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a man in a red shirt and a black cap standing in front of a misting fan

How Much Heat Can We Handle?

Summers are getting hotter. Use this guide to help students explore the science of heat and its effects on the body, and then apply what they learn through diagramming.

Too hot to handle

Heat waves are becoming more frequent around the globe, and scientists are studying humans’ ability to endure the extra heat. Get students thinking about what it means to handle heat and explore basic thermodynamic concepts through diagramming. Learning Outcomes: Diagramming
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.
underwater photo of an octopus garden on the sea floor

Deep-sea ‘Octomoms’ Seek the Heat

In this guide, students will answer questions about how scientists discovered that octopuses laying eggs in warm waters near geothermal springs are speeding up hatching. Students will then define rates and their units of measurement for biological and chemical processes and discuss factors that affect rates.

Rates and what affects them

Students will define rates and their units of measurement for biological and chemical processes before discussing factors that affect rates.

Octopus moms seek the heat

Students will answer questions about the Science News article “Some deep-sea octopuses aren’t the long-haul moms scientists thought they were,” which describes how octopuses laying eggs in warm waters near geothermal springs speed up hatching. A version of the article, “Deep-sea ‘octomoms’ seek the heat,” appears in the April 9, 2022 issue of Science News.
image of a hand snapping on a yellow backdrop

Camera Captures Physics in a Snap

In this guide, students will learn about an experiment inspired by the movie Avengers: Infinity War that investigates the role of friction in a successful finger snap. Students will then apply their scientific knowledge to assess scientific accuracy in movies and other media.

Science in a snap

Students will answer questions about the online Science News article “New high-speed video reveals the physics of a finger snap,” which details scientists’ exploration of the friction required for finger snapping. A version of the article, “Camera captures physics in a snap,” appears in the December 18, 2021 & January 1, 2022 issue of Science News.

Science on screen

Students will discuss the physics of finger snapping and apply their scientific knowledge to think critically about the scientific accuracy of movies and online demonstrations.

How ducklings dodge drag

Students will discuss the physics of drag using real-world examples.