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From Cell to DNA

Grades
9 to 12
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This brief multimedia slide show takes students on a virtual tour of a typical human cell. Each individual cell structure - from the nucleus, to chromosomes, to DNA strands and ...more
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This brief multimedia slide show takes students on a virtual tour of a typical human cell. Each individual cell structure - from the nucleus, to chromosomes, to DNA strands and their bases - is clearly illustrated, animated, and defined. This is not a highly detailed resource, but would make a very effective introduction to a genetics lesson. Turn on your speakers for this one!

tag(s): dna (68)

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Plants in Motion - Indiana University, Department of Biology

Grades
2 to 12
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Watch plants change and grow with these time-lapse movies that illustrate germination, circadian responses, tropic and nastic movements, and more. The images can be enjoyed by students...more
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Watch plants change and grow with these time-lapse movies that illustrate germination, circadian responses, tropic and nastic movements, and more. The images can be enjoyed by students of all ages -elementary kids will love watching the plants "dance" - but the text on the site is fairly high level and appropriate for high school biology classes.

tag(s): plants (153)

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Tour of the Basics: Heredity - University of Utah

Grades
8 to 10
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Genetics can be a fairly weighty topic, but this site breaks down complex concepts into easy-to-understand language. Click on each of the six topics - DNA, genes, chromosomes, proteins,...more
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Genetics can be a fairly weighty topic, but this site breaks down complex concepts into easy-to-understand language. Click on each of the six topics - DNA, genes, chromosomes, proteins, heredity, traits - and walk through an animated slide show that provides in-depth descriptions and helpful visuals. You can even download the tour so that you can run it without an Internet connection.

tag(s): dna (68), genetics (94)

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Croak - Access Excellence

Grades
8 to 12
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The frog population in the town park is declining, and you must help Councilman Pierce uncover the source of the problem. This four-part interactive mystery requires students to investigate,...more
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The frog population in the town park is declining, and you must help Councilman Pierce uncover the source of the problem. This four-part interactive mystery requires students to investigate, interview, and research their way to a logical solution. The activity is perfect for group work and has the potential to engage your most resistant science student!

tag(s): amphibians (20), ecosystems (89)

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Seeing - Exploratorium

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6 to 12
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Discover the science behind optical illusions with these interactive activities that demonstrate how our eyes interpret images. Each illusion is accompanied by an explanation of how...more
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Discover the science behind optical illusions with these interactive activities that demonstrate how our eyes interpret images. Each illusion is accompanied by an explanation of how and why the eye behaves as it does. Created by Exploratorium.

tag(s): brain (71), optical illusions (13), senses (29)

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Why Does Evolution Matter Now? - PBS

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9 to 12
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The growing problem of antibiotic resistance is explored in this lesson plan that investigates how evolution is at the heart of this wide-spread health threat. Real-time videos demonstrate...more
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The growing problem of antibiotic resistance is explored in this lesson plan that investigates how evolution is at the heart of this wide-spread health threat. Real-time videos demonstrate how disease-causing agents can rapidly become immune to our best antibiotic defenses. A second activity investigates how evolution affects our daily lives and can solve problems in medicine, agriculture, and the environment. Includes student instructions and teacher notes.

tag(s): diseases (68), evolution (102)

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Creature Feature - National Geographic Society

Grades
3 to 6
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Students can safely explore and navigate through this site that lets them get up close and personal with dozens of wild critters. Each featured creature is introduced via an easy-to-read...more
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Students can safely explore and navigate through this site that lets them get up close and personal with dozens of wild critters. Each featured creature is introduced via an easy-to-read article, fun facts, video and audio files, and photos. Brainteaser questions and links to related sites are provided. A great resource for independent research on an animal of choice. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): amphibians (20), animals (287), birds (52), dinosaurs (58), fish (26), mammals (33), reptiles (12)

In the Classroom

Share this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector to get your students "up close" to dinosaurs, bugs, or other animals. This site is a perfect addition to a research project.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Morgan Genetics Tutorial - William Sofer of Rutgers University

