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Links & Resources


General Education

1. Alaska History and Cultural Studies:
Alaska's History & Cultural Studies provides students, teachers and others interested in the state access to a rich source of facts and viewpoints about Alaska and its history.

2. The Smithsonian Website: This site contains lesson plans on a variety of topics, and most have corresponding state standards. Some lesson plans from this site have been chosen to go along with our workshop topics and are placed under our workshop headings.


Alaskan Animals:  Explore Alaska’s animals past and present and discover animal tools for the task. (Standards: SA1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 3.1, SC1.1,1.2,2.1,2.2, SC3.1, SG4.1)*


1. Web of Life:
Construct a food web to learn how all living things in an ecosystem are interconnected. Includes student role play and extension activities. Grade(s): PreK–3
Alaska State standards for this resource:

2. Weaving the Web:
Students construct food webs to learn how food chains are interconnected, show how energy flows through food chains between the sun, plants, and animals. Includes printable activity sheets and extensions. Grade(s): PreK–3, 4–8
Alaska State standards for this resource:

3. Animal Tracks—What Do They Reveal?:
In this online lesson, students do the work of biologists by investigating wildlife through tracks it leaves. They collect data, classify animals according to their “consumer category,” create species lists, and interpret habitat requirements.
Alaska State standards for this resource:

4. Arctic Wildlife Portfolio:
Learn about Alaska and its animal inhabitants. Divided into birds, mammals, and sea mammals. Includes primary accounts of the arctic by a 19th-century naturalist, matching animal game, and glossary. Grade(s): 4–8, 9–12
Alaska State standards for this resource:

5. My Space (PreK-3):
Activity examining how animals create a unique space in which they can live. Students read a poem about animals' habitats and then discuss the habitats.
Grade(s): PreK–3
Alaska State standards for this resource:

6. North American Animals for Kids:
Links to information and educational activities for children related to the animals of North America. Grade(s): PreK–3, 4–8
Alaska State standards for this resource:


Bones:  This challenging hands on examination encourages hypothesizing and drawing conclusions by telling the stories behind the bones.  (Standards:  SA1.1,1.2, 2.1, SC1.1, 2.2, 3.1)*


A mysterious band of hunters once inhabited interior Alaska. Find out what scientists have uncovered at this 12,000 year old site.

2. North American Mammals:
Searchable database of all living mammals of North America. Search by geographic location, species name, mammal family tree, or conservation status. Includes glossary and skulls, bones, and teeth. Grade(s): 4–8, 9–12
Alaska State standards for this resource:

3. Body Parts: An Online Activity
Interactive online activity in which children study anatomy by matching various body parts to their respective position on the human frame. Grade(s): 4–8, 9–12
Alaska State standards for this resource:


Geology Rocks:  Hands on exploration of the properties of minerals, types of rocks and the rock cycle.  Interact with a stream table and land forms to understand Earth’s changing surface.  (Standards:  SA1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 3.1, SB1.1, 3.1, SD1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 2.2, 4.2, 4.3)*

(see also “Rocks & Fossils” section)

1. The Volcano Simulator:
Ever wanted to have your own volcano laboratory, but didn't want to clean up all that lava? Now's your chance to be a super-scientist and create your very own volcano.

2. The Paleontology Portal:
"This site is a resource for anyone interested in paleontology, from the professional in the lab to the interested amateur scouting for fossils to the student in any classroom. We have gathered many different resources into this single entry "portal" to paleontological information on the Internet."

3. Alaska Geological Society:
All about Alaska geology. The society offers field trips, publications, luncheons and other social events for its members, and membership is very affordable! Learn more at their site.

