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The Greens

Grades
3 to 8
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Meet the Green cousins, Dex and Izz, who are on a mission to make the world a little greener. Watch videos of Dex and Izz attempting to educate a whole ...more
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Meet the Green cousins, Dex and Izz, who are on a mission to make the world a little greener. Watch videos of Dex and Izz attempting to educate a whole cast of characters, including Dex's mom, Izz's dad, Granny, her cat, and the crazy neighbor lady, on how to become a little more earth friendly. These characters keep Izz and Dex on their toes throughout each comically, animated episode. Each episode has corresponding links that are filled with educational information about recycling, reusing and reducing. There is also a simple Blog (written by Izz and Dex). This site requires Flash.

tag(s): earth (224), earth day (105), environment (325)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. This site is a perfect addition to Earth Day activities! Incorporate literacy skills into the site by having students read the silly blogs of each character. Extend into a writing assignment by having students create their own personal Green characters and write their own blogs for each episode.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Mission H2O - Savewater

Grades
4 to 12
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Use this free game to identify how water is wasted and can be conserved in the home. Click Play Now to start the activity. This is part of a competition ...more
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Use this free game to identify how water is wasted and can be conserved in the home. Click Play Now to start the activity. This is part of a competition (that ends May 29, 2009). But the activities can be done without entering the contest. Choose from 8 rooms or places in the house that are identified by icons along the bottom and that portion pops-up. Click on the information areas designated with an "i" to view information about water use and conservation. Underneath each room, is an opportunity to play the game to save the family water. Many of the games are just for fun, but the whole experience is engaging. As this site originates in Australia, remember that many of the units of measure are different from ours.

tag(s): conservation (128), earth (224), earth day (105), water (134)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students move through the rooms and take notes on conservation ideas and statistics. Students can use these notes to create a pamphlet on water conservation or a project that can be posted on a wiki. Do you want to learn more about wikis? Check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through.

Alternatively, post writing prompts that can be answered in a journal or a blog post about the thoughts, problems, and reasons for conserving. Students can analyze water usage in their homes or community and create suggestions or write a letter to the editor of the local paper or to local officials in favor of conservation.
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Virtual Forest - Scholastic.com

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K to 8
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Teaching about our impact on the environment? Engage students through this game that moves through the choices in a daily life and the direct impact that they make. This site ...more
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Teaching about our impact on the environment? Engage students through this game that moves through the choices in a daily life and the direct impact that they make. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): earth (224), earth day (105), ecology (138), environment (325)

In the Classroom

Use this game as an introductory activity to an ecology unit. As students play the game, they will note ways that we have an impact on the environment. Brainstorm what they learned in the end, either as a small group or as a class. Groups of students can research more information on these topics or use class discussions. Students can survey peers or families to determine habits and impact. Create multimedia or traditional posters that bring awareness to these issues. Why not have the class create a video or videos highlighting their topic? Have the students share the videos using a site such as Teachers.tv (reviewed here). Or have students create an online book using a tool such as Bookemon (reviewed here) and share it via email with family members.
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Bell Museum of Natural History - University of Minnesota

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2 to 8
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Find interactive activities at the online activities page from this museum. Hover over objects on the "Touch and See Room" page to view information or participate in activities. Take...more
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Find interactive activities at the online activities page from this museum. Hover over objects on the "Touch and See Room" page to view information or participate in activities. Take the restoration challenge by restoring a barren landscape back to a prairie on the "Build a Prairie" page. Try the "Life in a Diorama" activity to view the connections in an ecosystem by simply hovering over areas of the diorama. Play the "Watershed Game" by entering your name and choosing novice or one of the intermediate levels. Students earn points and can improve upon their score while learning about watersheds.

tag(s): air (148), conservation (128), earth (224), earth day (105), ecosystems (93), prairie (12), water (134), watersheds (15)

In the Classroom

Share the activities on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use these activities as an introductory activity as you study each of these topics. For example, students can play the watershed game and note information that they learned. Students can compile this information to use as a starter for class discussion or additional research into watersheds. Have students create multimedia presentations to share with the class, such as a podcast using a tool such as Podomatic (reviewed here).

