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20/20 Vision
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Educational Use
Rating
4.0 stars

In this activity, students determine their own eyesight and calculate what a good average eyesight value for the class would be. Students learn about technologies to enhance eyesight and how engineers play an important role in the development of these technologies.

Subject:
Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Denali Lander
Janet Yowell
Joe Freidrichsen
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Date Added:
09/26/2008
3RC (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Compost)
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Educational Use
Rating
4.0 stars

In this lesson, students expand their understanding of solid waste management to include the idea of 3RC (reduce, reuse, recycle and compost). They will look at the effects of packaging decisions (reducing) and learn about engineering advancements in packaging materials and solid waste management. Also, they will observe biodegradation in a model landfill (composting).

Subject:
Engineering
Ecology
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Amy Kolenbrander
Janet Yowell
Jessica Todd
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Date Added:
09/18/2014
About Accuracy and Approximation
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Students learn about the concepts of accuracy and approximation as they pertain to robotics, gain insight into experimental accuracy, and learn how and when to estimate values that they measure. Students also explore sources of error stemming from the robot setup and rounding numbers.

Subject:
Engineering
Mathematics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Ronald Poveda
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Acid Attack
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Educational Use
Rating
3.0 stars

In this activity, students explore the effect of chemical erosion on statues and monuments. They use chalk to see what happens when limestone is placed in liquids with different pH values. They also learn several things that engineers are doing to reduce the effects of acid rain.

Subject:
Engineering
Chemistry
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Janet Yowell
Jessica Todd
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Melissa Straten
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Acid Rain Effects
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Students conduct a simple experiment to model and explore the harmful effects of acid rain (vinegar) on living (green leaf and eggshell) and non-living (paper clip) objects.

Subject:
Engineering
Environmental Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Amy Kolenbrander
Denise Carlson
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Natalie Mach
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Acid (and Base) Rainbows
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Educational Use
Rating
4.0 stars

Students are introduced to the differences between acids and bases and how to use indicators, such as pH paper and red cabbage juice, to distinguish between them.

Subject:
Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Amy Kolenbrander
Denise Carlson
Gwendolyn Frank
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Natalie Mach
Sharon Perez
Date Added:
09/26/2008
Adding Helpful Carrier Devices to Crutches
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Educational Use
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People using crutches have their hands occupied, which makes it difficult to carry books and other items they want to have handy. Student teams are challenged to design assistive devices that modify crutches to help people carry things such as books and school supplies. Given a list of constraints, including a device weight limit and minimum load capacity, groups brainstorm ideas and then make detailed plans for their best solutions. They create prototypes and then test for functionality by loading them and using them, making improvements with each iteration. At a concluding design expo, teams present their concepts and demonstrate their final prototype devices.

Subject:
Mathematics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Date Added:
02/07/2017
Aerogels in Action
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Students experiment with a new material—aerogel. Aerogel is a synthetic (human-made) porous ultra-light (low-density) material, in which the liquid component of a gel is replaced with a gas. In this activity, student pairs use aerogel to simulate the environmental engineering application of cleaning up oil spills. In a simple and fun way, this activity incorporates density calculations, the material effects of surface area, and hydrophobic and hydrophilic properties.

Subject:
Chemistry
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Claudia K. Gunsch
Desiree L. Plata
Lauren K. Redfern
Osman Karatüm
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Afterimage
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
Rating
0.0 stars

In this activity about light and perception, learners discover how a flash of light can create a lingering image called an "afterimage" on the retina of the eye. Learners will be surprised when they continue to see an image of a bright object after staring at it and looking away. Use this activity to introduce learners to principles of optics and perception as well as to explain why the full moon often appears larger when it is on the horizon than when it is overhead. This lesson guide also includes a few extensions like how to take "afterimage photographs."

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Date Added:
12/01/2012
Agar Cell Diffusion
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
Rating
0.0 stars

All biological cells require the transport of materials across the plasma membrane into and out of the cell. By infusing cubes of agar with a pH indicator, and then soaking the treated cubes in vinegar, you can model how diffusion occurs in cells. Then, by observing cubes of different sizes, you can discover why larger cells might need extra help to transport materials.

