Students will breed fruit flies through several generations and record their data using mathematical models in order to demonstrate the inheritance of trait variations.
Students construct rockets from balloons propelled along a guide string. They use this model to learn about Newton's three laws of motion, examining the effect of different forces on the motion of the rocket.
Following are a series of activities in which students apply various math skills to better understand the problems of world hunger and what steps are being taken to reduce the number of people without enough to eat. This activity looks at how the number of people affected by hunger is changing. Students will understand the dynamic nature of the problem and the challenges of reaching the Millennium Development Goal to reduce the number of people suffering from hunger by half by 2015. This is Activity #2 of 5 in this lesson.
The CyberSquad searches for Hackerë_í__ castle based on a survey of where town residents have last seen him in this video from Cyberchase.
- Material Type:
- PBS LearningMedia
- Provider Set:
- PBS Learning Media: Multimedia Resources for the Classroom and Professional Development
- Teachers' Domain
- U.S. Department of Education
- Date Added:
In this task students are asked to describe the data represented in a scatter plot.
Students learn about the role engineers and mathematicians play in developing the perfect bungee cord length by simulating and experimenting with bungee jumping using washers and rubber bands. Working as if they are engineers for a (hypothetical) amusement park, students are challenged to develop a show-stopping bungee jumping ride that is safe. To do this, they must find the maximum length of the bungee cord that permits jumpers (such as brave Washy!) to get as close to the ground as possible without going "splat"! This requires them to learn about force and displacement and run an experiment. Student teams collect and plot displacement data and calculate the slope, linear equation of the line of best fit and spring constant using Hooke's law. Students make hypotheses, interpret scatter plots looking for correlations, and consider possible sources of error. An activity worksheet, pre/post quizzes and a PowerPoint® presentation are included.
Using the LEGO MINDSTORMS(TM) NXT kit, students construct experiments to measure the time it takes a free falling body to travel a specified distance. Students use the touch sensor, rotational sensor, and the NXT brick to measure the time of flight for the falling object at different release heights. After the object is released from its holder and travels a specified distance, a touch sensor is triggered and time of object's descent from release to impact at touch sensor is recorded and displayed on the screen of the NXT. Students calculate the average velocity of the falling object from each point of release, and construct a graph of average velocity versus time. They also create a best fit line for the graph using spreadsheet software. Students use the slope of the best fit line to determine their experimental g value and compare this to the standard value of g.
Students learn about the anatomy of the ear and how the ears work as a sound sensor. Ear anatomy parts and structures are explained in detail, as well as how sound is transmitted mechanically and then electrically through them to the brain. Students use LEGO® robots with sound sensors to measure sound intensities, learning how the NXT brick (computer) converts the intensity of sound measured by the sensor input into a number that transmits to a screen. They build on their experiences from the previous activities and establish a rich understanding of the sound sensor and its relationship to the TaskBot's computer.
It is possible to say a lot about the solution to an equation without actually solving it, just by looking at the structure and operations that make up the equation. This exercise turns the focus away from the familiar Ňfinding the solutionÓ problem to thinking about what it really means for a number to be a solution of an equation.
This is a task from the Illustrative Mathematics website that is one part of a complete illustration of the standard to which it is aligned. Each task has at least one solution and some commentary that addresses important asects of the task and its potential use. Here are the first few lines of the commentary for this task: Is there an association between the weight of an animal’s body and the weight of the animal’s brain? 1. Make a scatterplot using the following data. Bo...
Students reinforce an antenna tower made from foam insulation so that it can withstand a 480 N-cm bending moment (torque) and a 280 N-cm twisting moment (torque) with minimal deflection. During one class period, students discuss the problem, run the initial bending and torsion tests and graph the results. During the following class periods, students design, construct and test sturdier towers, and graph the results.
Students learn about the many types of expenses associated with building a bridge. Working like engineers, they estimate the cost for materials for a bridge member of varying sizes. After making calculations, they graph their results to compare how costs change depending on the use of different materials (steel vs. concrete). They conclude by creating a proposal for a city bridge design based on their findings.
Students conduct experiments to determine what environmental factors favor decomposition by soil microbes. They use chunks of carrots for the materials to be decomposed, and their experiments are carried out in plastic bags filled with dirt. Every few days students remove the carrots from the dirt and weigh them. Depending on the experimental conditions, after a few weeks most of the carrots have decomposed completely.
Students are introduced to different ways of displaying visual spectra, including colored "barcode" spectra, like those produced by a diffraction grating, and line plots displaying intensity versus color, or wavelength. Students learn that a diffraction grating acts like a prism, bending light into its component colors.
In this math activity, students conduct a strength test using modeling clay, creating their own stress vs. strain graphs, which they compare to typical steel and concrete graphs. They learn the difference between brittle and ductile materials and how understanding the strength of materials, especially steel and concrete, is important for engineers who design bridges and structures.
Students learn that fats found in the foods we eat are not all the same; they discover that physical properties of materials are related to their chemical structures. Provided with several samples of commonly used fats with different chemical properties (olive oil, vegetable oil, shortening, animal fat and butter), student groups build and use simple LEGO MINDSTORMS(TM) NXT robots with temperature and light sensors to determine the melting points of the fat samples. Because of their different chemical structures, these fats exhibit different physical properties, such as melting point and color. This activity uses the fact that fats are opaque when solid and translucent when liquid to determine the melting point of each sample upon being heated. Students heat the samples, and use the robot to determine when samples are melted. They analyze plots of their collected data to compare melting points of the oil samples to look for trends. Discrepancies are correlated to differences in the chemical structure and composition of the fats.
Using paper, paper clips and tape, student teams design flying/falling devices to stay in the air as long as possible and land as close as possible to a given target. Student teams use the steps of the engineering design process to guide them through the initial conception, evaluation, testing and re-design stages. The activity culminates with a classroom competition and scoring to evaluate how each team's design performed.
Students learn about the strength of bones and methods of helping to mend fractured bones. During a class demonstration, a chicken bone is broken by applying a load until it reaches a point of failure (fracture). Then, working as biomedical engineers, students teams design their own splint or cast to help repair a fractured bone, learning about the strength of materials used.
This task asks students to glean contextual information about bird eggs from a collection of measurements of said eggs organized in a scatter plot. In particular, students are asked to identify a correlation and use it to make interpolative predictions, and reason about the properties of specific eggs via the graphical presentation of the data.
With the help of simple, teacher-led demonstration activities, students learn the basic concepts of heat transfer by means of conduction, convection, and radiation. Students then apply these concepts as they work in teams to solve two problems. One problem requires that they maintain the warm temperature of one soda can filled with water at approximately body temperature, and the other problem is to cause an identical soda can of warm water to cool as much as possible during the same thirty-minute time interval. Students design their solutions using only common, everyday materials. They record the water temperatures in their two soda cans every five minutes, and prepare line graphs in order to visually compare their results to the temperature of an unaltered control can of water.
Build your own miniature "greenhouse" out of a plastic container and plastic wrap, and fill it with different things such as dirt and sand to observe the effect this has on temperature. Monitor the temperature using temperature probes and digitally plot the data on the graphs provided in the activity.
Through an overview of some of the environmental challenges facing the growing and evolving country of China today, students learn about the effects of indoor and outdoor air pollution that China is struggling to curb with the help of engineers and scientists. This includes the sources of particulate matter 2.5 and carbon dioxide, and air pollution impacts on the health of people and the environment.
In this activity, students will learn how water can be polluted by algal blooms. They will grow algae with different concentrations of fertilizer or nutrients and analyze their results as environmental engineers working to protect a local water resource.
Students learn about composite materials, tension as a force and how they act on structural components through the design and testing of strips of plastic chair webbing.
Students work as physicists to understand centripetal acceleration concepts. They also learn about a good robot design and the accelerometer sensor. They also learn about the relationship between centripetal acceleration and centripetal force governed by the radius between the motor and accelerometer and the amount of mass at the end of the robot's arm. Students graph and analyze data collected from an accelerometer, and learn to design robots with proper weight distribution across the robot for their robotic arms. Upon using a data logging program, they view their own data collected during the activity. By activity end , students understand how a change in radius or mass can affect the data obtained from the accelerometer through the plots generated from the data logging program. More specifically, students learn about the accuracy and precision of the accelerometer measurements from numerous trials.
Students are given a biomedical engineering challenge, which they solve while following the steps of the engineering design process. In a design lab environment, student groups design, create and test prototype devices that help people using crutches carry things, such as books and school supplies. The assistive devices must meet a list of constraints, including a device weight limit and minimum load capacity. Students use various hand and power tools to fabricate the devices. They test the practicality of their designs by loading them with objects and then using the modified crutches in the school hallways and classrooms.
Students explore whether rooftop gardens are a viable option for combating the urban heat island effect. Can rooftop gardens reduce the temperature inside and outside houses? Teams each design and construct two model buildings using foam core board, one with a "green roof" and the other with a black tar paper roof. They measure and graph the ambient and inside building temperatures while under heat lamps and fans. Then students analyze the data and determine whether the rooftop gardens are beneficial to the inhabitants.
In this design challenge, students learn about the Vikings from an engineering point-of-view. While investigating the history and anatomy of Viking ships, they learn how engineering solutions are shaped by the surrounding environment and availability of resources. Students apply this knowledge to design, build and test their own model Viking ships.
Students learn about two types of friction static and kinetic and the equation that governs them. They also measure the coefficient of static friction experimentally.
