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ALEX Lesson Plans


Subject: Science (5 - 7), or Social Studies (5)
Title: Invasive Plants
Description: Invasive plants are non-native plants that grow in an environment that has no native diseases, parasites, or predators. This allows them to grow rapidly and be destructive to native plants.


Subject: Arts Education (7 - 12), or Science (7)
Title: Cells! Cells! Cells!
Description: Students will learn about both POP Art and science in this pattern project. Working in conjunction with a science teacher in your school, students will view cells through a microscope and use visual diaries to create pattern templates. Templates are then used in simple and bold coloration to implement a POP inspired work of art.


Subject: Science (7), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: The Human Body Inc.: What's an Arm and a Leg Worth?
Description: In this technology-based project, students will take on the role of a legal defense team and prepare the court defense for a body organ that is currently an employee of Human Body Inc.. Due to recent cost increases, the Human Body has had to fire workers. Assuming the role as lawyer, students' responsibilities are to conduct research, collect and analyze material, and produce an informative and explanatory multimedia presentation (PowerPoint, PhotoStory, Keynote, etc.) defending their body organ's position in the company and what would happen if their client were fired. In addition, they are to create a brochure, highlighting the trendy spots, the exciting activities, etc., of the body system in which the organ works, convincing the corporation of the importance in keeping their client. The students will present their case at an administrative hearing to the Human Body Committee (whole class), the corporate group who will decide the ultimate fate of the body organ.


Subject: Science (7), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Is the Cell Membrane Semi-Permeable?
Description: As part of the study of the cell, students will perform a three day hands-on inquiry to determine if the cell membrane of an egg is semi-permeable. Students will work individually or in groups as they explore the functions of the cell membrane. Students will create a lab report using the scientific method. The program Excel or any other comparable program will be used to assist students with developing graphs and charts in for the data section. The Internet will be used to assist student in exploring illnesses associated the malfunctioning of the cell membrane.This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science University, GEMS-U Project.


Subject: English Language Arts (7), or Science (7)
Title: Shrinking Cell
Description: Students explore the form and function of cell organelles by using the interactive CELLS Alive website. Students create their own cell models by drawing them, writing an essay to compare and contrast plant and animal cells, then making a hands-on project model. 7th grade students make models of both the plant and animal cells using permanent markers and #6, square, clear, plastic, nacho tray, and #6, round, clear, plastic, salad trays, or lids. The CELLS Alive website is used for reviewing the organelles of the cell. After punching holes for hanging the models, the teacher shrinks the plastic cells in a toaster oven. The student models are displayed in the classroom.This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science, GEMS Project, funded by the Malone Family Foundation.


Subject: Science (7), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: The Tree of Life
Description: This is a lesson to help students understand the phylogeny of organisms and how all organisms are linked in a certain way. By navigating an Internet site, students will learn how organisms are classified.


Subject: Science (6 - 7), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Imagine Mars
Description: Students will learn about Mars and what adaptations would be needed for people to live on Mars. They will develop a plan for the colonization of Mars. A slideshow presentation and brochure will be created to entice people to join this new colony being developed.


Subject: Science (7), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Observation of Yeast Growth
Description: In this lesson students will observe the growth of yeast cells, which is evidence that yeasts are converting food to energy and are living organisms.


Subject: Science (7), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: It's a Small, Small World
Description: As an introduction to the study of diversity of life, science students will use hands-on inquiry experiments to discover the microscopic world through a microscope. Students will use computers to create a brochure or slideshow presentation to show the three kinds of protists. Students will learn the importance of all life in our biosphere.


Subject: Mathematics (7), or Science (7 - 12), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: How Big Can a Bee Be?
Description: Students will study the relationship between surface area and volume. Math, science, and technology components are included.