Subject:
Chemistry
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Date Added:
11/14/2017
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 Pressure
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Educational Use
Rating
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
The Air We Breathe
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Students learn what causes air pollution and how to investigate the different pollutants that exist, such as toxic gases and particulate matter. They investigate the technologies developed by engineers to reduce air pollution.

Subject:
Engineering
Environmental Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Melissa Straten
Date Added:
09/18/2014
All About Water!
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Students learn about the differences between types of water (surface and ground), as well as the differences between streams, rivers and lakes. Then, they learn about dissolved organic matter (DOM), and the role it plays in identifying drinking water sources. Finally, students are introduced to conventional drinking water treatment processes.

Subject:
Engineering
Hydrology
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Jessica Ebert
Marissa H. Forbes
Date Added:
09/18/2014
All Caught Up
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Commercial fishing nets often trap "unprofitable" animals in the process of catching target species. In this activity, students experience the difficulty that fishermen experience while trying to isolate a target species when a variety of sea animals are found in the area of interest. Then the class discusses the large magnitude of this problem. Students practice data acquisition and analysis skills by collecting data and processing it to deduce trends on target species distribution. They conclude by discussing how bycatch impacts their lives and whether or not it is an important environmental issue that needs attention. As an extension, students use their creativity and innovative skills to design nets or other methods, theoretically and/or through hands-on prototyping, that fisherman could use to help avoid bycatch.

Subject:
Engineering
Ecology
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Amy Whitt
Matt Nusnbaum
Vicki Thayer
Date Added:
10/14/2015
All Caught Up: Bycatching and Design
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Educational Use
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Bycatch, the unintended capture of animals in commercial fishing gear, is a hot topic in marine conservation today. The surprisingly high level of bycatch about 25% of the entire global catch is responsible for the decline of hundreds of thousands of dolphins, whales, porpoises, seabirds and sea turtles each year. Through this curricular unit, students analyze the significance of bycatch in the global ecosystem and propose solutions to help reduce bycatch. They become familiar with current attempts to reduce the fishing mortality of these animals. Through the associated activities, the challenges faced today are reinforced and students are stimulated to brainstorm about possible engineering designs or policy changes that could reduce the magnitude of bycatch.

Subject:
Engineering
Ecology
Material Type:
Full Course
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Amy Whitt
Matt Nusnbaum
Vicki Thayer
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Alloy Advantage
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Educational Use
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Students define and classify alloys as mixtures, while comparing and contrasting the properties of alloys to those of pure substances. Students learn that engineers investigate the structures and properties of alloys for biomedical and transportation applications. Pre- and post-assessment handouts are provided.

Subject:
Physical Science
Chemistry
Material Type:
Lesson
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Janelle Orange
Date Added:
02/03/2017
Alloy the Way to Mars
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Acting as engineering teams, students take measurements and make calculations to determine the specific strength of various alloys and then report their data to the rest of the class. Using this class data, students write data-based recommendations to NASA regarding the best alloy to use in the construction of the engine and engine turbines for the Space Launch System that will eventually be used to transport astronauts to Mars.

Subject:
Mathematics
Physical Science
Chemistry
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Janelle Orange
Date Added:
02/03/2017
Aluminum-Air Battery
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
Rating
0.0 stars

Use aluminum foil, salt water, and activated charcoal to construct a simple battery strong enough to power a small motor or light.

Subject:
Chemistry
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Date Added:
11/14/2017
The Amazing Aerogel
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Aerogel, commonly called "frozen smoke," is a super-material with some amazing properties. In this lesson and its associated activity, students learn about this silicon-based solid with a sponge-like structure. Students also learn about density and how aerogel is 99.8% air by volume, making it the lightest solid known to humans! Further, students learn about basic heat transfer and how aerogel is a great thermal insulator, having 39 times more insulation than the best fiberglass insulation. Students also learn about the wide array of aerogel applications.

