Are You a Water Waster?

Are You a Water Waster? Activity Source: Education Place, Copyright © Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Company. All rights reserved. Try this experiment to find out if you’re a water waster. Materials clean, empty, one-quart milk cartons new toothbrushes toothpaste Procedure Brush your teeth with the water running. At the same time, have another person fill the containers with the running water-until you finish brushing. Record how many quart containers are filled. Then use that information to figure out how much water your family uses to brush their teeth. [Read More]

Burning Issues

Burning Issues Activity Source: The Canadian Forestry Association Learning Outcomes Students will become familiar with fire terminology, realize how fire can be used as a management tool, and better understand the factors that need to be considered when planning a prescribed burn. Summary In this activity the students will form opinions around fire management issues. They will then work in small groups to get more information around the issues and make a more informed decision. [Read More]

Chemistry of Burning

Chemistry of Burning Activity Source: The University of Texas at Austin Bureau of Economic Geology. Provided by Association of American State Geologists. Adapted with permission. Why is CO2 increasing in the atmosphere? Who is doing it? Many people think that CO2 is “pollution,” so that clean burning should be a way to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions. In this demonstration, we review basic chemistry (see illustration) to realize that producing CO2 is an inevitable product of burning any fossil fuel. [Read More]

Connecting With Nature

Connecting With Nature Activity Source: Adapted with permission by U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service The “Blue Goose” has been the symbol of the National Wildlife Refuge System since it was first drawn by Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist J.N. “Ding” Darling, one of the greatest supporters of wildlife conservation in the 20th century. President Theodore Roosevelt designated Florida’s Pelican Island as the first wildlife refuge in 1903. Now the National Wildlife Refuge System includes more than 550 refuges. [Read More]

Conservation in Action

Conservation in Action Activity Source: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Adapted with permission. “The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.” --Rachel Carson, 1954 The second full week of October is not only Earth Science Week—it is also National Wildlife Refuge Week! During this time, you are encouraged to consider the legacy of Rachel Carson, an early leader in the environmental conservation movement, and the resource management activities of the U. [Read More]

Cookie Mining

Cookie Mining Activity Source: Adapted from Women in Mining Education Foundation Activities Purpose The purpose of this activity is to give the player an introduction to the economics of mining. Each player buys “property,” purchases the “mining equipment,” pays for the “mining operation,” and finally pays for the “reclamation.” In return, the player receives money for the “ore mined.” The object of the game is to develop the mine, safeguard the environment, and make as much money as possible. [Read More]

Cupcake Core Sampling

Cupcake Core Sampling Activity Source: Adapted from Women in Mining Education Foundation Activities This activity is ideal for a small group of students, a youth group, or a parent-child activity. Purpose Trying to “see” what is beneath the surface of the Earth is one of the jobs of a geologist. Rather than digging up vast tracts of land to expose an oil field or to find some coal-bearing strata, core samples can be taken and analyzed to determine the likely composition of the Earth’s interior. [Read More]

Discovering Fossils

Discovering Fossils Activity Source: Adapted with permission from the National Park Service. A fossil is any evidence of past life preserved in a geologic context, such as within rock or sediment. This activity allows you to explore the process used by paleontologists — scientists who study fossils to understand ancient landscapes, climate, and life on Earth — to find and identify fossils. A day or two before beginning this lesson, the teacher must prepare “fossils” for students to excavate: [Read More]

Engineer a Satellite

Engineer a Satellite Activity Source: NASA. Adapted with permission. Is the ozone hole getting smaller? How much rain is in the cloud of a hurricane? How much sea ice is melting in the Arctic? For over 50 years, NASA scientists have been asking questions and collecting data from space-based satellites to study Earth’s changing environment. Engineers and scientists are essential partners in this process. From the scientists’ questions, engineers help design instruments to get the measurements needed to help answer these questions. [Read More]

Enliven Data With Art

Enliven Data With Art Activity Source: Science Friday, Adapted with permission. There are many reasons people look to art for expression. Art is a means to express emotion, document events, and convey information. In this exercise, you will select a scientific graph that addresses an important real-world issue, create an illustrated graph from that original, and craft an effective artist’s statement that connects the two. Once you’re done, keep an eye out for other ways you can merge science with art. [Read More]