Students use two different methods to determine the densities of a variety of materials and objects. The first method involves direct measurement of the volumes of objects that have simple geometric shapes. The second is the water displacement method, used to determine the volumes of irregularly shaped objects. After the densities are determined, students create x-y scatter graphs of mass versus volume, which reveal that objects with densities less than water (floaters) lie above the graph's diagonal (representing the density of water), and those with densities greater than water (sinkers) lie below the diagonal.
This a a cross curricular unit encompassing English, History, and Math Common Core Standards to teach the Child Labor practices of 1800s U.S. with the tragedy of Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire of 1911 which lead to child labor reform throughout the world and into the modern era.
- Arts and Humanities
- Social Science
- Material Type:
- Data Set
- Lecture Notes
- Lesson Plan
- Primary Source
- Teaching/Learning Strategy
- Shelley Arca, Victoria Birbeck, Navpre
- Navpreet Bedi
- Victoria Birbeck
- Date Added:
This activity illustrates the interrelationship between science and engineering in the context of extinction prevention. There are two parts to the activity. The first part challenges students to think like scientists as they generate reports on endangered species and give presentations worthy of a news channel or radio broadcast. The second part puts students in the shoes of engineers, designing ways to help the endangered species.
In this group task students collect data and investigate whether there is a relationship between height and hand size among the students in the class.
Students teams each assemble a wing component of a lifter with the goal to test the lifter wing and measure the force exerted when high voltage is applied to it. After an introduction to torque and its use to measure force, students calculate the change in the torque when a high voltage is applied to the wing portion of the lifter using a fulcrum. Once a group has assembled its wing portion, the teacher tests it with a high-voltage power supply, marking the change in the balance so that students can calculate the force. Then groups adjust the gap between the electrodes and re-measure the force. Groups each repeat this process three times, which allows students to estimate the magnitude of the force as a function of the gap between the electrodes.
Students use ultrasonic sensors and LEGO© MINDSTORMS© NXT robots to emulate how bats use echolocation to detect obstacles. They measure the robot's reaction times as it senses objects at two distances and with different sensor threshold values, and again after making adjustments to optimize its effectiveness. Like engineers, they gather and graph data to analyze a given design (from the tutorial) and make modifications to the sensor placement and/or threshold values in order to improve the robot's performance (iterative design). Students see how problem solving with biomimicry design is directly related to understanding and making observations of nature.
Most of the flavoring in gum is due to the sugar or other sweetener it contains. As gum is chewed, the sugar dissolves and is swallowed. After a piece of gum loses its flavor, it can be left to dry at room temperature and then the difference between its initial (unchewed) mass and its chewed mass can be used to calculate the percentage of sugar in the gum. This demonstration experiment is used to generate new questions about gums and their ingredients, and students can then design and execute new experiments based on their own questions.
Geospatial data analysis is a growing field in science with practical applications in government and industry. This problem-based learning module guides learners through exploring the relationship between the amount of trash found relative to the location of waste receptacles in their community. Recording the location of identified items of trash/recyclables and placing them on a map allows students to identify if there is a correlation between the amount of trash and the distance away from waste receptacles. While this module uses trash, almost any item can be tracked and plotted for analysis. Some other ideas were: locations of Pokemon in Pokemon Go, animal migration, safety devices, various plant species, texting and driving are just a few examples.
In this problem-based learning module, students will ‘dig’ for fossils in a digital environment, using the advanced graphing techniques of line-of-best-fit and piecewise functions to look for different kinds of trends in the health of the history of the earth. They will apply this information to their knowledge of the laws of superposition and index fossils to form a complete analysis in the historical health as well as to predict where we are going in the future.
Students investigate the weather from a systems approach, learning how individual parts of a system work together to create a final product. Students learn how a barometer works to measure the Earth's air pressure by building a model using simple materials. Students analyze the changes in barometer measurements over time and compare those to actual weather conditions. They learn how to use a barometer to understand air pressure and predict actual weather changes.
In a multi-week experiment, students monitor the core temperatures of two compost piles, one control and one tended, to see how air and water affect microbial activity. They daily aerate and wet the "treated" pile and collect 4-6 weeks' worth of daily temperature readings. Once the experiment is concluded, students plot and analyze their data to compare the behavior of the two piles. They find that the treated pile becomes hotter, an indication that more microbes are active and releasing heat. Through this activity, students see that microbes play a role in composting and how composting can be used as a carbon management process.
- Environmental Science
- Material Type:
- Provider Set:
- Caryssa Joustra
- Daniel Yeh
- Emanuel Burch
- George Dick
- Herby Jean
- Ivy Drexler
- Jorge Calabria
- Lyudmila Haralampieva
- Matthew Woodham
- Onur Ozcan
- Robert Bair
- Stephanie Quintero
- Date Added: