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Classroom Activities

  • Periodic Table Mystery P is less dense than S. S is an alkali metal. E is a noble gas. In this activity, students generate a periodic table from clues and predict the missing properties of several elements based on the elements’ locations in the table. View »
  • Invasion! Invasion! Engage life science students by investigating a fascinating topic: invasive species. Here’s a lesson plan outline to help you get started. Based on the KWL chart, it guides you through 4 days of invasive species activities that introduce the topic, guide research, and culminate in a research project. View »
  • More Paper Clip Chemistry Who knew the common paper clip could be such a versatile teaching assistant? This activity uses several paper clip styles to help students understand empirical formulas and relative masses. View »
  • Molecular Geometry with Balloons For some students, molecular geometry can be tricky to understand, but with this hands-on, engaging activity, it doesn’t have to be. View »
  • Teaching Chemistry with Manipulatives Manipulatives can help students (especially visual and tactile learners) understand abstract concepts by allowing them to “see” a chemical structure or process. We offer 2 ideas for creating manipulatives and how to use them. View »
  • A New Approach to Teaching Atomic Theory For chemistry teacher Siobhan Julian, teaching the history of atomic theory by lecture “was dry and tedious and boring for everyone involved.” Then she took a fresh approach—one that focuses on doing science to learn science history. View »
  • Ballistics: Student Investigation Sheet How do holes left by projectiles help forensic investigators? This activity asks students to calculate the angle of incidence of several perforations. View »
  • Bloodstain Analysis: Student Investigation Sheet Like other physical evidence, blood often links a scene, perpetrator, and victim. This activity describes how to determine the angle of incidence of a blood drop. View »
  • Five Photography Terms Every Arson and Crime Scene Photographer Should Know Despite its advantages, photography remains the least understood and developed skill for arson and crime scene investigators. Learn about key terms and techniques and try a fingerprint distortion activity. 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 »
  • Maggot Michelangelos: Using Artwork to Gain Behavioral Insight In this activity, students use house fly larvae to answer morphological and behavioral questions—all while creating unique artwork! Students create and test hypotheses, and learn about the complete metamorphosis life cycle. View »
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