Activities and Examples: Using Data in the Classroom Today

This collection contains links to on-line activites for teaching STEM concepts with data of all types and examples that describe ways in which on-line, published, and student-collected data are currently used in teaching and learning.

This collection includes both data activities identified from across the web as well as a local example collection.

The initial example collection was created in collaboration with the Geological Society of America where the examples were given in a poster session "Using Data to Teach Earth Processes: An Illustrated Community Discussion" sponsored by the NAGT On the Cutting Edge program. We invite you to contribute additional examples in any of the STEM disciplines.

Each example includes a description of the activity, its learning goals, the context in which it is used, information on the needed data, tools, and activities and suggestions for evaluation.


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Discover Clues from a Colder Climate with GeoMapApp part of Earth Exploration Toolbook:Ice Stream
DATA: Global Digital Elevation Model (DEM) TOOLS: GeoMapApp, Spreadsheet SUMMARY: Use GeoMapApp to search for evidence of glacial expansion and retreat. Produce a research report of your findings modeled on peer-reviewed papers in the field of glaciology.

When is Dinner Served? Predicting the Spring Phytoplankton Bloom in the Gulf of Maine part of Earth Exploration Toolbook:Predicting Phytoplankton Bloom in the Gulf of Maine
DATA: Ocean Buoy Data, MODIS Images TOOLS: GoMOOS Online Graphing Tool SUMMARY: Learn about conditions that influence the spring phytoplankton bloom. Use an online graphing tool to predict the date of the bloom.

Seeing the Forest for the Trees: What's in Your Woods? part of Earth Exploration Toolbook:Seeing the Forest for the Trees: Whats in Your Woods?
DATA: Forest Inventory Growth and Analysis data, TOOLS: Spreadsheet, My World GIS SUMMARY: Investigate forest biodiversity in Maine and consider the environmental factors that contribute to tree species diversity.

Comparing Sunscreens part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Teaching with Data:Examples
Students use a microcomputer connected to an ultra-violet sensor to compare the relative blocking power of different SPF sunscreens for the UVB region of the solar spectrum. -

Mapping Plate Boundaries part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lectures:Examples
Students can discover plate boundaries by plotting different sets of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions on maps. These are then stacked on the overhead projector, outlining the tectonic plates. -

How do polar and tropical ice cores correlate? part of Cutting Edge:Climate Change:Ideas for Teaching about Ice Cores
This activity was developed during the Teaching Climate Change Using Ice Core Data workshop, held in June 2008.Contributed by John Wehwiller, Tara Curtin, Thom Davis Topic: Timing of Climatic Shifts Course Type: ...

Evidence for Plate Tectonics part of Earth Exploration Toolbook:Evidence
DATA: Sea Floor Age, Volcano and Earthquake Distributions. TOOL: My World GIS. SUMMARY: Identify relationships among sea-floor age, earthquakes, and volcanoes to understand how they support the theory of plate tectonics.

Exploring Regional Differences in Climate Change part of Earth Exploration Toolbook:Exploring Regional Differences in Climate Change
DATA: Climate Model Predictions TOOLS: EOS-Webster, Spreadsheet application SUMMARY: Produce and analyze graphs to compare climate predictions among U.S. states through the year 2100.

Population Reference Bureau part of SERC Web Resource Collection

This is the homepage of the Population Reference Bureau, an organization dedicated to providing information about worldwide population, health, and environment. Materials available here include ...

Two streams, two stories: How Humans Alter Floods and Streams part of SERC Web Resource Collection

In this class activity, students determine the discharge of a 100-year flood for two human-impacted streams. This activity supports the quantitative concepts of recurrence intervals, floods and ...