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Classroom Activities

  • Estimating Populations Using Mark-Recapture Mark-recapture is one of the most common methods used by ecologists to determine population size. Engage your students with this exciting activity to get hands-on experience with the Mark-recapture method. View »
  • Modeling the Coriolis Effect The Coriolis effect can be a tough concept to explain, but it's fairly easy to model. Try this simple and inexpensive balloon activity. View »
  • Plant Biodiversity Field Activity This field activity introduces students to biodiversity through the study of plants and animals in a designated area. But here’s the twist—instead of using a quadrat to designate the area of study, students use a Hula Hoop® instead. View »
  • Teaching with Ecosystem Aquariums By creating and maintaining an aquarium ecosystem in the classroom, students can understand the web of relationships that link organisms to one another, and they can develop a growing sensitivity to living things and what they need to survive. View »
  • Air Pollution: Tropospheric Ozone, Particulates, and Indoor Carbon Dioxide "Bad" ozone, dangerous particulates, and significant CO2 buildup—in and around your school! Access a series of field tests students can use to measure your school’s tropospheric ozone levels and the number of deposited particulates in different locations, and to study how carbon dioxide concentrations indoors vary throughout the school day. 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 »
  • Two Quick, Easy Ways to Collect Insects for Diversity Studies Get your students outside and engaged with the world around them. In this activity, we’ll look at 2 techniques that make collecting insects in the field quick and easy. Use one or both to collect insects from microenvironments around your school and then examine diversity using Shannon’s or Simpson’s diversity index. View »
  • End the Year with an Outdoor Classroom Everything’s better in the great outdoors. Celebrate the warmer weather and engage your students during the final stretch of the school year with these fun activities. View »
  • In a Fog? Cloud Formation Use this activity to explore the reasons for cloud formation. View »
  • Carolina Quick Tips®: Hunting for Prey In this activity, students investigate energy transfer among organisms by assembling a food chain energy pyramid and dissecting an owl pellet. Adapted from the Building Blocks of Science® unit Matter and Energy in Ecosystems. View »
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