Subject:
Engineering
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Claudia K. Gunsch
Desiree L. Plata
Lauren K. Redfern
Osman Karatüm
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Ames Chair
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
Rating
0.0 stars

Short pieces of chenille stem arranged inside a box look like a random jumble of line segments—until viewed in the proper perspective.

Note: This activity is detail oriented and time intensive. It’s done by threading a long length of fishing line through twenty small holes, and then attaching short pieces of chenille stem to create a suspended pattern. When you look through a viewing hole, that random-looking pattern resolves into the form of a chair. If you think being a watchmaker is something you’d hate, then you might want to rethink doing this Snack!

Subject:
Physical Science
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Date Added:
04/03/2019
Anchors Away
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

In this activity, students discover the relationship between an object's mass and the amount of space it takes up (its volume). Students learn about the concept of displacement and how an object can float if it displaces enough water, and the concept of density and its relationship to mass and volume.

Subject:
Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Android Acceleration Application
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Educational Use
Rating
5.0 stars

In the first of two sequential lessons, students create mobile apps that collect data from an Android device's accelerometer and then store that data to a database. This lesson provides practice with MIT's App Inventor software and culminates with students writing their own apps for measuring acceleration. In the second lesson, students are given an app for an Android device, which measures acceleration. They investigate acceleration by collecting acceleration vs. time data using the accelerometer of a sliding Android device. Then they use the data to create velocity vs. time graphs and approximate the maximum velocity of the device.

Subject:
Computer Science
Engineering
Material Type:
Full Course
Unit of Study
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Brian Sandall
Scott Burns
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Angle Hunting
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
Rating
0.0 stars

In this activity, learners use a hand-made protractor to measure angles they find in playground equipment. Learners will observe that angle measurements do not change with distance, because they are distance invariant, or constant. Note: The "Pocket Protractor" activity should be done ahead as a separate activity (see related resource), but a standard protractor can be used as a substitute.

Subject:
Geometry
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Author:
Exploratorium
Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation
National Science Foundation
The Exploratorium
Date Added:
12/07/2010
Animals and Engineering
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Educational Use
Rating
5.0 stars

Students are introduced to the classification of animals and animal interactions. Students also learn why engineers need to know about animals and how they use that knowledge to design technologies that help other animals and/or humans. This lesson is part of a series of six lessons in which students use their growing understanding of various environments and the engineering design process, to design and create their own model biodome ecosystems.

Subject:
Engineering
Ecology
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Denise Carlson
Katherine Beggs
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Anti-Gravity Mirror
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
Rating
0.0 stars

In this demonstration, amaze learners by performing simple tricks using mirrors. These tricks take advantage of how a mirror can reflect your right side so it appears to be your left side. To make the effect more dramatic, cover the mirror with a cloth, climb onto the table, straddle the mirror, and then drop the cloth as you appear to "take off." This resource contains information about how this trick was applied during the making of the movie "Star Wars."

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Author:
California Department of Education
National Science Foundation
NEC Foundation of America
The Exploratorium
Date Added:
12/01/2012
Anti-Sound Spring
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
Rating
0.0 stars

In this simple exploration, a coiled phone cord slows the motion of a wave so you can see how a single pulse travels and what happens when two traveling wave pulses meet in the middle.

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Date Added:
11/20/2017
Aqua-Thrusters!
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

In this activity, students construct their own rocket-powered boat called an "aqua-thruster." These aqua-thrusters will be made from a film canister and will use carbon dioxide gas produced from a chemical reaction between an antacid tablet and water to propel it. Students observe the effect that surface area of this simulated solid rocket fuel has on thrust.

Subject:
Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Brian Argrow
Janet Yowell
Jay Shah
Jeff White
Luke Simmons
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Architects and Engineers
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Educational Use
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0.0 stars

Students explore the interface between architecture and engineering. In the associated hands-on activity, students act as both architects and engineers by designing and building a small parking garage.

