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Lesson: Can-Do Canoe

canoeIn this activity, teams of students in grades 3-12 explore the engineering design process by building model canoes from everyday materials and testing their design in a basin. The canoes must be able to float for three minutes and, for older students, support a load. Students then evaluate the effectiveness of their canoes and those of other teams, and present their findings to the class.

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Native American STEM Heritage

weavingFrom wild rice cultivation to shelter design to tool-making, Native American traditions are steeped in STEM. Native American engineers and scientists have built on that legacy to benefit modern society. Celebrate Native American Heritage Month by learning more about the country’s notable tribal STEM trailblazers and their contributions.

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Website: NASA’s Native American Connections

na_dreamcatcherNASA’s Web site “Native American Connections” focuses on images and activities that have been used by Native Americans for generations to explore Sun-Earth science. The site includes biographies of Native American members of the NASA community who represent a variety of expertise and cultural backgrounds.

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Website: NASA’s Ancient Observatories

gal_010NASA’s Website Ancient Observatories, Timeless Knowledge contains a rich bank of material to help students, educators, and others explore the astronomical activities of pre-modern cultures. With separate sections for students and educators, the site contains lesson plans, web resources and links, interactive games, a timeline, and a photo gallery, as well as a showcase of Native Americans involved with NASA.

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Curriculum: Montana State U. Lesson Plans

Earth, Space, and Life — check out the K-12 science lesson plans offered through Montana State University’s Extended University Website, a number of which explore the region’s local environment and Native American cultures.

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