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Backyard Weather Station

homemade rain gaugeWorking in groups of 8, middle school students use their senses to describe and predict the weather, then act as state park engineers and design/build “backyard weather stations” to gather data to make actual weather forecasts.

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Who Moved the Beach?

students conducting Cape Hatteras beach profile surveyHigh school students working in groups of three to four learn about the primary causes and impacts of coastal erosion, and use elevation data to construct profiles of a beach over time or to compare several beaches, make inferences about the erosion process, and discuss how humans should respond.

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Save Our Shore!

unusual breakwaterStudents in grades 3 to 8 study coastal erosion and the apply the engineering design process to devise structures and policies to protect shorelines, taking public concerns into account.

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“Adopt” a Piece of the Planet

NASA Adopt a PlanetIt’s hard to top NASA for an out-of-this-world way to celebrate Earth Day 2017. The space agency is inviting people from around the globe to virtually “adopt” one of 64,000 individual pieces of Earth as seen from space by one of its 18 Earth science instruments.

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Asteroid Impact!

asteroid impactIn this first of eight activities, students in grades 6 – 8 learn about the engineering design process and earth science by beginning to design an underground cavern that can shelter people for one year after an asteroid strike makes Earth uninhabitable.

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Activity: Eyewitness to Evaporation

dust bowlIn this week-long activity, student teams in grades 5 – 7 study the effects of evaporation by observing and measuring the ongoing evaporation of water in pans that contain soil or other variables, then then assess what factors may affect evaporation.

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Lesson Plan: Pollution in Our Watershed

Pollution in WatersheadBy building a simple watershed with paper and markers, students will understand how pollution accumulates in our water sources, especially from pesticides used in agriculture, and what constitutes a watershed.

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Lesson: Measure the Earth’s Circumference

In this project, students in grades 6-12 will recreate the remarkable measurement of the circumference of the earth first performed over 2,000 years ago. Using rulers, protractors, and meter sticks, students measure shadows cast by a stick on a day close to the equinox, then use that measurement in a simple equation to determine the circumference.

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Web Resource: The Science of Earthquakes


Tasa Graphics Arts, Inc., a company that illustrates science textbooks, offers an online chapter on earthquakes, with clear explanations and illustrations of key terms used in the study of seismology.

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