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small dinosaur

A Tiny Dino and Iron Rain

In this guide, students will learn about the smallest-known Mesozoic dinosaur and use phase diagrams to explore meteorology on an exoplanet. In an activity, students will collect and analyze data in their own homes. Editor’s Note: A study included in this guide has been retracted. Please see the comprehension questions for more detail.

Sizing up a dinosaur

Students will answer questions about the Science News article “This ancient dinosaur was no bigger than a hummingbird,” which reports on a fossil of a many-toothed, Mesozoic predator.
Egyptian fruit bat

Why Bat Viruses Are So Dangerous

This guide will help students understand how viruses in other animals can infect people, sometimes leading to epidemics or pandemics. In a group activity, students will imagine they are health officials developing action plans to prevent or stop an epidemic.

The truth about bats and viruses

Students will answer questions about the Science News article “Why bat viruses are so dangerous,” which explores how the animals’ immune defenses might lead to killer human pathogens.

Cats and Punnett squares

Scientists would like to breed cats that don’t trigger allergies in people. By constructing and analyzing a Punnett square for two low-allergen cats, students will review key concepts including patterns and probabilities of inheritance, genotype, phenotype, genes, alleles, chromosomes and mutations.
cute kitten

How to Lick Cat Allergies

This guide asks students to explore how scientists are combating cat allergies, apply problem-solving strategies to an allergen of their choice, review basic concepts in genetics and analyze Punnett squares.

The quest to fend off cat allergies

Students will answer questions about the Science News article “How to lick cat allergies,” which explores some potential solutions to prevent and calm allergic reactions.

Taking charge of allergies

Students will identify and categorize various approaches to fending off cat allergies. After discussing the approaches, students will apply similar problem-solving strategies to a new allergen.

What’s that smell?

Students will explore how our sense of smell helps us interpret the world around us, and how those interpretations may vary. Students will practice analyzing data and determine how temperature affects vapor pressure and thus the intensity of scents.
mammal skulls

Here Come the (Bigger) Mammals

This guide, based on the Science News article “Here come the (bigger) mammals,” asks students to analyze a graph about a recent fossil find, discuss how organisms evolve as ecosystems change and research important fossil sites across the world.

Growing up mammal

Students will answer questions based on the Science News article “Here come the (bigger) mammals.”

Do not disturb

Students will explore the immediate and long-term effects of specific environmental disturbances, including how energy enters or leaves an ecosystem, how the biotic and abiotic characteristics of the ecosystem change and how organisms evolve under the new conditions.