Follow up by visiting a local watershed and identifying the animals and plants and our relationship and impact on the ecosystem. Or map a local watershed with voice explanations using a tool such as Zeemaps, reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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The Story of Stuff - Annie Leonard and Free Range Studios

Grades
6 to 12
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Watch the story of stuff movie, an interactive 20-minute video about where our stuff comes from and the effects of consumption on our society. Use the tabs along the top ...more
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Watch the story of stuff movie, an interactive 20-minute video about where our stuff comes from and the effects of consumption on our society. Use the tabs along the top of the video to skip around to the specific chapters or click a link for more information about the topic. Play the video from the site or download to your computer. Other downloads include posters and related items. Subscribe to the blog and receive updates and new information. If your district blocks YouTube, the video may not be viewable. You could always view the video at home and bring it to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as Freemake Video Converter, reviewed here, to download the video from YouTube.

tag(s): earth (224), earth day (105), environment (325), resources (107)

In the Classroom

The most difficult aspect in learning about the environment is understanding how the "stuff we use" impacts more than students can imagine. Use this thought-provoking movie to stimulate class discussions, get students thinking, and create awareness. Students can take aspects of the video and do group research of additional information needed to understand. Students can also create awareness campaigns, poll friends and families, blog, or create other multimedia articles. Looking for some creative multimedia options? How about having students create public service message podcasts ("Stop! Where do you think that ___ came from?") using a tool such as podOmatic, reviewed here. Or create videos and share them using SchoolTube, reviewed here.

Students can research the origins of many popular items in their lives, tracing the materials used and the resources needed to create and transport the materials and the product. Students can create a Google map or Click2Map, reviewed here, showing the movement of materials throughout the world from resource to send product to consumer.
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Rainforest - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 10
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for the Rainforest. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Rainforest-related...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for the Rainforest. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Rainforest-related vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): environment (325)

In the Classroom

Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector or make them available as links on your teacher public page. Have students (or groups) create their own illustrated dictionaries of terms using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. As you add more vocabulary lists during the year, have them select their favorite 6-10 terms from each list to add to their "book."

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Search - Community Gardens Page

Grades
1 to 12
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More a project than a lesson, this site offers a very complete guide to planning a community garden. Though not specifically designed for school settings, the steps and procedures would...more
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More a project than a lesson, this site offers a very complete guide to planning a community garden. Though not specifically designed for school settings, the steps and procedures would be a great guide for a class or school interested in developing its own garden. Depending on your local climate, this could be a full-year or summer project.

tag(s): earth day (105)

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Winter Weather - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 12
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Brr.. it is cold outside! This site is all about winter weather: arctic, blizzard, freezing, frost. Are you feeling cold yet? Come to this site to find several interactive puzzles,...more
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Brr.. it is cold outside! This site is all about winter weather: arctic, blizzard, freezing, frost. Are you feeling cold yet? Come to this site to find several interactive puzzles, a wordbank of 30+ vocabulary words, discussion questions, an alphalary of winter weather terms, some basic wintry fact, and more. Many of the activities are able to be printed FREE of charge. This site does have some basic advertisements.

tag(s): vocabulary (321), weather (201)

In the Classroom

Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector or make them available as links on your teacher public page. Have students (or groups) create their own illustrated dictionaries of terms using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. As you add more vocabulary lists during the year, have them select their favorite 6-10 terms from each list to add to their "book."

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Earth Day - Myvocabulary.com

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4 to 10
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for Earth Day. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Earth Day vocabulary...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for Earth Day. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Earth Day vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): earth (224), earth day (105), vocabulary (321)

In the Classroom

Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector or make them available as links on your teacher public page. Have students (or groups) create their own illustrated dictionaries of terms using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. As you add more vocabulary lists during the year, have them select their favorite 6-10 terms from each list to add to their "book."

