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Amazon fly
This short activity quickly engages the participants in the process of developing testable hypotheses. Students come up with multiple hypotheses to explain a set of observations and figure out how to test these hypotheses.

Grade: College

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Cells within cells: An extraordinary claim with extraordinary evidence
This Science in Action article on endosymbiosis explores the career of microbiologist, Lynn Margulis and how an unlikely idea overcame strong resistance within the scientific community and finally came to be an accepted part of evolutionary theory.

Grade: College

Source: UCMP

Resource type: article

High altitude adaptations: The work of Emilia Huerta-Sánchez
This research profile tells the story of Emilia Huerta-Sánchez and how she uses mathematical modeling to answer evolutionary questions. Students examine data visualizations and learn about the process of science while focusing on adaptations, allele frequencies, and natural selection.

Grade: College

Source: UCMP

Resource type: research profile

How science works
This Science in Action video uses the Understanding Science Flowchart to follow arachnologist Charles Griswold and colleagues as they describe the process involved in an exciting new spider discovery.

Grade: College

Source: California Academy of Sciences

Resource type: video

How scientific is it?
Students are given six knowledge statements and asked to rank them according to how scientific they feel the statements are. A group discussion ensues. This activity is adapted from Scharmann et al. 2005. Journal of Science Teacher Education.

Grade: College

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Hydrogeology: Learning by discovery in an urban environment
Students learn about the cycling of nutrients, origin of water quality, and the impacts of land use and urbanization on hydrologic systems as they closely examine the data collected and re-evaluate prior hypotheses.

Grade: College

Source: On the Cutting Edge

Resource type: field-based investigation

Introducing the Understanding Science flowchart
Students participate in a quick activity and discuss whether they were doing science. They then read a story about Walter Alvarez, discuss the process of science, and trace his scientific journey using the Science Flowchart.

Grade: College

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Mystery boxes: Uncertainty and collaboration
Students manipulate sealed "mystery" boxes to determine the inner structure of the boxes. The nature and sources of uncertainty inherent in the process of problem-solving are experienced, but reduced by collaboration.

Grade: College

Source: ENSI

Resource type: classroom activity

Mystery tubes
Students are asked to determine what the interior construction of the mystery tube looks like. Working in groups, students pose explanations for what they are observing and test their ideas.

Grade: College

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Number patterns
Students try to discover the relationship among six numbers. The objective of this activity is to engage students in a problem-solving situation in which they practice aspects of the process of science.

Grade: College

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Ornamentation in birds
In this investigation students explore the connection between competition for mates and the evolution of elaborate traits in birds. Using the online database Birds of North America , students develop and test a set of hypotheses to explain the variation in sexual dimorphism among bird species.

Grade: College

Source: Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Resource type: lab activity

Teaching the Process of Molecular Phylogeny and Systematics: A Multi-Part Inquiry-Based Exercise
Students explore molecular data from Homo sapiens and four related primates and develop multiple hypotheses regarding the ancestry of these five species by analyzing DNA sequences, protein sequences, and chromosomal maps.

Grade: College

Source: Nathan Lents

Resource type: lab activity

The great fossil find
Students are taken on an imaginary fossil hunt and form hypotheses about the identity of the creature they discover. Students revise their hypotheses as new evidence is found.

Grade: College

Source: ENSI

Resource type: classroom activity

The Hobbit: When scientists disagree about the evidence
This classroom activity, adapted from an exercise on PBS's NOVA website, provides an excellent example of an active debate within the scientific community regarding a relatively recent human fossil find, Homo floresiensis.

Grade: College

Source: Visionlearning

Resource type: classroom activity

The story behind the science
Thirty stories spanning five disciplines help students explore key science concepts through the eyes of the scientists who were involved, while emphasizing the nature and process of science.

Grade: College

Source: Iowa State University

Resource type: article

Umbrellaology
Based on a classic philosophical exercise (Somerville, 1941), students are asked to read a letter that describes detailed data collected on umbrellas. Their task is to determine whether or not umbrellaology represents science.

Grade: College

Source: Johnston, Adam

Resource type: classroom activity

What's in a Word?
Word choice in the classroom can (mis)represent science. Use word lists to combat misconceptions about science that stem from vocabulary mix-ups. Find out how in this article distributed with permission from Science Scope.

Grade: College

Source: Schwartz, Renee

Resource type: article

Age dating star clusters
Students explore how classification and graphing are used by astronomers to determine the age of star clusters. They will measure the color and brightness of stars, as proxies for temperature and luminosity

Grade: 9-12

Source: Whitfield, Lisé

Resource type: lab activity

Amazon fly
This short activity quickly engages the participants in the process of developing testable hypotheses. Students come up with multiple hypotheses to explain a set of observations and figure out how to test these hypotheses.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Anolis Lizards
Students "travel" to the Greater Antilles to figure out how the Anolis lizards might have evolved there. Students make observations, ask questions, share data, form hypotheses, generate expectations, get more data, interpret them, and test their ideas.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Collins, Jennifer

Resource type: lab activity

Cells within cells: An extraordinary claim with extraordinary evidence
This Science in Action article on endosymbiosis explores the career of microbiologist, Lynn Margulis and how an unlikely idea overcame strong resistance within the scientific community and finally came to be an accepted part of evolutionary theory.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: article

Clipbirds
In this activity, students simulate bird feeding with "beaks" that differ in size. The proportion of big-, medium-, and small-beaked birds changes in response to available types of food. This is a lesson on evolution, but suggestions on how to incorporate the nature and process of science are included.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Crime scene: The case of the missing computer chip
In this classroom activity, teams of students use clues to adjust working hypotheses about an unsolved crime. The nature and process of science are recognized through discussion of the crime solution metaphor.

Grade: 9-12

Source: ENSI

Resource type: classroom activity

Designing your very own science experiment
Students design and carry out an experiment using pill bugs (isopods). Other organisms could be used in place of the pill bugs. Students reflect on the process used by charting their pathway on the Science Flowchart.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Stefanski, Mark

Resource type: lab activity

Dogs and turnips
In this lesson students attempt to assemble a meaningful sentence by successively turning over cards with words on them. The point is made that we change our ideas of what a story may be as we gather more information.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Exploring bouncing balls
Students explore the physical properties of a variety of balls and how they bounce. Students then reflect on the process they used by charting their pathway on the Understanding Science Flowchart.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: lab activity

Galaxy classification
This is a modified version of Galactic Inquiry in which students learn about galaxy classification while also experiencing a simple simulation of peer review and community analysis.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Whitfield, Lisé

Resource type: lab activity

How science works
This Science in Action video uses the Understanding Science Flowchart to follow arachnologist Charles Griswold and colleagues as they describe the process involved in an exciting new spider discovery.

Grade: 9-12

Source: California Academy of Sciences

Resource type: video

How science works
This video uses the Understanding Science flowchart to describe how a team of scientists investigates climate change throughout Earth's history with ocean sediment cores.

Grade: 9-12

Source: OceanLeadership

Resource type: video

Introducing the Understanding Science flowchart
Students participate in a quick activity and discuss whether they were doing science. They then read a story about Walter Alvarez, discuss the process of science, and trace his scientific journey using the Science Flowchart.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Investigating a Crime Scene
Two suspicious dogs and a shredded book provide a perfect combination for focusing on the process of science and to do so with a bit of a chuckle. This powerpoint has been developed so that you can ask for student responses throughout.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: powerpoint slides

Investigating a Deep Sea Mystery
In this lab activity, students examine authentic morphological and phylogenetic data of three fish families and then pose and test alternative hypotheses about the fishes' classification.

Grade: 9-12

Source: ETOL

Resource type: lab activity

Mystery boxes: Uncertainty and collaboration
Students manipulate sealed "mystery" boxes to determine the inner structure of the boxes. The nature and sources of uncertainty inherent in the process of problem-solving are experienced, but reduced by collaboration.

Grade: 9-12

Source: ENSI

Resource type: classroom activity

Mystery tubes
Students are asked to determine what the interior construction of the mystery tube looks like. Working in groups, students pose explanations for what they are observing and test their ideas.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Newton's 2nd law: Inquiry approach
Students act as colleagues of Isaac Newton. Students focus on how to design a procedure to test Newton's hypothesis and then communicate that idea to others. The emphasis is on the process rather than the actual results.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Tung, Cecilia

Resource type: lab activity

Number patterns
Students try to discover the relationship among six numbers. The objective of this activity is to engage students in a problem-solving situation in which they practice aspects of the process of science.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Poking around
Students are introduced to the process of scientific inquiry as they develop an approach to determine the shape and size of an unseen object.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Stefanski, Mark

Resource type: classroom activity

Rutherford's enlarged: A content embedded NOS activity
Students reason about a model of Ernst Rutherford's famous experiment supporting the idea of the atomic nucleus. They differentiate between observation and inference and see the role of creativity in the process of science.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Abd-El-Khalick, Fouad

Resource type: lab activity

Teaching the Process of Molecular Phylogeny and Systematics: A Multi-Part Inquiry-Based Exercise
Students explore molecular data from Homo sapiens and four related primates and develop multiple hypotheses regarding the ancestry of these five species by analyzing DNA sequences, protein sequences, and chromosomal maps.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Nathan Lents

Resource type: lab activity

The checks lab
Students construct plausible scenarios to explain a series of canceled bank checks. They revise their original hypotheses with new evidence and learn how human values and biases influence observation and interpretation.

Grade: 9-12

Source: ENSI

Resource type: classroom activity

The great fossil find
Students are taken on an imaginary fossil hunt and form hypotheses about the identity of the creature they discover. Students revise their hypotheses as new evidence is found.

Grade: 9-12

Source: ENSI

Resource type: classroom activity

The Hobbit: When scientists disagree about the evidence
This classroom activity, adapted from an exercise on PBS's NOVA website, provides an excellent example of an active debate within the scientific community regarding a relatively recent human fossil find, Homo floresiensis.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Visionlearning

Resource type: classroom activity

The story behind the science
Thirty stories spanning five disciplines help students explore key science concepts through the eyes of the scientists who were involved, while emphasizing the nature and process of science.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Iowa State University

Resource type: article

Time for mitosis
Drs. Lederman compare two methods of teaching about mitosis, emphasizing how to enhance a lesson by incorporating the nature of science.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Lederman, Norman and Judith

Resource type: article

What's in a Word?
Word choice in the classroom can (mis)represent science. Use word lists to combat misconceptions about science that stem from vocabulary mix-ups. Find out how in this article distributed with permission from Science Scope.

Grade: 9-12

Source: Schwartz, Renee

Resource type: article

Xenosmilus
In this lesson, students play the roles of paleontologists on a dig. They “unearth” a few fossils at a time and attempt to reconstruct the animal the fossils represent.

Grade: 9-12

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Amazon fly
This short activity quickly engages the participants in the process of developing testable hypotheses. Students come up with multiple hypotheses to explain a set of observations and figure out how to test these hypotheses.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Clipbirds
In this activity, students simulate bird feeding with "beaks" that differ in size. The proportion of big-, medium-, and small-beaked birds changes in response to available types of food. This is a lesson on evolution, but suggestions on how to incorporate the nature and process of science are included.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Crime scene: The case of the missing computer chip
In this classroom activity, teams of students use clues to adjust working hypotheses about an unsolved crime. The nature and process of science are recognized through discussion of the crime solution metaphor.

Grade: 6-8

Source: ENSI

Resource type: classroom activity

Dino-Data
Students examine data about dinosaurs and hypothesize about what the data can tell them. Students modify their hypotheses as more information is revealed and review what they have learned about how science works.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Dogs and turnips
In this lesson students attempt to assemble a meaningful sentence by successively turning over cards with words on them. The point is made that we change our ideas of what a story may be as we gather more information.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Exploring bouncing balls
Students explore the physical properties of a variety of balls and how they bounce. Students then reflect on the process they used by charting their pathway on the Understanding Science Flowchart.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: lab activity

Galaxy classification
This is a modified version of Galactic Inquiry in which students learn about galaxy classification while also experiencing a simple simulation of peer review and community analysis.

Grade: 6-8

Source: Whitfield, Lisé

Resource type: lab activity

Heating and cooling of the Earth's surface
Students conduct experiments on the rate that sand and water heat up and cool down. Based on their observations, they make hypotheses about why materials heat up and cool down at different rates and then test their ideas.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: lab activity

How science works
This Science in Action video uses the Understanding Science Flowchart to follow arachnologist Charles Griswold and colleagues as they describe the process involved in an exciting new spider discovery.

Grade: 6-8

Source: California Academy of Sciences

Resource type: video

How science works
This video uses the Understanding Science flowchart to describe how a team of scientists investigates climate change throughout Earth's history with ocean sediment cores.

Grade: 6-8

Source: OceanLeadership

Resource type: video

Introducing the Understanding Science Flowchart to middle school students
Students read a story about Walter Alvarez and then plot his scientific journey on the Understanding Science Flowchart. Students find that science is seldom a linear story.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Investigating a Crime Scene
Two suspicious dogs and a shredded book provide a perfect combination for focusing on the process of science and to do so with a bit of a chuckle. This powerpoint has been developed so that you can ask for student responses throughout.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: powerpoint slides

Mystery tubes
Students are asked to determine what the interior construction of the mystery tube looks like. Working in groups, students pose explanations for what they are observing and test their ideas.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Number patterns
Students try to discover the relationship among six numbers. The objective of this activity is to engage students in a problem-solving situation in which they practice aspects of the process of science.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

The great fossil find
Students are taken on an imaginary fossil hunt and form hypotheses about the identity of the creature they discover. Students revise their hypotheses as new evidence is found.

Grade: 6-8

Source: ENSI

Resource type: classroom activity

Weathering and erosion
Students will conduct a series of experiments to explore the processes and effects of weathering and erosion.

Grade: 6-8

Source: Whitfield, Lisé

Resource type: lab activity

What's in a Word?
Word choice in the classroom can (mis)represent science. Use word lists to combat misconceptions about science that stem from vocabulary mix-ups. Find out how in this article distributed with permission from Science Scope.

Grade: 6-8

Source: Schwartz, Renee

Resource type: article

Xenosmilus
In this lesson, students play the roles of paleontologists on a dig. They “unearth” a few fossils at a time and attempt to reconstruct the animal the fossils represent.

Grade: 6-8

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Mystery boxes for grades 3-5
Working in groups, students pose explanations (hypotheses) for what they are observing and are asked to test their hypotheses. These procedures have been modified from Mystery Boxes: Uncertainty and Collaboration by Jean Beard.

Grade: 3-5

Source: Janulaw, Sharon

Resource type: classroom activity

Sensing Energy
Students perform simple experiments using UV detection beads to explore unseen energy produced by the sun.

Grade: 3-5

Source: AAAS Science NetLinks

Resource type: classroom activity

Tennis shoe detectives
Students make observations, examine data, and form hypotheses about a set of footprints and what they can tell us.

Grade: 3-5

Source: Heindel, Sharon

Resource type: classroom activity

Weathering and erosion
Students will conduct a series of experiments to explore the processes and effects of weathering and erosion.

Grade: 3-5

Source: Whitfield, Lisé

Resource type: lab activity

What's in a Word?
Word choice in the classroom can (mis)represent science. Use word lists to combat misconceptions about science that stem from vocabulary mix-ups. Find out how in this article distributed with permission from Science Scope.

Grade: 3-5

Source: Schwartz, Renee

Resource type: article

Xenosmilus
In this lesson, students play the roles of paleontologists on a dig. They “unearth” a few fossils at a time and attempt to reconstruct the animal the fossils represent.

Grade: 3-5

Source: UCMP

Resource type: classroom activity

Comparing rocks
Learners will observe and sort samples of rocks and minerals to compare and contrast their physical properties. They will record their observations in Science Notebooks.

Grade: K-2

Source: Janulaw, Sharon

Resource type: classroom activity

Exploring how liquids behave
Learners observe how liquids behave and record their observations. Then they combine two of the liquids and observe and record how the liquids behave.

Grade: K-2

Source: Janulaw, Sharon

Resource type: classroom activity

Exploring liquids
Learners will use their senses to investigate and observe three liquids. They will see, hear, touch, smell and taste to collect data and to ask and answer questions.

Grade: K-2

Source: Janulaw, Sharon

Resource type: classroom activity

Traveling through different liquids
Learners will observe and record what happens when they manipulate bottles containing one liquid and an object. They will compare bottles that have an object and different liquids. They will observe and record what happens when they manipulate bottles containing one liquid and more than one object.

Grade: K-2

Source: Janulaw, Sharon

Resource type: classroom activity

Watching animals move
Learners will identify the way animals move and the body parts used to move by observing animals, their body parts and their movements.

Grade: K-2

Source: Janulaw, Sharon

Resource type: classroom activity


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