Ever seen a face in the moon? Or a slice of toast? What about the front of a car (and not just the characters in the movie Cars)? If so, you’re in good company. Many people see faces in commonplace objects. After learning about face pareidolia, the phenomenon of seeing faces in everyday objects, students will collect images of faces they find in nature and inanimate objects and then poll classmates on the perceived gender of the faces. Students will compare their results to results from a study reported in Science News and then design their own follow-up research on face pareidolia.
Help your students connect and relate to current scientists from diverse backgrounds with this activity. Students will then find articles about ongoing science research that links the work of the scientists to real-world questions. Learning outcomes: Basic collaboration and listening skills; ability to use a computer with internet access
After reading a journalistic article about materials science and engineering over the last century, students will discuss and research why and how new materials are developed and how they transform society. Student groups will develop museum-style exhibits to communicate what they learned to the rest of the class.
In this activity, students will discuss how literary devices can be used to convey scientific concepts, research how an animal of their choice senses the world and compose a piece of creative writing based on what they find.
After considering their interests and skills, students will identify potential STEM careers that they might want to pursue and create a map or flowchart showing how they might reach that goal. Students will then use the Science News archive and other online resources to research a STEM professional whose career resembles one that students might choose for themselves.
Students will use the clues provided and the Science News Century of Science website to explore how science advances. After making connections across scientific subtopics, student groups will research and present highlights of discoveries from an assigned decade.
Students will design and build models inspired by flying seeds with the goal of making the models travel as far as possible. Students will test the models, analyze which ones performed the best and explain why those models performed well using physics principles.
Students will learn about early evidence for human evolution, discuss how interpretations of data can be influenced by scientists’ biases and develop a framework for analyzing the physical features of hominin fossils.