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EcoKids - Earth Day Canada

Grades
K to 8
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This clever, creative, and entertaining resource is a must for elementary science classroom! Kids from all over the world can learn oodles from this Canadian ecology site. Teachers...more
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This clever, creative, and entertaining resource is a must for elementary science classroom! Kids from all over the world can learn oodles from this Canadian ecology site. Teachers will find a trove of information and instructional materials as well. You will appreciate the Earth Day activities and information. There are also numerous educational interactives highlighting the food chain, bugs, animal adaptations, acid rain, transportation, and other topics. Students can participate in interactive stories; play and learn with more than 50 ecology-based on-line games and activities; learn about a variety of topics including wildlife, energy, and environment issues; and print out word games or coloring sheets.

Be aware: recently, this site started to offer certain features of the Teacher's Lounge to "members only." Membership is FREE, but does require an email address. The link for students does NOT require membership to access the interactives, information, or printables. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): acid rain (5), earth (224), earth day (105), ecology (138), transportation (43)

In the Classroom

There is SO much to look at and explore, so browse through the offerings, create a plan for your students based on their age and ability level, then mark the site as a favorite on classroom computers. Upper elementary students can use it as an independent learning center. Younger children may need help with some of the text, so consider using an interactive whiteboard or projector and exploring the activities as a class. Click on "Downloads" on the bottom left to find printables, including coloring sheets of Canadian wildlife and various ecology-related worksheets and lesson plans. Click on the 'games and activities' tab and use the interactive whiteboard or projector for whole class eco-minded fun. ESL and ELL teachers, don't miss the 'teacher' section for a cache of activities written for your ELL/ESL students. Interested students will use this one for hours, so some directions will be important for classroom use.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Earth Day - Earthday.com

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4 to 7
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This environmental education site, a cooperative effort across the entire U.S. government, is filled with creative ways to make learning about the environment fun! Click on the "In...more
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This environmental education site, a cooperative effort across the entire U.S. government, is filled with creative ways to make learning about the environment fun! Click on the "In the Classroom" link to learn more about specific topics, play educational interactive, complete puzzles, or take a virtual trip to "Recycle City." The "For Kids" page provides an annotated collection of kid-friendly environmental Web sites filled with clever and interactive activities. Learn about the history of Earth Day, ways to celebrate in your classroom or at home, and more. There is quite a bit to explore!

tag(s): earth (224), earth day (105), ecology (138), environment (325), recycling (60)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Read the history of Earth Day together. Have cooperative learning groups explore different ways to "take action" and then create a multimedia presentation to share with the class. Why not challenge students to create a video to share with the class using a site such as TeacherTube (explained here).

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A Student's Guide to Global Climate Change - US EPA

Grades
5 to 8
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Created by the Environmental Protection Agency, this visually appealing site is filled with interactive story books, climate animations, and cleverly designed animations for students....more
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Created by the Environmental Protection Agency, this visually appealing site is filled with interactive story books, climate animations, and cleverly designed animations for students. Links include Climate Change (What is It), Climate & Weather, Greenhouse Effect, What is the Climate System, Climate's Come a Long Way, The Climate Detectives, Games, Climate Animations, Climate Change Calculator, Stuff for Teachers, So What's the Big Deal, We CAN Make a Difference, and Can We Change the Climate. Use this site to supplement a unit on the Greenhouse Effect or as a springboard for Internet Earth Day activities. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): ecology (138), fossil fuels (18)

In the Classroom

Have cooperative learning groups research the many links and activities at this site. Challenge groups to create a multi-media presentation: blog entry, wiki, PowerPoint, web page, or video.
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Freecycle - The Freecycle Network

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K to 12
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Need a bookcase or rug for your classroom or home office area? Perhaps you have extra, personally-purchased classroom supplies that you no longer use. There is a solution to both ...more
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Need a bookcase or rug for your classroom or home office area? Perhaps you have extra, personally-purchased classroom supplies that you no longer use. There is a solution to both dilemmas--Freecycle! Check this site to see if there is a local Freecycle group in your area. With 4,336 groups and growing, there's a good chance one is in your neighborhood. Twenty five states currently have participants. This grassroots, non-profit network's aim is to get unused 'stuff' into the hands of someone who can use it, and most importantly, they want to keep it out of our clogged landfills. Teachers are the most resourceful people on earth, and Freecycle is here to help fuel that creditable reputation. Membership is free -check it out!

tag(s): earth (224), earth day (105), environment (325)

In the Classroom

Share this site with your class as an idea for Earth Day or being "green." Encourage your school service club or student council to consider launching a Freecycle project. Be sure to list the link on your class website, so parents can freecycle too.