4. Smithsonian in Your Classroom: Minerals, Crystals, and Gems: Stepping-Stones to Inquiry
Lesson plans introduce students to mineral science and the scientific process of observation, hypothesis, and conclusion. Grade(s): 4–8
Alaska State Standards for this resource:

5. The Dynamic Earth:
Interactive. Explores the dynamic forces that formed and are continually reforming the Earth and Solar System. Search records of gems, minerals, rocks, volcanoes, and meteorites by type or location. Grade(s): 4–8, 9–12
Alaska State Standards for this resource:

6. This Dynamic Planet Map:
Shows Earth’s most prominent features when viewed from a distance and more details when viewed more closely. Map back highlights examples of fundamental processes.
Grade(s): 4–8, 9–12
Alaska State standards for this resource:

7. Rock Cycle:
This interactive site allows students to collect rocks and follow them through the rock cycle.


8.  The Rock Cycle:
This site contains experiments, cycles of the Earth, rock identifying resources and more.


Kindergarten Rocks!:   Introduces the properties of rocks with fun activity stations.  (Standards:  SA, SB, SE)*

1. Rocks & Soil
This site includes story book titles, printables and activities.

2. Soil Scavenger Hunt
This site relates what is in the soil to its usefulness when it comes to plants.

3. 1,2,3 Kindergarten
This website contains various activities ranging from rock art, rock shapes and rocks in water, plus many more.

4. Rock cycle, Understanding the Earth’s crust.
A little more advanced, but contains some great information.


Living in the Ice Age:  Examine and learn about ancient Alaskan’s ice age tools.  Try mammoth hunting and explore the ice age ecosystem and food chain. (Standards SA1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 3.1, SC1.2, 2.2, 3.2, AH PPE1)*


A mysterious band of hunters once inhabited interior Alaska. Find out what scientists have uncovered at this 12,000 year old site.

2. Smithsonian in Your Classroom: Decoding the Past: The Work of Archaeologists
Students use the methods of archeologists to identify and interpret artifacts from a contemporary setting. Grade(s): 4–8
Alaska State standards for this resource:


Museum Mystery:  Mystery of the Ice Cave Diamonds!  A fun review for SBA testing.  Includes stations on hypothesizing, gathering data, analyzing, drawing conclusions, and of course solving a mystery!  (Standards:  SA1.1, 1.2, 2.1, SB1.1, SD4.3, SE1.1, 2.2, SG2.1)*


1. Mystery Boxes
In this activity, students determine the contents of a ‘mystery’ box by making observations but without opening it and parallels are drawn between this activity and aspects of the nature of science.

2. Mystery Lessons
This site contains 5 plus lessons on teaching mysteries and scientific principles.

3. The Science Spot
This site has an extensive collection of forensic science and mystery lesson plans and activities.


Nano Science:  Engaging activity stations introducing the science of structures on the smallest scale.  (Standards: SA1.1, 1.2, SB1.1, SB3.1, SD4.3, SE3.1, SG2.1, SG4.1)*


1. Nano Activities for Kids
This website contains a set of family oriented K-12 activities.

2. NISE net, K-12 resources for teachers.
This website contains background information, activities and videos. The Alaska Museum of Science & Nature is a partner with the NISE network.
Pet Dinosaur

1. Dinosaur Pet
This site contains guiding questions, craft and family book ideas.

2. Preschool Activities about Dinosaurs
This site provides activity ideas for dinosaur songs, finger plays, measuring and environments.


Pet Dinosaur:  Learn about Alaska’s dinosaurs and what it would be like to care for them today. Finish with a story in the dinosaur area.  (Standards SA, SC)


Plucky Plants: Dig into how the structure of plants helps them survive and thrive, their impact on the Earth, & why invasive plants are harmful. (Standards:  SA, SC)*


1. The Life Cycle of Plants:
This interactive site includes seed growth, parts of a flower, seed dispersal, worksheets and
plant identification.

2. Plants and our Environment:
This website is good for reference materials. The pages are narrated by the students who created the site.

3. Super Teacher Ideas:
This website contains fun experiments and activities from a mystery seed project to building a giant flower.

4. Botany and Art and their roles in conservation:
This lesson focuses on the race to make records of endangered plant species around the world.
The students try their own hands at botanical illustration, following the methods of a Smithsonian artist.

Alaska state standards for this resource:


Dinosaurs:  Discover Alaska’s Cretaceous dinosaurs.  Explore and interact with the evidence they left behind.  (Standards:  SA1.1,1.2,3.1,2.1, SC1.2, 2.2, SG3,SG4)*


1. Dinosaurs of Alaska:
Learn about the terrible lizards (that's what the word "Dinosaur" means) that ate, slept, hunted, fought and played in Alaska.

