Middle School Science Modules

Subject: Life Sciences
Module / Curriculasort descending Description Practice Themes
Coral Reef Challenge - "Don't Wreck the Reef"

Predator/Prey, Ecology​. 

Students engage as biologists advising the government and citizens of Fiji on recent acceleration in the death of coral reefs around Fiji. The module covers some basic concepts of ecosystems, food web/chains, and predator prey relationships.

Context Integration: Data Trends.

Cross-Cutting Concepts: Patterns, Cause/Effect, System/Models, Stability & Change​.

Decision Making Request this Module
Deep Sea Ecosystems Challenge - "Under the Sea"

Marine Ecology​. 

Students engage as scientists to analyze images of corals to evaluate the health of deep-sea ecosystems in the Gulf of Mexico after the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. The module helps students define and quantify data as well as differentiate between temporal and spatial data.  It covers some basic concepts of ecosystems, abiotic and biotic factor, and benthic environments.

Context Integration: Data Trends, Rubrics​.

Cross-Cutting Concepts: Patterns, Cause/Effect, Stability & Change.

Data Visualization Request this Module
Oil Spill Challenge - "Oil Spill Drill"

Marine Ecology. 

Students engage as environmental engineers to develop a procedure that would remove the largest amount of oil from the ocean in the shortest time possible in the event of a large-scale oil spill. The module covers some basic concepts on how human actions impact an ecosystem and different methods of reducing the damage of oil spills on the environment.

Context Integration: Graphs, Data Variability​.

Cross-Cutting Concepts: Systems/Models.

Experimental Design Request this Module
Subject: Earth Sciences
Module / Curriculasort descending Description Practice Themes
Earthquake Challenge - "Shake and Break"

Plate Tectonics.

Students engage as earth scientists to plot and analyze spatial and temporal earthquake data to help a company decide where to build its new cell phone manufacturing plant in northern California. The module covers basic concepts of seismology, plate tectonics, and the earth’s structure.

Context Integration: Scale/Proportion, Graphs.

Cross-Cutting Concepts: Patterns, Cause/Effect, Structure & Function​.

Data Visualization Request this Module
Lava Challenge - "Molten Madness"

Plate Tectonics.

Students engage as earth scientists to develop a procedure for measuring lava flow to help a town adjacent to a volcano develop evacuation plans in the event of an eruption. The module covers some basic concepts regarding volcanoes, lava, and igneous rock formation.

Context Integration: Graphs, Data Variability.

Cross-Cutting Concepts: Systems/Models.

Experimental Design Request this Module
Winter Weather Challenge - "Snow Day"

Weather.

In this module students play the role of school officials and have to decide whether to close school or keep it open based on weather forecasts. They are introduced to weather concepts and terminology and forecasting basics while learning how to read and analyze forecasts from the National Weather Service.

Context Integration: Data Trends, Probability​.

Cross-Cutting Concepts: Patterns, Cause/Effect, System/Models, Stability & Change​.

Decision Making Request this Module
Subject: Physical Sciences
Module / Curriculasort descending Description Practice Themes
Helmet Challenge - "Riding the Concrete Wave" (Part I)

Energy. 

Students engage as crash-test scientists for the SkateTech company to test helmets for skateboarders. The module covers some basic concepts regarding energy, energy transfer, linear and non-linear graphs and brain injuries in sports.

Context Integration: Linear/Non-Linear Graphs.

Cross-Cutting Concepts: Patterns, Cause/Effect, Systems/Models, Energy & Matter​.

Data Visualization Request this Module
Marine Snow Challenge - "Ocean Blizzard"

Density, Ecology. 

Students engage as environmental engineers to develop a procedure to determine how the oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill landed at the bottom of the ocean. The module covers some basic concepts of density and the factors that affect the movement of particles in fluids.

Context Integration: Graphs, Data Variability​.

Cross-Cutting Concepts: Systems/Models​.

Experimental Design Request this Module
Skate Park Challenge - "Riding the Concrete Wave" (Part II)

Energy. 

Students engage as product reviewers for the SkateTech company’s website to craft a product review of various helmets for various abilities of skateboarders. The module covers some basic concepts regarding energy, energy transfer and brain injuries in sports, while mostly introducing and reinforcing the concept that good decisions are made on scientific evidence.

Context Integration: Graphs, Equations, Trends​.

Cross-Cutting Concepts: Patterns, Cause/Effect, Systems/Models, Energy & Matter.

Decision Making Request this Module