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Investigations, activities, & teaching plans
Classified by dimensions of science & age levels

Integrated ideas


Inquiry & science cross cutting concepts, processes, & skills

Science cross cutting concepts, processes, & skills

Order and organization

Evidence, Explanations, and Models

Change, Constancy, and Measurement

Evolution and Equilibrium

Form and Function



Physical Science

  • Air - as matter, occupies space, & pressure
  • Balance and stability - activities & plans
  • Balloon Piercing | Plastic bag piercing |
  • Bubbles 1 - bubbles, gases, liquids
  • Bubbles 2 - Alka-seltzer, measuring, color
  • Chemistry - lab notes for activity to model atoms, elements, & compounds with nuts & bolts.
  • Colored Water - liquids as matter, mass, density
  • Density - learning cycle inquiry activities for middle grade to apply linear, mass, volume, measurement for matter, to introduce density of solids, liquids, & gases. Includes 14 activities with lesson plans and lab sheets. Includes pop can float, wood, metal, plastic, gas, assorted materials, cubes, spheres, population of school rooms, cross cutting concepts measurement, change, properties, variables, operational definitions Assessment data base for density related concepts
  • Electrical circuits - A middle level study of electricity and magnetism. Activities start with a historical static influence. Moving to understand current electricity in a simple closed circuit (bulb, battery, & wire) by creating a model that explains the energy transfer from source to receiver. Continues to circuit tester, multiple sources & receivers in parallel and series, resistance, make a switch, electical puzzles, electro magnetism, & electro scale.
  • Electricity - static electricity
  • Energy - activities and concepts - no instructional suggestions
  • Force, mass, and movement activities - annotated list of activities
  • Gravity, acceleration, inertia, friction - includes link to moon feather hammer experiment
  • Heat and energy transfer * - teacher directed plan with lab notes to explore: hot & cold with touch, variety of activities using water, mixing hot & cold water, warming ice water to boiling, salt & ice, temperatures of cars in sunshine, blowing hot & cold bubbles, conduction, convection, & radiation.
  • Heat energy and conservation - candle & heat
  • Hoop & bottle challenge - force, motion, Newton's laws of motion
  • Kitchen science - food groups, fat test, acid test, sugar test, yeast
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Life Science

  • Anatomy - See Human anatomy & health resources & activities
  • Anatomical Positions and positional vocabulary
  • Animal as pets for early grades* - activity unit with plans for pets: gerbils, responsibility, habitat, movement, seasonal adaptations, classification, food, & zoo trip with concepts and outcomes threaded to National Standards
  • Animal classification - list of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and fish - cut them out, mix them up, & sort them in different categories
  • Animals & fungi in my neighborhood & maybe beyond - Copy and paste this journal to make your own journal or field guide to study of outdoor environments. Includes suggestions to study insects, ants, spiders, mammals, birds, earthworms, fungi, how to make a Berlese funnel, a
  • & more
  • Animals - camouflage moths, simulation activities, echolocation, penguin - temperature
  • Arthropods - insects, spiders, crustaceans, & myriapods
  • Birds learning sequence beaks and adaptation *
  • Bird guide online Cornell lab of Ornithology
  • Cells - activities & plans for cells their organalles & functions, animal & plant cell models, cell cycle, & mitosis model
  • Community -
  • Dinosaurs
  • Earth worms and soil -
  • Environmental education & sustainability - Historical perspective of environmental education, state of environmental education, ICEE findings & recommendations, suggestions to help teachers become environmentally savvy, teacher's views of their needs, sample program goals, scoring guide for environmental concern, suggestions to assess curriculum, dtudent environmental knowledge, misconceptions, teaching resources, & six questions & answers about environmental education
    • Environment & environmental factors - unit with plans, activities, & lab note book
    • Community - A unit or packet with a sequence of activities & plans to develop a deeper understanding of the relationships of organisms & populations as communities within environments. Includes hands-on activities with plants, seeds (embryo, cotyledon, & seed coat), crickets, anoles, decomposers, and terrariums.
    • Ecosystem - A unit or project with a sequence of activities & plans to develop a deeper understanding of the interdependence required to maintin healthy ecosystems. Investigations include study of environmental factors, organisms and their needs, populations, communities, life cycles, food webs and energy cycle, water cycle, carbon dioxide - oxygen cycle, nitrogen cycle, and decomposition.

Animal & Ph of water survival


Human Health & Anatomy


Personal food computer


Earth, Atmosphere, and Space Links





Science perspectives





History of Science

Nature of Science

Design process steps

A comprehensive design process has many ideas that can be used to guide a design process. However, the use of different ideas depends on the problem and the design being considered. While the process is sorta linear, sorta cyclical, and sorta random. Meaning it can be started at any point and move to any other point the designer desides to consider next.

There is no magic number of steps or ideas to be included in a process, but it is helpful to start with four or five ideas and add more or subtopics, as users become familiar with designing.

A basic design with limited steps and a more comprehensive process follows:

A basic design process includes:

  1. Ask: - What is the problem?
    • Empathize - consider others’ needs beyond solving the problem. (Ask)
    • Define the problem and create meaningful and actionable problem statement. (Ask)
  2. Imagine solutions - encourage innovation throughout brainstorming
  3. Iterate prototypes -identify and develop a best solution through multiple iterations. (Research, identify, design, evaluate, solution, prototype)
  4. Test - evaluate prototypes and consider improvements. (Test, redesign, create or make the solution)
  5. Present & communicate the solution

A more comprehensive representation of the design process:


Design process


Design problems

  • Design error
  • Operator error
  • Poor maintenance of vital parts
  • Complex combination of risks


Model process

Models have explanatory and predictive power (physical objects, plans, mental constructs, mathematical equations, computer simulations...) that may or may not be observed with real objects, systems, and events. They are created with information collected from observations, facts, laws, inferences, thought, and reasoning. They represent systems or things and are used to provide an explanation.

Model of models

More information on models in the literate section of models in the science processes knowledge base. Or activities in the evidence, explanations, & models section.