Showing posts with label Science Videos. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Science Videos. Show all posts

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Five Short Lessons About the Shortest Day of the Year

The winter solstice is about a week away. I always like to go outside to snowshoe or ski on the solstice just to say to the world that a lack of daylight isn't going to ruin my fun. Not everyone feels the same way about the shortest day of the year. And if you're looking for some resources to help students understand the winter solstice, take a look at the resources I have listed below.

What is a Solstice? is a National Geographic video. The two minute video explains why we experience solstices. The video also explains why the solstice and the first day of winter aren't always the same.


PBS Kids Nature Cat has a cute video that explains the basic concept of winter and summer solstice.



Last year TIME published a video featuring "four things you probably didn't know about the winter solstice." Spoiler alert! You probably knew them, but the video will remind you about those things.


Mechanism Of The Seasons is a six minute video about why the length of daylight we receive in a location changes throughout the year. This video could be helpful in a flipped classroom environment.


Even though it is not about the winter solstice, Why the Full Moon Is Better In Winter is a good companion resource to go with those featured above.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

This TED-Ed Lesson Explains What Causes Heartburn - No, It's Not Your Kids

At one time or another we've all suffered from a bout of heartburn. It usually happens to me if I drink soda pop (sometime the allure of a cold can of Coke on a hot day is too strong to resist). What else can cause heartburn? And what is actually happening in your body when you experience heartburn? Those are the questions that are answered the TED-Ed lesson What Causes Heartburn? The lesson includes excellent drawings that illustrate how stomach acid gets back up into your esophagus. The lesson also covers the lifestyle habits and diets that contribute to heartburn.


Applications for Education
This lesson could be a good fit for a health class in which students are learning about the effects of diet and nutrition. The lesson could also be a good fit in a science class in which students are studying anatomy and physiology.

Thursday, November 1, 2018

What are Spices and Herbs? - And What is Pumpkin Spice?

We are in full-blown pumpkin spice season here in New England. Everywhere you look stores are selling pumpkin spice coffee, donuts, cakes, candles, and anything else that spice can be crammed into. This, of course, begs the question "what is pumpkin spice?" That's the question that is addressed in the latest episode of SciShow Kids. But before answering that question the video explains what spices and herbs are and how they are combined to create flavors. Click here to watch the video or watch it as embedded below.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

A Science, Math, and History Lesson in One Short Video

Reactions is a YouTube channel produced by the American Chemical Society and PBS Digital Studios. The videos in the channel focus on explaining how chemistry concepts as they relate to things we see every day or to interesting "what if" scenarios. Recently, Reactions published a video to explain how much tea it would take to turn Boston Harbor into tea.

In How Much Tea Would It Take to Turn Boston Harbor Into Tea? viewers learn how much tea was dumped into Boston Harbor during the Boston Tea Party, how tea diffuses in water, and the math behind calculating how many tea bags it would take to turn Boston Harbor into a giant cup of tea.


Applications for Education
Ask your students to attempt to calculate how many tea bags they would need to turn Boston Harbor into tea before showing them this video.

When I was teaching U.S. History I had more than a couple of students ask if the water tasted like tea after the Boston Tea Party. My answer was always a quick "no." Now I have the math to support that answer. 

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Frostbite Theater - 87 Science Experiment Video Lessons

Jefferson Lab's YouTube channel includes a playlist titled Frostbite Theater. The first time I looked at the playlist a few years ago it had about fifty videos. The playlist has now expanded to 87 videos. The playlist features videos of science demonstrations and experiments. Many of the demonstrations involve the use of liquid nitrogen. You'll also find videos about electricity, insects, and lasers. The video from the playlist that I've embedded below is about measuring the speed of light.


Applications for Education
Rather than just showing these videos to your students, place them into a tool like EDpuzzle or TES Teach with Blendspace to build questions into the videos. Both of those tools will let you add questions into the timeline of a video and let your students respond while watching the videos.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

A Good Resource for Learning About the Science of Food

Foodskey is a site produced by The University of Nottingham who also produces the Periodic Table of Videos. Foodskey is a set of fourteen videos about the science of food. The videos cover topics like nutrition, food security, and crop technology. I've embedded the video about broccoli below.



Applications for Education
Foodskey isn't terribly in-depth yet, but the content that is present could be useful for a short lesson on the science of food. You might use the videos an introduction to a lesson or as part of an editorial moment in your lesson.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

The Process of Plastic Bottle Recycling

I have t-shirts made from recycled plastic bottles and I bet that your students do too. How did those bottles become the material for t-shirts? Why didn't the recycling company just make more bottles out of the recycled bottles? And why are those numbers on the bottom of the bottle important? Those questions and more are answered in a new Reactions video, How Plastic Recycling Actually Works.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

A Science Lesson for Dog Owners

As regular readers of this blog know, I love dogs. But as much as I love them there is one habit that I wish "man's best friend" would kick. That habit is eating poop. Whether its from a deer, a moose, a horse, or any other mammal, my dogs have had time not scooping up a mouthful. While I still don't like the habit, thanks to a new MinuteEarth video, I now know why they do it.

