Science in Personal and Social Perspectives (E)
National Science Education Standard: Science in Personal and Social Perspectives
- Personal health
- Characteristics and changes in populations
- Types of resources
- Changes in environments
- Science and technology in local challenges
- Personal health
- Populations, resources, and environments
- Natural hazards
- Risks and benefits
- Science and technology in society
- Personal and community health
- Population growth
- Natural resources
- Environmental quality
- Natural and human-induced hazards
- Science and technology in local, national, and global challenges
Mapping a Refuge
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.
Measure for Measure
Geoscientists use special boats to conduct research at sea. One of these boats is named the JOIDES Resolution (JR). Unlike most oceangoing vessels, the JR has a flat bottom, a 6.4-meter hole in the middle, 12 laboratories, and a derrick towering 67 meters above the waterline! Why? So scientists can sail nearly anywhere in the world to drill for samples of rocks and sediment from below the seafloor. What for? In hopes of discovering clues about Earth's history and structure, life in the deep biosphere, past climate change, earthquakes and natural resources.
Measuring Glacial Retreat
The USGS has been studying glaciers in Glacier National Park since 1850. It is estimated that there were 150 glaciers in the park back then, and when the national park was established in 1910. Today only 25 glaciers remain.
Scientists go back every year to repeat photographs, as well as to examine the ice and the ecology of the landscape to see how glacial retreat is affecting plant and animal species that live there.
Model of a Normal Fault
A normal fault occurs when rocks break and move because they are being pulled apart. As the area is stretched, the rocks move along the fault. Each movement causes an earthquake. This model demonstrates how a block of rock is extended by a normal fault.
Model of a Well
Groundwater is contained in the zone of saturation below the land surface. The top of this zone is known as the water table. People can tap into this source of water by drilling wells. The depth of the well and level of the water table greatly influences the wells productivity. In this activity you will demonstrate the relationship of groundwater to wells.
Modeling an Oil Reserve
Abundant oil and natural gas form only where conditions in the Earth are just right. Doing this investigation will help you understand how geoscientists identify and explore petroleum-rich reserves.
Modeling Earthquake Waves
An earthquake occurs when massive rock layers slide past each other. This motion makes enormous vibrations, which travel from the site of the earthquake in waves. In this activity, you will model how earthquakes move in three dimensions.
Learn about fossil preservation, paleontology, and stratigraphy in this detailed activity from the USGS.
Pretend to be a biologist as you 'discover' a new mollusc species and work to determine it's characteristics and habitat.
Natural Gas Formation
Natural gas, which is mostly methane, is an energy resource used for generating electricity and heating, powering transportation, and manufacturing products. Right now, one-quarter of the world’s energy comes from natural gas. In this investigation, you will make a simple model of how gases can form from decaying material. You will also explore the effects of temperature on gas formation.