National Academies Press: OpenBook

Resources for Teaching Middle School Science (1998)

Chapter: 4. Earth and Space Science

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Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
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Constructing an ecocolumn

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

CHAPTER 4
EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE

Earth and Space Science—Core Materials

4.1 Concepts and Challenges in Earth Science.

3rd ed., rev. Leonard Bernstein, Martin Schachter, Alan Winkler, and Stanley Wolfe. Concepts and Challenges in Life, Earth, and Physical Science series. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Globe Fearon, 1998.

Program Overview The series entitled Concepts and Challenges in Life, Earth, and Physical Science consists of 3 textbooks—one in life science, one in earth science, and one in physical science. Each yearlong course contains about 20 units. Teaching materials, ancillary student materials, and some optional components are available for each course.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8. Reading level: late 6. Concepts and Challenges in Earth Science offers a complete course in earth and space science. This textbook is divided into 18 units, each consisting of 6 to 12 lessons. The following topics are addressed: maps, minerals, rocks, weathering, soil, erosion, landforms, volcanoes, earthquakes, plate tectonics, fossils, oceanography, the atmosphere, weather, climate, air and water pollution, energy resources, astronomy, the solar system, the earth-moon system, stars, and galaxies. Basic science concepts and vocabulary are introduced in short paragraphs. A variety of activities or demonstrations require students to extend their learning, model phenomena, or make observations. For example, students look at hard-boiled eggs to model the earth's layers; classify igneous rocks using crystal size; use a container filled with pebbles, sand, soil, and water to demonstrate the settling of ocean sediments; and make a simple wind vane. In other activities, students are asked to design an experiment to find out, for example, if the skeletons of coral contain calcium carbonate, to show that air is made up of matter, and to demonstrate the law of gravity.

Suggestions for writing exercises and reports are provided. Brief reading features focus on careers in earth science, science connections to everyday life, people in science, technology and society, and looking back in science.

Teacher's Edition The teacher's edition provides unit-by-unit teaching tips and ideas—including suggestions for discussions, class activities, extensions, reinforcements, and bulletin board projects. Answers to in-text questions are provided.

Supplementary Laboratory Manual The laboratory manual contains 48 activities and 8 skills worksheets. Lab activities are directly correlated with lessons in the student textbook. Examples include learning how the difference in arrival time between P and S waves can be used to locate

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

the epicenter of an earthquake, using a psychrometer to determine the relative humidity of air, reading a weather map, and demonstrating how a lunar eclipse occurs. The annotated teacher's edition of the lab manual includes answers to questions in the student manual, materials and equipment lists, and a skills matrix.

Teacher's Resource Book The teacher's resource book contains more than 300 reproducible blackline masters, including lesson review, vocabulary, and enrichment worksheets; unit tests; and a Spanish-language supplement.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Properties and changes of properties in matter; transfer of energy.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; history of science.

ABOUT THE ANNOTATIONS IN "EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE—CORE MATERIALS"

Entry Numbers

Curriculum materials are arranged alphabetically by title in each category (Core Materials, Supplementary Units, and Science Activity Books) in chapters 1 through 5 of this guide.

Each curriculum annotation has a two-part entry number: the chapter number is given before the period; the number after the period locates the entry within that chapter. For example, the first entry number in chapter 1 is 1.1; the second entry in chapter 2 is 2.2; and so on.

The entry numbers within each curriculum chapter run consecutively through Core Materials, Supplementary Units, and Science Activity Books.

Order of Bibliographic Information

Following is the arrangement of the facts of publication in the annotations in this section:

  • Title of publication

  • Number of edition, if applicable

  • Authors (an individual author or authors, an institutional author, or a project or program name under which the material was developed)

  • Series title

  • Series developer, if applicable

  • Place of publication, publisher, and date of publication

Recommended Grade Level

The grade level for each piece of material was recommended by teacher evaluators during the development of this guide. In some instances, the recommended grade level may differ slightly from the publisher's advertised level.

Key to Content Standard: 5-8

The key lists the content standards for grades 5-8 from the National Science Education Standards (NSES) that are addressed in depth by the item. A key is provided for core materials and supplementary units. (See appendix C.)

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

Price and Acquisition Information

Ordering information appears at the end of each entry. Included are—

  • Prices (of teacher's guides, student books, lab manuals, and kits or units)

  • Publisher/supplier (The name of a principal publisher/supplier, although not necessarily the sole source, for the items listed in the price category. Appendix A, "Publishers and Suppliers," provides the address, phone and fax numbers, and electronic ordering information, where available, for each publisher and supplier.)

  • Materials (various sources from which one might obtain the required materials)

Readers must contact publishers/suppliers for complete and up-to-date listings of the program resources and support materials available for a particular unit. Depending on the developer, these items may be required, optional, or both; they may be offered individually and/or in kits, packages, or boxes. Materials may change with revised editions. The prices given in this chapter for selected resources or materials are based on information from the publishers and suppliers but are not meant to represent the full range of ordering options.

Indexes of Curriculum Materials

The multiple indexes on pp. 449-78 allow easy access to the information in this guide. Various aspects of the curriculum materials—including titles, topics addressed in each unit, grade levels, and standards addressed—are the focus of seven separate indexes. For example, titles and entry numbers are listed in the "Title Index" on pp. 450-54. The "Index of Authors, Series, and Curriculum Projects," on pp. 455-57, provides entry numbers of any annotated titles in a particular series.

Overviews of Core and Supplementary Programs

Appendix D, "Overviews of Core and Supplementary Programs with Titles Annotated in This Guide," on pp. 441-48, lists, by program or series, the individual titles annotated in the sections "Core Materials" and "Supplementary Units" in the five curriculum chapters.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-835-92241-3), $45.95. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-835-92245-6), $58.95. Student lab program, $14.95. Teacher's lab program, $22.95. Teacher's resource book, $154.95. Publisher/supplier: Globe Fearon. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.2 Exploring Earth Science.

2nd ed. Anthea Maton, Jean Hopkins, Susan Johnson, and others. Prentice Hall Exploring Life, Earth, and Physical Science series. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice Hall, 1997.

Program Overview The Prentice Hall Exploring Life, Earth, and Physical Science series is a program for middle school students. Designed to cover all relevant areas of science, this integrated program consists of 3 textbooks (1 for each major discipline) and incorporates 7 science themes—energy, evolution, patterns of change, scale and structure, systems and interactions, unity and diversity, and stability. Each of the 3 year-long courses contains about 6 units. The units are also available, possibly with some modifications, as individual textbooks in the Prentice Hall Science Integrated Learning System series (see, e.g., 4.3). For each course, teaching materials, ancillary student materials, and some optional components are available.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8+. Reading level: middle 8. Exploring Earth Science offers a complete course in earth science.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

The units in this textbook are entitled: (1) "Exploring the Universe," (2) "Exploring Planet Earth," (3) "Dynamic Earth," (4) "Exploring Earth's Weather," (5) "History of the Earth," and (6) "Ecology: Earth's Natural Resources." During the course, students learn about topics in the fields of geology, astronomy, meteorology, and oceanography—for example, stars and galaxies; the solar system; rocks and minerals; the earth's structure, atmosphere, and oceans; weather; erosion; earthquakes and volcanoes; plate tectonics; fossils; geologic time; and the earth's natural resources.

Examples of the lab investigations that students conduct during the 6 units are these: constructing a refracting telescope, determining the porosity of various soils, comparing the decomposition of different types of litter in a landfill, locating patterns of earthquake and volcano distribution, and determining relative humidity using a handmade sling psychrometer.

Each of the 6 units in Exploring Earth Science typically has 2 to 6 chapters. Each chapter contains comprehensive reading sections that introduce major science concepts. Also included are suggested skills-oriented activities for discovering, doing, calculating, thinking, and writing about science. The activities range from making a model of the water cycle to calculating shoreline erosion to creating a scrapbook of news items concerning environmental problems. Each chapter includes a laboratory investigation as well as a review and study guide.

Other features of this textbook include problem-solving challenges, science connections to real-world events or issues, and careers in science. A "Science Gazette" feature at the end of each unit profiles prominent scientists—for example, astronomer Ian Shelton, archaeologist Alan Kalata, and meteorologist Joanne Simpson. An "Activity Bank" at the back of the book provides at least 1 additional laboratory investigation for each chapter. Examples include exploring ways to prevent rusting, measuring the effects of phosphates on plant growth, and building a simple anemometer to measure wind speed.

Teacher's Edition In the teacher's wraparound edition, each chapter begins with a 2-page planning guide and a 2-page preview that summarizes each section within the chapter. The teacher's edition also provides suggestions for teaching, guiding, integrating, and closing lessons, as well as enrichments, extensions, and answers to questions in the student text.

Supplementary Laboratory Manual The supplementary lab manual contains 52 additional investigations directly correlated with the information presented in the student textbook. Examples include investigating how the angle of the sun's rays affects temperature on the earth, creating a model of a density current to observe some of the factors that affect the behavior of deep-sea density currents, preparing a contour map of a landform model, and using a stream table to investigate running water and erosion.

Program Resources and Support Materials A variety of support materials is available, including a box of teaching resources with activities, worksheets, and assessment materials for each chapter. Other available materials are a teacher's desk reference, an integrated science activity book, a computer test bank, videos, videodiscs, transparencies, a classroom manager guide, and a book of product-testing activities.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Properties and changes of properties in matter; motions and forces; transfer of energy.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-13-418724-5), $41.47. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-13-422825-1), $70.40. Lab manual, teacher's edition (1995), $24.47. Teaching resources, $306.47. (Contact publisher/supplier for complete price and ordering information.) Publisher/supplier: Prentice Hall. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.3 Exploring Earth's Weather.

3rd ed. Anthea Maton, Jean Hopkins, Susan Johnson, and others. Prentice Hall Science Integrated Learning System series. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice Hall, 1997.

Program Overview The Prentice Hall Science Integrated Learning System series is a program for middle school or junior high school students. Designed to cover all relevant areas of science, this program consists of 19 books, each in a particular

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

topic area, such as sound and light, earth's weather, and cells—building blocks of life. Seven science themes are incorporated into the program; the themes are energy, evolution, patterns of change, scale and structure, systems and interactions, unity and diversity, and stability. For each unit, teaching materials, ancillary student materials, and some optional components are available.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 6-8. Reading level: late 7. The textbook Exploring Earth's Weather, which helps students investigate the factors that cause weather and climate, is organized in 3 chapters: (1) "What Is Weather?" (2) "What Is Climate?" and (3) "Climate in the United States." During the course, students learn about temperature, air pressure, wind, and humidity. They explore weather patterns and weather forecasting, learn to identify basic types of clouds, and differentiate between weather and climate. They also examine the nature, causes, zones, and changes of climate. Students then explore the climate regions of the United States and identify the 6 major regions on the basis of temperature and precipitation. They also relate land biomes of the United States to their climates.

Each chapter includes a lab investigation. Students use a handmade sling psychrometer to determine relative humidity. They graph temperature and precipitation data to classify the climates of cities in different parts of the world. They also use climate information to determine the biomes of the United States.

Each chapter contains comprehensive reading sections that introduce major science concepts. Suggestions are provided for activities in which students "find out by doing," "find out by reading," and "find out by writing." Other skills-oriented activities are also suggested—for example, using a barometer to forecast the weather and examining 2 microclimates in a neighborhood.

Other features of the textbook include problem-solving challenges, descriptions of science careers, and science connections to real-world events or issues. The student edition closes with readings on 3 topics: (1) the career of pioneering meteorologist Joanne Simpson, (2) the irrigation of arid lands, and (3) a fictional account of what scientists would expect weather to be like after a nuclear holocaust.

Teacher's Edition In the teacher's wraparound edition, each chapter begins with a 2-page planning guide and a 2-page preview that summarizes each section within the chapter. The teacher's edition also provides suggestions for teaching, guiding, integrating, and closing lessons, as well as enrichments, extensions, and answers to questions in the student text.

Supplementary Laboratory Manual The supplementary lab manual provides 5 additional investigations directly correlated with the information presented in the student textbook. Examples of the investigations include determining how the angle of insolation affects the rate of temperature change of a surface; and constructing a simple barometer, then using it to make observations of changes in atmospheric pressure.

Program Resources and Support Materials A variety of materials, including some optional components, is available. A teacher's resource package contains the student edition and annotated teacher's editions of both the textbook and the lab manual, as well as a test book, an activity book, a review-and-reinforcement guide, and English and Spanish audiotapes for auditory and language learners. Other available materials include interactive videodiscs, transparencies, assessment materials, English and Spanish guides for language learners, a study guide, a teacher's desk reference, and a booklet of product-testing activities.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-13-423401-4), $9.97. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-13-423161-9), $22.97. Teacher's resource package, $112.97. (Contact publisher/supplier for complete price and ordering information.) Publisher/supplier: Prentice Hall. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.4 Exploring Planet Earth.

3rd ed. Anthea Maton, Jean Hopkins, Susan Johnson, and others. Prentice Hall Science Integrated Learning System series. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice Hall, 1997.

Program Overview The Prentice Hall Science Integrated Learning System series is a program for middle school or junior high school students. Designed to cover all relevant areas of science, this program consists of 19 books, each in a particular topic area, such as sound and light, the planet earth, and cells—building blocks of life. Seven science themes

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

are incorporated into the program; the themes are energy, evolution, patterns of change, scale and structure, systems and interactions, unity and diversity, and stability. For each unit, teaching materials, ancillary student materials, and some optional components are available.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8. Reading level: early 7. Exploring Planet Earth, which introduces students to the various components and structures of the earth, is organized in 5 chapters: (1) "Earth's Atmosphere," (2) "Earth's Oceans," (3) "Earth's Fresh Water," (4) "Earth's Landmasses," and (5) "Earth's Interior." During the course, students study the composition and layers of the earth's atmosphere and the composition of the magnetosphere. They also learn about the properties, life zones, and motions of the oceans; and they find out how the earth maintains a supply of freshwater. Students study the characteristics of continents, mountains, plains, and plateaus. They discuss the advantages and disadvantages of various types of maps. They also find out about the properties of the earth's layers, and learn how scientists use seismic waves to gather information about the interior of the planet.

Each chapter includes a lab investigation. Students explore whether different types of surfaces gain different amounts of heat in and out of direct sunlight. They determine the effect that different depths of water have on the settling of sediments. They also compare the porosity of various soils, make a topographic map, and simulate the plasticity of the earth's mantle using cornstarch and water.

Each chapter contains comprehensive reading sections that introduce major science concepts. Suggestions are provided for activities in which students "find out by doing," "find out by reading," and "find out by writing." Other activities are also suggested—for example, constructing a model of the ocean floor and calculating how many earths would have to be lined up in a row to reach the sun.

Other features of the textbook include problem-solving challenges, descriptions of science careers, and science connections to real-world events or issues. The student edition closes with readings on 3 topics: (1) archaeologists who discovered an ancient Bolivian agricultural system that involved canals and raised land, (2) the controversy between conservationists and the timber industry over efforts to save the spotted owl from extinction, and (3) a fictional account of what life might be like in a city under the ocean.

Teacher's Edition In the teacher's wraparound edition, each chapter begins with a 2-page planning guide and a 2-page preview that summarizes each section within the chapter. The teacher's edition also provides suggestions for teaching, guiding, integrating, and closing lessons, as well as enrichments, extensions, and answers to questions in the student text.

Supplementary Laboratory Manual The supplementary lab manual provides 12 additional investigations directly correlated with the information presented in the student textbook. Examples of the investigations include experimenting to determine the relationship of the density of water to the amount of salt dissolved in the water, creating a model of a well system to study the spread of a pollutant, and creating an artificial magma to demonstrate the action of gases in a magma.

Program Resources and Support Materials A variety of materials, including some optional components, is available. A teacher's resource package contains the student edition and annotated teacher's editions of both the textbook and the lab manual, as well as a test book, an activity book, a review-and-reinforcement guide, and English and Spanish audiotapes for auditory and language learners. Other available materials include interactive videodiscs, transparencies, assessment materials, English and Spanish guides for language learners, a study guide, a teacher's desk reference, and a booklet of product-testing activities.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Populations, resources, and environments; natural hazards; risks and benefits; science and technology in society.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-13-423427-8), $9.97. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-13-423187-2), $22.97. Teacher's resource package, $112.97. (Contact publisher/supplier for complete price and ordering information.) Publisher/supplier: Prentice Hall. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.5 Glencoe Earth Science.

Ralph Feather, Jr., and Susan Leach Snyder. Glencoe Life, Earth, and Physical Science series. New York, N.Y.: Glencoe/McGraw-Hill, 1997.

Program Overview The Glencoe Life, Earth, and Physical Science series includes 3 full-year courses—one in life, one in earth, and one in physical science—for students in grades 8 and above. Four major

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

themes are developed: (1) energy, (2) systems and interactions, (3) scale and structure, and (4) stability and change. An extensive set of materials and resources, including many optional components, is available for students and teachers.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8. Reading level: middle 7. Glencoe Earth Science is divided into 7 units: (1) "Earth Materials," (2) "The Changing Surface of Earth," (3) "Earth's Internal Processes," (4) "Change and Earth's History," (5) "Earth's Air and Water," (6) "You and the Environment," and (7) "Astronomy." During this course, students learn about matter and its changes, minerals, rocks, weathering and soil, erosional forces, earthquakes, volcanoes, plate tectonics, geologic time, the earth's atmosphere, water, weather, climate, oceanography, man and the environment, the sun-earth-moon system, the solar system, stars, and galaxies.

Sample lab activities in this textbook include classifying igneous rocks by their characteristics, making a topographic map from a landform model, determining the locations of earthquake epicenters by interpreting data on an earthquake wave-travel-time graph, and making a barometer and observing how it reacts to changes in air pressure. Other lab activities involve observing how water and soil differ in their ability to absorb and release heat, and reading and using a weather map.

Glencoe Earth Science has 24 chapters in its 7 units. Each chapter begins with a self-guided activity in which students make observations and generate questions about chapter concepts and topics. Reading sections on science concepts are then interwoven with various types of activities, including open-ended activities, minilabs (activities that can be done in class or at home), and skill-building or problem-solving activities. In activities for designing their own experiments, students brainstorm hypotheses, make a decision to investigate a hypothesis that can be tested, plan procedures, and think about why their hypothesis was supported or not.

Special features of the textbook include "connect to" marginal notes that relate basic questions in physics, chemistry, earth science, and life science to one another. The book also provides "science and society" features that invite students to confront real-life problems; profiles of people in science; and reading selections about connections between science, history, literature, and the arts.

Teacher's Edition The wraparound teacher's edition provides information on curriculum integration, assessment, planning, and meeting the diverse needs of students. Each chapter contains a 4-page planning guide; strategies for preparing, teaching, and closing lessons; answers to in-text questions; tips on connecting earth science to other sciences, disciplines, or community resources; and different assessment options.

Supplementary Laboratory Manual The supplementary lab manual offers 1 or more additional labs for each chapter. It has set-up diagrams, data tables, and space for student responses. Examples of investigations include comparing various materials to see which are most suitable for filtering groundwater, constructing a block diagram to illustrate the geologic history of an area, analyzing weather data for patterns, and determining the composition of a star using a simple spectral analyzer.

Program Resources and Support Materials Glencoe Earth Science offers an extensive list of support materials and program resources, including the following: activity and reinforcement worksheets, science integration activities that relate earth and life science to specific physical science chapters, a critical-thinking/problem-solving book, a concept-mapping book, chapter review masters, a study guide, enrichment worksheets, a book on multicultural connections, technology-integration masters, assessments, computer test banks, color transparencies, a Spanish resources book, and interactive CD-ROM and videodisc programs.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Properties and changes of properties in matter; transfer of energy.

LIFE SCIENCE: Diversity and adaptations of organisms.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Populations, resources, and environments; natural hazards; risks and benefits; science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-02-827808-9), $41.79. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-02-827809-7), $57.86. Student lab manual, $8.25. Teacher's lab manual, $14.00. Teacher's classroom resources, $321.87. (Contact publisher/supplier for complete price and ordering information.) Publisher/supplier: Glencoe/McGraw-Hill. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×
4.6 Landforms.

Full Option Science System (FOSS) series. Developed by Lawrence Hall of Science (Berkeley, Calif.). Hudson, N.H.: Delta Education, 1993.

Program Overview The Full Option Science System (FOSS) program is a K-6 science curriculum consisting of 27 stand-alone modules. The 8 modules for grades 5-6 are organized under topics in the life, physical, and earth sciences and in scientific reasoning and technology. They can be used in any order. The FOSS program is designed to engage students in scientific concepts through multisensory, hands-on laboratory activities. All modules of the program incorporate 5 unifying themes—(1) pattern, (2) structure, (3) interaction, (4) change, and (5) system. The components of a FOSS module are a teacher's guide and a kit of materials.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 5-6. The Landforms module introduces students to concepts of physical geography and mapping. Students first create a 3-dimensional model of their school site and transfer information about the locations of landforms and structures in their model to a grid. This allows them to relate physical structures to representations on maps. They use stream tables to simulate the creation of landforms. Students construct a 3-dimensional foam model of an actual mountain, Mount Shasta; then they create a topographic map of the mountain and compare it to a topographic map of the same mountain from the U.S. Geological Survey.

Landforms contains 5 multipart activities, requiring 18 class sessions of 30 to 50 minutes each. The teacher's guide includes a module overview, the 5 individual activity folios, duplication masters (in English and Spanish) for student sheets, and an annotated bibliography. Science background information, detailed instructions on planning for and conducting each activity, an extensive assessment component, and extensions for integration and enrichment are provided.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-7826-0065-4), $101. Complete module, $599. Publisher/supplier: Delta Education. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.7 Measuring Time.

Science and Technology for Children (STC) series. Developed by National Science Resources Center (Washington, D.C.). Burlington, N.C.: Carolina Biological Supply, 1994.

Program Overview The Science and Technology for Children (STC) series consists of 24 inquiry-centered curriculum units for grades 1-6, with 4 units at each grade level. Students learn about topics in the life, earth, and physical sciences. The technological applications of science and the interactions among science, technology, and society are addressed throughout the program. The STC units, each of which takes about 16 class sessions to complete, encourage participatory learning and the integration of science with mathematics, language arts, social studies, and art. The components of an STC unit are a teacher's guide, a student activity book with simple instructions and illustrations, and a kit of materials.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 6. Reading level: 7. In Measuring Time, students explore timekeeping first by observing the natural cycles of the sun and moon and then by building and investigating mechanical devices designed to measure time. Activities include recording the length and position of shadows at different times of day, devising a calendar, and predicting and observing the phases of the moon. In other activities, students construct and experiment with sinking water clocks and pendulums, build and adjust a working clock escapement, and make a 1-minute timer.

Throughout the unit, students are encouraged to develop an appreciation of advances over the centuries in measuring time. They record ideas, questions, and descriptions of their work in notebooks; they organize and report results in charts, tables, and graphs; and they discuss and analyze their experiences in small groups and with the class.

Measuring Time is a 16-lesson unit. The teacher's guide includes a unit overview, the 16 lesson plans, and an annotated bibliography. Science background information, detailed instructions on planning for and conducting each activity, an extensive assessment component, and extensions for integration and enrichment are provided.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Motions and forces.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Earth in the solar system.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science; history of science.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-89278-707-4), $24.95. Student activity book, $3.75. Unit, $439.95. Publisher/supplier: Carolina Biological Supply. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.8 Project STAR: The Universe in Your Hands.

Harold P. Coyle, Bruce Gregory, William M. Luzader, and others. Project STAR: Science Teaching through Its Astronomical Roots, sponsored by Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. Dubuque, Iowa: Kendal/Hunt, 1993.

Program Overview Project STAR is a full-year course that uses astronomy as a vehicle for teaching students about real-world applications of mathematics and physics. The activities were written for high school students but can be adapted for middle school. The course stresses the importance of measurements, observations, and building models. The program includes a student textbook, a teacher's guide, an activity book, and several kits.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 8+. Reading level: late 9. Project STAR: The Universe in Your Hands focuses first on the solar system, then on stars and galaxies beyond the solar system, and finally on a model of the universe as a whole. Subjects covered in this textbook include the day and night sky; distances, sizes, and angles; the behavior of light; mirrors and lenses; the size and distance relationships of the earth, moon, and sun; paths of the planets; stars; the Milky Way galaxy; and galaxies and the universe.

Each of the 15 chapters in Project STAR begins with several questions to test students' preconceptions about the subjects or concepts addressed in the chapter. In several hands-on activities, students then build and use simple but powerful tools to explore those concepts. For example, to answer questions about the position of the sun during the day, students learn how to measure the position of an object in the sky with their hands, plot the sun's apparent daily motion using a plastic hemisphere, and keep a journal of the sun's apparent motion.

Other examples of the lab investigations that students conduct during the course are these: determining the apparent size of an object as an angle measured in degrees; building scale models of the size and distance relations of the earth, moon, and sun to understand how the distances of these objects compare with their sizes; investigating what happens when different colors of the spectrum are projected onto the same place on a white screen; and estimating the size of the Milky Way galaxy and the distances to other galaxies by using the apparent brightness-distance nomogram.

The activities—which include suggestions for homework and extensions—are written at the high school level and employ mathematical skills such as basic arithmetic, algebra, and geometry. However, the activities can be easily adapted for different age groups or for science classes other than astronomy. Appendixes provide a guide to viewing the night sky and descriptive information about the moon and the solar system. A separate activity book—Where We Are in Space and Time—contains 21 additional hands-on activities.

Teacher's Guide The teacher's guide to using the Project STAR materials and textbook includes a discussion of student preconceptions, tips for teaching each activity, reproducible activity masters, and answers to test questions and homework problems.

Program Resources and Support Materials Individual Project STAR resource kits—for example, the Celestial Sphere Kit; the Refracting Telescope Kit, with Tubes; and the Solar System Scale Model Kit—contain most of the materials required to do an activity.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Transfer of energy.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science; history of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-8403-7715-0), $34.90. Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-8403-7716-9), $99.90. (Contact publisher/supplier for complete price and ordering information for kits.) Publisher/supplier: Kendall/Hunt. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×
4.9 Solar Energy.

Full Option Science System (FOSS) series. Developed by Lawrence Hall of Science (Berkeley, Calif.). Hudson, N.H.: Delta Education, 1993.

Program Overview The Full Option Science System (FOSS) program is a K-6 science curriculum consisting of 27 stand-alone modules. The 8 modules for grades 5-6 are organized under topics in the life, physical, and earth sciences and in scientific reasoning and technology. They can be used in any order. The FOSS program is designed to engage students in scientific concepts through multisensory, hands-on laboratory activities. All modules of the program incorporate 5 unifying themes—(1) pattern, (2) structure, (3) interaction, (4) change, and (5) system. The components of a FOSS module are a teacher's guide and a kit of materials.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 5-6. This module focuses on solar energy and the variables that affect solar energy transfer. During the unit, students chart changes in the size and position of shadows as the relative position of the sun changes; they investigate temperature changes in equal amounts of water, sand, dry soil, and wet soil when the sun shines on them; and they relate the temperature differences to the properties of the materials. Students then conduct controlled experiments to test the effect of 3 variables on the collection of solar energy by solar water heaters. (The variables are the color of the solar collector, its being covered or uncovered, and its surface area.) Finally, they assemble model solar homes, looking for the most efficient way to heat them. Throughout the unit students organize data on charts and graphs to establish relationships between variables.

Solar Energy contains 4 multipart activities, requiring about 12 class sessions of 30 to 60 minutes each. The teacher's guide includes a module overview, the 4 individual activity folios, duplication masters (in English and Spanish) for student sheets, and an annotated bibliography. Science background information, detailed instructions on planning for and conducting each activity, an extensive assessment component, and extensions for integration and enrichment are provided.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Transfer of energy.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-7826-0087-5), $101. Complete module, $415. Publisher/supplier: Delta Education. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

Earth and Space Science—Supplementary Units

4.10 Asteroid!

Russell G. Wright. Event-Based Science series. Menlo Park, Calif.: Innovative Learning Publications, 1996.

Program Overview The Event-Based Science series is a program for middle school students in grades 6-9. Each module tells the story of a real event—such as the 1995 outbreak of the Ebola virus in Zaire—through reprinted newspaper articles and personal interviews; sections of background information explain relevant scientific concepts. A central task related to the module's story line leads to a final product that allows students to apply the science they have learned. For each module, a student book, teacher's guide, and videotape and/or videodisc are available.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8. The threat of an asteroid hitting the earth is the event on which this study of various topics in astronomy is based. Students begin the module Asteroid! by watching television news coverage and reading newspaper articles about objects from space that have hit or just missed hitting the earth. They are told that their major task during the module will be to design, in 5-member teams, a multimedia information campaign to warn people about an asteroid that is on a collision course with the earth. The module's 7 activities provide students with the background information and skills they need for this task.

Among the activities, for example, students work with sand and small objects to investigate how an asteroid's speed and size affect the diameter of an impact crater. They create a time line to see if there is a relationship between mass extinctions and asteroid impacts. They also design and illustrate a scale drawing of the inner planets showing the path of an approaching asteroid, and they construct an "asteroid-smasher" model rocket capable of hitting a target 1 foot in diameter at a distance of at least 30 feet. Students also calculate the time it would take a free-falling object to reach the earth's surface.

The module provides short narratives about astronomical topics, such as the origin of the moon, the solar system, and comets. It includes copies of actual newspaper articles, explanatory graphics, and profiles of professionals—such as public relations managers, planetary scientists, paleontologists, and physicists—who might be involved in a public relations campaign about asteroids. Other information that students need to complete the task must be obtained from encyclopedias, textbooks, films, magazines, and other sources they can find. The unit culminates with the presentation of team multimedia projects.

Teacher's Edition The teacher's guide provides brief overview information on the module's structure and activities. It includes suggestions for guiding specific student activities, and a scoring rubric for a performance assessment.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Motions and forces.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Earth's history; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; risks and benefits; science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science; history of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-201-49443-4), $7.95. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-201-49444-2), with video, $18.00. Classroom package, $115.00. Publisher/supplier: Addison-Wesley/Longman. Materials: Available locally.

4.11 Convection: A Current Event.

Reprinted with revisions. Alan Gould. Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series. Berkeley, Calif.: Lawrence Hall of Science, 1991.

Program Overview The Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series includes more than 50 teacher's guides and handbooks for preschool through grade 10. About 35 of these are appropriate for middle school. The series also includes several assembly presenter's guides and exhibit guides. New guides and handbooks continue to be developed, and current titles are revised frequently. The series is designed to teach key science and mathematics concepts through activity-based learning. The time needed to complete GEMS units varies from about 2 to 10 class sessions.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 6-8+. Students explore the physical phenomenon of convection and generalize their findings to understand wind patterns in Convection: A Current Event. The teacher's guide introduces the concept of convection

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

and then offers 3 sessions: "Observing Convection in Water," "Getting the Whole Picture," and "Convection and Wind." In the first session, students use food coloring to trace convection currents in water. In the second session, they apply their knowledge to guide an imaginary submarine through ocean currents generated near a hot volcanic vent. In the third session, the teacher presents 3 demonstrations to show that convection occurs in gases as well as in liquids, and students apply what they have learned to predict air flow in a room and wind patterns.

Each session in Convection: A Current Event requires 30 to 60 minutes and includes a materials list, preparation steps, and directions for activities and discussion. The guide also includes background information, summary outlines for each lesson, and reproducible data sheets.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Transfer of energy.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth in the solar system.

Price: $10.50 (ISBN 0-912511-15-X). Publisher/supplier: LHS GEMS. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

ABOUT THE ANNOTATIONS IN "EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE—SUPPLEMENTARY UNITS"

Entry Numbers

Curriculum materials are arranged alphabetically by title in each category (Core Materials, Supplementary Units, and Science Activity Books) in chapters 1 through 5 of this guide.

Each curriculum annotation has a two-part entry number: the chapter number is given before the period; the number after the period locates the entry within that chapter. For example, the first entry number in chapter 1 is 1.1; the second entry in chapter 2 is 2.2; and so on.

The entry numbers within each curriculum chapter run consecutively through Core Materials, Supplementary Units, and Science Activity Books.

Order of Bibliographic Information

Following is the arrangement of the facts of publication in the annotations in this section:

  • Title of publication

  • Number of edition, if applicable

  • Authors (an individual author or authors, an institutional author, or a project or program name under which the material was developed)

  • Series title

  • Series developer, if applicable

  • Place of publication, publisher, and date of publication

Recommended Grade Level

The grade level for each piece of material was recommended by teacher evaluators during the development of this guide. In some instances, the recommended grade level may differ slightly from the publisher's advertised level.

Key to Content Standard: 5-8

The key lists the content standards for grades 5-8 from the National Science Education Standards (NSES) that are addressed in depth by the item. A key is provided for core materials and supplementary units. (See appendix C.)

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

Price and Acquisition Information

Ordering information appears at the end of each entry. Included are—

  • Prices (of teacher's guides, student books, lab manuals, and kits or units)

  • Publisher/supplier (The name of a principal publisher/supplier, although not necessarily the sole source, for the items listed in the price category. Appendix A, "Publishers and Suppliers," provides the address, phone and fax numbers, and electronic ordering information, where available, for each publisher and supplier.)

  • Materials (various sources from which one might obtain the required materials)

Readers must contact publishers/suppliers for complete and up-to-date listings of the program resources and support materials available for a particular unit. Depending on the developer, these items may be kits, packages, or boxed. Materials may change with revised editions. The prices given in this chapter for selected resources or materials are based on information from the publishers and suppliers but are not meant to represent the full range of ordering options.

Indexes of Curriculum Materials

The multiple indexes on pp. 449-78 allow easy access to the information in this guide. Various aspects of the curriculum materials—including titles, topics addressed in each unit, grade levels, and standards addressed—are the focus of seven separate indexes. For example, titles and entry numbers are listed in the "Title Index" on pp. 450-54. The "Index of Authors, Series, and Curriculum Projects," on pp. 455-57, provides entry numbers of any annotated titles in a particular series.

Overviews of Core and supplementary Programs

Appendix D, "Overview of Core and Supplementary Programs with Titles Annotated in This Guide," on pp. 441-48, lists, by program or series, the individual titles annotated in the selections "Core Materials" and "Supplementary Units" in the five curriculum chapters.

4.12 Earth and Beyond.

Mary Atwater, Prentice Baptiste, Lucy Daniel, and others. Unit 37. Macmillan/McGraw-Hill Science series. New York, N.Y.: Macmillan/McGraw-Hill School Publishing, 1995.

Program Overview The Macmillan/McGraw-Hill Science series is a comprehensive, activity-based, K-8 science curriculum made up of 42 stand-alone units, 18 of which are designed for grades 6-8. The series is constructed around 7 major themes: (1) systems and interactions, (2) scale and structure, (3) stability, (4) energy, (5) evolution, (6) patterns of change, and (7) models. The subject of each unit—for example, earth and beyond—is presented from the perspective of one or more of these themes. One theme is designated as the "major theme" for a unit, and any others are treated as "related themes." For each unit, a wide range of materials, including some optional components, is available for students and teachers.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8. Earth and Beyond contains 5 lessons that introduce students to the planet earth, its neighbors in the solar system, the galaxy, and the universe. The organizing themes for the unit are scale and structure (major theme), systems and interactions (related theme), and models (related theme).

Each of the 5 lessons in the unit typically requires 5 days to complete. During the unit, students first examine the earth as part of the sun-moon-earth system and learn that the relative positions of these 3

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

astronomical objects produce various phenomena—such as seasons, tides, and phases of the moon. Students are introduced to the characteristics of the different planets in the solar system. They find out about star formation and the relationship of a star's color to its evolution. They learn about galaxies, the Big Bang theory of the origin of the universe, and different types of earth- and space-based space exploration.

Sample activities include using a thermometer, foam balls, and black paper to investigate why the earth experiences seasons; constructing a scale model of the solar system; and making and experimenting with a simple spectroscope. Students also use balloons to construct a model that illustrates the Big Bang theory, and communicate how different kinds of technology are used to gather different types of astronomical data.

Each lesson contains narrative information and a series of sequential, hands-on activities—such as an introductory "minds-on" activity, short "try this" activities, and a longer "explore" activity. The unit's 5 "explore activities," which are lab activities, each take a class period to complete. Students use activity logs to record ideas, observations, and results.

Special unit features include curriculum links to language arts, literature, mathematics, music, and art; information about science careers; and narrative sections highlighting science, technology, and society connections.

Teacher's Planning Guide The teacher's planning guide, a spiral-bound, wraparound edition, provides information and strategies for teaching the 5 lessons in the student edition. Each lesson is introduced by a 4-page section that offers background information, a lesson-planning guide, and assessment options. Marginal notes on the lesson pages provide discussion ideas, tips on meeting individual needs, suggestions for addressing misconceptions, assessment ideas, and curriculum connections.

Program Resources and Support Materials A wide range of materials, including some optional components, is available. Examples include consumable and nonconsumable activity materials; audio- and video-tapes; interactive videodiscs; color transparencies; assessment materials; a teacher anthology of short stories, poems, fingerplays, and songs; trade books; teacher resource masters; activity cards; activity logs; a staff development package; concept summaries and glossaries for students acquiring English; and software with problem-solving simulations for students.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: History of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-02-276137-3), $7.06. Teacher's planning guide (ISBN 0-02-276085-7), $55.98. Unit package, $115.98. Activity materials kit, $79.00. (Contact publisher/supplier for complete price and ordering information.) Publisher/supplier: McGraw-Hill. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.13 Earth, Moon, and Stars.

Reprinted with revisions. Cary I. Sneider. Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series. Berkeley, Calif.: Lawrence Hall of Science, 1994.

Program Overview The Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series includes more than 50 teacher's guides and handbooks for preschool through grade 10. About 35 of these are appropriate for middle school. The series also includes several assembly presenter's guides and exhibit guides. New guides and handbooks continue to be developed, and current titles are revised frequently. The series is designed to teach key science and mathematics concepts through activity-based learning. The time needed to complete GEMS units varies from about 2 to 10 class sessions.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 5-8. In Earth, Moon, and Stars, students investigate ancient models of the universe, the earth's shape, gravity, the moon and its phases, star clocks, and star maps. They compare 4 ancient models of the earth to learn how each one explained common events seen daily in the sky, then they invent their own "ancient models" of the world. They use a questionnaire to launch a discussion about the shape of the earth and about gravity. Students observe the phases of the moon for a month; use a model to explain the moon's monthly cycle of phases and eclipses; make and use star clocks; and learn how to find constellations in the night sky by reading star maps. All of the activities can be done in the classroom or outdoors during the daytime, with a few evening homework assignments.

The 6 activities in Earth, Moon, and Stars require 6 sessions of 40 to 45 minutes each, 4 sessions of 20 to 30 minutes each, and 6 sessions of 15 minutes each. The lessons each include a materials list, preparation

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

steps, and directions for activities and discussion. The guide also includes background information, summary outlines for each lesson, reproducible data sheets, and suggestions for related reading.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Motions and forces.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Nature of science; history of science.

Price: $10.50 (ISBN 0-912511-18-4). Publisher/supplier: LHS GEMS. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.14 Earth, Moon, and Sun.

John G. Radzilowicz and Jan M. Derby. Delta Science Module (DSM) series. Hudson, N.H.: Delta Education, 1994.

Program Overview The Delta Science Module (DSM) series has 51 life, physical, and earth science units for grades K-8 that emphasize science concepts, science content, and process skills. The series includes 12 modules for grades 5-6 and 8 modules for grades 6-8. Each requires about 3 to 4 weeks to complete and includes a teacher's guide and materials for a class of 32 students.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 6-8. Earth, Moon, and Sun helps students investigate the properties of and relationships among the earth, moon, and sun. During the unit, students gather and analyze data on the sun and moon through observation. They make 2- and 3-dimensional scale models of the solar system and the earth-moon system; and they create a real-time model of the earth by rectifying a globe, then use the globe to investigate phenomena such as day, night, sunrise, and sunset.

In other activities, students construct a large, simple horizontal sundial in which they are the gnomon; they model the rotation and revolution of the earth; and they learn how the tilt of the earth is responsible for seasonal changes. Students also model the motions of the moon in relation to the earth and sun; they model solar and lunar eclipses; and they model the positions of the earth, moon, and sun to gain an understanding of the causes and varieties of tides on earth. They also perform some simple techniques of celestial navigation.

The 13 activities in Earth, Moon, and Sun are organized to be completed sequentially over 3 to 4 weeks. Each activity takes between 30 and 50 minutes each and can be done by students working individually or in groups.

A "connections" feature at the end of each activity provides suggestions for extending or applying the concepts in the activity. Discussion or activity topics include technology, society, science and careers, language arts, mathematics, the arts, social studies, and health. Follow-up activities that students can do at home or out of the classroom are also provided. For example, a "science and language arts" connection suggests that students read at least the first 6 chapters of Samuel Clemens's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court and describe how the nineteenth-century hero uses his knowledge of eclipses to impress citizens of the sixth century.

In addition to directions for activities, the teacher's guide provides a module overview, a schedule of activities, objectives for each activity, background information, materials management and preparation tips, sample answers to discussion questions, teaching suggestions, and reinforcement activities. Also included are reproducible activity sheets for student work and a performance-based assessment.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: History of science.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-87504-166-3), $27.95. Kit, $379.00. Refill package, $67.00. Publisher/supplier: Delta Education. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.15 Earth Processes.

Katy Goldner. Delta Science Module (DSM) series. Hudson, N.H.: Delta Education, 1995.

Program Overview The Delta Science Module (DSM) series has 51 life, physical, and earth science units for grades K-8 that emphasize science concepts, science content, and process skills. The series includes 12 modules for grades 5-6 and 8 modules for grades 6-8. Each requires

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

about 3 to 4 weeks to complete and includes a teacher's guide and materials for a class of 32 students.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 6-8. Earth Processes introduces students to the earth processes that shape the world around them. During the unit, students learn about the theory of continental drift, and they use paper cutouts to demonstrate how the continents fit together like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. They also create a model of the earth and all its layers using a set of concentric spheres; they simulate the chemical and mechanical weathering of rocks; and they compare the formation of sedimentary, igneous, and metamorphic rocks. Students use different-colored layers of clay to model the types of faults in the earth's crust and the mountains created by the faults.

In other activities, students model the energy waves produced by an earthquake; they build a model seismograph and use it to measure the strength of a simulated earthquake; and they map areas of volcanic and seismic activity around the earth. They also investigate isostasy, explore convection currents and the effect they have on the earth's crust, and learn about the theory of plate tectonics.

The 14 activities in Earth Processes are organized to be completed sequentially over 3 to 4 weeks. Each activity takes between about 30 and 40 minutes and can be done by students working individually or in groups.

A "connections" feature at the end of each activity provides suggestions for extending or applying the science concepts in the activity. Discussion or activity topics include technology, society, science and careers, language arts, mathematics, the arts, social studies, and health. For example, a "science and social studies" extension suggests that students research the name, location, and height of the tallest mountain on each continent and locate these mountains on a globe or world map.

In addition to directions for activities, the teacher's guide provides a module overview, a schedule of activities, objectives for each activity, background information, materials management and preparation tips, sample answers to discussion questions, teaching suggestions, and reinforcement activities. Also included are reproducible activity sheets for student work and a performance-based assessment.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: History of science.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-87504-168-X), $27.95. Kit, $379.00. Refill package, $84.00. Publisher/supplier: Delta Education. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.16 Earthquake!

Russell G. Wright. Event-Based Science series. Menlo Park, Calif.: Innovative Learning Publications, 1996.

Program Overview The Event-Based Science series is a program for middle school students in grades 6-9. Each module tells the story of a real event—such as the 1995 outbreak of the Ebola virus in Zaire—through reprinted newspaper articles and personal interviews; sections of background information explain relevant scientific concepts. A central task related to the module's story line leads to a final product that allows students to apply the science they have learned. For each module, a student book, teacher's guide, and videotape and/or videodisc are available.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8. The 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake is the event on which this 5-week study of concepts associated with earthquakes is based. The concepts addressed in Earthquake! include faults, earth structure, plate tectonics, liquefaction, and landslides. Students begin the module by watching television news coverage and reading newspaper accounts of the 1989 California earthquake. They are told that their major task during the module will be to design, in 6-member teams, a city for a geographical area with a history of seismic activity.

The module's 8 activities provide students with the background information and skills they need for their task. For example, students identify regions of the earth where earthquakes occur, and they select possible sites for the city-planning project. They investigate conditions that produce liquefaction during an earthquake. They also design and construct a model of an earthquake-resistant building, and they design an experiment to test ways of making a house resist landslides. In another activity, students determine how reliable predictions of major earthquakes have to be before they should be made public.

The module provides short narratives on topics such as tectonic plates, faults, and earthquake preparedness; copies of actual newspaper articles; explanatory graphics; and profiles of professionals involved in site development and planning—for example, geologists, transportation experts, city planners, architects

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

and civil engineers. Middle school students who experienced the Loma Prieta earthquake tell their stories throughout the module. Other information that students need to complete their task must be obtained from encyclopedias, textbooks, films, magazines, and other sources they can find. The unit culminates with the presentation of student teams' city plans. Teachers may want to supplement or exchange the activities in the unit depending on the latest "real event" in the news.

Teacher's Edition The teacher's guide provides brief overview information on the module's structure and activities. It includes suggestions for guiding specific student activities, a scoring rubric for a performance assessment, and a list of resources.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; risks and benefits; science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-201-49092-7), $7.95. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-201-49093-5), with video, $18.00. Classroom package, $115.00. Publisher/supplier: Addison-Wesley/Longman. Materials: Available locally.

4.17 Earthquakes.

Module 1.6. Foundations and Challenges to Encourage Technology-based Science (FACETS) series. Developed by American Chemical Society (Washington, D.C.). Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt, 1996.

Program Overview The Foundations and Challenges to Encourage Technology-based Science (FACETS) program consists of 3 series of 8 modules each for grades 6-8. Each module focuses on a topic in the life, earth, or physical sciences. The time needed to complete FACETS modules varies from 2 to 4 weeks. Each module consists of a student book and a teacher's guide.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 6-7. In Earthquakes, students investigate where and why earthquakes happen, what effects they can have on people's lives, and how the risks of injury from earthquakes can be reduced by the careful design of buildings and structures. Throughout the module, students role-play a planning-and-development team in a large construction corporation.

Among the activities in the unit, students use latitude and longitude to find the location of a number of earthquakes and to get a sense of where the major earthquake zones in the world are. They correlate the location of earthquake activity with plate boundaries. They also construct a model with a fish tank and pieces of wood to understand what happens at the edges of plates. Students use coiled springs to investigate different types of waves created during an earthquake. They use the Mercalli scale of earthquake intensity together with information from the library to assess effects of earthquakes. In the unit's final activity, students design, build, and test models of earthquake-resistant buildings or structures.

Earthquakes is a 3-week module divided into 6 activities, which each take between 1 and 6 class periods to complete. A narrative section at the end of the module provides background information for students on detecting earthquakes.

Teacher's Guide The wraparound teacher's guide includes a unit overview, a time line for completing the module, a materials list, background information, and teaching suggestions.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; risks and benefits.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Nature of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-7872-1431-0), $7.90. Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-7872-1432-9), $14.90. Publisher/supplier: Kendall/Hunt. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.18 Earth's Solid Crust.

Mary Atwater, Prentice Baptiste, Lucy Daniel, and others. Unit 35. Macmillan/McGraw-Hill Science series. New York, N.Y.: Macmillan/McGraw-Hill School Publishing, 1995.

Program Overview The Macmillan/McGraw-Hill Science series is a comprehensive, activity-based, K-8 science curriculum made up of 42 stand-alone units, 18 of which are

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

designed for grades 6-8. The series is constructed around 7 major themes: (1) systems and interactions, (2) scale and structure, (3) stability, (4) energy, (5) evolution, (6) patterns of change, and (7) models. The subject of each unit—for example, earth's solid crust—is presented from the perspective of one or more of these themes. One theme is designated as the "major theme" for a unit, and any others are treated as "related themes." For each unit, a wide range of materials, including some optional components, is available for students and teachers.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7. Earth's Solid Crust contains 4 lessons that introduce students to rocks, minerals, weathering, landforms, and cartography. The organizing themes for the unit are the major theme of scale and structure and 3 related themes—systems and interactions, models, and patterns of change.

Each of the 4 lessons in the unit typically requires 6 days to complete. During the unit, students identify minerals by observing their physical properties; they discover that minerals can be classified as belonging to 1 of 6 crystal systems on the basis of the different angles among their crystal faces. Students also learn about the formation of different types of rocks, they explore erosion and the weathering cycle, and they study different types of maps and their uses.

Sample activities include classifying rocks and minerals, growing salt crystals, and constructing models of sedimentary layers and metamorphic rocks. Students also model the abrasive action of glaciers using sand and ice frozen in milk cartons, they investigate variables that affect wind erosion, and they prepare a basic topographic map of a model landform to scale.

Each lesson contains narrative information and a series of sequential, hands-on activities—such as an introductory "minds-on" activity, short "try this" activities, and a longer "explore" activity. The unit's 4 "explore activities," which are lab activities, each take a class period to complete. Students use activity logs to record ideas, observations, and results.

Special unit features include curriculum links to language arts, literature, mathematics, music, and art; information about science careers; and narrative sections highlighting science, technology, and society connections.

Teacher's Planning Guide The teacher's planning guide, a spiral-bound, wraparound edition, provides information and strategies for teaching the 4 lessons in the student edition. Each lesson is introduced by a 4-page lesson section that offers background information, a lesson-planning guide, and assessment options. Marginal notes on the lesson pages provide discussion ideas, tips on meeting individual needs, suggestions for addressing misconceptions, assessment ideas, and curriculum connections.

Program Resources and Support Materials A wide range of materials, including some optional components, is available. Examples include consumable and nonconsumable activity materials; audio- and videotapes; interactive videodiscs; color transparencies; assessment materials; a teacher anthology of short stories, poems, fingerplays, and songs; trade books; teacher resource masters; activity cards; activity logs; a staff development package; concept summaries and glossaries for students acquiring English; and software with problem-solving simulations for students.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Properties and changes of properties in matter.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: History of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-02-276135-7), $7.06. Teacher's planning guide (ISBN 0-02-276083-0), $55.98. Unit package, $100.98. Activity materials kit, $93.00. (Contact publisher/supplier for complete price and ordering information.) Publisher/supplier: McGraw-Hill. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.19 Erosion.

Delta Science Module (DSM) series. Hudson, N.H.: Delta Education, 1994.

Program Overview The Delta Science Module (DSM) series has 51 life, physical, and earth science units for grades K-8 that emphasize science concepts, science content, and process skills. The series includes 12 modules for grades 5-6 and 8 modules for grades 6-8. Each requires about 3 to 4 weeks to complete and includes a teacher's guide and materials for a class of 32 students.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 5-8. In Erosion, students investigate how wind, glaciers, and especially water cause erosion of the earth's surfaces and how the effects of erosion can be reduced. During the unit, students construct a stream table to test the effects of several variables on the process of erosion. The variables include vegetation, slope, water volume, and type of material being eroded. They compare the erosion and deposition characteristics of several types of earth materials, they simulate the erosive effect of wave action along a shoreline, and they test the effects of wind on sand before and after building a model windbreak.

The 12 activities in Erosion, which require approximately 15 class sessions, take between 30 and 60 minutes each and can be done by students working individually or in groups. A "connections" feature at the end of each activity provides suggestions for extending or applying the concepts in the activity. Discussion or activity topics include technology, society, science and careers, language arts, mathematics, the arts, social studies, and health. For example, a "science, technology, and society" extension suggests that students research and report on how glass is made and on its many commercial applications.

In addition to directions for activities, the teacher's guide provides a module overview, a schedule of activities, objectives for each activity, background information, materials management and preparation tips, sample answers to discussion questions, teaching suggestions, and reinforcement activities. Also included are reproducible activity sheets for student work and a performance-based assessment.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: History of science.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-87504-117-5), $27.95. Kit, $309.00. Refill package, $52.00. Publisher/supplier: Delta Education. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.20 The Evolution of a Planetary System.

SETI [Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence] Academy Planet Project. Life in the Universe Series. Englewood, Colo.: Teacher Ideas Press, 1995.

Program Overview The Life in the Universe Series consists of 6 units, including the 3 volumes in the SETI Academy Planet Project. Each book in the SETI Academy Planet Project is designed to be a complete unit in itself as well as a subunit of a 3-unit course. During the activities in the 3 units, each student plays the role of a "cadet" at the SETI [Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence] Academy, a fictitious institution. (The SETI Institute is an actual scientific organization.)

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 5-6. The Evolution of a Planetary System examines one important aspect of the search for intelligent life in the universe: the evolution of stars and planets. During the unit, students discuss their ideas about unidentified flying objects (UFOs) and extraterrestrials; they make a scale model of the solar system; and they simulate the formation of a planetary system using oatmeal, puffed rice, and tea. Students also use a radiometer to measure infrared radiation coming from the 3 types of "stars." They make a filmstrip showing the breakup of the supercontinent Pangaea, they model interactions of tectonic plates, and they learn about factors that influence climate. At the end of the unit, students use what they have learned to design planetary systems that contain habitable planets, transform their individual planets into life-sustaining worlds, and create continental and climate maps of their planets.

Organized in 14 "missions" or chapters, the activities in The Evolution of a Planetary System take about 4 weeks to complete. The guide includes background information, directions for activities, discussion ideas, extensions, and reproducible blackline masters for student logbooks.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science.

Price: $25.50 (ISBN 1-56308-324-8). Publisher/supplier: Teacher Ideas Press. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×
4.21 Flood!

Russell G. Wright. Event-Based Science series. Menlo Park, Calif.: Innovative Learning Publications, 1996.

Program Overview The Event-Based Science series is a program for middle school students in grades 6-9. Each module tells the story of a real event—such as the 1995 outbreak of the Ebola virus in Zaire—through reprinted newspaper articles and personal interviews; sections of background information explain relevant scientific concepts. A central task related to the module's story line leads to a final product that allows students to apply the science they have learned. For each module, a student book, teacher's guide, and videotape and/or videodisc are available.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8. Flood! uses the 1993 flooding of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers as the event on which to base this 5-week study of streams and rivers and science concepts related to stream dynamics. Students begin the module by watching a videotape of live television news coverage and reading newspaper articles about the power and drama of floods. They are told that their major task during the module will be to design, in 5-member teams, a new national park along the St. Joe River in Idaho to demonstrate the forces and features of a dynamic stream system. The module's 11 activities provide students with the background information and skills they need for this task.

Among the activities, for example, students use a landform model to construct a contour map, and they graph real stream discharge data from the St. Joe River. They also use a stream table to model and observe river dynamics, apply fractals to the meandering of a river, and design and produce a brochure for the park.

The module provides short narratives on topics such as floods and the safety of the water supply, conditions that cause flooding, and satellite surveying; copies of actual newspaper articles; explanatory graphics; and profiles of professionals involved in park design—such as landscape architects, hydrologists, geologists, cartographers, and forest recreation technicians. Middle school students who experienced the 1993 floods tell their stories throughout the module. Other information that students need to complete the task must be obtained from encyclopedias, textbooks, films, magazines, and other sources they can find. At the end of the unit, student teams present their plans and park brochures to the class. Teachers may want to supplement or exchange the activities in the unit depending on the latest "real event" in the news.

Teacher's Edition The teacher's guide provides brief overview information on the module's structure and activities. It includes suggestions for guiding specific student activities, and a scoring rubric for a performance assessment.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; risks and benefits; science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-201-49438-8), $7.95. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-201-49439-6), with video, $18.00. Classroom package, $115.00. Publisher/supplier: Addison-Wesley/Longman. Materials: Available locally.

4.22 Geology Lab.

Science Technology and Reading (STAR) series. Developed by Reading Is Fundamental (Washington, D.C.). Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt, 1996.

Program Overview Designed for the upper elementary grades, the Science Technology and Reading (STAR) series consists of 8 thematic "labs" in the natural and physical sciences. Each lab focuses both on science activities and on a genre of children's literature, developing correlations between the science process and the process of reading. In addition to a teacher's guide for each of the 8 labs, the STAR program includes a mentor's guide for scientists, engineers, and others assisting in the classroom.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 4-6. In Geology Lab, a story about the discovery of a geode by a character in a fictional classroom provides a backdrop and source of background information for a series of geology lab explorations. Students first conduct a rock-hunting expedition around the schoolyard. To identify the rocks, they test them for the presence of carbonates and conduct a streak (color) test. They learn how sedimentary rocks are formed by making artificial sandstone. To simulate core sampling—a technique used by scientists to study the geological history of an area—students make multilayered sandwiches and

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

use straws to extract a "core sample." Students use clay models of folding rock layers to show how movement in the earth's crust creates mountains. They use large blocks of ice to simulate glacial action and its effect on land. Finally students make molds and casts to simulate the process of fossilization.

During the unit, students examine the format and features of nature guides as a model for writing their own geology field guides. Examples of other interdisciplinary activities include developing recipes for a geological cookbook, creating sand paintings, and role-playing specialists in geology-related fields.

The guide provides a list of resources including books, computer software, and audiovisual materials. Reproducible pages for students, such as lab procedures, data sheets, and information handouts, are also provided.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-7872-1460-4), $21.90. Mentor's guide, $3.90. Publisher/supplier: Kendall/Hunt. Materials: Available locally.

4.23 Hurricane!

Russell G. Wright. Event-Based Science series. Menlo Park, Calif.: Innovative Learning Publications, 1995.

Program Overview The Event-Based Science series is a program for middle school students in grades 6-9. Each module tells the story of a real event—such as the 1995 outbreak of the Ebola virus in Zaire—through reprinted newspaper articles and personal interviews; sections of background information explain relevant scientific concepts. A central task related to the module's story line leads to a final product that allows students to apply the science they have learned. For each module, a student book, teacher's guide, and videotape and/or videodisc are available.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8. Hurricane Andrew of 1992 is the event on which this 5-week study of meteorological topics is based. The topics addressed in Hurricane! include air pressure, humidity, wind, hurricane formation, and the hydrologic cycle. The module also introduces students to practical ways of preparing for and cleaning up after a major weather event. Students begin the module by watching television news coverage and reading newspaper accounts of the devastation caused by Hurricane Andrew. They are told that their major task during the module will be to design, in 6-member teams, a 3-page newspaper explaining the impact of a hurricane on a community. The module's 10 activities provide students with the background information and skills they need for this task.

Among the activities, for example, students track a hurricane and use various weather features—such as earth wind patterns—to predict its path. They follow the movement of weather across the United States in order to make a forecast. They determine the best location for scientific instruments designed to detect hurricanes that are forming. They also construct a bar graph showing when during the year hurricanes are most likely to occur.

The module provides short narratives on meteorological topics; copies of actual newspaper articles; explanatory graphics; and profiles of professionals who might be involved in publishing a newspaper on a hurricane—for example, an editor, a hurricane specialist, a meteorologist, a natural hazards planner, a reporter, and an environmental scientist. Middle school students who experienced Hurricane Andrew tell their stories throughout the module. Other information that students need to complete the task must be obtained from encyclopedias, textbooks, films, magazines, and other sources they can find. The unit culminates with a display of each team's newspaper. Teachers may want to supplement or exchange the activities in the unit depending on the latest "real event" in the news.

Teacher's Edition The teacher's guide provides brief overview information on the module's structure and activities. It includes suggestions for guiding specific student activities and a scoring rubric for a performance assessment.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Motions and forces; transfer of energy.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; risks and benefits; science and technology in society.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-201-49094-3), $7.95. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-201-49416-7), with video, $18.00. Classroom package, $115.00. Publisher/supplier: Addison-Wesley/Longman. Materials: Available locally.

4.24 The Moons of Jupiter.

Debra Sutter, Cary Sneider, Alan Gould, and others. Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series. Berkeley, Calif.: Lawrence Hall of Science, 1993.

Program Overview The Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series includes more than 50 teacher's guides and handbooks for preschool through grade 10. About 35 of these are appropriate for middle school. The series also includes several assembly presenter's guides and exhibit guides. New guides and handbooks continue to be developed, and current titles are revised frequently. The series is designed to teach key science and mathematics concepts through activity-based learning. The time needed to complete GEMS units varies from about 2 to 10 class sessions.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 4-8+. In this unit, students learn about the exciting world of planets and space exploration by studying Jupiter and its moons. During the unit's 5 activities, students track Jupiter's moons, investigate the creation of craters, create a scale model of the Jupiter system using their schoolyard, go on a tour of the Jupiter system as viewed by the Voyager spacecraft, and design and build model space stations. Students are introduced to the work of Galileo and other early astronomers. They have the opportunity to observe photographs of Jupiter and its moons and to discuss and record information; they compare the moons' features with other, more familiar things; and they venture possible ideas, explanations, or conclusions on the basis of what they have seen. In all of the activities, students create and use models of various kinds.

The 5 activities in The Moons of Jupiter require about 5 to 7 sessions of 40 to 50 minutes each. Each lesson includes a materials list, preparation steps, and directions for activities and discussion. The guide also includes background information, summary outlines for each lesson, reproducible data sheets, and suggestions for related reading. A set of 23 slides is included with the teacher's guide.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science; history of science.

Prices: $42.00 (ISBN 0-912511-84-2). Slides, $26.50. Publisher/supplier: LHS GEMS. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.25 Project Earth Science: Astronomy.

P. Sean Smith. Project Earth Science series. Washington, D.C.: National Science Teachers Association, 1992.

Program Overview The Project Earth Science series consists of 4 volumes for students in middle and junior high school. Each volume focuses on a single area in earth science—astronomy, geology, meteorology, or physical oceanography—and contains a collection of hands-on activities and a series of readings related to the topic area. The central theme of the series is the uniqueness of the earth among the planets in the solar system.

Curriculum Guide Recommended grade level: 7-8+. Project Earth Science: Astronomy contains 11 hands-on activities and a set of 14 background readings designed to introduce students to planetary astronomy. Many of the activities involve mathematics. They are organized under 3 broad concepts: (1) the placement of earth in relation to the sun and to the other planets, (2) the unique properties of earth, and (3) the reasons for the phases of the moon and the earth's seasons.

Among the activities, students use angular diameters to measure the true diameter of the moon, build a scale model of the planetary distances in the solar system, investigate the effect of distance to the object and baseline on parallax, and use Ping-Pong balls and a light source to understand the cause of the moon's phases.

The set of 14 background readings elaborates on concepts presented in the activities. Included are topics such as scale measurements, the Hubble Space Telescope, and the greenhouse effect. The readings are intended to enhance teacher preparation or to serve as resources for students interested in further study.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

Each activity in Project Earth Science: Astronomy includes student pages, which can be duplicated, and a teacher's guide. The student pages contain background information, directions, and a set of questions to guide the students as they draw conclusions. The teacher's section contains more detailed background information, preparation tips, and suggestions for interdisciplinary study and extensions. Appendixes provide a master materials list and an annotated bibliography of resources in astronomy.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Transfer of energy.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

Price: $21.95 (ISBN 0-87355-108-7).

Publisher/supplier: National Science Teachers Association. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.26 Project Earth Science: Geology.

Brent A. Ford. Project Earth Science series. Arlington, Va.: National Science Teachers Association, 1996.

Program Overview The Project Earth Science series consists of 4 volumes for students in middle and junior high school. Each volume focuses on a single area in earth science—astronomy, geology, meteorology, or physical oceanography—and contains a collection of hands-on activities and a series of readings related to the topic area. The central theme of the series is the uniqueness of the earth among the planets in the solar system.

Curriculum Guide Recommended grade level: 6-8+. Project Earth Science: Geology contains 15 hands-on activities and a set of 4 background readings designed to introduce students to the unifying theory of plate tectonics and how this concept can be used to explain the occurrences of volcanoes, earthquakes, and other geologic phenomena. The activities are constructed around 4 basic concepts: (1) the earth's surface is composed of plates that can move independently of one another, (2) tectonic plates move because they "ride" on a rock layer called the asthenosphere, (3) tectonic motion and mechanisms are studied indirectly by investigating a variety of geologic features and events on and near the earth's surface, and (4) rocks and minerals are products of complex geological processes. An understanding of the concept of density is required for several of the activities.

Among the activities in the unit, students use maps and data tables to look for patterns in the frequency and distribution of earthquakes around the world, and they construct paper models that illustrate seafloor spreading. Students also experiment with models of convection cells in water, and they compare the ability of various construction designs to withstand the effects of an earthquake.

The set of 4 background readings—on plate tectonics, volcanoes, earthquakes, and rocks and minerals—elaborates on concepts presented in the activities. The readings are intended to enhance teacher preparation or to serve as resources for students interested in further study.

Each activity in Project Earth Science: Geology includes student pages that can be duplicated and a teacher's guide. The student pages contain background information, directions, and a set of questions to guide the students as they draw conclusions. The teacher's section contains more detailed background information, preparation tips, and suggestions for interdisciplinary study and extensions. Appendixes include a master materials list and an annotated bibliography.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Transfer of energy.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Nature of science.

Price: $21.95 (ISBN 0-87355-131-1).

Publisher/supplier: National Science Teachers Association. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.27 Project Earth Science: Meteorology.

P. Sean Smith and Brent A. Ford. Project Earth Science series. Arlington, Va.: National Science Teachers Association, 1994.

Program Overview The Project Earth Science series consists of 4 volumes for students in middle and junior high school. Each volume focuses on a single area in earth

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

science—astronomy, geology, meteorology, or physical oceanography—and contains a collection of hands-on activities and a series of readings related to the topic area. The central theme of the series is the uniqueness of the earth among the planets in the solar system.

Curriculum Guide Recommended grade level: 6-8+. Project Earth Science: Meteorology contains 17 hands-on activities, 2 demonstrations, and a set of 10 background readings designed to introduce students to meteorology. The activities are constructed around 3 basic concepts: (1) the origin and composition of the earth's atmosphere, (2) factors that contribute to weather, and (3) the ways air masses interact to produce weather.

Among the activities in the unit, students conduct an experiment to determine the percentage of oxygen in the atmosphere. They also investigate the rates at which different colors of the same surface heat, they use inflated balloons to model how pressure differences create wind, and they investigate some essential factors in the production of hail.

The set of 10 background readings elaborates on concepts presented in the activities. Included are topics such as smog, acid rain, and mechanisms of severe weather. The readings are intended to enhance teacher preparation or to serve as resources for students interested in further study.

Each activity in Project Earth Science: Meteorology includes student pages that can be duplicated, and a teacher's guide. The student pages contain background information, directions, and a set of questions to guide the students as they draw conclusions. The teacher's section contains more detailed background information, preparation tips, and suggestions for interdisciplinary study and extensions. An annotated bibliography is also provided.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history; earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; science and technology in society.

Price: $21.95 (ISBN 0-87355-123-0).

Publisher/supplier: National Science Teachers Association. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.28 River Cutters.

Reprinted with revisions. Jefferey Kaufmann, Robert C. Knott, and Lincoln Bergman. Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series. Berkeley, Calif.: Lawrence Hall of Science, 1995.

Program Overview The Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series includes more than 50 teacher's guides and handbooks for preschool through grade 10. About 35 of these are appropriate for middle school. The series also includes several assembly presenter's guides and exhibit guides. New guides and handbooks continue to be developed, and current titles are revised frequently. The series is designed to teach key science and mathematics concepts through activity-based learning. The time needed to complete GEMS units varies from about 2 to 10 class sessions.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 6-8+. River Cutters gives students a sense of events in a river system over time. The unit includes not only earth science and ecology but social studies. Concepts of erosion, sequencing of geological events, pollution, and human manipulation of rivers are introduced. Students first create their own model rivers, observing and recording information about them. During the first 4 sessions of the unit, they acquire geological terminology and begin to understand rivers as dynamic, ever-changing systems. During 3 optional sessions, students have the opportunity to explore the relationship between the angle of the river models and the events that occur in the developing river, experimenting with dams and modeling problems in toxic waste disposal. Students develop skills such as designing models, experimenting, recording data, communicating, and decision making. It is important that diatomaceous earth—the type used for swimming pool filtration—be used and that teachers make a few trial runs with the river model prior to the class session.

The first 4 sessions in River Cutters require about 45 minutes each; the 3 optional sessions require 45 to 60 minutes each. The lesson plan for each session includes an overview, a materials list, and detailed instructions (including diagrams) for preparing and for conducting the activity. The guide also includes background information, summary outlines for each lesson, reproducible data sheets, and suggestions for related reading.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Populations, resources, and environments; natural hazards.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Nature of science; history of science.

Price: $16 (ISBN 0-912511-67-2).

Publisher/supplier: LHS GEMS.

Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.29 Rocks and Minerals.

Delta Science Module (DSM) series. Hudson, N.H.: Delta Education, 1994.

Program Overview The Delta Science Module (DSM) series has 51 life, physical, and earth science units for grades K-8 that emphasize science concepts, science content, and process skills. The series includes 12 modules for grades 5-6 and 8 modules for grades 6-8. Each requires about 3 to 4 weeks to complete and includes a teacher's guide and materials for a class of 32 students.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 5-6. In this module students investigate the properties and uses of rocks and minerals and learn about some of the methods geologists use to gather data about the materials that make up the earth. Students describe minerals in terms of properties such as luster, hardness, and streak color. They apply their knowledge in inferring some of the mineral constituents of rocks. During the unit, students develop a list of how different rocks and minerals have been used by humans through time. They construct 3-dimensional models of crystals, grow crystals, and take a geological field trip to gather and interpret data on rocks and minerals.

The 12 activities in Rocks and Minerals are organized to be completed sequentially over 3 to 4 weeks. Each activity takes about 30 to 50 minutes and can be done by students working individually or in groups.

A "connections" feature at the end of each activity provides suggestions for extending or applying the concepts in the activity. Discussion or activity topics include technology, society, science and careers, language arts, mathematics, the arts, social studies, and health. For example, a "science and health" extension suggests that students research the causes and sources of acid rain and its effects on plants, wildlife, and people.

In addition to directions for activities, the teacher's guide provides a module overview, a schedule of activities, objectives for each activity, background information, materials management and preparation tips, sample answers to discussion questions, teaching suggestions, and reinforcement activities. Also included are reproducible activity sheets for student work and a performance-based assessment.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: History of science.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-87504-101-9), $27.95. Kit, $279.00. Refill package, $39.00. Publisher/supplier: Delta Education. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.30 Shrinking Farmlands.

Module 1.8. Foundations and Challenges to Encourage Technology-based Science (FACETS) series. Developed by American Chemical Society (Washington, D.C.). Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt, 1996.

Program Overview The Foundations and Challenges to Encourage Technology-based Science (FACETS) program consists of 3 series of 8 modules each for grades 6-8. Each module focuses on a topic in the life, earth, or physical sciences. The time needed to complete FACETS modules varies from 2 to 4 weeks. Each module consists of a student book and a teacher's guide.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 6. In the module Shrinking Farmlands, students investigate the effects of wind and water erosion on the world's supply of arable land, and they also examine the issue of equitable distribution of food throughout the world. During the module, students figure out the percentage of land on the planet that is available for farming, and they conduct library research to determine the positive and negative effects of some of the methods farmers use to maximize production and minimize problems with erosion.

In other activities, students make models of farmland to explore the effects of wind and water erosion and to investigate ways in which wind and water erosion can be reduced by planting. Students also participate in a trading simulation (game) to learn why the world food supply gets divided unequally. In the final activity, students design and make a learning center on shrinking farmlands, using the information they have acquired.

Shrinking Farmlands is a 4-week module divided into 6 activities, which each take between 1 and 4 class periods to complete. A narrative section at the end of the module provides background information for

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

students on controlling soil erosion and soil pollution.

Teacher's Guide The wraparound teacher's guide includes a unit overview, a time line for completing the module, a materials list, background information, and teaching suggestions.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

LIFE SCIENCE: Populations and ecosystems.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Populations, resources, and environments; natural hazards; risks and benefits; science and technology in society.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-7872-1429-9), $7.90. Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-7872-1430-2), $14.90.

Publisher/supplier: Kendall/Hunt.

Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.31 Solar Energy.

Delta Science Module (DSM) series. Hudson, N.H.: Delta Education, 1994.

Program Overview The Delta Science Module (DSM) series has 51 life, physical, and earth science units for grades K-8 that emphasize science concepts, science content, and process skills. The series includes 12 modules for grades 5-6 and 8 modules for grades 6-8. Each requires about 3 to 4 weeks to complete and includes a teacher's guide and materials for a class of 32 students.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 5-7. Solar Energy helps students understand what is involved in making use of solar energy. During the unit, students carry out various experiments before designing an optimal solar collector. For example, they plant 2 terrariums, place 1 in a sunny location and 1 in a dark location, and compare the growth rates of their plants. Students investigate the transfer of solar energy and discover that a covered solar collector retains more heat than an uncovered one does. They also measure the change in water temperature in black and white solar collectors, investigate how the same amount of solar energy affects the temperature of different volumes of water, and find out whether exposure time is a determining factor in the amount of solar energy absorbed in a collector.

In other activities, students conduct a controlled experiment—to test the importance of the angle at which the sun's rays strike a solar collector, to learn about the use of a reflector, and to investigate the way in which different types of liquid absorb solar energy. After designing and constructing an efficient solar collector on the basis of what they have learned, students use a solar cell to capture and convert solar energy to electrical energy, they experiment with different insulating materials, and they construct and use solar stills.

The 13 activities in Solar Energy are organized to be completed sequentially over 3 to 4 weeks. Each activity takes about 30 to 50 minutes and can be done by students working individually or in groups. Many of the experiments require students to work outdoors.

A "connections" feature at the end of each activity provides suggestions for extending or applying the concepts in the activity. Discussion topics include technology, society, science and careers, language arts, mathematics, the arts, social studies, and health. Other follow-up activities that students can do at home or out of the classroom are also provided. For example, students are encouraged to investigate solar-powered cars and planes that have been built and tested in recent years.

In addition to directions for activities, the teacher's guide provides a module overview, a schedule of activities, objectives for each activity, background information, materials management and preparation tips, sample answers to discussion questions, teaching suggestions, and reinforcement activities. Also included are reproducible activity sheets for student work and a performance-based assessment. The module includes a 15-minute video, Solar Energy.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE: Transfer of energy.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; history of science.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-87504-111-6), $27.95. Kit, $279.00. Refill package, $11.00. Publisher/supplier: Delta Education. Materials: Available locally, through commercial suppliers, or in kit.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×
4.32 Stories in Stone.

Kevin Cuff, with Cary Sneider, Lincoln Bergman, and others. Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series. Berkeley, Calif.: Lawrence Hall of Science, 1995.

Program Overview The Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) series includes more than 50 teacher's guides and handbooks for preschool through grade 10. About 35 of these are appropriate for middle school. The series also includes several assembly presenter's guides and exhibit guides. New guides and handbooks continue to be developed, and current titles are revised frequently. The series is designed to teach key science and mathematics concepts through activity-based learning. The time needed to complete GEMS units varies from about 2 to 10 class sessions.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 5-8+. In Stories in Stone, students closely observe and learn about the properties of rocks and minerals. They also conduct simulations and an experiment to find out about how rocks and minerals are formed. Among the activities of the unit, for example, students examine and describe a class collection of 10 different rocks and minerals, learn to distinguish rocks from minerals, grow sodium chloride crystals, and fold paper templates to make models of crystalline shapes. They also carry out an experiment with phenyl salicylate that simulates the formation of igneous rocks as magma cools and solidifies. They investigate sediments with different grain sizes and then create a model sedimentary rock profile by suspending a mixture of these materials in water and allowing them to settle out. They use clay to model the formation of metamorphic rocks and the rock cycle. In the final session, students apply their new knowledge to classifying the 10 rocks and minerals in the class collection and to identifying unknown "mystery" rocks.

The 8 sessions in Stories in Stone take between 40 and 60 minutes each and require that students work in teams of no more than 4 students. The lesson plan for each session includes an overview, a materials list, and detailed instructions for preparing and for conducting the activity. The guide also includes background information, summary outlines for each lesson, reproducible sheets, and suggestions for related reading. Information on obtaining rock samples for the classroom is included.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; evolution and equilibrium.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Nature of science; history of science.

Price: $16 (ISBN 0-912511-93-1). Publisher/supplier: LHS GEMS. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.33 The Universe: Exploring Stars, Constellations, and Galaxies.

Scholastic Science Place series. Developed in cooperation with Houston Museum of Natural Science (Houston, Tex.). New York, N.Y.: Scholastic, 1997.

Program Overview The Scholastic Science Place series is a K-6 program with 42 units, 6 for each grade level. The 6 units for grade 6 are organized under topics in the life, earth, and physical sciences. Three key themes—(1) scale and structure, (2) systems and interactions, and (3) patterns of change—are incorporated into the program. For each unit, teaching materials, student materials, and some optional components are available.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 6-7. In The Universe: Exploring Stars, Constellations, and Galaxies, students learn that the stars and other bodies that make up the universe are constantly changing. The unit's lessons are grouped under 3 subconcepts: (1) Stars can be studied from earth using direct and indirect evidence. (2) Stars have predictable life cycles and exist in groups. (3) The universe is constantly expanding.

In this unit, students use a sampling technique to discover how it is possible to estimate the number of stars in the sky. They observe why constellations change position over a year, investigate how parallax shift is used to measure the distance from earth to the stars, and make a model to show how the universe is expanding.

The Universe is a 17-lesson unit requiring about 22 class sessions of 60 minutes each.

Teacher's Edition The conceptual goals of the unit are presented in the lesson-by-lesson story line in the teacher's guide. Each lesson also includes background information; a complete lesson plan, including suggestions for assessing performance and integrating the curriculum; and a list of the materials required. For each lesson there is also a list of the relevant National Science Education Standards (developed by the National Research Council) and Project 2061 Benchmarks (developed by the American Association for the Advancement of Science).

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Earth in the solar system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; history of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-590-95535-7), $7.95. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-590-95462-8), $27.00. Unit, $275.00. Consumable kit, $70.00. Publisher/supplier: Scholastic. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.34 Using Earth's Resources: What Are the Tradeoffs?

New York Science, Technology and Society Education Project (NYSTEP). Problem-Solving Activities for Middle-Level Science series. Albany, N.Y.: NYSTEP, 1992.

Program Overview The Problem-Solving Activities for Middle-Level Science series consists of 8 stand-alone modules. Each module contains 2 to 6 units focused on technological and/or ethical aspects of issues involving science, technology, and society. The series was designed so that teachers can select modules and units that address local needs and draw on local community resources. A module requires 3 to 8 weeks to complete, depending on the units selected. Supplies and equipment may be required that are not typically part of a school's science inventory.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 7-8+. Using Earth's Resources introduces students to basic science concepts related to earth's natural resources and helps them become aware that trade-offs are inherent in the use of these resources. During the 3 units in this module, students construct a comprehensive description of their local area and make a composite map of local land use patterns. They identify and explore various properties of soils and of minerals, and they develop a soil profile. Then they relate the raw materials from soils and mineral resources to manufactured goods, food products, and energy resources.

In other activities, students design and conduct a survey to locate local soil erosion sites. They also participate in a 3-part simulation centered around the decisions that 6 communities in a county must make with respect to a proposed highway. In the simulation activities, students develop community action plans and study the possible impacts—especially on different soils and on water resources—of the proposed siting. They consider the economic, social, and aesthetic benefits and drawbacks of having a highway built through a county.

Using Earth's Resources is designed to be completed over a 3-to 4-week period. The module's 3 units have a total of 11 activities. Each unit has directions for its activities, a bibliography, interdisciplinary connections (to technology, social studies, language arts, mathematics, health, home and career skills, arts, and foreign languages/cultures), and ideas for extending classroom activities. Suggestions for using relational databases in the study of land use, soils, and mineral resources are provided.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Populations, resources, and environments; natural hazards; risks and benefits; science and technology in society.

Prices: Teacher's guide: In New York State, free with attendance at workshop; outside of New York, $7. Publisher/supplier: New York Science, Technology and Society Education Project. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.35 Volcano!

Russell G. Wright. Event-Based Science series. Menlo Park, Calif.: Innovative Learning Publications, 1997.

Program Overview The Event-Based Science series is a program for middle school students in grades 6-9. Each module tells the story of a real event—such as the 1995 outbreak of the Ebola virus in Zaire—through reprinted newspaper articles and personal interviews; sections of background information explain relevant scientific concepts. A central task related to the module's story line leads to a final product that allows students to apply the science they have learned. For each module, a student book, teacher's guide, and videotape and/or videodisc are available.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 7-8. The 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippine Islands is the event on which this 6-week unit on earth science concepts is based. The topics addressed in Volcano! include, for example, the structure of the earth, plate tectonics,

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

and topographic mapping. Students begin the module by watching television news coverage and reading newspaper reports about the eruption of Mount Pinatubo. They are told that their major task during the module will be to produce, in 5-member teams, a 30-minute television program that will inform middle school students in Seattle, Washington, about volcanoes and the potential hazards of living near Mount Rainier. The module's 10 activities provide students with the background information and skills they need for this task.

Among the activities, for example, students work with a mound of sand to simulate caldera formation. They build a model of Mount Rainier from a topographic map. They also design a lab to test how concentration and temperature affect the viscosity of various liquids. They use distance and rate to calculate the time available to evacuate 3 communities in a valley below Mount Rainier if a mudflow is on its way, and they classify and identify igneous rocks. Students also produce displays that compare cinder cone, shield, and composite volcanoes; and they map volcano locations worldwide.

The module provides short narratives on topics related to volcanoes, such as geysers and smokers, volcano monitoring, and the rock cycle; explanatory graphics; and profiles of professionals who might be involved in producing a program on volcanoes—such as a producer, a special-effects expert, a camera operator, a volcanologist, and a geologist. Middle school students who experienced the eruption of Mount Pinatubo tell their stories throughout the module. Other information that students need to complete the task must be obtained from encyclopedias, textbooks, films, magazines, and other sources they can find.

The unit culminates with the presentation of the television program. Schools without video equipment may consider producing a "live" show without the camera. Teachers may want to supplement or exchange the activities in the unit depending on the latest "real event" in the news.

Teacher's Edition The teacher's guide provides brief overview information on the module's structure and activities. It includes suggestions for guiding specific student activities, and a scoring rubric for a performance assessment.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system; earth's history.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Abilities of technological design; understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Natural hazards; risks and benefits; science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-201-49590-2), $7.95. Teacher's edition (ISBN 0-201-49591-0), with video, $18.00. Classroom package, $115.00. Publisher/supplier: Addison-Wesley/Longman. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.36 Weather and Health.

Module 1.4. Foundations and Challenges to Encourage Technology-based Science (FACETS) series. Developed by American Chemical Society (Washington, D.C.). Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt, 1996.

Program Overview The Foundations and Challenges to Encourage Technology-based Science (FACETS) program consists of 3 series of 8 modules each for grades 6-8. Each module focuses on a topic in the life, earth, or physical sciences. The time needed to complete FACETS modules varies from 2 to 4 weeks. Each module consists of a student book and a teacher's guide.

Student Edition Recommended grade level: 6. In Weather and Health, students working in small groups investigate whether a relationship exists between changing weather patterns and human health and well-being. This topic—called biometeorology—is also used in the module as a vehicle for students to learn about collecting long-term data and about analyzing such data for the patterns and relationships that might exist. For example, students look for possible relationships between 2 data-sets—absentee lists from their school and weather reports over a 2-week period. They also learn about the instruments used to measure weather variables, as well as written instruments used to collect health data. Students collect data on the weather at their school and on the health patterns of themselves and another person for 2 weeks.

In other activities, students work in teams to study and develop a demonstration on a particular aspect of the weather, such as air masses and wind, atmospheric pressure, temperature, or precipitation. In the unit's final activity, they analyze their 2 weeks of data on both the

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

weather and people's health, looking for possible relationships.

Weather and Health is a 3-week module divided into 5 activities, which each take between 1 and 5 class periods to complete. A narrative section at the end of the module provides background information for students on the water cycle, atmospheric pressure, clouds, weather maps, and air masses and winds.

Teacher's Guide The wraparound teacher's guide includes a unit overview, a time line for completing the module, a materials list, background information, and teaching suggestions.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

LIFE SCIENCE: Regulation and behavior.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Personal health.

Prices: Student edition (ISBN 0-7872-1441-8), $7.90. Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-7872-1442-6), $14.90. Publisher/supplier: Kendall/Hunt. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.37 Weather Forecasting.

Delta Science Module (DSM) series. Hudson, N.H.: Delta Education, 1995.

Program Overview The Delta Science Module (DSM) series has 51 life, physical, and earth science units for grades K-8 that emphasize science concepts, science content, and process skills. The series includes 12 modules for grades 5-6 and 8 modules for grades 6-8. Each requires about 3 to 4 weeks to complete and includes a teacher's guide and materials for a class of 32 students.

Teacher's Guide Recommended grade level: 5-6. In Weather Forecasting, students make weather observations and collect weather-related data and information that they display at a weather station they construct. Students explore how collecting data on temperature, rainfall, and wind helps them forecast the weather. Through participation in the activities in this unit, students are able to relate barometric pressure readings to weather conditions. They learn to code weather information and to plot weather fronts. They discover the usefulness of tracking areas of similar air pressure and temperature on a weather map. Students learn the conditions necessary for clouds to form, and begin to associate specific types of clouds with specific types of weather conditions.

The 12 activities in Weather Forecasting are organized to be completed sequentially over 3 to 4 weeks. Each activity takes about 30 to 60 minutes and can be done by students working individually or in groups.

A "connections" feature at the end of each activity provides suggestions for extending or applying the concepts in the activity. Discussion or activity topics include technology, society, science and careers, language arts, mathematics, the arts, social studies, and health. For example, a "science and health" extension suggests that students find out how the skin helps regulate body temperature.

In addition to directions for activities, the teacher's guide provides a module overview, a schedule of activities, objectives for each activity, background information, materials management and preparation tips, sample answers to discussion questions, teaching suggestions, and reinforcement activities. Also included are reproducible activity sheets for student work and a performance-based assessment.

Key to Content Standards: 5-8

(see app. C)

UNIFYING CONCEPTS AND PROCESSES: Systems, order, and organization; evidence, models, and explanation; change, constancy, and measurement; form and function.

SCIENCE AS INQUIRY: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry; understandings about scientific inquiry.

EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE: Structure of the earth system.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: Understandings about science and technology.

SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES: Science and technology in society.

HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE: Science as a human endeavor; nature of science.

Prices: Teacher's guide (ISBN 0-87504-123-X), $27.95. Kit, $249.00. Refill package, $64.00. Publisher/supplier: Delta Education. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

Earth and Space Science—Science Activity Books

4.38 Activities for the School Planetarium.

Rev. ed. Gerald L. Mallon. Planetarium Activities for Student Success. Vol. 2. Berkeley, Calif.: Lawrence Hall of Science; Corona Park, N.Y.: New York Hall of Science, 1993.

Recommended grade level: 3-8. Activities for the School Planetarium presents ideas for interdisciplinary planetarium activities for elementary and middle school students. Designed both for experienced planetarium professionals and for teachers using a planetarium for the first time, the activities were developed to provide a general introduction to astronomy and space science and to serve as springboards for teachers to create their own or similar activities.

Among the activities, students compare the brightness of a simulated "variable" star with that of surrounding stars of known brightness. They learn how to use a blink comparator—an instrument used to detect a moving object, such as a planet or an asteroid, in a field of stars. They also investigate the reasons for seasons, produce a density map of the Milky Way, and explore some of the navigational tasks that would have been encountered by the characters in the novel Treasure Island.

The 16 activities in this volume are categorized by grade level; 7 are intended for use by middle school students. Activities can also be adapted by teachers for various grade levels. Some activities can be done in the classroom; others require a planetarium.

Each activity includes background information, direction for conducting the activities, and reproducible student worksheets. The guide also offers tips on constructing participatory planetarium experiences and provides a framework for thinking about and developing planetarium activities.

Price: $11.50. Publisher/supplier: Lawrence Hall of Science. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.39 The Amateur Meteorologist: Explorations and Investigations.

H. Michael Mogil and Barbara G. Levine. Amateur Science Series. New York, N.Y.: Franklin Watts, 1993.

Recommended grade level: 4-8. The Amateur Meteorologist is an activity and resource book on observing and forecasting weather. Among the activities, for example, students build their own weather instruments—a wind vane, thermometer, barometer, rain gauge, and anemometer—from readily available materials. Other investigations introduce skills needed to identify clouds, to read weather maps, to calculate dew point and relative humidity, and to determine windchill and degree-days. The book includes useful background information on the water cycle, cloud formation, sun and seasons, pressure and wind, and stormy weather. This beginner's guide to meteorology features numerous photographs and charts.

Price: $20.60 (ISBN 0-531-11045-1). Publisher/supplier: Grolier. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.40 Arid Lands, Sacred Waters.

Marne Potter and Caitlyn Howell, eds. Albuquerque, N.Mex.: New Mexico Museum of Natural History; U.S. Geological Survey; and U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, 1992.

Recommended grade level: 5-8+. Arid Lands, Sacred Waters is a student activity packet designed to accompany an exhibition at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History; the packet can also be used on its own. It provides basic information, games, and introductory activities that allow students to learn about water in the natural environment and to find out about some of the changes that can take place with respect to this natural resource when humans step into the picture. Topics addressed include the water cycle; surface water and groundwater; weather; ecosystems, food chains, and adaptations; wetlands; water pollution; water treatment; and water conservation.

Among the activities, students calculate the flow rate of a river or stream, they make and use a rain gauge, and they investigate how certain plants are adapted to specific water conditions. Students also study maps to discover how water has influenced human settlement in New Mexico from ancient times to the present. They conduct water tests and build a water filter. They evaluate the potential effects on a community's water supply and economy from building a radioactive waste dump nearby.

Each activity in Arid Lands, Sacred Waters includes a materials list, brief directions, and limited background information. Some activities emphasize topics particularly

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

relevant to New Mexico and the Southwest, but this does not preclude their use in other geographic regions. The activity packet is also available in Spanish.

Price: $4.95. Publisher/supplier: New Mexico Museum of Natural History. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.41 Atmospheric Dynamics.

Project LEARN [Laboratory Experience in Atmospheric Research at the National Center for Atmospheric Research]. Boulder, Colo.: University Corporation for Atmospheric Dynamics, 1996.

Recommended grade level: 6-8. Atmospheric Dynamics offers 35 activities related to weather and the physical processes that create and maintain motion in the atmosphere. Activities focus on topics such as weather measurements and processes; the importance of the sun, radiation, and heat transfer; different types of storms, such as hurricanes, thunder-storms, and cyclones; and the use of weather observations to make forecasts.

Among the activities, for example, students make and use a variety of weather instruments; they use simple materials to demonstrate the differences between conduction, convection, and radiation; and they fly a paper airplane through a carbon dioxide cloud to simulate the effect of microbursts on real aircraft during takeoff and landing.

ABOUT THE ANNOTATIONS IN "EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE—SCIENCE ACTIVITY BOOKS"

Entry Numbers

Curriculum materials are arranged alphabetically by title in each category (Core Materials, Supplementary Units, and Science Activity Books) in chapters 1 through 5 of this guide.

Each curriculum annotation has a two-part entry number: the chapter number is given before the period; the number after the period locates the entry within that chapter. For example, the first entry number in chapter 1 is 1.1; the second entry in chapter 2 is 2.2; and so on.

The entry numbers within each curriculum chapter run consecutively through Core Materials, Supplementary Units, and Science Activity Books.

Order of Bibliographic Information

Following is the arrangement of the facts of publication in the annotations in this section:

  • Title of publication

  • Number of edition, if applicable

  • Authors (an individual author or authors, an institutional author, or a project or program name under which the material was developed)

  • Series title

  • Series developer, if applicable

  • Place of publication, publisher, and date of publication

Recommended Grade Level

The grade level for each piece of material was recommended by teacher evaluators during the development of this guide. In some instances, the recommended grade level may differ slightly from the publisher's advertised level.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

Price and Acquisition Information

Ordering information appears at the end of each entry. Included are—

  • Prices (of teacher's guides, activity books, and kits or units)

  • Publisher/supplier (The name of a principal publisher/supplier, although not necessarily the sole source, for the items listed in the price category. Appendix A, "Publishers and Suppliers," provides the address, phone and fax numbers, and electronic ordering information, where available, for each publisher and supplier.)

  • Materials (various sources from which one might obtain the required materials)

Readers must contact publishers/suppliers for complete and up-to-date ordering information, since prices are subject to change and materials may also change with revised editions. The prices given in this chapter are based on information from publishers and suppliers but are not meant to represent the full range of ordering options.

Indexes of Curriculum Materials

The multiple indexes on pp. 449-78 allow easy access to the information in this guide. Various aspects of the curriculum materials—including titles, topics addressed in each unit, and grade levels—are the focus of seven separate indexes. For example, titles and entry numbers are listed in the "Title Index" on pp. 450-54. The "Index of Authors, Series, and Curriculum Projects," on pp. 455-57, provides entry numbers of any annotated titles in a particular series.

The activities include brief directions and background information, and many of them have suggestions for extensions.

Price: $15. Publisher/supplier: UCAR LEARN Center. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.42 Blue Planet.

Carolyn E. Schmidt. Washington, D.C.: National Air and Space Museum, Office of Education, 1990.

Recommended grade level: 5-8+. Looking at earth from space provides students with a unique perspective in Blue Planet. This activity book was designed to be used in conjunction with the IMAX film of the same name, produced by the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum. The information, activities, and resources in the book cover many environmental and earth science topics, from earthquakes to groundwater filtration to solar heating. This varied selection offers teachers of students in grades 3 to 12 a wide range of resources from which to choose. Many of the activities are designed to develop students' observational skills, especially with regard to the changing nature of the earth's environment. The guide lists 40 locations where Blue Planet can be seen.

Price: Free to educators in response to request on school letterhead. Publisher/supplier: National Air and Space Museum. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×
4.43 Destiny in Space.

Carolyn E. Schmidt. Washington, D.C.: National Air and Space Museum, Educational Services Department, 1994.

Recommended grade level: 4-8+. Destiny in Space contains 12 activities through which students explore sociological, biological, and technological challenges of living and working in space. For example, they examine reasons for exploring space, such as colonization, curiosity, or the search for life. They experience a sense of weightlessness by exercising with leg and arm weights. They explore how different senses help people keep their balance in earth's gravitational environment.

In other activities, students simulate the problems of communicating in space, and they role-play the programmer of a robot to get a sense of how instructions for a simple task might be sent to a robotic spacecraft. They consider the isolation astronauts might experience on long voyages, and they identify the functions performed by various parts of a space suit.

Each activity includes background information for the teacher, information on the preparation needed, step-by-step procedures, discussion questions, and extensions. The importance of making and recording careful observations is stressed.

The topic of each activity in the book is linked to real-world developments and to scenes in the National Air and Space Museum's IMAX film Destiny in Space. A list of teaching materials, books, films and videos, and other materials on space is provided. The guide lists more than 50 locations where Destiny in Space can be seen.

Price: Free to educators in response to request on school letterhead. Publisher/supplier: National Air and Space Museum. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers. to request on school letterhead. Publisher/supplier: National Air and Space Museum. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.44 Earth at Hand: A Collection of Articles from NSTA's Journals.

Washington, D.C.: National Science Teachers Association, 1993.

Recommended grade level: 6-8+. Earth at Hand contains 72 articles on earth science published between 1982 and 1991 in the following journals of the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA): Journal of College Science Teaching, The Science Teacher, Science Scope, and Science and Children. The articles, selected from among hundreds published during the 10-year period, feature teaching ideas and/or hands-on activities that require minimal or no background material and little, if any, further research before being used in the classroom. Other articles provide instructions for making cheap, usable alternatives to expensive equipment.

The articles are organized in 3 broad subject categories: (1) earth's features and properties; (2) water, weather, and the environment; and (3) earth in space. Examples of activities in the volume include developing a 365-day calendar to use as an analogy for earth's 4.5-billion-year history, experimenting with a half-life model in which M&M candies represent radioactive atoms, and participating in an oil spill simulation. In other activities, students build a barometer with an Erlenmeyer flask, watch a demonstration to learn why the sky is blue, and work with a large balloon to see that the earth can look flat even though it is not.

Most articles were originally written for students in a specific age range and may need to be adapted for use at other grade levels. Earth at Hand includes a bibliography of all earth science articles published in the NSTA journals between January 1982 and May 1991.

Price: $19.95 (ISBN 0-87355-112-5). Publisher/supplier: National Science Teachers Association. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.45 Earthquakes: A Teacher's Package for K-6.

National Science Teachers Association/Federal Emergency Management Agency (NSTA/FEMA) Earthquake Curriculum. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1993.

Recommended grade level: K-6. Earthquakes: A Teacher's Package for K-6 offers a cross-curricular approach to the study of these events. Copiously illustrated, this teacher's manual contains dozens of activities under 6 unit headings: (1) "Defining an Earthquake," (2) "Why and Where Earthquakes Occur," (3) "Physical Results of Earthquakes," (4) "Measuring Earthquakes," (5) "Recognizing an Earthquake," and (6) "Earthquake Safety and Survival." The units are intended to be used in order. Activities include using a hard-boiled egg to simulate the layers of the earth, constructing models of 3 types of faults, simulating an earthquake using wooden sticks and coffee grounds, and practicing proper reactions to an earthquake.

Each of the first 5 units in Earthquakes includes background information, lessons, and activities for each of 3 grade levels: K-2, 3-4, and 5-6, as well as master pages that may be reproduced for transparencies, handouts, and worksheets.

Prices: Single copy free to educators in response to request on school letterhead. Publisher/supplier: Federal Emergency Management Agency. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×
4.46 Earth Science Investigations.

Margaret A. Oosterman and Mark T. Schmidt, eds. Alexandria, Va.: American Geological Institute, 1990.

Recommended grade level: 7-8+. Earth Science Investigations offers 27 activities related to earth science topics including earthquakes, erosion, rocks, weather, tides, the solar system, and mapping skills. The hands-on activities are grouped by general subject. Among the activities, for example, students construct a geologic model that simulates river features and processes. They also visualize how the North Atlantic basin formed and learn how different ages of bedrock reveal the basin's history. They gather data on micro weather patterns, determine the density of soil particles, and prepare and analyze contour maps to determine the flow of contaminated groundwater. In other activities, students determine the approximate circumference of the earth using geometric principles and mathematical proportions, and they look for patterns in the meteorite-impact history of North America.

The activities in Earth Science Investigations include step-by-step procedures, basic background information, reproducible student data sheets, a set of questions with an answer key, and a list of additional resources. Many of the activities are paper-and-pencil labs that require the analysis of data provided in the tables and charts.

Price: $34.95 (ISBN 0-922152-07-1). Publisher/supplier: American Geological Institute. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.47 Earth: The Water Planet.

Rev. ed. Jack E. Gartrell, Jr., Jane Crowder, and Jeffrey C. Callister. Washington, D.C.: National Science Teachers Association, 1992.

Recommended grade level: 6-8+. Earth: The Water Planet features 21 activities that investigate various aspects of water: its scarcity or abundance, where it is found, its unique physical properties, how it moves through the atmosphere, and how it reshapes the solid earth. The activities in the book also heighten students' environmental awareness and allow them to see how water affects almost every aspect of life on earth.

Among the activities, for example, students collect data on the rate of water absorption of local soils, use a block of ice containing sand and stones to simulate the abrasive action of a glacier, and use a model of a hillside to investigate how contour farming practices reduce erosion. Students also determine how much water leaks from a faulty plumbing fixture in a year and simulate the major steps in purifying water for human consumption.

This guide includes a collection of 18 readings that provide detailed explanations and additional examples of the concepts explored in the activities. The topics include glaciers, clouds, acid rain, soil erosion, the water cycle, water treatment, water conservation, and seawater. The readings can be used as student handouts or as background information for teachers.

The activities in Earth: The Water Planet take between 40 and 60 minutes each and require readily available materials such as paint rollers, toys, plastic bottles, and watering cans. Each activity includes background information, detailed instructions, reproducible students sheets, extension ideas, and answers when needed. Most of the activities can be adapted for classroom demonstrations. Audiovisual activities are an integral part of some activities.

Price: $18.50 (ISBN 0-87355-083-8). Publisher/supplier: National Science Teachers Association. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.48 Earthy Things.

Margaret Eidson. Riverview, Fla.: Idea Factory, 1990.

Recommended grade level: 5-8. Earthy Things, written by a middle school teacher, offers 87 ideas for basic activities in 4 areas of earth science: astronomy, geology, meteorology, and oceanography. Examples of the activities include making and using a spectroscope, investigating the Doppler effect using a Nerf football, and producing materials that have the characteristics of noncrystalline igneous rocks. In other activities, students construct and use a homemade thermometer or a nephoscope (for observing the direction and velocity of clouds), investigate what happens when a warm air mass meets a cold air mass, prepare a model of an estuary and its natural resources, and investigate a cross-section of a barrier island.

Earthy Things is presented in 3-ring-binder format. Each activity includes a materials list, teacher's notes with basic background information and instructions, and reproducible student pages and record sheets. Appendixes give tips for working with students on slide and

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

filmstrip presentations and for teaching students how to write a lab report.

Price: $24.95 (ISBN 1-885041-11-X). Publisher/supplier: Idea Factory. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.49 Exploring Space: Using Seymour Simon's Astronomy Books in the Classroom.

Barbara Bourne and Wendy Saul. New York, N.Y.: Morrow Junior Books, 1994.

Recommended grade level: 5-6. Exploring Space: Using Seymour Simon's Astronomy Books in the Classroom contains about 50 space-related activities that build on information in astronomy books by Seymour Simon and other prominent authors of children's nonfiction books. Each activity has a different theme, such as magnetic storms on the sun, black holes, or developing a space quiz. In addition to experiments, this guide for teachers and parents proposes topics for writing assignments and discussions and suggests titles for further reading. Teachers are encouraged to select from among the activities and to encourage their students to amend and refine them. Striking, full-color photographs and useful diagrams appear throughout the guide. Each activity also includes a materials list, step-by-step procedures, and extensions.

Price: $16 (ISBN 0-688-12723-1). Publisher/supplier: Morrow Junior Books. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.50 Finding Your Way: Navigation Activities from the exploratorium.

Peter Weiss and staff of The Exploratorium. San Francisco, Calif.: The Exploratorium, 1992.

Recommended grade level: 4-8. Inspired by an exhibit at The Exploratorium museum in San Francisco celebrating "the amazing human ability to get from here to there," Finding Your Way contains sections on finding north, making maps, and orienting oneself on the planet. Among the activities, for example, students use a dial watch and the sun to find true north and then make and use a magnetic compass to find magnetic north. They make a clinometer to measure the height of an object and then use a "shrinking tower" scale to determine how far away the object is. They also measure and map a hill in 3 dimensions, use the North Star and a clinometer to measure latitude, and use a north-south line and a time-zone table to determine longitude.

Each activity includes an objective, a materials list, instructions, and an explanation that provides scientific, technological, and historical context. The book offers helpful illustrations and clear, easy-to-follow directions.

Prices: $5.95 (ISBN 0-943451-35-3). Publisher/supplier: The Exploratorium. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.51 Geothermal Energy.

Marilyn Nemzer and Deborah Page. Tiburon, Calif.: Geothermal Education Office, 1994.

Recommended grade level: 5-8. Geothermal Energy, designed for use with students in grades 4 to 8, describes geothermal energy in the context of the world's energy needs. The information and activities in this illustrated guide involve students in an in-depth study of geothermal energy, including its geology, history, and many uses. The activities in the 6 sections of the unit include, for example, demonstrating the effects of burning fuels using mirrors and various heat sources, using swirling colored water to show how hot mantle rock moves in convection currents, testing the effects of heat on evaporation, producing electric current in a magnet, and making a model geothermal steam engine.

Science activities are integrated with mathematics, social studies, and language arts in Geothermal Energy. Each section of the book has information "For the Teacher." Activities provide an introduction, a materials list, and step-by-step directions. A videotape—Geothermal Energy: A Down-to-Earth Adventure—provides an overview of the concepts taught in this unit.

Prices: Teacher's guide, $5. Video, $9. Publisher/supplier: Geothermal Education Office. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.52 Global Climates—Past, Present, and Future: Activities for Integrated Science Education.

Sandra Henderson, Steven R. Holman, and Lynn L. Mortensen, eds. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, 1993.

Recommended grade level: 8+. Global Climates—Past, Present, and Future, published by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, offers

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

15 simple activities that focus student attention on global climate change. The curriculum is designed not to convince students that global temperatures are rising at an unprecedented rate but to present the results of research and to encourage students to apply critical-thinking skills to a complex issue. The topics addressed in this guide include weather and climate, the greenhouse effect, the carbon cycle, human activity and the greenhouse effect, and the possible impact of the greenhouse effect on plants and global sea level.

Among the activities in the guide, students collect and graph local weather data, learning about the distinction between weather and climate. They also construct and interpret a 45-foot-long chart of the earth's history. They analyze simulated pollen-sample analogs to replicate the way that scientists gather paleo-data. Students also make model greenhouses, and they investigate the differences between the atmospheres of the planets in our solar system. They plant, care for, and observe the changes in growing plants under conditions of normal (ambient) carbon dioxide (CO2) and elevated CO2 levels.

Although most of the activities take 1 or 2 class periods to complete, many could be done over longer periods of time. Each activity in this 3-ring-binder includes a materials list, step-by-step procedures, and separate student pages. A list of 12 articles, books, and reports on climate change is provided.

Price: $31.50. Publisher/supplier: National Technical Information Service. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.53 The Great Ocean Rescue.

Watertown, Mass.: Tom Snyder Productions, 1993.

Recommended grade level: 5-8. The Great Ocean Rescue is a videodisc package designed to engage students in learning about the ocean and related topics in earth science, environmental science, and life science through a cooperative learning experience. The activity (requiring 4 to 12 class periods) consists of 4 rescue missions that take students to trouble spots in the ocean. Students view a videodisc description of the mission, then break into small groups, with each student in the group adopting the role of a different scientist—geologist, marine biologist, oceanographer, or environmental scientist—to analyze the information. Each group reports its recommendations to the class, and the class decides the trouble spot location. Small groups reconvene to come up with possible solutions to the problem, and the class then decides on the best solution. Topics addressed in the rescue missions include habitat selection, pollution, coral reefs, and hydrothermal vent communities.

The videodisc includes a library of short movies that complement and extend the rescue activity. Reproducible masters of student worksheets and a poster-sized map of the ocean floor are included.

Prices: Videodisc kit, $349.95. Software for Macintosh or Windows (optional), $49.95. Publisher/supplier: Tom Snyder Productions. Materials: Available in kit.

4.54 The Great Solar System Rescue.

Watertown, Mass.: Tom Snyder Productions, 1992.

Recommended grade level: 4-8. In The Great Solar System Rescue, a videodisc-based simulation set in the year 2210, 4 probes are lost in space and the class must rescue them. Students analyze data in order to find the best way of rescuing the probes. They view a videodisc description of the mission, then break into small groups, with each student assuming the role of a specific scientist, such as an astronomer, meteorologist, geologist, or space historian, to analyze the information. Each group reports its recommendations to the class and the class decides where to travel. When the probe is located, the small groups reconvene to develop rescue plans, and the class again decides on the best plan.

The videodiscs include a library of short movies and stills that complement and extend the rescue activity.

Prices: Videodisc kit, $349.95. Software for Macintosh or Windows (optional), $49.95. Publisher/supplier: Tom Snyder Productions. Materials: Available in kit.

4.55 Hands-On Geology: K-12 Activities and Resources.

R. Heather Macdonald and Susan G. Stover, eds. Tulsa. Okla.: SEPM [Society for Sedimentary Geology], 1991.

Recommended grade level: 4-8+. Hands-On Geology is a collection of 23 stand-alone activities and resources on sedimentary geology. Topics covered include crystals, rocks, fossils, evolution, dinosaurs, global warming, and acid rain. Among the activities,

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

for example, students build a quicksand model; develop a taxonomic web diagram of cars in a parking lot; learn how fossils are used in paleogeographic interpretation; investigate the types of stone used for local buildings; and use a geologic map, a soil geochemistry map, and a sediment geochemistry map to locate a copper deposit. Developed by many different geologists and educators, the activities in this volume vary somewhat in approach and detail. Each activity includes background information, a materials list, procedures, and a results-and-discussion section. The resources section lists geology suppliers; sources for curricula and supplementary materials; state geological surveys; professional geology organizations; and earth science books, films, and periodicals.

Price; $6 (ISBN 0-918985-90-0). Publisher/supplier: SEPM. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.56 Janice VanCleave's Earthquakes: Mind-Boggling Experiments You Can Turn into Science Fair Projects.

Janice Pratt VanCleave. Spectacular Science Projects. New York, N.Y.: John Wiley, 1993.

Recommended grade level: 4-6. Janice VanCleave's Earthquakes, a book written for students, contains 20 simple activities for exploring concepts related to earthquakes—such as compression forces, faults, tectonic plates, convection currents, seismic waves, and the Richter scale. For each activity, students first complete a "cookbook" experiment, such as exploring compression forces by pushing hand towels together to create "folds," using glass jars filled with water at different temperatures to investigate convection currents, or making a model of a seismograph with a cardboard box. Students then follow suggestions for varying these experiments and for designing their own related experiments on the basis of the models in the book. Some of the related experiments could be developed into science fair projects.

Most of the activities in Janice VanCleave's Earthquakes can be done by students working with little supervision. Each activity includes a materials list, step-by-step procedures, an explanation of results, and guidelines for further experimentation and research. A glossary of terms is also included.

Price: $10.95 (ISBN 0-471-57107-5). Publisher/supplier: Wiley. Materials: Available locally.

4.57 Marine Science Activities on a Budget.

J. Michael Williamson. Boston, Mass.: Wheelock College, 1993.

Recommended grade level: 8+. Marine Science Activities on a Budget is a collection of 18 original experiments, written by a single author, focusing primarily on physical-chemical (rather than biological) oceanography and designed to be done inexpensively. Among the activities, for example, students analyze the rates at which different-sized sand particles settle. They also observe and graph a thermocline, and they compare the buffering capacities of samples of pondwater and seawater. In other activities, students launch labeled drift bottles to study surface currents, and they observe the effect that temperature has on the metabolic rate of a poikilotherm (coldblooded organism). The emphasis in these activities is on data collection and analysis and on report-writing ability.

In addition to the 18 activities, ideas and directions are provided for building 12 pieces of marine laboratory equipment out of inexpensive materials. The equipment includes a core sampler, a hydrometer tube, a sediment-analysis apparatus, and a current-generating apparatus. Each activity in this stapled booklet includes a materials list, preparation instructions, procedures, and sample tables or charts for recording data. No background information is provided.

Price: $13. Publisher/supplier: J. Michael Williamson. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.58 Measuring Earthquakes.

Nancy Cook. Real-World Mathematics through Science series. Developed by Washington Mathematics, Engineering, and Science Achievement (MESA) Group (Seattle, Wash.). Menlo Park, Calif: Innovative Learning Publications, 1994.

Recommended grade level: 8+. Measuring Earthquakes contains 5 classroom activities and 1 home activity that teach students the mathematics underlying the development and use of local-magnitude scales, such as the Richter scale, for measuring earthquakes. Students learn where earthquakes occur and how to measure their size as they explore powers of 10, exponents, rounding numbers, and scientific notation. The importance of these mathematical concepts to geophysics and seismology is also emphasized. The book draws largely upon earthquake events in the Pacific Northwest.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

Among the activities in Measuring Earthquakes, students explore powers of 10, exponents, and logarithmic patterns by comparing and graphing the number of popcorn kernels in 4 prepackaged bags. They also build a simple seismograph and generate "quakes" of 3 magnitudes, and they construct the Richter scale using exponents and logarithmic scales.

In other activities, students calculate the magnitude of selected earthquakes using data from different seismic stations, then use the magnitude of the earthquake to calculate how far the ground actually moved. They also plot the locations of damaging earthquakes in the Pacific Northwest on a geological projection map. In the home activity, students and their families explore the effects of building materials and design on a structure's ability to withstand an earthquake.

Each activity in this book includes an overview, a materials list, background information, procedures, presentation suggestions, assessment strategies, and links to careers, history, and technology.

Price: $18.95 (ISBN 0-201-86122-4). Publisher/supplier: Scott Foresman/Addison Wesley. Materials: Available locally.

4.59 On the Rocks: Earth Science Activities for Grades 1-8.

Susan G. Stover and R. Heather Macdonald, eds. Tulsa, Okla.: SEPM [Society for Sedimentary Geology], 1993.

Recommended grade level: 1-8. On the Rocks is a collection of 50 earth science demonstrations, activities, and investigations. The activities are intended for a varied audience—for those new to teaching earth science, for experienced teachers seeking new ideas or approaches, and for geologists visiting the classroom. The activities are grouped under 7 major topics: (1) rocks and minerals; (2) soils, volcanoes, and earthquakes; (3) water; (4) fossils; (5) maps and map making; (6) science basics; and (7) geology, society, and the environment.

Among the activities in On the Rocks, students simulate the formation of sedimentary rocks. They observe how and why ground liquefaction occurs during earthquakes. They create a musical play based on their knowledge of dinosaurs. Students also use a model to see how and why groundwater moves through aquifers; they make a 3-dimensional model of a landscape and relate the model to a topographic map; and they explore the many different ways petroleum is used in modern society, learning about advantages and disadvantages of its use.

Each activity includes a materials list, an indication of time required (which ranges from 15 minutes to several hours), step-by-step procedures, and a results-and-discussion section. Background material is presented with some activities. No student pages are provided.

Price: $9 (ISBN 1-56576-005-0). Publisher/supplier: SEPM. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.60 Project SPICA: A Teacher Resource to Enhance Astronomy Education.

Nadine Butcher Ball, Harold P. Coyle, and Irwin I. Shapiro, eds. Project SPICA: Support Program for Instructional Competency in Astronomy, sponsored by Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt, 1995.

Recommended grade level: 2-8+. This manual contains 37 stand-alone astronomy activities, selected from more than 100 activities used nationwide by the Project SPICA teacher network in workshops. These activities are designed to be used by teachers with little or no background in astronomy. The activities cover a wide range of topics, including the earth, moon, and sun; the solar system; stars; our galaxy and other galaxies; and the universe as a whole.

Among the activities, for example, students make and use a moon phase dial and a sundial, and they trace the position of a reflected image (the analemma) of the sun at noon throughout the school year. They also explore "crustal material" from a mystery planet, and they use spectra to identify which of 7 known elements are present in 5 imaginary stars. Students also decode imaginary binary data sent to earth from a spacecraft, and they construct a 3-dimensional model of the Big Dipper inside a box, then observe the constellation from different positions.

The activities in this teacher resource can be adapted for classes from second grade through high school. Most of the activities take 1 class period of 40 to 50 minutes to complete. Some need to be done outside. Each activity lists a key concept and a key question to indicate its focus. Grade-level information, an indication of the time required, background information, procedures, notes on student preconceptions, cross-references to other activities, extensions, and student worksheet masters are provided.

An appendix offers other useful information. For teachers who do not have access to reference materials on astronomy, there are comprehensive background essays on topics relevant to the activities. Also included are tables of information

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
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about the planets and the brightest stars, as well as a list of science education equipment suppliers, astronomy organizations, and publications related to astronomy.

Price: $20.95 (ISBN 0-7872-0134-0). Publisher/supplier: Kendall/Hunt. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.61 Science Experiments: Earth Science.

Science Experiments, Book 2. Tammy K. Williams. Lewistown, Mo.: Mark Twain Media, 1995.

Recommended grade level: 6-8. Science Experiments: Earth Science offers 44 stand-alone activities that introduce students to a wide variety of topics in the earth sciences, focusing on geology, oceanography, meteorology, and astronomy. For example, students evaporate the water from a saltwater solution at different rates to observe the crystal sizes, and they investigate how adding salt to water affects the boiling point, freezing point, and rate of temperature change of water. They use P- and S-wave data to plot earthquake epicenters. They investigate which colors absorb more radiant energy, and they practice estimating the altitude of different objects using a "quadrant."

In addition to the earth science activities, 10 laboratory skills activities help strengthen students' familiarity with metric measurements, the scientific method, and classification systems. For example, students use a dichotomous key to give household items nonsense names. They practice using the scientific method while investigating how the height from which a ball is dropped affects how high it bounces. They use a triple-beam balance to measure the mass of different objects.

Each activity in Science Experiments: Earth Science is printed on reproducible, tear-out student sheets. These sheets include a stated objective, directions for the activity, data charts, and questions to guide student work. The book contains an answer key for the astronomy questions, but no teacher pages or background information is provided.

Price: $12.95. Publisher/supplier: Carson-Dellosa. Materials: Available locally.

4.62 Science Projects about Weather.

Robert Gardner and David Webster. Science Projects series. Springfield, N.J.: Enslow, 1994.

Recommended grade level: 5-8. Science Projects about Weather, 1 of 6 books in the Science Projects series, contains 22 simple experiments or activities that allow students to explore weather and its changes. Topics addressed include the atmosphere, the water cycle, seasons, temperature, weather, and air and wind. Among the activities, for example, students place a ball of steel wool in the bottom of a narrow jar and invert the jar in a pan of water; the next day they determine what fraction of the air—oxygen—originally in the jar reacted with the steel wool. They also make a cloud in a bottle, record and chart temperatures over the course of a day, use a turntable or "lazy Susan" to investigate the Coriolis effect, and make a liquid tornado with 2 plastic soda bottles and colored water. Students may need assistance for some of the experiments.

The last section of the book tells students how to set up their own weather station. Included are instructions for making and using a wind vane, an anemometer, a rain gauge, and a hygrometer and suggestions about making local weather forecasts.

Designed to be student-directed, many of the stand-alone activities in Science Projects about Weather could be done at home or as teacher demonstrations, or used as the basis for science fair projects.

The activities are narrative in form; the text contains questions to help guide inquiry. All of the activities have introductory, student-oriented background readings or explanations. Most activities include suggestions of further investigations for students to conduct on their own. An appendix lists suppliers of materials needed for the experiments.

Price: $18.95 (ISBN 0-89490-533-3). Publisher/supplier: Enslow. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.63 A Sedimentary Geologists' Guide to Helping K-12 Earth Science Teachers: Hints, Ideas, Activities and Resources.

Molly F. Miller, R. Heather Macdonald, Linda E. Okland, and others, eds. Tulsa, Okla.: SEPM [Society for Sedimentary Geology], 1990.

Recommended grade level: K-8+. A Sedimentary Geologists' Guide to Helping K-12 Earth Science Teachers was written to help sedimentary geologists become more involved in earth science education, but it contains many ideas useful for middle school science teachers. Included are 20 classroom activities, suggestions for field trips, hints for successful class visits by professional geologists, and resources.

Classroom activity ideas, which focus on sedimentary geology, include determining the roundness

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

of sedimentary grains, making a quicksand model, identifying the composition of rocks used in local buildings, and modeling geologic time. Several ideas for larger-scale educational activities are also given, such as panning for gold and magnetite or measuring longshore currents.

Gathered from many geologists and educators, the activities in this volume vary somewhat in approach and detail. Each activity includes a specified grade level, a list of materials, procedures, and a section on expected results. The resource section lists suppliers, sources for geology curricula and supplementary materials, and national geology and science organizations.

Price: $5 (ISBN 0-918985-86-2). Publisher/supplier: SEPM. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.64 Stonehenge: A Program from the Holt Planetarium.

Alan J. Friedman. Planetarium Activities for Student Success, Vol. 12. Berkeley, Calif.: Lawrence Hall of Science; Corona, N.Y.: New York Hall of Science, 1993.

Recommended grade level: 7-8. Stonehenge contains guidelines for directing a planetarium show that teaches students what Stonehenge is and how it could have been used as a gigantic astronomical calendar. Through the planetarium program, students learn the basic components of astronomer Gerald Hawkins's theory about Stonehenge's probable functions, and they perform an investigation using the planetarium to test the theory. The key activity involves searching for horizon events—such as sunset on the winter solstice—and then comparing those events with alignments of the stones at Stonehenge.

The program includes several follow-up classroom activities that allow students to explore apparent solar motion. The activities include creating a horizon sun calendar for a month, building and using a device that accurately models the apparent motion of the sun, and performing a detailed study of the yearly cycle of sunrises. The application of Hawkins's ideas to other ancient archaeological sites is also briefly covered. Each classroom activity has a materials list, cutouts for tools or devices, steps for preparation, procedures, and extensions. Instructions and cutouts for making indicators that show the alignments Hawkins found at Stonehenge are supplied for several types of planetariums.

Price: $11.50. Publisher/supplier: Lawrence Hall of Science. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

4.65 Student Activities in Meteorology (SAM).

Version 2. Beverly L. Meier and Elisa Passarelli. Developed in collaboration with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Environmental Research Laboratories, Forecast Systems Laboratory (Boulder, Colo.). Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1994.

Recommended grade level: 6-8+. Student Activities in Meteorology is a packet of 10 paper-and-pencil activities on meteorology and atmospheric science that give students a sense of the type and form of scientific data with which a meteorologist or an atmospheric scientist might work. All of the activities have strong mathematics and graphing components. They can be used alone or as a series. The wide range of topics addressed includes Doppler radar, severe weather, windchill, the greenhouse effect, ozone depletion, carbon monoxide pollution, air traffic and weather, and sunspots.

Among the activities in this book, students learn how to track severe weather by looking at a Doppler radar worksheet, they complete a wind chill table, and they plot curves for the occurrence of greenhouse gases over time. Students also calculate the effect that wind speed and direction have on carbon monoxide pollution in Boulder and Denver, Colorado; they examine the type of maps and weather data used by air traffic controllers; and they use techniques similar to those solar observers use to record data based on sunspot observations.

The activities give students the opportunity to manipulate data, look for patterns, and draw conclusions using the data given. Each activity includes background information, procedures, questions to guide students, charts or tables, and a conclusion box to be completed.

Price: Free. Publisher/supplier: NOAA/ERL/FSL. Materials: Available locally.

4.66 Thematic Applications: Sciences I.

Technology-Based Solutions series. Developed by Twin Discovery Systems. Freeport, N.Y.: Educational Activities, 1995.

Recommended grade level: 6-8. This CD-ROM offers 47 computer-based activities that allow students to explore 4 topics: dinosaurs, the solar system and space, weather, and inventions.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×

The activities, which can be completed individually or collaboratively, incorporate computer literacy, mathematics, writing, science, and research, and require students to locate, manipulate, organize, and analyze data. Generally, students use the word processor, database, spreadsheet, or draw/paint program to complete each activity. They are also encouraged to consult research sources such as the Internet, CD-ROM encyclopedias, books, and periodicals.

As they go through the program, students research dinosaurs and input the data into a database; then they use the database to create spreadsheets, graphs, stories, illustrations, and a time line. They research plans for space stations and use a paint program to create their own space station plan. They write a story about what life is like on an imaginary planet. Students also view a short video of the Lunar Rover and then describe it; they interpret an infrared satellite image of the weather, which is on the CD-ROM; and they create a time line of important inventions.

Video clips and clip art illustrations are included on the CD-ROM for students to use as they create documents or reports. A list of relevant Web sites is also provided. The activities are designed to be adapted to different grade levels; thus, they will require varying amounts of time, depending on the level of detail teachers assign.

The CD-ROM uses either Claris-Works (for Macintosh) or Microsoft Works for Windows. Students must know how to use these applications before they can complete the activities. The CD-ROM comes with a teacher's guide that summarizes the goals, skills, and research requirements for each activity.

Price: Unit, $99. Publisher/supplier: Educational Activities. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in unit.

4.67 The Topsoil Tour.

LaMotte Co. Chestertown, Md.: LaMotte Co., 1993.

Recommended grade level: 7-8. The 7 activities in The Topsoil Tour —a soil test unit—allow students to examine, discover, and compare the physical and chemical properties of soil samples they gather. During the unit, students also learn about the role of different plant nutrients. Among the activities, they first collect soil samples, and they observe and record information about the soil's texture and appearance on data sheets. Then they make a soil nutrient extract using soda bottle filter funnels; they test the extract for pH, nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorous levels. Students also complete several word games or puzzles that reinforce concepts presented.

The procedures used in The Topsoil Tour are simpler versions of procedures used by soil scientists throughout the world. The unit includes a 3-ring binder with information for the teacher, reproducible student data sheets and handouts, and testing reagents in single-unit foil packages.

Prices: Complete kit, $51. Replacement kit, $39. Publisher/supplier: LaMotte Co. Materials: Available locally, from commercial suppliers, or in kit.

4.68 The Universe at Your Fingertips: An Astronomy Activity and Resource Notebook.

Andrew Fraknoi, ed. Developed by Project ASTRO, Astronomical Society of the Pacific. San Francisco, Calif.: Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 1995.

Recommended grade level: 3-8+. The Universe at Your Fingertips is an activity and resource guide on astronomy. It contains 87 hands-on classroom activities selected from various sources by a team of teachers and astronomers. The activities are presented in 13 sections, on topics such as moon phases and eclipses, the sun and seasons, planets, the solar system, comets and meteors, and stars and galaxies, as well as less conventional topics such as space exploration, the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, pseudoscience (that is, astrology), and astronomy in different cultures. Ideas for interdisciplinary teaching are given. For example, students use Styrofoam balls to model lunar and solar eclipses; they make a star chart to find constellations in the night sky at any time of year; they construct simple refracting telescopes; and they create lists of songs and other pieces of music that relate in some way to astronomy.

Although activities are arranged within sections by topic and grade level, they can be done in any order. Each section of activities is followed by one or more lists of resources.

This 3-ring binder also contains comprehensive resource lists and bibliographies on topics such as astronomy organizations and suppliers, women in astronomy, the work and lives of astronomers, and astronomy and space software. Background material on astronomical topics and teaching ideas from experienced astronomy educators are also provided.

Price: $29.95 (ISBN 1-886733-00-7). Publisher/supplier: Astronomical Society of the Pacific. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
×
4.69 Water, Stones, and Fossil Bones.

Karen K. Lind, ed. CESI Sourcebook VI. Washington, D.C.: National Science Teachers Association and Council for Elementary Science International (CESI), 1991.

Recommended grad level: K-7. Water, Stones, and Fossil Bones offers 51 well-illustrated earth science activities from dozens of authors. Activities are grouped within the topics of space, land, water, air, and the earth's past. Activities include making a scale model of the solar system, using Play-Doh to simulate layers of sedimentary rock, creating miniature landfills in a plastic cup, building a solar collector, and making a fossil cast.

Activities vary in length, requiring from 30 minutes to 3 class periods to complete. Each activity includes brief background information, questions to initiate discussion, step-by-step procedures, and suggestions for further investigation.

Price: $16.50 (ISBN 0-87355-101-X). Publisher/supplier: Council for Elementary Science International. Materials: Available locally, or from commercial suppliers.

Suggested Citation:"4. Earth and Space Science." Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and National Academy of Engineering. 1998. Resources for Teaching Middle School Science. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/5774.
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With age-appropriate, inquiry-centered curriculum materials and sound teaching practices, middle school science can capture the interest and energy of adolescent students and expand their understanding of the world around them.

Resources for Teaching Middle School Science, developed by the National Science Resources Center (NSRC), is a valuable tool for identifying and selecting effective science curriculum materials that will engage students in grades 6 through 8. The volume describes more than 400 curriculum titles that are aligned with the National Science Education Standards.

This completely new guide follows on the success of Resources for Teaching Elementary School Science, the first in the NSRC series of annotated guides to hands-on, inquiry-centered curriculum materials and other resources for science teachers.

The curriculum materials in the new guide are grouped in five chapters by scientific area--Physical Science, Life Science, Environmental Science, Earth and Space Science, and Multidisciplinary and Applied Science. They are also grouped by type--core materials, supplementary units, and science activity books.

Each annotation of curriculum material includes a recommended grade level, a description of the activities involved and of what students can be expected to learn, a list of accompanying materials, a reading level, and ordering information.

The curriculum materials included in this book were selected by panels of teachers and scientists using evaluation criteria developed for the guide. The criteria reflect and incorporate goals and principles of the National Science Education Standards. The annotations designate the specific content standards on which these curriculum pieces focus.

In addition to the curriculum chapters, the guide contains six chapters of diverse resources that are directly relevant to middle school science. Among these is a chapter on educational software and multimedia programs, chapters on books about science and teaching, directories and guides to science trade books, and periodicals for teachers and students.

Another section features institutional resources. One chapter lists about 600 science centers, museums, and zoos where teachers can take middle school students for interactive science experiences. Another chapter describes nearly 140 professional associations and U.S. government agencies that offer resources and assistance.

Authoritative, extensive, and thoroughly indexed--and the only guide of its kind--Resources for Teaching Middle School Science will be the most used book on the shelf for science teachers, school administrators, teacher trainers, science curriculum specialists, advocates of hands-on science teaching, and concerned parents.

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