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  • American Museum of Natural History
After-School Educator's Guide to OLogy: Paleontology
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This comprehensive guide to the Paleontology section of OLogy, the Museum's science Web site for kids, explains how after-school educators can make the most of the site. It focuses on dinosaurs because that's what kids are most familiar with. An introduction to the Big Ideas in Paleontology brings educators up to speed on how scientists study early life on Earth, what kind of information the fossil record contains, and why dinosaurs are not extinct. A Site Map shows where to locate all Paleontology resources, from stories to quizzes to hands-on-activities. Paleontology units offer ways to combine different types of resources around a topic. Follow-up questions encourage inquiry-based learning. Wrap-Up Paleo Projects suggests fun ways to wrap up any of these units. A Links and Resources section lists recommended paleontology-related books and Web sites for educators and for kids. A glossary of paleontological terms wraps up the guide.

Subject:
Education
Life Science
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Antarctica in Images
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This classroom activity introduces students to Antarctica's organisms, landscapes, and seascapes. After examining the images in the photo gallery, students work in small groups to discuss their conclusions about the living conditions on this continent. The printable three-page handout includes a series of questions to help students structure their thoughts while viewing the gallery images and a group worksheet that guides students through a discussion of their evolving hypotheses and conclusions.

Subject:
Atmospheric Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Arthropod Jeopardy
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In this Biodiversity Counts activity, students use their arthropod knowledge to create and play a classroom Jeopardy-style game. The printable five-page PDF handout includes a series of inquiry-based questions to help students identify what they already know about arthropods and step-by-step directions for developing Jeopardy-style quiz questions.

Subject:
Life Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Game
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Becoming a Cultural Researcher
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Students learn about material culture in this Moveable Museum lesson plan by taking a firsthand look at how culture influences the kinds of things we do. The 12-page PDF guide has educator materials including background information, teacher strategies, assessment guidelines, and detailed notes about the curriculum standards addressed. The Becoming a Cultural Researcher activity worksheet has a series of questions that prompts students to reflect on the material culture of daily activities, customs, or ceremonies. There is a kid-friendly glossary of related terms.

Subject:
Anthropology
Ethnic Studies
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Student Guide
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Bigger Than You Think
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In this classroom activity, middle school students examine the wide-ranging sizes of dinosaurs. The activity opens with background information for teachers about the enormous range of dinosaur sizes. In a classroom discussion, students describe the size of some dinosaurs. Then, working from an existing grid, students create either a to-scale drawing of a Tyrannosaurus head or a life-size drawing of a Protoceratops.

Subject:
Life Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Building a Simple Refracting Telescope
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Students learn about refracting telescopes in this Moveable Museum unit, in which they construct a simple telescope. The three-page PDF guide includes suggested general background readings for educators, activity notes, step-by-step directions, and information about where to obtain supplies.

Subject:
Astronomy
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Building a Spectroscope
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Students learn about the variations of white light in this Moveable Museum unit, in which they build a pocket-sized spectroscope from readily available materials and examine different light sources in school, at home, and around their town or city. The seven-page PDF guide includes suggested general background readings for educators, activity and safety notes, step-by-step directions, and a spectroscope template.

Subject:
Astronomy
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Calculating a Biodiversity Index
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In this Biodiversity Counts activity, students learn how scientists calculate a biodiversity index using a page from the phone book as their data source. The printable five-page PDF handout includes a series of inquiry-based questions to get students thinking about what they already know about biodiversity and how living and non-living things are connected, step-by-step directions for calculating a biodiversity index, and a worksheet that includes brainstorming questions and areas for recording answers.

Subject:
Life Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Crash Course? (ScienceWorld)
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This online article is from the Museum's Science Explorations, a collaboration between AMNH and Scholastic designed to promote science literacy. Written for students in grades 6-10, this article from Science World magazine has an interview with AMNH astrophysicist Mike Shara, in which he explains what space objects are and what happens when they collide. There are Web links that offer further opportunities for learning about space objects and their collisions.

Subject:
Astronomy
Material Type:
Data Set
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Author:
Nancy Honovich
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Crazy Cold Air
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In this classroom activity, students record the temperatures in and around a walk-in refrigerator or freezer to see how cold air behaves when it meets warmer air. The printable five-page handout includes a series of inquiry-based questions to get students thinking about how the temperature of air changes its density, detailed experiment directions and a worksheet that helps students use the experiment results to obtain insight into the wind patterns of Antarctica.