Grades
6 to 12
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This interactive site explains and illustrates complex concepts involved in understanding genetics. Students can progress through six sequential levels - from chromosomes and probability...more
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This interactive site explains and illustrates complex concepts involved in understanding genetics. Students can progress through six sequential levels - from chromosomes and probability to gender determination - then follow-up with an online quiz.

tag(s): genetics (94)

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Microangela - Tina Carvalho of the University of Hawaii

Grades
4 to 10
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From the very tiny, to the microscopic, this site offers close-up pictures and information about insects, spores, bacteria, cells, microorganisms, plankton, and more. The strangely...more
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From the very tiny, to the microscopic, this site offers close-up pictures and information about insects, spores, bacteria, cells, microorganisms, plankton, and more. The strangely beautiful, colorized images are accompanied by brief and sometimes entertaining explanations. Your students will gain new understanding and appreciation for the very tiny critters that surround us.

tag(s): bacteria (30), insects (70), microorganisms (15), organisms (21)

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Ology - American Museum of Natural History

Grades
2 to 8
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This site is filled with kid-friendly text and engaging interactive activities that introduce "ologies" and investigate topics including marine biology, astronomy, archeology, earth...more
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This site is filled with kid-friendly text and engaging interactive activities that introduce "ologies" and investigate topics including marine biology, astronomy, archeology, earth science, and more. Each topic section includes background information, virtual experiments and tours, and suggestions for in-class experiments. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): museums (50)

In the Classroom

Motivate your students by using an interactive whiteboard or projector to share these engaging, interactive, and educational resources.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Virtual Cell

Grades
8 to 10
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Reinforce the parts of a cell with this interactive tour. Students can click on an area of the virtual cell, read a brief definition, zoom in or out, and perform ...more
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Reinforce the parts of a cell with this interactive tour. Students can click on an area of the virtual cell, read a brief definition, zoom in or out, and perform certain functions - cutting, splitting, and rotating. The pronunciation guide will "speak" the words for you. This portion is slow to loas and requires the Quicktime plug-in. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page. The site also requires that you have Javascript ENABLED. Depending on your version of Internet Explorer or other browser, you will find this under Tools> INternet Options> Advanced.

tag(s): cells (104)

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DNA Detective - New York Hall of Science

Grades
6 to 8
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Engage your middle school students in this online crime-solving activity that involves using and interpreting DNA evidence. After learning DNA basics, visitors can enter the crime...more
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Engage your middle school students in this online crime-solving activity that involves using and interpreting DNA evidence. After learning DNA basics, visitors can enter the crime scene, collect samples, and analyze them in the virtual lab. REQUIRES FLASH!

tag(s): dna (68), forensics (27)

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Build a DNA Molecule - University of Utah

Grades
10 to 12
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Teach your students about the structure of DNA with this interactive activity that challenges them to apply pairing rules to the construction of a model. The object is to click ...more
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Teach your students about the structure of DNA with this interactive activity that challenges them to apply pairing rules to the construction of a model. The object is to click and drag nucleotides to their proper position.

tag(s): dna (68), genetics (94)

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Hyperheart - University of Utah

Grades
6 to 12
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Use this animated site to help student visualize how blood circulates through the heart. Younger students can easily follow the well-labeled animation, and older students may be interested...more
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Use this animated site to help student visualize how blood circulates through the heart. Younger students can easily follow the well-labeled animation, and older students may be interested in the tutorials, which explain the various stages of the cardiac cycle in much greater detail.

tag(s): heart (44)

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Online Marine Picture Book

Grades
6 to 8
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This online introduction to marine life, designed by and for middle school kids, is an excellent primer for field trip excursions to tidal pools. If traveling to the coast is ...more
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This online introduction to marine life, designed by and for middle school kids, is an excellent primer for field trip excursions to tidal pools. If traveling to the coast is not an option, the online slideshow provides photos and descriptions that are the next best thing to being there. Caution: the site contains several inactive links to videos and related resources.

tag(s): animals (287), habitats (85)

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Bone Biology for Kids

Grades
4 to 8
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Science, health, and biology teachers can find a variety of resources on this site for helping students to understand the skeletal system, bone health, and nutrition. Students can play...more
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Science, health, and biology teachers can find a variety of resources on this site for helping students to understand the skeletal system, bone health, and nutrition. Students can play an interactive Bone-Yahtzee game, or participate in a question/answer page. The Teacher's Corner contains two printable worksheets that can be used to guide students through the site content. Some sections are still in progress, but there is still a considerable amount of information to explore.

tag(s): nutrition (155)

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Hello Dolly: A WebQuest - Keith Nuthall of the Poway Unified School District

Grades
11 to 12
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The impact of cloning on 21st century society is examined in this non-partisan, fact-based WebQuest that encourages research, analysis, and evaluation. Students, working in teams, are...more
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The impact of cloning on 21st century society is examined in this non-partisan, fact-based WebQuest that encourages research, analysis, and evaluation. Students, working in teams, are asked to consider the ethics, politics and science of the cloning process as they establish a government policy to regulate cloning. Teacher resources and website links are provided, along with a timeline and content standards. Because of the controversial nature of this real-life problem-solving challenge, exercise caution when implementing.

tag(s): dna (68), ethics (17), webquests (30)

In the Classroom

Save this site as a favorite, and use the webquest during a discussion of government oversight, and how it has affected areas such as science. (This could also be used in a biology classroom during a lesson on cloning)

Consider alternate product options for today's students, such as using Google Docs during planning and writing phases reviewed here or one of many creative. collaborative web 2.0 tools reviewed in the TeachersFirst Edge. Your students can work collaboratively without even being in the same place, and their projects can be shared easily on the web.

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Putting DNA to Work - National Academy of Sciences

Grades
9 to 12
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This collection of well-organized tutorials and interactive multimedia activities reveals how DNA technology affects our lives. From detecting inherited diseases and catching criminals,...more
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This collection of well-organized tutorials and interactive multimedia activities reveals how DNA technology affects our lives. From detecting inherited diseases and catching criminals, to improving agriculture, the site presents high-level information in an easy-to-understand format. Videos, simulations, and well-designed graphics place students in the role of scientist. Use this site with your AP science students.

tag(s): dna (68), genetics (94)

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Virtual Frog Dissection - Froguts, Inc.

Grades
8 to 12
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If scheduling an actual frog dissection activity is just not possible then enter the virtual dissection lab and involve your students in this remarkable on-line experience - no formaldehyde...more
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If scheduling an actual frog dissection activity is just not possible then enter the virtual dissection lab and involve your students in this remarkable on-line experience - no formaldehyde necessary. Using virtual tools, students can actually pin, slice, snip, remove, and examine organs. You must add the introduction, background information, and related details - just as you would in the science lab.

tag(s): dissection (10)

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Stalking the Mysterious Microbe

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6 to 12
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Introduce your students to the microbial worlds of bacteria, fungi, and viruses with this site that provides entertaining background information, ideas for classroom experiments, and...more
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Introduce your students to the microbial worlds of bacteria, fungi, and viruses with this site that provides entertaining background information, ideas for classroom experiments, and a collection of "Microbes in the News" articles. Find out when hands should be washed and what happens when they are not! Interested students can even explore a "Careers" link that offers interviews with experts in the field, advice on finding a mentor, and tips on how to become a microbiologist. Available in English and Spanish.

In the Classroom

Use the videos on this site as a supplement to a lecture on microbes. One video that would be great, "E. Coli Animation," shows the growth and reproduction of e.coli in a quick YouTube clip. Not all school internet systems allow for access to YouTube, so make sure to check your school's policies before use. If it does work, some of these videos do a great job of detailing specific microbes and their life-cycles. Definitely a lot more interesting and fun for students to watch than reading the same information out of a textbook!

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