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Air: Design a Paper Airplane
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This STEM challenge can be used during an air unit. Students are able to find ways to best minimize air resistance. The students are trying to develop a paper airplane that will go the farthest in the class competition.

Subject:
Engineering
Elementary Education
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Author:
Jessica Redcay
Date Added:
12/05/2018
Remix
Air: Design a Paper Airplane
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
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This STEM challenge can be used during an air unit. Students are able to find ways to best minimize air resistance. The students are trying to develop a paper airplane that will go the farthest in the class competition.

Subject:
Engineering
Elementary Education
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Author:
STEMToolkit Administrator
Date Added:
06/16/2021
Air Has Matter
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CC BY-NC-SA
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This is a series of activities demonstrating that air has mass, takes up space, and can exert a force on objects enough to lift them.

Subject:
Chemistry
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carleton College
Provider Set:
Pedagogy in Action
Author:
Caroline Sorensen
Date Added:
10/04/2011
Air - Is It Really There?
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Educational Use
Rating
5.0 stars

By watching and performing several simple experiments, students develop an understanding of the properties of air: it has mass, it takes up space, it can move, it exerts pressure, it can do work.

Subject:
Physical Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Amy Kolenbrander
Daria Kotys-Schwartz
Denise Carlson
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Natalie Mach
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Air Power: Making a Hovercraft
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Educational Use
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In this video segment adapted from ZOOM, cast members make their own hovercraft and demonstrate how the air leaking out of a balloon can make a plastic plate hover above a table.

Subject:
Engineering
Chemistry
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
PBS LearningMedia
Provider Set:
PBS Learning Media: Multimedia Resources for the Classroom and Professional Development
Author:
National Science Foundation
WGBH Educational Foundation
Date Added:
01/22/2004
Air Pressure
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Educational Use
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0.0 stars

Air pressure is pushing on us all the time although we do not usually notice it. In this activity, students learn about the units of pressure and get a sense of just how much air pressure is pushing on them.

Subject:
Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Alex Conner
Geoffrey Hill
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Tom Rutkowski
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Air Quality InQuiry (AQ-IQ)
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Educational Use
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Students engage in hands-on, true-to-life research experiences on air quality topics chosen for personal interest through a unit composed of one lesson and five associated activities. Using a project-based learning approach suitable for secondary science classrooms and low-cost air quality monitors, students gain the background and skills needed to conduct their own air quality research projects. The curriculum provides: 1) an introduction to air quality science, 2) data collection practice, 3) data analysis practice, 4) help planning and conducting a research project and 5) guidance in interpreting data and presenting research in professional poster format. The comprehensive curriculum requires no pre-requisite knowledge of air quality science or engineering. This curriculum takes advantage of low-cost, next-generation, open-source air quality monitors called Pods. These monitors were developed in a mechanical engineering lab at the University of Colorado Boulder and are used for academic research as well as education and outreach. The monitors are made available for use with this curriculum through AQ-IQ Kits that may be rented from the university by teachers. Alternatively, nearly the entire unit, including the student-directed projects, could also be completed without an air quality monitor. For example, students can design research projects that utilize existing air quality data instead of collecting their own, which is highly feasible since much data is publically available. In addition, other low-cost monitors could be used instead of the Pods. Also, the curriculum is intentionally flexible, so that the lesson and its activities can be used individually. See the Other section for details about the Pods and ideas for alternative equipment, usage without air quality monitors, and adjustments to individually teach the lesson and activities.

Subject:
Career and Technical Education
Physical Science
Material Type:
Unit of Study
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Ashley Collier
Ben Graves
Daniel Knight
Drew Meyers
Eric Ambos
Eric Lee
Erik Hotaling
Evan Coffey
Hanadi Adel Salamah
Joanna Gordon
Katya Hafich
Michael Hannigan
Nicholas VanderKolk
Olivia Cecil
Victoria Danner
Date Added:
02/07/2017
An Arm and a Leg
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Educational Use
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As an introduction to bioengineering, student teams are given the engineering challenge to design and build prototype artificial limbs using a simple syringe system and limited resources. As part of a NASA lunar mission scenario, they determine which substance, water (liquid) or air (gas), makes the appendages more efficient.

Subject:
Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Battling for Oxygen
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Educational Use
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Using gumdrops and toothpicks, students conduct a large-group, interactive ozone depletion model. Students explore the dynamic and competing upper atmospheric roles of the protective ozone layer, the sun's UV radiation and harmful human-made CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons).