This interactive website allows you to click on dig sites in Alaska and find out specific information on the dinosaurs found at those sites.

2. Dinosaur Tracks:
Sometimes investigating prehistoric animals means studying their footsteps preserved in stone for millions of years. See what we know about the dinosaurs of the North Slope by the tracks they left behind.

3. Dinosaur Designs:
In this lesson, students do research on a dinosaur species while exploring the steps of design. They themselves plan a long-term project in which they build 3-D models.
Grade(s): PreK–3, 4–8
Alaska State Standards for this resource:

4. Dinosaurs:
Information on dinosaurs at the Smithsonian and around the world. Includes general information, species specific information and images, background on the researchers, virtual tour, and virtual fossil digs for children. Grade(s): 4–8, 9–12
Alaska State standards for this resource:

5. Dinosaurs:

Information on dinosaur teeth, eating habits, and lifestyles.  Article.


Property Changes:  Fun interactive stations focused on different ways proerties of matter can change and why.  (Standards:  SA1.1,1.2,2.1, SB1.1, 2.1,3.1,4.2,SD4.2, 4.3, SG4.1)*

1. American Chemistry Society: Chemistry for Life
This is a great site containing educational resources, standards and lots of fun activities.

2. Brain Pop-Property changes
This site contains cartoon videos, games and interactives.



Rocks & Fossils:  Explore rock types and fossil formation.  Identify and classify fossils through time and discover living fossils.  (Standards:  SA1.1, 1.2, 2.1, SC1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 2.2, SD1.1, SD4.2, SD4.3,SE3.1)*

(see also “Geology Rocks” section)

1. Smithsonian in Your Classroom: Prehistoric Climate Change (and Why It Matters Today)
If you're looking for a science activity to help introduce environmental issues, or if you're looking for fun and challenging real-world math problems, take a look at the lesson plan in this issue of Smithsonian in Your Classroom. Students do the work of a team of paleontologists studying a time of rapid global warming 55 million years ago. By examining fossils of leaves from various tree species, and by incorporating the findings into a mathematical formula, they are able to tell average annual temperatures during this prehistoric time. The lesson culminates in a discussion of climate change in our own time. Grade(s): 4–8, 9–12
Alaska State standards for this resource:

2. Geological Time: Story of a Changing Earth Interactive geological timeline.
Sections include descriptions of life on the planet, evidence, and details of climate and plate tectonics. Includes information on dating methods, earth processes, life processes, and glossary.
Grade(s): 4–8, 9–12
Alaska State standards for this resource:

3. Rock Cycle:
This interactive site allows students to collect rocks and follow them through the rock cycle.


Water, Water Everywhere:  Interactive exploration of the water cycle, water’s properties and its role in the world.  (Standards:  SA1.1, 1.2, 2.1,SB1.1, 3.1, SD1.2, SE1.1)


1. Drinking Water:
This site contains an interactive water cycle, printables and more.

2. Seepy Sandwiches:
This site contains an activity that demonstrates how water infiltration can carry pollution underground.

3. The Water Cycle For Kids: This site lists the stages of the water cycle with links under each for more information.

4. The Air and Water Cycle for Kids:
This site contains links to several animations, diagrams, stories and more.



Whale of a Time:  Hear and copy the sounds whales make, compare whales to other marine animals, experiment with how whales stay warm, and step into an inflatable life size humpback whale! Finish with a story.  (Standards:  SA,SC)


1. Whales
This site provides ideas for songs, art, science and books.

2. Whale unit (and the Arctic)
This site provides book ideas, experiments and crafts.



Great resources for elementary and middle school science teachers.
Brain Pop
This site is great for all subjects, including social studies, math, language arts, health and science. It contains games and online activities.
PBS Kids
PBS KIDS Measurement Games are designed to reinforce essential early math and science measurement skills.


More Links

Chugach Gem and Mineral Society:

North Pacific Research Board:

Earth Science World Image Bank. A great visual teaching tool:

Almost everything Paleo:

One of our wonderful volunteers, and soon to be curator of "Modern Science Explorers of Alaska." By Author/Editor Sonya Senkowski:

For a global View of sciences UNESCO is one of the world leaders:

Dinosaur News: