and much more. (For a "huge list" of every article on the site, click here.)

Popular Science You'll always find plenty of cool and interesting things to read at Popular Science Magazine's web site. Articles on science, space, the Internet, computers, and more are all here to help keep you informed of the latest advances in technology.

Real Trees 4 Kids Developed in 1999 in honor of Earth Day, this site continues to grow! Topics of interest include conifers, tree farms, growth cycles, tree types, recycling, plant cycles, classification, trees as microhabitats, stems and rings, and a year in the life of a tree farmer.

Savage Earth Examine the earth's changing crust, earthquakes, volcanoes, and tsunamis. Each topic has a substantive article with rich illustrations. Computer animations use impressive graphics to visually represent the phenomena covered in each episode.

The Biology Corner - lesson plans, activities, and other resources. Mainly Biology, but also has A&P and Physics.

STEM - description, ideas and resources for educators - tons of Science, Tech, Engineering, and Math resources, including lessons and activities.

Discovery Education STEM resources - great, free resources from Discovery Education.

Virtual Tour of NASA Goddard Space Center and Missions - NASA has thousands of great resources for educators and this one is a great way to get students excited about science and space exploration.

Forensic Science Resource - CSI: The Experience Web Adventures - forensics is a great way to get kids interested in science and this site has virtual cases for students to solve.

Science of Cooking - great resource to engage and excite students about science - food and students -"nuff said. It's actually a great way to get students interested in science.

Great Earth Day Resources for Educators - Earth Day is a great time to get students thinking about the environment and about science.

The Science Spot - lots of great science resources for teachers and students in all areas of science. Lesson plans, activities, and links.

Understanding Science - great resource for teachers and students - explains science in a way that is easy to understand.

Science NetLinks - great science resource for teachers - lesson plans, tools, activities and resources.

The Science Explorer Using common household items, make a salt volcano, a roto-coptor, or one of over 25 other projects at this clever site.

Nature PBS Watch nature videos streaming online, get sneak previews of upcoming shows, listen to podcasts, play interactive games...even shop the PBS store.

Medical Mysteries on the Web Medical Mysteries is an interactive online game. Students solve mysteries and in doing so learn how infectious diseases are spread. Teacher Pages contain lots of downloadable resources. The Center for Technology in Teaching and Learning at Rice University designed this website with funding from the National Institutes of Health. Requires Shockwave.

Bytesize Science (podcast) An educational and entertaining podcast for young listeners, this site translates cutting-edge scientific discoveries into stories about science, health, medicine, energy, food, and other topics. New installments are posted every Monday and are available free of charge. The archive includes items such as environmental threats to orcas, a scientific explanation for why some people love chocolate, unlikely new uses for compact discs, and more! No iPod? Listen on your computer, using your web browser.

The Nature Conservancy Operates 100 marine conservation projects, protects a million acres of land, and monitors 5,000 miles of rivers. How We Work has an excellent primer on conservation science. Got to Activities for a nice selection of eCards, stunning slide shows, and exceptional videos. Observe bald eagles live via webcam. On Earth Day, calculate your school's climate impact with the Carbon Footprint Calculator. And each week, Nature Stories offers audio commentary about people connecting with the natural world.

Los Angeles Zoo For a comprehensive list of the L.A. Zoo's birds, mammals, reptiles, and invertebrates, read the highly informative fact sheets. The data for each animal includes the scientific name, a photo or video, habitat, diet, and physical characteristics. In addition, study the plants at the botanical garden or learn about the zoo's efforts to preserve pronghorns, condors, and tapirs.

World Wide Telescope New Web 2.0 software by Microsoft that enables your computer to function as a virtual telescope, bringing together imagery from ground and space-based telescopes in order to explore the universe, right from your desktop. Choose from among several guided tours narrated by experts. Controls allow you to pause the tour, explore on your own, and rejoin the tour where you left off. You can even choose which telescope to look through, including the Hubble Space Telescope, the Chandra X-Ray Observatory Center, the Spitzer Space Telescope, or others. View the locations of planets in the night sky--in the past, present, or future. Requires a download of the software, which can take about an hour.