Irene Salter

Ecology 1 - Carbon Cycle

Based on a “Carbon Adventures” lesson plan developed by  the GK-12 Project at Arizona State University. For details on the original activity, go to (http://gk12.asu.edu/curriculum/life_science/CarbonAdventures/carb_ad.htm).

College Biology Box

This series of activities is designed to complement a semester long introductory biology course for non-majors (general education) at a 4 year university. These activities are designed to be used to review material from the week's lecture in an activity-based way that is practical to implement in a  section of 25-75 students.

The original course is structured in 3 segments:

Brains and Neurons

How does a brain - less than 3 pounds of wrinkly pink matter - enable a person to sense their environment, think, feel, make decisions, remember things, and control every behavior? This is one of the greatest mysteries of life. For teachers interested in teaching students about the brain and its neurons, here is a set of lesson plans for exploring your brain.

Biology for Future Elementary Teachers

Here's my current syllabus for an introductory college biology course for undergraduates planning on entering elementary teaching. This is NOT your traditionalcollege biology course. The goal of this course is to give students mastery over theconcepts required of K-8 students in California in a hands-on, experiential way.

Teaching electron configuration

In response to a question on ways to teach electron configuration to students, here's a model I used with my 8th graders. We had been using beans to represent and build 2D models of atoms (green lentils = electrons, white beans = protons, black beans = neutrons). I made a handout for them to help them understand the idea of where electrons like to go when they are added (download it at the bottom of this page).

Recommended Web Resources

On December 9, 2006 I led a workshop for new teachers called "Web Wonders and Wizardry". A main feature of the workshop was a list of websites recommended by myself and other educators. Here's the list for everyone to enjoy!

How do I add lessons of my own?

Adding lessons to My Science Box (in 7 easy steps):

  1. Make sure you are logged into your account then click the "create content" button on the left side of the page below your username.
  2. Select "book page".
  3. Enter a title for your page.
  4. The "Parent" pull down menu files your lesson in a hierarchical menu system. For instance, Irene's lessons are organized with a larger "box" with lessons inside. Each lesson is in turn broken down into subsections: an overview, logistics, background, lesson plan, etc. Initially, you will want to put your teaching box under the Drop Box. After that, you can file additional pages within your own section of the Drop Box.
  5. Use the "Categories" pull down menus to categorize your lessons so other teachers can find them.
  6. In the "Body" section, enter any text you wish or cut and paste from another application. The icons at the bottom of the window allow you to format your text just like a word processor. Mouse over them to learn what each icon allows you to do.
  7. When you are done, click "submit" and your lesson is LIVE ON THE WEB! Congratulations

 

Thank yous

This website was developed by Jason Salter, web developer extraordinaire. A billion thanks for all the hard work, creative ideas, and loving support in the creation of My Science Box.

This work was funded through a generous grant from the Rose Foundation. The concept of the "teaching box" was inspired by the Exploratorium's Teacher Institute and their amazing staff. A special thanks to Linda Shore, Eric Muller, Tory Brady, Modesto Tomez and Margaret Fauchier for their kind support and generous encouragement. The organization of the lessons at MyScienceBox was inspired by the Lawrence Hall of Science GEMS and FOSS guides. Their publications have been the role models for my curriculum. Because the GEMs guides layout and descriptions are so clear and helpful, I have modeled my lesson plans after their materials.

Lawrence Hall - Standards

Standards
Grade 6
Plate Tectonics and Earth's Structure

1. Plate tectonics accounts for important features of Earth's surface and major geologic events. As a basis for understanding this concept:
a. Students know evidence of plate tectonics is derived from the fit of the continents; the location of earthquakes, volcanoes, and midocean ridges; and the distribution of fossils, rock types, and ancient climatic zones.

Lawrence Hall - Going Further

Going Further
There are a large number of ways to reinforce these same concepts back in your classroom.

  • Use the Virtual Earthquake software in the Earthquake Fingerprints lesson.
  • Whose Fault is it Anyway? is a great kinesthetic way to model epicenter finding developed by Eric Muller from the Exploratorium Teachers’ Institute. Students hold hands and propagate a p and s wave through a human chain. The difference in arrival times can be used to figure out who started the earthquake.
  • Finally, the Center for Science Education at the University of California Space Sciences Laboratory has a fantastic compilation of hands-on inquiry activity for the classroom on earthquakes. In addition to the standard stuff on reading seismograms for location and magnitude information, this series of lessons covers everything from using earthquake data to infer things about