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Dr. E's Energy Lab - U. S. Department of Energy

Grades
2 to 12
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If you have any hesitation that students think energy is 'uncool,' think again. Tinker Bell delights the younger students with her short video clips about energy. They will spend oodles...more
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If you have any hesitation that students think energy is 'uncool,' think again. Tinker Bell delights the younger students with her short video clips about energy. They will spend oodles of time exploring the many facets of this site. Click on the various types of energy from the homepage to start the exploration. Interactives, lesson plans, crafts, printable sheets, and tons of information that we all need to know to survive on this planet is handily available here. The Game link includes "Funergy," "Energy Quest," and more! Visit the Teacher's link to find over 350 lesson plans and activities (with standards). The activities are divided into three levels (grades K-4, 5-8, and 9-12). While some of the Dr. E's activities look like they are intended for a young audience, don't be fooled. Heavy information for the high school student is housed behind the "cutesy" cover. This site requires Flash and Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): earth (224), earth day (105), energy (207), solar energy (39)

In the Classroom

If energy is a subject you teach in your classroom, there are several pages at this site that would work well on a projector or interactive whiteboard. You will want to explore on your own to find all the teaching materials and activities, since there is SO much information. Share this site on your teacher web page during your energy unit, since many activities can include parents, as well. The alternative fuels, renewable energy, and conservation sections are also ideal for Earth Day activities. Have students use this site to research energy. Why not have students create blog entries demonstrating their knowledge?
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Smog City 2 - U.S. EPA and Sacramento Air Quality Management District

Grades
5 to 12
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Use this interactive air pollution simulation to learn about the effects of particulates, ozone, and individual choices on air pollution. The Create Your Own section allows you...more
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Use this interactive air pollution simulation to learn about the effects of particulates, ozone, and individual choices on air pollution. The Create Your Own section allows you to test cause and effect of different factors in a controlled setting. Although the option to download the simulator is offered, it runs just fine in its online version. The site's disclaimer explains that the complex relationships between environmental factors have been simplified for this simulator, but the processes are still representative of the "real world" factors. This is a MUST for Earth Day!

This site is powerful and therefore may take some extra time to load - so prepare ahead! This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): air (148), earth (224), earth day (105), environment (325), pollution (65)

In the Classroom

Younger students would benefit from a teacher-centered introduction on the simulator (using your interactive whiteboard or projector), followed by directed explorations to find specific answers to teacher questions. Older students can determine the most important factors in air pollution and explore means to solve the problem as part of a health, social studies, science, or government class. Have your students present their finding on an interactive whiteboard or projector.
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Kids' Planet - Defenders of Wildlife.

Grades
2 to 8
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Approach writing, reading, technology, and social studies through the lens of environmental science. Use the printable units and lesson plans (found at the Teacher's Table) for...more
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Approach writing, reading, technology, and social studies through the lens of environmental science. Use the printable units and lesson plans (found at the Teacher's Table) for direction and content, then allow students to play the related "Wild Games" as an enrichment activity. Click on the "Defend It" or "Cool Stuff" links to find creative ways for kids to take part in wildlife conservation. Students can explore an interactive map of the world to discover the status of more than 50 species. A great Earth Day resource! This site requires Flash, Adobe Acrobat, and Java. You can get all three from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): conservation (128), earth (224), earth day (105), endangered species (41), environment (325), species (30)

In the Classroom

There are many ways to incorporate this site into your Earth Day plans (or a unit on conservation or wild life). Save this site in your favorites, so students can visit often. Take advantage of the ready-to-go units of study. Share the interactives on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Use this site for student research projects.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Teach Coal - American Coal Foundation

