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Great Lakes Teacher Resources
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Elementary schoolers discover how electricity travels and create an electron flow through a closed circuit. They work together to make a closed circuit and observe the electricity being made. This outstanding lesson plan is well worth the four one-hour sessions needed to implement it. Excellent streamed video, resource links, and hands-on activities are part of the instructional activity.
Here is a geology lesson that is sure to get your charges excited. It's all about the process of weathering of rocks. Learners study natural events that can cause rocks to break apart. Some of these events are: ice wedging, plant wedging, abrasion, and the effects of water. A terrific hands-on experiment/activity is aptly described, and a very good final review worksheet is embedded in the plan.
Showcase the religion, conflicts, daily life, and politics of Colonial North America. A very well-done presentation highlights all the major colonial groups, social norms, demographics, and political struggles of the time. Perfect for an independent work station, and great for note taking or for added interest during lecture.
Are you looking for a great collection of lessons and activities on the water cycle? This plan is for you! In it, second graders engage in hands-on lessons that cover science, langugage arts, and art as they study the water cycle. Topics covered are the various types of water on Earth, ground water, water vapor, clouds, and precipitation. A nice conservation element is also built into these lessons, which should help youngsters learn the value of conserving this precious resource.
There was a situation in the Kaibab desert of Arizona during which the deer population exploded. Wildlife biologists examine historical data using a graphing calculator in order to learn about population growth, limiting factors, and interdependence within ecosystems. This is a well-written lesson plan geared toward high school ecology courses. It comes complete with required worksheets.
Teaching kids how to use reference material can be fun! After a brief discussion on the type of information and ways to use an Atlas, learners go on an Atlas scavenger hunt. They break into teams and try to find as many items listed on the worksheet in the shortest amount of time.
How is energy transferred within an ecosystem? What would happen to a food web if one of the organisms was removed? Elementary or middle school ecologists examine these questions and more in a comprehensive 5E learning cycle lesson. Through stories, games, a card sort, and a writing assignment, young scientists learn the essential components of food webs in a fun and interesting way. Although most of the links within the lesson are no longer active, many of the necessary resources are included in the appendix. In order to build learner anticipation and reduce your preparation time, each student could be assigned one of the animals in the food web game to research, then create a card for the game; cards could be made a day or two before teaching the lesson. Depending on the age of your learners, you may wish to adjust the writing prompt at the end to address some higher-level thinking concepts.
Sometimes our kids grow like weeds. But in an invasive species activity, they have a chance to be a weed. After learning about what an invasive species is, and why they cause problems, take your class outside (or to the gym) and have them play a few rounds of the game, which should give them a more concrete understanding of how quickly non-native plants can take over. There is a significant amount of preparation for the lesson, but if you laminate your species cards, you can use them year after year.
Here's a great geology lesson for 3rd graders on weathering and erosion of soil. After a class discussion on how nature can "move a mountain," learners take a look at how a modern phenoma called acid rain can also cause weathering and erosion. They engage in an inquiry using vinegar and chalk to simulate how acid rain causes chemical changes and erosion in nature. A good lesson for 3rd graders!
Arkansas ranks first in the entire world in the production of bromine! Here is a instructional activity which guides middle schoolers through a study about the formation and history of Arkansas' bromine reserves. They also looks at the many uses of bromine-derived products and discuss the pros and cons of bromine production in Arkansas. An excellent real-life instructional activity.
Use drawings as inspiration. Have learners doodle for 10 minutes before beginning the lesson. Then, have them use their doodles to inspire a story. Several writing activities are included here to play with writing. One of my favorites asks learners to write a story starter on a blank piece of paper, put the paper into a hat, and have each learner randomly draw one from the hat to start their story.
In this statistics and matrix worksheet, students test their understanding of basic matrix operations and statistical analysis. They organize given data and identify the quartiles. Students determine the best graph to present data. This two-page worksheet contains sixteen multiple-choice problems.
If you do not mind wading through unrelated headings (This is not for a physics or STEM course, as it states.) and content (The lesson opens with an article about neurology, not halophiles.), then you will find a valuable resource on salt-loving microorganisms. A PowerPoint presentation introduces viewers to high salt environments, human impact on them, and what we might learn from the extremophiles that thrive in such places. A note-taking page, links to related articles, and a couple of fun extension activities are suggested. Enrich your microbiology unit with this resource!
Geology whizzes observe the effects of change within a model of a watershed. They place replica waste dumps within the models and note the path that the waste takes as water passes through. This detailed lesson plan provides teacher narrative, instructions for building the watershed model, discussion questions, and more! If you have the time for this elaborate hands-on experience, it will be worth your while!
Students observe physical features of Daphnia and explain how characteristics allow them to survive, investigate Daphnia's ecological interactions, and observe how Daphnia turn red under low oxygen conditions through increased production of hemoglobin. They then discuss how invasive species can populate foreign area, predict type of adaptation that has allowed it to invade North America, and discuss what impacts an invasive species can have on ecosystem.