Subject:
Architecture and Design
Engineering
Education
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Abigail Watrous
Denali Lander
Janet Yowell
Katherine Beggs
Melissa Straten
Sara Stemler
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Arctic Animal Robot
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Students create four-legged walking robots and measure how far they travel across different types of surfaces. They design and create "shoes" to add to the robots' feet and observe the effect of their modifications on the net distance traveled across the various surface types. This activity illustrates how the specialized locomotive features of different species help them to survive or thrive in their habitat environments. The activity is best as an enrichment tool that follows a lesson that introduces the concept of biological adaptation to students.

Subject:
Engineering
Electronic Technology
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Andrew Cave
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Are Dams Forever?
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Students learn that dams do not last forever. Similar to other human-made structures, such as roads and bridges, dams require regular maintenance and have a finite lifespan. Many dams built during the 1930-70s, an era of intensive dam construction, have an expected life of 50-100 years. Due to inadequate maintenance and/or for environmental reasons, some of these dams will fail or be removed in the next 50 years. The engineers with Splash Engineering have an ethical obligation to remind Thirsty County of the maintenance and lifespan concerns associated with its dam.

Subject:
Engineering
Hydrology
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Denali Lander
Denise W. Carlson
Jeff Lyng
Kristin Field
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Are We Alone?
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

The year is 2032 and your class has successfully achieved a manned mission to Mars! After several explorations of the Red Planet, one question is still being debated: "Is there life on Mars?" The class is challenged with the task of establishing criteria to help look for signs of life. Student explorers conduct a scientific experiment in which they evaluate three "Martian" soil samples and determine if any contain life.

Subject:
Engineering
Astronomy
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Chris Yakacki
Daria Kotys-Schwartz
Geoffrey Hill
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Are We Like Robots?
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

This lesson explores the similarities between how a human being moves/walks and how a robot moves. This allows students to see the human body as a system, i.e., from the perspective of an engineer. It shows how movement results from (i) decision making, i.e., deciding to walk and move, and (ii) implementing the decision by conveying the decision to the muscle (human) or motor (robot).

Subject:
Architecture and Design
Engineering
Material Type:
Lecture Notes
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Ajay Nair
Satish Nair
Date Added:
09/18/2014
The Artificial Bicep
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Students learn more about how muscles work and how biomedical engineers can help keep the muscular system healthy. Following the engineering design process, they create their own biomedical device to aid in the recovery of a strained bicep. They discover the importance of rest to muscle recovery and that muscles (just like engineers!) work together to achieve a common goal.

Subject:
Engineering
Health, Medicine and Nursing
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Denise W. Carlson
Jaime Morales
Jonathan MacNeil
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Assessing the Situation
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

Finding themselves in the middle of the Amazon rainforest after a plane crash, students use map scales, keys, and longitude and latitude coordinates to figure out where they are. Then they work in groups to generate ideas and make plans. They decide where they should go to be rescued, the distance to that location, the route to take, and make calculations to estimate walking travel time.

Subject:
Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Attack of the Raging River
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

In this lesson, the students will discover the relationship between an object's mass and the amount of space it takes up (its volume). The students will also learn about the concepts of displacement and density.

Subject:
Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Date Added:
09/18/2014
At the Doctor's
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

In this simulation of a doctor's office, students play the roles of physician, nurse, patients, and time-keeper, with the objective to improve the patient waiting time. They collect and graph data as part of their analysis. This serves as a hands-on example of using engineering principles and engineering design approaches (such as models and simulations) to research, analyze, test and improve processes.

Subject:
Engineering
Education
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Courtney Feliciani Patricio Rocha
Dayna Martinez
Tapas K. Das
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Audio Engineers: Sound Weavers
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Educational Use
Rating
0.0 stars

In this lesson, students are introduced to audio engineers. They discover in what type of an environment audio engineers work and exactly what they do on a day-to-day basis. Students come to realize that audio engineers help produce their favorite music and movies.

Subject:
Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Janet Yowell
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Michael Bendewald
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Avalanche
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
Rating
0.0 stars

What starts out as a cascade of well-mixed granular materials sorts itself into alternating layers of salt and sand.

Subject:
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Exploratorium
Provider Set:
Science Snacks
Date Added:
11/20/2017