Grades
K to 12
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Energy is always a hot topic, and what better way to learn about one of America's main resources than to visit this site? The American Coal Foundation's site includes facts ...more
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Energy is always a hot topic, and what better way to learn about one of America's main resources than to visit this site? The American Coal Foundation's site includes facts about coal mining in the U.S., and also, equips teachers with practical lesson plans (linked to National Standards) and experiment ideas. Of course this organization has its own views on coal, but the lesson ideas are solid. The lesson plans include all grade levels. Click on the tabs to find comprehensive information, such as, facts, glossary, and the latest coal news. There are also countless links to other sources about coal. Some of the links require QuickTime or Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): coal (14), energy (207), fire (27), plants (174)

In the Classroom

If you or your students need lumps of coal for experiments, use the website links provided. Any coal company would be glad to accommodate that request. Use the ready-to-go lesson plans in your class. Have students research coal and complete multi-media projects about the benefits or coal. As energy and "gong green" receive more and more media attention, this study can be part of your class debate.
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Windows Into Wonderland - National Park Service

Grades
5 to 8
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Take one of many virtual field trips to Yellowstone. Though the site suggests registration by a teacher, it is not required for the eTrips. View field trips such as "Getting ...more
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Take one of many virtual field trips to Yellowstone. Though the site suggests registration by a teacher, it is not required for the eTrips. View field trips such as "Getting Into Hot Water," "Yellowstone Exposed," "Where The Bison Roam," and "Geyser Quest." Many of the field trips have video and audio components and last approximately 50 minutes. Free registration provides more resources, including a link with lesson plans for teachers. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): national parks (21)

In the Classroom

View aspects of Yellowstone to learn about the Biology and Geology of the park. Illustrate concepts such as biodiversity, adaptation, and many environmental issues as shown in the Yellowstone National Park. Assign student groups to collect "evidence" to use in a class debate on fictitious proposed environmental legislation to change the park.
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Drought Monitor - University of Nebraska

Grades
6 to 12
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Working with NOAA, the University of Nebraska at Lincoln has created one of the best looking drought monitoring sites we've seen. There are maps showing drought severity, crop data,...more
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Working with NOAA, the University of Nebraska at Lincoln has created one of the best looking drought monitoring sites we've seen. There are maps showing drought severity, crop data, rainfall, and related topics over a wide variety of time series, and the quality of the graphics is well beyond that of most similar sites. If your students are studying weather - or just complaining about the summer heat - this site can shed some light on the problem.

tag(s): agriculture (60), climate (95), fall (14), weather (201)

In the Classroom

Share the maps on an interactive whiteboard or projector.

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3D parks - USGS

Grades
1 to 12
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Make landforms and geology REAL to your students. This site offers a rich collection of 3D photography and tours of the geology of U.S. National Parks. Use these activities with ...more
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Make landforms and geology REAL to your students. This site offers a rich collection of 3D photography and tours of the geology of U.S. National Parks. Use these activities with a variety of ages of students. Choose National Parks to view or print pictures. Pictures (anaglyphs) are best viewed with cheap 3D glasses (just like the movies!) Non 3D images are also found on the site. Pictures are not copyrighted and can be used for any presentation or format as long as you give credit to the site and the USGS. The site includes a tutorial on making anaglyphs. Each National Park has a link to the 3D image, regular image, link to the park website, and a link to other information that includes stratigraphy, virtual tours, or other links. Click "Suggestions for Teachers and Students" for ideas at different grade levels.

tag(s): geology (81), landforms (49), national parks (21)

In the Classroom

Students can look at pictures and decide upon common features they see. Display images side by side on your interactive whiteboard and note the features using the pen tools. Research or explanations about the features can lead to additional research into the natural processes that created them. Students can write "what is it?" clues to identify specific National Parks for others to identify. Share them on your class wiki for others to solve. Since the images are in the public domain, students can download them to include on the "answers" page of the wiki! Create class anaglyphs with pictures and Adobe Photoshop (if available), using the directions provided on the site.

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