Why Do Some Animals Eat Poop? explains why and how some animals get nutrients from eating the excrement of other animals. The video also mentions why the feces of some animals has more nutrients than that of other animals. Like all MinuteEarth videos, the description notes on YouTube for this video include a list of the references used in producing the video. Watch the video on YouTube or as embedded below.


Applications for Education
Any student who has a dog, might be interested in the lesson in this video. And if you want to build a complete flipped video lesson around it, try using EDpuzzle or TES Teach.

Apparently, I write about poop more often than I remember. A quick search of my archives unveiled three other poop-related lessons. Those are a TED-Ed Lesson explaining why the world isn't covered in poop, a TED-Ed lesson about constipation, and the classic Who Pooped? game from the Minnesota Zoo.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

How Submarines Work

SciShow Kids is one of my favorite YouTube channels for kids. SciShow Kids publishes a steady stream of science lessons for elementary school students. The latest video lesson from SciShow Kids is all about how submarines work. The video does a nice job of covering the basics of how submarines are sunk and how they are returned to the surface. A little demonstration that you could create in your classroom is included in the video.


My only criticism of the video is that I wish there was a bit more explanation about how oxygen is supplied in a submarine. Perhaps the answer to that question could be the start of a lesson in your classroom.

Friday, July 27, 2018

How Does Air Conditioning Work? - A Lesson for the Dog Days of Summer

Here in northern New England we don't handle hot and humid weather well. The first heat wave of the summer always sends people scrambling to buy the few air conditioners that are in stock at Home Depot or Walmart. In fact, I was one of those scramblers a couple of weeks ago. This leads me to a new video from Reactions titled How Air Conditioning Works.

How Air Conditioning Works uses excellent drawings and narration to explain the inner workings of air conditioners. The video also explains the environmental impact of the chemicals that are used in air conditioners and the alternatives that are currently being explored.

Monday, July 23, 2018

SciShow Kids Answers "Why Do Animals Have Tails?"

My daughters and my dogs' tails have a close relationship. Sometimes that relationship is tested by a quick grab of a tail and sometimes tested by a swishing tail to the face. But no matter what, my dogs always wag their tails when we come home. That, of course, begs the question, "why do animals have tails?" SciShow Kids has the answer to that question in their latest video. The video explains how some animals use their tails to communicate and some use them for balance. The video also explains why humans don't need tails.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Soft Fruit, Mold, and Sour Milk - A Lesson on Food Safety

At one time or another we've all opened a milk container and noticed that something wasn't quite right or picked up a piece of fruit that was just a little too soft. Reactions, one of my favorite YouTube channels, has a video that answers whether or not you can eat that soft fruit, moldy bread, or drink that sour milk. Reactions is a channel that is all about applying chemistry and biology concepts to common scenarios. To that end, Can I Still Eat This? explains the science of why fruits get soft, why milk gets sour, and how mold grows and spreads through food.


Applications for Education
Can I Still Eat This? is a good example of a science video to use in flipped lessons. A couple of my go-to tools for making flipped lessons are EDpuzzle and TES Teach

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Why Sheep Don't Shrink in the Rain

It's a rainy day here in Maine and after a little trail run with my dogs, my feet were soaked! My Smartwool socks keep my feet relatively warm, but do nothing to keep them dry. This scenario always makes we wonder about two things. First, why don't my Smartwool socks shrink when I wash and dry them? Second, why don't sheep shrink in the rain? The answer to the first question is that the socks aren't 100% wool. The answer to the second question is found in a clever MinuteEarth video titled Why Don't Sheep Shrink in the Rain?

Saturday, June 23, 2018

A Lesson for Beachcombers - How Seashells Are Made

If your summer plans include going to the beach, you may be interested in a new video from Reactions about how seashells are made. In How Seashells Are Made viewers learn that seashells are made of 95% calcium carbonate and 5% protein and sugar. The video doesn't stop with just listing the components of seashells. By watching the video viewers can learn how calcite and aragonite are layered in seashells to create a hard shell.


Applications for Education
I've never been a "lay on the beach" kind of person. I'm the person you'll find wandering and looking at neat things that get washed up on shore. If you have students that like to wander and collect seashells, use that curiosity as a segue into a science lesson about how seashells are made. This video is a great candidate for inclusion in an EDpuzzle lesson in which you add questions and your own clarifying remarks for students. Watch my EDpuzzle tutorial to learn how to add questions to an existing video.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

DIY Solar Updraft Tower - A Hands-on Elementary Science Lesson

SciShow Kids has a playlist of videos titled Super Simple Machines. The videos in that playlist feature explanations and demonstrations of simple machines that students could make in your classroom. One of those videos is Spin a Wheel With Sunlight.

By watching Spin a Wheel With Sunlight students can learn how solar energy can be transferred through a solar updraft tower. The video provides clear directions on how students can make their own solar updraft towers with materials commonly found in classrooms or homes. In the example in the video, the solar updraft tower makes a pinwheel spin.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Seven Good Resources to Help Students Learn the Periodic Table

Learning the periodic table of the elements is not one of my fondest memories of high school, but it was a necessary experience to get through chemistry. My classmates and I memorized  all of the elements, at least temporarily, by using flashcards to drill each other. Today, students have more options at their disposal. Here are seven good resources to help students learn the periodic table of elements.

