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Free Next Gen Activities

 

Free Activities with NGSS* Performance Expectations
Carolina understands tight budgets. That’s why we developed Carolina Essentials™. This series of free activities follow NGSS-prescribed teaching and learning methods that include phenomena, big questions, student investigations, modeling activities, and assessment questions.

 

  • Termite Pheromones This investigation demonstrates how soldier termites sense pheromones. Students observe and document motions of termites under 2 different conditions: pencil circles and pen circles. View »
  • Comparative Metamorphosis In this investigation, students observe development of 3 different insects from the larva or nymph stage through the adult stage. They also complete a comparative development study of metamorphosis, observing complete and incomplete metamorphosis. View »
  • Wisconsin Fast Plants® Monohybrid Crosses Inquiry In this scientific inquiry activity, students germinate F2 generation Wisconsin Fast Plants® seeds and identify the phenotypes and possible genotypes of the F2 generation plants. View »
  • Introduction to Wisconsin Fast Plants® Phenotypes In this inquiry activity, students investigate phenotypes using Wisconsin Fast Plants® seeds. After the seeds germinate, students identify the phenotypes and the possible associated genotype. View »
  • Which Leaf Shape Can Hold the Most Butterfly Eggs? In this elementary-level activity, students investigate the relationship between leaf shape and the number of butterfly eggs that can be laid on a leaf (grades K–5). View »
  • Using Algae Beads as a Model for Photosynthesis Introduce students to photosynthesis with fresh water algae. By creating algae beads (made of algae and sodium alginate solution), they indirectly observe the change in concentration of oxygen in beads that are exposed to different amounts of light. View »
  • Photosynthesis Introduce students to photosynthesis in a visual way. As Elodea uses carbon dioxide from an initial solution, a change in pH occurs, causing a color change in the solution. View »
  • Invertebrate Biodiversity and Abiotic Factors Understanding the relationships between biotic diversity and abiotic factors in an ecosystem can be a difficult task. Using soil invertebrates, students can identify both the number of species present in a soil sample and the number of individuals within a species. View »
  • Pill Bug Behavior Choices This introductory investigation into animal behavior uses pill bugs and choice chambers. Students begin with an experiment to test how pill bugs respond to humidity and can go on to design an inquiry to test another environmental factor. View »
  • The Ups and Downs of Weather Use this demonstration to show how temperature, pressure, and the Coriolis effect drive weather. View »
  • Thermochemistry: An Endothermic Reaction In this thermochemistry demonstration, students observe an extreme, spontaneous endothermic reaction between 2 solid compounds, measure changes in temperature, and make observations. View »
  • Equilibrium and Milk of Magnesia Rainbow This demonstration shows a colorful reaction that is a good introduction to Le Châtelier’s principle, solubility, stoichiometry, neutralization reactions, and reaction rates. View »
  • Carbon Snake In this teacher-directed demonstration of an exothermic reaction, students observe the dehydration of a carbohydrate using concentrated sulfuric acid. View »
  • Water Quality Awareness Use this engaging activity to increase student awareness of the current state of global water quality and availability. View »
  • Sense of Smell and Olfactory Fatigue In this introductory activity, students use fragrant oils to determine the time of olfactory fatigue for both of their nostrils and examine the link between smell and memories. View »
  • An Inquiry into Seed Germination This NGSS-aligned activity is a student inquiry into factors that affect seed germination.Use it as an introduction for plant studies in biology or as an environmental impact investigation in earth science, environmental science, or agricultural science. View »
  • Ocular Dominance How does the brain process information from both eyes? This short activity introduces the senses, sensation and perception, and evolutionary differences in predator-prey relationships. View »
  • Reaction Time and Practice Introduce students to reflexes and reactions, the nervous system, or learning theory with this engaging activity. View »
  • Constructing and Testing a Dichotomous Key Model for Fruit This investigation requires students to create and test a model for fruit classification. Use it as an introductory inquiry into taxonomy for life science classes or as an NGSS Dimension 1 Practice in life science, botany, or agricultural science classes. View »
  • Hydroponic Nutrient Solution After a structured investigation of a hydroponic technology, students design an experiment to test different nutrient solutions. View »
  • A Visual Introduction to Ionic and Net Ionic Equations With this activity students explore the phenomenon of chemical precipitation and construct an atomic level model of precipitation using ionic and net ionic equations. View »
  • What Do Plants Need To Grow? Explore the phenomenon of plant growth with this guided inquiry activity. Students use seed disks to determine the amount of sunlight and water plants need to grow. For grades K-2. View »
  • Materials Plants Need to Grow Examine the phenomenon of plant growth by designing and carrying out an experiment to show that plants need air and water to grow. For grade 5. View »
  • Homeostasis in Animals Introduce students to homeostasis with this activity. Gather data on set point or resting heart rate, exercise, collect data again, and relate the data to negative feedback mechanisms. View »
  • Comparing Land and Water Plants How are land and aquatic plants different? How are they alike? In this activity, students compare an aquatic plant, common duckweed, to a terrestrial plant of their choosing. For grade 2. View »
  • Survival: Sow Bug Behavior In this investigation, observe how sow bugs change their behavior when the dampness in their environment decreases. For grade 3. View »
  • Elephant Toothpaste This demonstration showing the decomposition of hydrogen peroxide, catalyzed by iodide ions, provides students with visual evidence of a chemical reaction. View »
  • Don’t Quote Me on That: Math Attitude Card Sort Students' preconceived notions about their skills can be as large a stumbling block as the lack of skills. This short activity helps students identify their applied mathematics strengths, weaknesses, and fears. View »
  • Law of Conservation of Mass Use this inquiry investigation as an introduction to the conservation of mass or as a confirmatory investigation. View »
  • Newton’s Laws, Friction, and Hovercraft With this Carolina Essentials™ activity, students build a simple hovercraft that illustrates Newton’s laws of motion and frictional force. View »
  • The Physics of Vision Get ready to investigate parallax and depth perception with 2 activities you can complete in less than 30 minutes. View »
  • Invertebrate Biodiversity with Berlese Funnels Using soil invertebrates, students identify the number of species present in a soil sample and the number of individuals within a species. With some simple math, they can then calculate the density of invertebrates in a plot. View »
  • Survival: Swim to the Light For this lab, students gather observations of algae in full light, change habitat conditions by reducing light, and apply the observations. Essential question: Can all organisms survive equally well in the same habitat? View »
  • Decomposition by Physarum polycephalum View »
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*Next Generation Science Standards® is a registered trademark of Achieve. Neither Achieve nor the lead states and partners that developed the Next Generation Science Standards were involved in the production of, and do not endorse, these products.