Dendrochronologists use tree rings to go back in time to learn more about past climate. Using straws to recreate tree rings, you can learn how dendrochronologists work.
The following activity is designed to help you learn to listen, read, and communicate in both written and oral formats about the sky.
In this activity, students will explore local places with wild elements, such as wildlife refuges. Students also will create maps showing spatial relationships between wild places and school, and they will find creative ways to record experiences.
Learn about the Earth's magnetic poles and paleomagnetism in this activity from Consortium for Ocean Leadership.
Soil is a vital component of almost every ecosystem, and its health often determines the viability of the whole ecosystem. If a soil cannot support the living organisms within it – such as insects, bacteria, fungi, and plant roots – then it is likely that the entire ecosystem will suffer. The same is true on farms. The success of crops is dependent on the health of the soil.
When warm and cold air masses meet, a thunderstorm can grow. Thunderstorms also cause heavy rain, flash flooding, hail, strong winds and tornadoes. In this activity, you will learn about convection and how air moves.
We usually think of caves forming as rocks are dissolved and the particles are washed away, leaving hollow spaces behind. This activity simulates the way that dissolution, a chemical weathering process, leads to the formation of caves.
Caves form through a variety of natural processes depending on their local geology and climate. Flowing lava, melting ice, dissolving rock, and crashing waves are the major processes that form these wondrous environments. In this activity, students will observe a model of how the most common type of cave — solution caves — form.
Per student or small group:
• 4 ounces of modeling clay
• Sugar cubes (3-6 per cave)
• See-through bowl (cutting the top off a 2-liter bottle works well)
If you were an alien visiting Earth for the first time, you might remark on the diverse and incredible landscapes and patterns around majestic mountains, green forests, rolling grasslands, and turquoise oceans. You also might recognize geometries of civilization and changing weather patterns. All this can be explored from space. In this activity you will explore our planet using Google Earth and locate natural and man-made patterns and landscapes on Earth’s surface that inspire you.
A refuge is a place where you can record observations of seasonal changes to plants, trees, and wildlife. You can use GPS (global positioning system) data to mark an observation spot and record your observations. Then, if you can, visit the same national wildlife refuge during other seasons in the year to document changes in the natural world.