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a referee holds up a yellow card amid during a soccer game in Germany

When Fans Are Away, Home Teams Lose Their Sway

In this guide, students will learn about scientific research into bias in sporting events that was made possible by the coronavirus pandemic. Then, students will define and discuss the role of questions in the scientific method before brainstorming a scientific question of their own.

Investigating bias with ‘ghost games’

Students will answer questions about the online Science News article “‘Ghost games’ spotlight the psychological effect fans have on referees,” which describes research into a phenomenon in sports known as home field advantage. A version of the story, “When fans are away, home teams lose their sway,” appears in the September 25, 2021 issue of Science News.

Why ask scientific questions?

Students will discuss the definition and importance of scientific questions, explore questions that scientists were able to investigate because of the coronavirus pandemic and brainstorm their own scientific questions.

A fair shot

Students will analyze a graph to identify inequities in COVID-19 vaccine access among nations based on wealth, discuss how affluence affects access to and distribution of vaccines as well as how disparities in vaccine distribution affect global pandemic recovery. Students will then work in groups to research COVID-19 vaccine access and distribution in their state or local area, identify potential inequities in vaccine access and distribution and construct a graph of their own.

A century of science podcast

Using the Science News archive for reference, students will make a podcast detailing the developments in an area of science over the last century.
AstraZeneca vaccine

Vaccine Inequity Will Prolong Pandemic

In this guide, students will learn about challenges in vaccinating the world against COVID-19. Then, students will discuss the possible effects of varying vaccination rates on local and global scales.

Global problem solving gets personal

Students will think about how communities connect on local and global scales through the lens of COVID-19 vaccine distribution and consider why global collaboration in STEM is crucial for solving some large-scale issues.

Counting on COVID-19 vaccines

Students will answer questions about the online Science News article “Global inequity in COVID-19 vaccination is more than a moral problem,” which explores the scientific and economic impacts of the failure to fairly distribute vaccines globally. A version of the story, “Vaccine inequity will prolong pandemic,” appears in the March 27, 2021 issue of Science News.

Planning ahead to prevent future disasters

Students will take on the role of a planning board for a region identified as having an increased risk for natural hazards — wildfires, floods, droughts, heatwaves or hurricanes — due to climate change. After proposing regulations and other strategies to reduce the natural hazard’s impact, the students will discuss the merits of the proposed solutions before voting on a disaster plan and budget for their region.
illustration of a science fiction nanobot brain mesh interface

Our Brains, Our Futures

In this guide, students will explore how brain science has progressed over the last century and how that progress could inform the field’s future. Then, students will discuss the ethics of advancements in neurotechnology.

Neuroscience fiction and fact

Students will answer questions about the online Science News article “Three visions of the future, inspired by neuroscience’s past and present,” which explores how advances in the field of neuroscience are bringing scientists closer to expanding, linking and healing human brains. A version of the story, “Our brains, our futures,” can be found in the March 13, 2021 issue of Science News.

Building better brains?

Students will explore advances in neurotechnology by making connections between examples they’ve seen in popular culture and what is currently possible. Students will then think critically about positive and negative effects of advancements in this area of science.