Open-Ended Everyday Science Mysteries

Everyday Science Mysteries

This is exciting news! I’ve been a fan of the Everyday Science Mysteries for a long time, but it took time to cull through each volume to get the discipline-specific activities I wanted. In response to teacher demand, NSTA recently published the books for separate content areas: Physical Science, Life Science, and Earth and Space Science.

These are great open-ended stories for your students that can lead them right into hands-on science demonstrations. In addition to the many stories included in the book are detailed explanations for how to use them and why you should. Each volume presents the following:

  • Theory Behind the Book
  • Using the Book and the Stories
  • Using this Book in Different Ways
  • Science and Literacy

But what will keep you coming back to these books time and again are the engaging stories and the science concepts they illustrate. Consider these examples:

Everyday Physical Science Mysteries

  • Grandfather’s Clock (Periodic motion and experimental design)
  • The Crooked Swing (Engineering application of pendulums, improving a product)
  • The Magic Balloon (Gas and temperature laws)

Read the free chapter: How Cold is Cold?

Everyday Life Science Mysteries

  • Flowers: More than Just Pretty (Botany)
  • What Did That Owl Eat? (Zoology)
  • The Trouble with Bubble Gum (Health, nutrition)

Read the free chapter: Seedlings in a Jar

Everyday Earth and Space Science Mysteries 

  • What’s the Moon Like Around the World? (Astronomy)
  • Where Did the Puddles Go? (Evaporation)
  • Here’s the Crusher (Atmosphere)

Read the free chapter: The Little Tent That Cried

One of the primary purposes of these books is to relieve the overburdened teacher from the exhausting work of designing inquiry lessons from scratch. Another stems from the idea that the use of open-ended stories challenge students to engage in real experimentation about real science content. With those goals in mind, enjoy these activities right along with your students.

This entry was posted in NSTA Press Books and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Trackbacks are closed, but you can post a comment.


  1. Stephanie Stensland
    Posted April 29, 2013 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

    I have never heard of these books before but they appear like they would be excellent resources to add to your science classroom. Students need open ended discussions in science and these books would provide that for your students.

  2. Carole Hayward
    Posted April 30, 2013 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Thanks for the comment, Stephanie. What you say resonates with the author’s intent: “…you will find these stories without endings a stimulating and provocative opening into the use of inquiry in your classrooms.”

  3. Trent Lueth
    Posted May 10, 2013 at 1:40 am | Permalink

    I have never really heard about these books in my past of learning about science. After reading more about them I can see how handy they could come into the classroom and I could see using them and implementing them into the curriculum that is already there granted they have one in place

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>