Videos cover the gamut of science content and come with helpful information like duration, age appropriateness, and curricular alignment. Students can use the site to gather information on a variety of topics, but teachers should assign follow-up activities to help them apply the new information. Some of the activities would make great classroom experiments, especially in non-lab classrooms. Home-school educators, and parents in general, will find the activities to be a great extension of classroom lessons.Continue reading Show less
Exploratorium, the website for the San Francisco-based science museum of the same name, includes an educational section with links, activities, and videos covering nearly every aspect of science from biology and geology to physics and space science.
From the Explore tab, users can choose Websites, Activities, Video, or Apps -- a page of Exploratorium's iOS applications that are available for download in the App Store. The Websites page has curated links to high-quality sites with engaging activities. Activities offers a collection of interactive (Flash-based) games and simulations, and has instructions for simple experiments kids can view online or print out. Videos is an online TV channel with videos sorted by topic.
The games and simulations on Exploratorium are well-designed and connect to topics of high interest to tweens and teens, such as the chemistry of candy and electrifying pickles. Students can use the site independently to delve into topics that interest them. Unfortunately, most of the activities aren't interactive; they're largely at-home experiments, but they're also clearly explained and require only simple supplies.
Key Standards Supported
Expressions And Equations
Use variables to represent two quantities in a real-world problem that change in relationship to one another; write an equation to express one quantity, thought of as the dependent variable, in terms of the other quantity, thought of as the independent variable. Analyze the relationship between the dependent and independent variables using graphs and tables, and relate these to the equation. For example, in a problem involving motion at constant speed, list and graph ordered pairs of distances and times, and write the equation d = 65t to represent the relationship between distance and time.
Use variables to represent quantities in a real-world or mathematical problem, and construct simple equations and inequalities to solve problems by reasoning about the quantities.
Graph proportional relationships, interpreting the unit rate as the slope of the graph. Compare two different proportional relationships represented in different ways. For example, compare a distance-time graph to a distance-time equation to determine which of two moving objects has greater speed.
Describe qualitatively the functional relationship between two quantities by analyzing a graph (e.g., where the function is increasing or decreasing, linear or nonlinear). Sketch a graph that exhibits the qualitative features of a function that has been described verbally.
Solve real-world and mathematical problems involving area, volume and surface area of two- and three-dimensional objects composed of triangles, quadrilaterals, polygons, cubes, and right prisms.
Statistics And Probability
Understand that a set of data collected to answer a statistical question has a distribution which can be described by its center, spread, and overall shape.
Display numerical data in plots on a number line, including dot plots, histograms, and box plots.
Understand that statistics can be used to gain information about a population by examining a sample of the population; generalizations about a population from a sample are valid only if the sample is representative of that population. Understand that random sampling tends to produce representative samples and support valid inferences.
Construct and interpret scatter plots for bivariate measurement data to investigate patterns of association between two quantities. Describe patterns such as clustering, outliers, positive or negative association, linear association, and nonlinear association.
Key Standards Supported
Reading Informational Text
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative, connotative, and technical meanings.
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative, connotative, and technical meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice on meaning and tone.
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative, connotative, and technical meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including analogies or allusions to other texts.
Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 6–8 texts and topics.
Follow precisely a multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks.