Lesson Plans (15 results)
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Free science lesson plans designed to engage students through hands-on experiments and activities. Chemistry, life sciences, physics, engineering and more, for elementary, middle and high school teachers.

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Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
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You might have read about the negative impacts modern human civilization has had on the environment, like pollution, deforestation, and extinction of animal species. How can we use modern technology to help protect the environment? In this project-based lesson students will design an electronic circuit that can measure something in the environment like water quality and light pollution, and develop a plan for how their circuits could be used to solve a real-world problem. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • HS-ESS3-4. Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Student teams test rocks to identify their physical properties such as luster, hardness, color, etc., and classify them as igneous, metamorphic or sedimentary. They complete a data table to record all of the rock properties, and then answer worksheet questions to deepen their understanding of rock properties.Engineering Connection Civil and geological engineers, for example, design tunnels through rock, build roads on the sides of mountains, and construct skyscrapers rooted in soil… Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-ESS2-1. Develop a model to describe the cycling of Earth's materials and the flow of energy that drives this process.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Does human activity impact the environment? If so, how can we measure our impact on the environment? How can we use these measurements to change our behavior? In this project, your students will explore these questions by designing and building an electronic circuit that can measure environmental parameters like water quality or light pollution. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-ESS3-3. Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 5th-8th
Help your students learn about solar energy, physical forces, and other science topics with this hands-on engineering experience. This lesson plan will show you how to get your classroom started building solar-powered cars that your students can enter, if desired, in regional Junior Solar Sprint competitions. No previous experience with electronics or building things is necessary. Get the dates and location for your regional competition. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-3. Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.
  • MS-ETS1-4. Develop a model to generate data for iterative testing and modification of a proposed object, tool, or process such that an optimal design can be achieved.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd-5th
Vibrobots are tiny robots powered by a vibrating motor, like the type found in cell phones. In this lesson plan, your students will learn about engineering design as they build their own vibrobots from craft materials. No previous experience with robots is required! Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Learn about potential and kinetic energy the fun way—by launching ping pong balls across the classroom with a catapult! Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-PS3-5. Construct, use, and present arguments to support the claim that when the kinetic energy of an object changes, energy is transferred to or from the object.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
Students are challenged to use computer-aided design (CAD) software to create "complete" 3D-printed molecule models that take into consideration bond angles and lone-pair positioning. To begin, they explore two interactive digital simulations: "build a molecule" and "molecule shapes." This aids them in comparing and contrasting existing molecular modeling approaches—ball-and-stick, space-filling, and valence shell electron pair repulsion (VSEPR)—so as to understand… Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • HS-PS1-1. Use the periodic table as a model to predict the relative properties of elements based on the patterns of electrons in the outermost energy level of atoms.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Have your students read about autonomous (also called self-driving or driverless) cars in the news? How can you build a car or a robot that will stay on the road without a human driver? In this project, your students will find out by building a robot that can automatically follow a line around a homemade race course, while learning about the electromagnetic spectrum and electronic circuits. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-PS4-2. Develop and use a model to describe that waves are reflected, absorbed, or transmitted through various materials.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
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Junkbots are easy-to-build robots that you can make using a simple circuit and some recyclable materials. In this lesson, your students will learn about engineering design as they compete to build the fastest robot. No previous robotics experience is required! Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-ETS1-4. Develop a model to generate data for iterative testing and modification of a proposed object, tool, or process such that an optimal design can be achieved.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Making an electromagnet from a battery, nail, and wire is a classic science demonstration. But instead of just demonstrating this for your students, let them explore it themselves! In this lesson they will discover how different variables affect the strength of an electromagnet. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-PS2-3. Ask questions about data to determine the factors that affect the strength of electric and magnetic forces.
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