Thinkfinity Lesson Plans


Subject: Science
Title: Glowing Wounds      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Science Update, from Science NetLinks, you'll hear about a Civil War legend of soldiers' glowing war wounds that may actually be based in fact. Science Updates are audio interviews with scientists and are accompanied by a set of questions as well as links to related Science NetLinks lessons and other related resources.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Health, Science
Title: Traveling Dust      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Science Update, from Science NetLinks, you'll hear how microbes may be carried across the globe in clouds of dust. Science Updates are audio interviews with scientists and are accompanied by a set of questions as well as links to related Science NetLinks lessons and other related resources.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Health, Science
Title: Sanitation and Human Health      Add Bookmark
Description: The purpose of this Science NetLinks lesson is to develop an understanding of the impact of improved sanitation on human health. In this lesson, students learn something about the ways that sanitation technology has helped people by examining the history of sanitation in the context of disease outbreaks and comparing the quality of life in those times to that of today. By the end of this lesson, students should recognize that advances in health and human life expectancy have resulted in large part because of technologies that we now take for granted, such as modern waste-disposal, sanitary food handling, and refrigeration.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Health - Disease - Science - Biological and Life Sciences - Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - World History
Title: Fleas and the Black Death      Add Bookmark
Description: This Xpeditions lesson asks students to investigate the role of fleas, a well-known parasite, in the European Black Death of the 14th century. They research this topic on the Web and create posters or multimedia presentations showing how fleas spread the disease.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Health
Title: Anthrax Attacks      Add Bookmark
Description: This Science NetLinks lesson focuses on the bacterial disease known as Anthrax. Anthrax has always been identified as a disease that infects cattle, but there are also known cases of people contracting this disease directly from handling infected cattle. In this lesson the students research the disease and its impact on human health.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science
Title: Louis Pasteur--A Microbe Discoverer      Add Bookmark
Description: This Science NetLinks lesson, the second in a two-part series on microorganisms, focuses on Louis Pasteur, his discovery of microorganisms, and the process of pasteurization.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Health
Title: What's Bugging You?      Add Bookmark
Description: This Science NetLinks lesson, the first in a two-part series lessons on microorganisms, demonstrates that some '' bad'' microorganisms can get into the body through food ingestion It also explores how environments support pathogens. This lesson is intended to build on a basic understanding of microbes.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science - Biological and Life Sciences - Science - Oceanography - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Bioluminescence: Living Light      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from Xpeditions, students learn about bioluminescent creatures and the underwater world in which they live. They perform an experiment to learn how animals use bioluminescence for camouflage and describe the environment of at least one bioluminescent organism.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science - Biological and Life Sciences - Science - Ecology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Invasive Species      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students investigate species relocation and the effect it has on the environment. They then outline arguments for and against human manipulation of other species.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science
Title: Smallest Thing      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Science Update, from Science NetLinks, you'll hear about the challenge of selecting the smallest living creature, based on how we define such an organism. According to Mike Conrad of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the smallest creature is about one five-thousandth of a millimeter in diameter and is a parasitic bacterium called Mycoplasma genitalium. Science Updates are audio interviews with scientists and are accompanied by a set of questions as well as links to related Science NetLinks lessons and other related resources.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Health,Science
Title: What s Bugging You?      Add Bookmark
Description: This E-sheet, from a Science NetLinks lesson, is used by students to explore foodborne illnesses. After reviewing some introductory questions, students read information from a Web site about food safety and foodborne illnesses and then assess their knowledge.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science, Social Studies
Title: Cities as Population Centers      Add Bookmark
Description: This Science NetLinks, the third in a series of five lessons, focuses on modern urban ecosystems. Students visit Web sites that deal with urban population, fossil fuel consumption, and the signals (such as carbon dioxide emissions) that can be used to track population changes. The class then creates a letter to the grandkids, which tells the grandkids how important fossil fuels were to the growth of cities and how the signal of fossil fuel use showed up in the atmosphere.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science
Title: Seal Cam      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Science Update, from Science NetLinks, you'll hear about how nature photographers have recruited Weddell seals to help them shoot film under the Antarctic ice. Science Updates are audio interviews with scientists and are accompanied by a set of questions as well as links to related Science NetLinks lessons and other related resources.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Science - Biological and Life Sciences - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Coral Bleaching: Making Our Oceans Whiter      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson from Xpeditions, students learn what coral reefs are and about the different types of reefs, study the ecology surrounding these biological playgrounds, and explore the human impact on them. Additionally, this lesson provides an opportunity for students to debate whether human contact should be impeded around coral reefs, a constructive approach for defending controversial environmental issues.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science
Title: Save Our Animals      Add Bookmark
Description: This E-sheet, from a Science NetLinks lesson, provides directions and links needed for students to complete a project in which they create a campaign to increase awareness about endangered species.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science - Earth science - Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - World History
Title: What Do People Know About the Arctic and Antarctic?      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students research the landscapes, climates, and animal life of the polar regions. They then interview people to find out what they think and know about the regions. They conclude by writing paragraphs explaining why it's important to know about the polar regions and detailing the differences between the two regions.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science - Earth science - Science - Meteorology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Climate Controls      Add Bookmark
Description: This Xpeditions lesson has students consider how various parts of the world and the United States are affected by climate controls such as world air currents. They read about climate controls and create maps showing how these controls affect the climate in various places around the country.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science
Title: Birds of Prey      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Science NetLinks lesson, students research several birds of prey and examine predator/prey relationships. The suggested reading and research questions should help students' understanding of these topics move forward, and may lead into a discussion of food chains and webs as well.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science - Botany - Science - Earth science - Science - Ecology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Using Venn Diagrams to Compare Two Ecosystems      Add Bookmark
Description: This Xpeditions lesson helps students identify and describe differences between two related ecosystems. Many students believe that the Earth's only rain forests are found in the tropics. On the contrary, temperate rain forests can be found along the coast of North America's Pacific Northwest. These stands are as endangered as and much smaller than their tropical cousins. By acquiring geographic information from a number of sources, and by using that information to complete a Venn diagram, students come to understand the distribution of temperate and tropical rain forests and the unique characteristics of both.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Health, Science
Title: Blood Cholesterol      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Science Update, from Science NetLinks, you'll hear about whether donating blood could actually be good for you. In the interview, Kirsten Alcorn, Medical Director of the Washington Hospital Center's transfusion service, discusses whether or not donating blood can help you get rid of cholesterol. Science Updates are audio interviews with scientists and are accompanied by a set of questions as well as links to related Science NetLinks lessons and other related resources.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Science
Title: Science NetLinks Weekly Science Updates      Add Bookmark
Description: Science NetLinks Science Updates are short audio clips about a variety of subjects related to science. Each clip is accompanied by a transcript and classroom lesson ideas. Science NetLinks is a member of the MarcoPolo consortium.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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