I recently finished a wilderness first aid course. During the practical we did a ‘rodeo’ of patients and I found it an apt term to describe what I’d like to do with this article. A rodeo of sites that science teachers may find helpful if not interesting. I tend to focus on biology quite a bit but I wanted to include a few non-bio things today.

Astronomy:

There are a number of great resources for astronomy. Some are obvious: NASA, ESA, JSA etc. But you want to find specifics so there is the actual education department of NASA. It runs the gamut form elementary to post-secondary. Both for teachers and students. Lets face it we tend to want resources and the multimedia pages are most worthwhile. I personally subscribe to the vodcasts they have linked on that page. I suggest you use an RSS feeder that handles them like itunes/netvibes/google reader etc and get the updates automatically. That way when something directly relevant to what you are doing is produced you’ll know asap!

The Jet Propulsion Laboratory at California Institute of technology is also great. Once again the multimedia page is tops for resources for teachers and students to use. I think it may be better than the NASA page. They also have an education department you may want to check out. They have pages dedicated to Earth, Solar System, Stars and Galaxies, and Sci/Tech. Each has a treasure trove of stuff!

The European Space Agency has great stuff too. They are actually doing some fantastic probing using the Cassini-Huygens probe and Mars presently and have a great deal of data collecting satellites that study the Earth from space. Which reminded me that I wanted to use it for data collection and analysis – check iT! They have their own multimedia gallery for resources including movies, animations and images. Of course they have their very own education pages.

Astronomy Magazine has limited resources unless you subscribe. The magazine itself is great for viewing space. And they will certainly keep you up to date of stellar events. One thing that is nice is their Star Dome java program and Star Atlas images. I suggest you check iT!

I have not ventured into the heart of Astronomy Now but its there for you to view.

General Science:

I have been teaching some grade 8 simple machine stuff the last few weeks for a mat leave. I LOVE simple machines because they are ubiquitous. Screws, wheels etc. What you may want to know is that most of the Eureka cartoon series on physical science is available on youtube. Search for Eureka science and I would subscribe to the set [user bubblebear83 – be aware that this user has lots of kids stuff in the set] using flock. Find FreeScienceLectures or kosaihiskandarsjah for a great collection of videos.

A simple machine shockwave animation is called ‘Simple Machines‘. This website also has a huge collection of links you can browse for material.

subcategory – chemistry

If you teach chemistry then Davidson College has a great collection, pretty much an entire chemistry course, online at their site. Many of the pages incorporate dry lab, simulations that work quite well.

Another chemistry website comes from Carnegie Mellon University. Called the ChemCollective there are numerous tutorials, problem sets and a virtual lab.

There is also the Aus-e-tute. I have not used it in while but I have created some lessons from a few of their ideas and content. Unfortunately for the better content you need to pay – hence why I stopped frequenting it.

Are you an IB chemistry teacher? If so you may already know about IB chemistry syllabus and notes online.

Oxford has a nice virtual chemistry section. It includes webcasts, movies on key chem topics, a video library of transition metal salt reactions, molecules of the month [great for weekly student presentations] and virtual experiments.

Biology:

A website I may have mentioned before is DNAinteractive. It is available through the Howard Hughes Medical Institute [HHMI] who bring you the holiday lecture series. DNA Interactive provides great material in 6 categories of interactivity. [they also allow online creation of lesson plans using their site]. There is a history of genetics/DNA. The actual biological basis – the molecule itself. How scientists manipulate DNA -molecular biology. How the genome is structured in terms of the genome. And finally applications of genetic and molecular biological techniques and knowledge.

how about Anatomy? The Winking Skull provides excellent online anatomy and a free account.

And the teachers domain. A collection of multimedia resources for teachers of biology. I don’ t frequent this site but it has mucho good stuff.

Finally:

I cannot help but list a few blogs that keep biology teachers up to date on some subjects. A fw I LOVE are:
genomicron – Dr. T.R. Gregory. Professor at the University of Guelph. Great for evolution and phylogenetic trees. He has great articles on how to understand these topics.
sandwalk – Dr. L. Moran at University of Toronto. Great for evolution, general science literacy.
pharyngula – Dr. P.Z. Myers at the University of Minnesota. He has one of the most read science blogs on the net. Although much of the content has been about bashing creationists of any sort [I won’t debate here] he has GREAT articles on evolutionary developmental biology.
effect measure – known as the ‘reveres’. A great site on public health and epidemiology. Past articles are fantastic on influenza A biology.
microbiologyBytes – Dr. Alan Cann. If you need a source for up to date microbiology or a source of information, then this blog rocks.

Ok. thats enough. Hope you find some of it helpful.

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