Subject:
Engineering
Atmospheric Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Amy Kolenbrander
Denise Carlson
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Natalie Mach
Tom Rutkowski
Tyman Stephens
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Breathe In, Breathe Out
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Educational Use
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Students are introduced to the respiratory system, the lungs and air. They learn about how the lungs and diaphragm work, how air pollution affects lungs and respiratory functions, some widespread respiratory problems, and how engineers help us stay healthy by designing machines and medicines that support respiratory health and function.

Subject:
Engineering
Anatomy/Physiology
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Denise W. Carlson
Jay Shah
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Cars from the Future
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Educational Use
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0.0 stars

In some cities, especially large cities such as Los Angeles or Mexico City, visible air pollution is a major problem, both for human health and the environment. A variety of sources contribute to air pollution, but personal vehicles account for one of the main sources. Though each car has relatively low emissions when compared to vehicles of the 1970s, there are so many more cars on the road now that their emissions play a large role in overall pollution. In this activity, students think about alternate ways to power a vehicle to reduce emissions. Student teams design an eco-friendly car using the engineering design process, and make a presentation to showcase their product.

Subject:
Engineering
Atmospheric Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Abigail Watrous
Denali Lander
Janet Yowell
Katherine Beggs
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Cleaning Air with Balloons
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Students observe and discuss a simple balloon model of an electrostatic precipitator to better understand how this pollutant recovery method functions in cleaning industrial air pollution.

Subject:
Engineering
Atmospheric Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Amy Kolenbrander
Denise Carlson
Gwendolyn Frank
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Natalie Mach
Sharon Perez
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Cleaning the Air
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Educational Use
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Engineers design methods of removing particulate matter from industrial sources to minimize negative effects of air pollution. In this activity, students will undertake a similar engineering challenge as they design and build a filter to remove pepper from an air stream without blocking more than 50% of the air.

Subject:
Engineering
Environmental Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Ben Heavner
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Melissa Straten
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Climate: A Complex Interaction
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CC BY-SA
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This article continues an examination of each of the seven essential principles of climate literacy on which the online magazine Beyond Weather and the Water Cycle is structured. Principle 2 covers the complex interactions among the components of the Earth system. The author discusses the scientific concepts underlying the interactions and expands the discussion with diagrams, photos, and online resources.

Subject:
Education
Life Science
Chemistry
Physics
Material Type:
Teaching/Learning Strategy
Provider:
Ohio State University College of Education and Human Ecology
Provider Set:
Beyond Weather and the Water Cycle
Author:
Kimberly Lightle
National Science Foundation
Date Added:
05/30/2012
Combustion and Air Quality: Emissions Monitoring
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Educational Use
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As a class, students use a low-cost air quality monitor (a rentable “Pod”) to measure the emissions from different vehicles. By applying the knowledge about combustion chemistry that they gain during the pre-activity reading (or lecture presentation, alternatively), students predict how the emissions from various vehicles will differ in terms of pollutants (CO2, VOCs and NO2), and explain why. After data collection, students examine the time series plots as a class—a chance to interpret the results and compare them to their predictions. Short online videos and a current event article help to highlight the real-world necessity of understanding and improving vehicle emissions. Numerous student handouts are provided. The activity content may be presented independently of its unit and without using an air quality monitor by analyzing provided sample data.

Subject:
Career and Technical Education
Mathematics
Measurement and Data
Physical Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Ashley Collier
Ben Graves
Daniel Knight
Drew Meyers
Eric Ambos
Eric Lee
Erik Hotaling
Hanadi Adel Salamah
Joanna Gordon
Katya Hafich
Michael Hannigan
Nicholas VanderKolk
Olivia Cecil
Victoria Danner
Date Added:
02/07/2017
Dangerous Air
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

By tracing the movement of radiation released during an accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, students see how air pollution, like particulate matter, can become a global issue.

Subject:
Engineering
Atmospheric Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Amy Kolenbrander
Denise Carlson
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Natalie Mach
Tyman Stephens
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Defy Gravity! Balancing Balls on Air
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Educational Use
Rating
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In this video segment adapted from ZOOM, cast members use a hair dryer to balance a ball in a stream of air, seemingly defying gravity.

Subject:
Chemistry
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
PBS LearningMedia
Provider Set:
PBS Learning Media: Multimedia Resources for the Classroom and Professional Development
Author:
National Science Foundation
WGBH Educational Foundation
Date Added:
01/22/2004