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Teacher/Tutor - Science

Unifying Concepts and Processes


This section describes the systems and processes of the natural world. It gives us the big picture of scientific ideas. This section provides a way to organize, describe, explain, and measure scientific ideas and observations.

Be sure to look at the different set of resources listed at the Student/Learner webpage for this topic.

Evolution--a journey into where we're from and where we're going
This interactive Web site is produced by PBS in support of the video series by the same name. The website contains animations, simulations, streaming video, and dynamic timelines in such categories as "Change", "Extinction", "Survival", "Darwin", "Humans", "Religion", and others. The site contains a good glossary, as well as online lessons for students. There is an eight-part professional development course for teachers, and a free, 40-page teacher's guide.

Screen shot from siteExploring Earth
This resource offers investigations about every Earth science topic one can imagine. It is listed here under unifying concepts because it showcases dynamic Earth processes and systems. There are online activities, resources, and incredible visualizations using the power of Internet-based technology. Start with Earth as a System.

Screen shot from sitePolar Science Station
Polar scientists make observations and collect data to answer questions about the Arctic (the north polar region) and the Antarctic (the south polar region). Find out what it is like to do research in these polar regions. This website has many links to resources, hands-on activities, web-based activities and lesson plans for group activities. Try "Dress your Scientist" or "Escape from Antarctica." This website also features special reports from scientists in the field. Look at "POP Goes Antarctica" to see what happened on an expedition to Palmer Station, Antarctica.

Screen shot from siteOcean Science Station
What is oceanography? How do people do research about the ocean? Find out here! This website has links to many online resources, and well as links to current expeditions. You'll follow research scientists from Oregon State University as they go to sea to do experiments. Travel with them off the coast of Oregon or in the waters off Southern California and Mexico. Adult education instructors go to sea with these scientists. They send back daily journals about life at sea, about careers, and about ocean sciences. Try some of the math problems they include in their journals!

Screen shot from siteOceans Alive!
This Science Learning Network project from the Boston Museum of Science could be classified in many different areas of science. It exemplifies systems of the natural world, giving us the big picture of our ocean planet. The website provides a wealth of information and illustrations about the ocean. There are sections on physical features, the changing ocean, the water cycle, life in the sea, currents, winds, and waves. There are also vignettes of four different oceans. There are also many activities for classroom use.

SCI WEB, a science literacy website for adults
This website offers “opportunities to indulge scientific curiosity and increase science literacy”. SCI WEB was developed to encourage and assist adults to become more involved in science. It is funded by the Commonwealth of Australia, Department of Education, Science, and Training.

The resources at this website are for people taking their first steps in science and for teachers who want to introduce science into their teaching. The “Tried and True” section offers forty activities designed to introduce adults to a range of science topics. Activities are listed by title, by theme, and by “branch of science”: biology, chemistry, environment, physics, and Earth and space science. Activities challenge learners to think, reflect, discuss, hypothesize, and engage in inquiry. There are worksheets and handouts available for the lessons. Adult learners may enjoy using these activities in the classroom and at home with their children.

To submit ideas and resources for this section, please contact Susan Cowles.