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a close-up photo of a jumping spider

News Stories Give Spiders a Bum Rap

Are your students creeped out by spiders? They aren’t alone. In this guide, students will learn about how inaccurate news coverage has promoted common misconceptions about the largely harmless critters. Students can also discuss misinformation, thinking about where they’ve encountered it before, its impacts and ways to correct it.   

Being mindful of misinformation

Let spiders and their unfair reputation help you teach students about identifying and correcting misinformation. Learning outcomes: Media literacy, communicating information.
A child throwing a toy football to an older man standing in the driveway of a suburban neighborhood

Why Spiraling Footballs Sometimes Miss the Mark

Engage your students in science using sports! In this guide, students can explore the physics of football throws and apply the scientific method to a sport of their choice.  

Solving sports problems with science

Get your students exploring the scientific method by applying scientific problem-solving to their favorite sport. Learning outcomes: Scientific method.

Extraordinary scientists are ordinary people

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
image of a scoop of ice cream

Cellulose Helps Ice Cream Go Down Smooth

In this guide, students will learn about how food scientists are using chemistry to improve the texture of ice cream, discuss the science of ice cream on a molecular level and brainstorm testable scientific questions about favorite frozen desserts.

Ice cream under the microscope

Students will analyze and write a caption for microscope images of crystals in an ice cream–like solution, discuss how molecules behave as ice cream freezes and thaws, and pose scientific questions about one of their favorite frozen desserts.

The scoop on ice cream science

Students will answer questions about the online Science News article “Grainy ice cream is unpleasant. Plant-based nanocrystals might help,” which describes new research into improving the shelf life of ice cream. A version of the article, “Cellulose helps ice cream go down smooth,” appears in the May 7, 2022 & May 21, 2022 issue of Science News.
Castleton Tower, a sandstone formation near Moab, Utah

Climbers Help Scientists Vibe With Utah’s Rocks

In this guide, students will learn about a citizen science project that is helping scientists better understand the physical properties of rock formations. Students will then explore other citizen science projects that they could participate in based on their hobbies and interests.

Citizens for science

Students will explore the concept of citizen science and use their hobbies and interests to find a citizen science project they could participate in.

Exploring STEM career paths

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.
illustration of one human figure standing separate from a group of figures

Look to the Outliers

In this guide, students will learn about outliers and why some social scientists study them in an effort to improve people’s lives.