Ptable is an interactive display of the Periodic Table of Elements. Place your mouse pointer over an element to access the basic information about it. Click on an element to open a Wikipedia article about that element. The article opens within a dialogue box within Ptable so that you don't have to leave the site and then come back to use the table again.

The Periodic Table of Elements, in Pictures and Words is an interactive site that shows students how each element is used or is present in familiar products. When students click on an element in the interactive display an image of a familiar product or object appears along with a description of the element and its characteristics. For example, if you click on aluminum an image of airplane appears along with a description of aluminum, its uses, and its characteristics.


The Periodic Table of Comic Books is a project of the chemistry department at the University of Kentucky. The idea is that for every element in the Periodic Table of Elements there is a comic book reference. Clicking on an element in the periodic table displayed on the homepage will take visitors to a list and images of comic book references to that particular element. After looking at the comic book reference if visitors want more information about a particular element they can find it by using the provided link to Web Elements.

The Periodic Table of Videos is produced by The University of Nottingham. The table features a video demonstration of the characteristics of each element in the table. Each element in the Periodic Table displayed on the home page is linked to a video. The videos are hosted on YouTube, but don't worry The University of Nottingham provides an alternative server through which you should be able to view the videos.

The Elements is an interactive periodic table on which students can click an element and learn about that element. Clicking on an element describes all of the element's properties and the common uses of that element. If students just need a snap shot of information, simply placing their cursor on an element reveals a snap shot of information at the top of the page.

ABPI Schools offers an online game in which students have to use their knowledge of the elements in order to correctly place them into a blank table. Students are scored according to time and accuracy. A penalty time is added for each incorrect attempt. The game is available in three difficulty levels. 

Finally, AsapScience has released an updated version of the Periodic Table Song. Watch the music video here

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Making Maple Syrup - A Science and Math Lesson

The days are getting warmer here in Maine, the sun is shining a bit longer each day, and the snow is starting to melt. That means that two of a Mainer's favorite seasons are starting; mud season and maple syrup season. My friend Gardner Waldeier AKA Bus Huxley on YouTube collects maple sap to make maple syrup. He does it the old fashioned way and he made a video about the process.

Gardner's video shows viewers how he collects maple sap and turns it into maple syrup. In the video explains why maple sap is collected at this time of year, how much sap he'll collect from a large tree, and just how much sap it takes to make a gallon of maple syrup. You also get a nice tour of Gardner's woodlot and plenty of images of his helpful dog.


Applications for Education
I don't think that Gardner deliberately edited the video to have the ideal length and pacing for a flipped classroom lesson, but that's how it turned out. Try EDpuzzle or Vizia to make a flipped lesson with Making Maple Syrup by Bus Huxley.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

How Snow Is Made Naturally and by Humans

Every skier knows that natural snow is better than man-made snow. But there will be plenty of both at the Winter Olympics. So what is the difference? And how is snow made? Those questions are answered in the following videos.

How to Make Snow (If You're Not Elsa) is a short video produced by SciShow that explains how snow is made at ski resorts by using cooled water and compressed air.


Reactions, a YouTube channel that produces lots of science videos, has a short video that explains how snowflakes are naturally created.


The National Science Foundation has a neat video that explains how high speed cameras capture images of snowflakes forming. The video then goes on to explain why some snow is light and fluffy while other snow feels wet and heavy. (Jump to the 4:25 mark to get to the section about the formation of snowflakes).

10 More Videos About the Science of the Winter Olympics

On Tuesday I shared a playlist of 16 videos about the science of the Winter Olympics. Those videos were created by the National Science Foundation to coincide with the 2010 Winter Olympics. In 2014 the NSF released another batch of videos about the science of the Winter Olympics.

Some of the things that viewers can learn about in these ten videos include how snow half-pipes are made for snowboarding events, the role of vibration dampening in alpine skiing, and the physics of figure skating.


There is an inquiry guide and question list available for each of the videos in this playlist. The guides are available to download as PDFs. You'll find the guides linked below each video on its respective landing page.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Videos and Google Earth File for Learning About Glaciers

SciShow Kids recently published a new video that explains to children how glaciers are formed and how they change over time. SciShow Kids is intended for early elementary school grades and this video about glaciers not an exception to that pattern.


For older students you might want to take a look at How Do Glaciers Move? which explains how glaciers are formed, the physical properties of glaciers, and how glaciers move. The video also answers the question of whether a glacier is a solid or a liquid.



Finally, the Extreme Ice Survey offers a Google Earth file (clicking the link will launch a KML download) that displays the results of the Extreme Ice Survey. In this Google Earth file users can view glaciers, historical data about glaciers, and some video clips about shrinking glaciers. The Extreme Ice Survey website has high quality photos and time lapse videos from the surveyors.

Use one of these seven tools to create a science lesson with either video that is posted above.