Parents and Educators: find resources for at-home and distance learning

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100 minutes
0

3 / 4
Environmental Education, Science

In this lesson, students learn that many public spaces are ecosystems with living and nonliving things, and that each part of the ecosystem—whether alive or not—plays an important role in the ecosystem. In the first session, students create a life-sized web to identify interactions among the living and nonliving things within a public space. They experiment to see what happens when one element is removed from the web, and they discuss how human and natural changes to the environment can cause disasters. In the second session, students choose a public space in their community and assume the role of "public space guardian" of that place. In this capacity, they take a close look at the space, detailing the living and nonliving things within it. Then they identify rules that will help in caring for the living and nonliving things within "their" public space.

100 minutes
0

3 / 4
Environmental Education, Science

In this lesson, students shed light on the subject of light pollution. They begin by observing the difference between natural light and artificial light. Then they watch a video about our "losing the dark." Next, students discuss some of the negative impacts that excessive light has on humans and wildlife. Students then participate in a fun, active simulation, role-playing what it's like to be a sea turtle hatchling trying to make its way to the sea. In the second session, students take a close look at streetlight designs. They experiment with different designs using a flashlight and paper plate, and then they consolidate what they've learned with a couple of worksheets and a tour around the school building. At the end of the session, students are encouraged to take materials home to share with their parents and to complete an at-home investigation of the lights in their neighborhood. Students and their parents will never look at streetlights the same way again!

60 minutes
0

3 / 4 / 5
Science

The class uses an energy flow diagram to represent transfer of energy from the sun to food to people. Then small groups create dinner menus to represent energy flow through particular food chains and analyze the roles of the sun, producers, consumers, and decomposers in ecosystems.

After brainstorming the connection between energy and food, the class creates an energy flow diagram to represent the transfer of energy from the sun to food to people. Students then attend a mystery dinner party where they gather as organisms into their respective ecosystems, create a dinner menu to represent energy flow through a food chain, identify patterns among different food chains and ecosystems, and guess the mystery host.

120 minutes
0

3 / 4 / 5
Science

Students use observations of domino chains and Rube Goldberg machines to learn about different forms of energy, energy transfer and transformation, and energy flow through systems.

During Activity 1, students connect their observations of domino chains with the definitions of energy and systems. In small groups, students learn more about different forms of energy and practice identifying these forms of energy in everyday situations. During Activity 2, students use their online or in-class observations of Rube Goldberg machines to learn about energy transfer, transformation, and the law of conservation of energy.

50 minutes
0

3 / 4
Environmental Education, Science

In this lesson, students learn more about the concept of air quality. They are guided to boost their IAQ, or indoor air quality, via a presentation that first introduces key factors that influence indoor air quality and then covers ways to improve indoor air quality. Students apply what they've learned by participating in a sensory activity to experience how quickly a smell can travel through the air. Then they work in teams to brainstorm ways they can use their senses to detect problems in air quality and come up with solutions to boost IAQ.

100 minutes
5

3 / 4
Environmental Education, Science

In this lesson, students explore air as a type of matter. In the first session, they watch a presentation that defines matter as anything that takes up space. They learn about the three common states of matter and see and discuss how solids and liquids take up space. Then, to help students understand how we can be sure that invisible gases like air take up space, they follow along as the teacher performs two demonstrations. In the second session, students learn that in addition to taking up space, all matter also has mass. To help them understand the concept of mass, students build a simple balance scale and use it to verify that air has mass and that different objects have different amounts of mass. At the end of the session, students reflect on the importance of protecting this important type of matter called air, even though it is often invisible to us.

380 minutes
0

Kindergarten / 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8
Reading or Language Arts

Developing a sense of place is one piece of the puzzle in making our schools with a focus on sustainability.
– David Sobel, Mapmaking with Children (1998)

In this series of activities, students reflect on their relationship with their community and how their place contributes to the health and safety of all citizens. By completing various mapping and special place reflection activities, students define their neighborhood and community. Students gain a sense of where they live, are prepared to create tools for evaluating their neighborhood, and have the ability to identify problems or concerns that need improvement.

Essential Questions

  • What is special about my place?
  • Why should I care about our place?
  • How am I connected to my place?
  • What can I do to make my place safer and healthier for all citizens?
45 minutes
0

3 / 4
Physical Education, Science

In this lesson, students learn that sugar is a complex, energy-giving carbohydrate that can be delicious to eat in moderation but harmful to the body in excess. They identify some of the chronic diseases related to the overconsumption of refined sugars and learn the health benefits of minimizing the sugar in their diet. Students see that sugar has many names, and they learn how to identify those names in the ingredients list on nutrition labels. They become sugar sleuths as they learn how to find the true sugar content of processed foods and to differentiate healthy food choices from unhealthy ones. Students consolidate what they’ve learned by identifying the amount of refined sugar in a number of food items they bring to class and visually representing that amount with stacks of sugar cubes.

90 minutes
0

3 / 4
Environmental Education, Science

In the first session of this lesson, students explore research-based information about healthy foods and food groups and how to create healthy meals. They learn that food quality, food variety, and portion size are important considerations for making healthy eating choices and that staying physically active is also a key part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. In the second session, students have an opportunity to demonstrate what they’ve learned and hone their understanding by participating in a fun block-stacking game. This lesson provides a great opportunity to involve students’ families and/or the community; the Extend tab offers several suggestions for lengthening the reach of these important concepts.

How do vehicles move?