Subject:
Chemistry
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Discover Biodiversity at the American Museum of Natural History
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This activity sheet for young children is designed to be completed during a visit to the Museum's Hall of Biodiversity. The printable two-page handout includes an explanation of biodiversity, a "scavenger hunt" and a writing and drawing activity using the Forest Floor Diorama, a classification activity using the Spectrum of Life Wall and a treasure hunt using the Rain Forest Diorama.

Subject:
Life Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Discover Reptiles and Amphibians at the American Museum of Natural History
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This activity sheet for young children is designed to be completed during a visit to the Museum's Reptiles and Amphibians Hall. The printable two-page handout includes notes about the distinguishing characteristics of reptile and amphibian eggs and a hall map that directs students to 10 numbered display cases, with at least one observation activity to be completed at each.

Subject:
Life Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Author:
Sharon Simpson
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Discover the Hall of Planet Earth at the American Museum of Natural History
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This activity sheet for young children is designed to be completed during a visit to the Museum's Hall of Planet Earth. The printable two-page handout includes notes on the rough terrain found on the ocean floors, a hall map that directs kids to seven numbered areas with observation activities, a hall-wide writing and drawing activity for the rocks on display and a collection of fun facts.

Subject:
Geology
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Fabric Test
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In this classroom activity, students work in groups to test a variety of fabrics to determine each one's effectiveness as an insulator. The printable five-page handout includes a series of inquiry-based questions to get students thinking about the conditions in Antarctica and the properties of specialty fabrics, illustrated activity directions and a worksheet that includes areas for recording their experiment data, and questions that prompt students to compare their results against their original hypotheses.

Subject:
Physical Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Find a Plume, Find a Vent
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This classroom activity gives students an appreciation for the difficulties deep sea researchers must face in order to find hydrothermal vents. Working in small groups, students can complete this Web investigation in a single class period. The printable handout includes a series of inquiry-based questions that prompt students to use what they already know about mid-ocean ridges to hypothesize about how scientists locate deep sea vents, detailed directions for a Web research project that takes them on a virtual deep sea journey investigating hydrothermal vents, and a worksheet that helps students apply their building knowledge to locate a vent in the northern Pacific Ocean.

Subject:
Life Science
Ecology
Forestry and Agriculture
Oceanography
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
The Formation of the Solar System
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About 4.6 billion years ago, a cloud of interstellar dust, ice crystals, and gas collapsed to form a rapidly rotating disk with a young sun at its center: our solar system. This comic strip, a supplement to the Hall of Meteorites Educator's Guide, explains the processes that led to the creation of the planets and the asteroid belt.

Subject:
Astronomy
Material Type:
Data Set
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Fossil Find
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In this classroom activity, middle school students simulate a "dinosaur dig." The activity opens with background information for teachers about fossils. Working in groups, students excavate fossil sites created in advance by the teacher, or other group of students, and try to reconstruct a chicken skeleton. The activity closes with a two-page student worksheet that directs students to diagram the fossil site and includes probing questions to help them decode their findings.

Subject:
Life Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Galactic Census
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In this Digital Universe activity, students learn firsthand about estimation strategies and observational bias. They estimate how common several celestial objects are based on their location and make inferences about larger population patterns throughout the galaxy. The printable PDF activity includes illustrated step-by-step instructions for the following hands-on and computer-assisted activities: Introduction to Celestial Objects, Broad Distribution of Objects in the Galaxy and Making Galactic Estimates

Subject:
Astronomy
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014
Gottesman Hall of Planet Earth: Elementary School Educator's Guide
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The Museum's Gottesman Hall of Planet Earth allows visitors to explore geologic time and to gain an understanding of the methods scientists use to study vast Earth systems. This comprehensive guide to the hall's resources is designed to help you maximize your trip to the Museum with elementary school students. It includes detailed background information, a map of the hall that shows the five sections of the exhibit and several pre-, during-, and post-visit activities to do with your students. There is a listing of related Museum exhibits and suggestions for how to tie them into your field trip and notes about how the topics featured in the hall address performance standards and curriculum requirements.

Subject:
Geology
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Provider:
American Museum of Natural History
Provider Set:
American Museum of Natural History
Date Added:
10/15/2014