Category Archives: Science 2.0

The Science 2.0 blog is all about digital tools for your classroom. Click on a headline to read the entire post.

I Can’t, in My Heart, Go Back to Our Old Curriculum

That was my response this week at our middle school science staff meeting.  We’ve spent the last two school years exploring the new Michigan standards (which are identical to NGSS) and trying out units from different curriculum programs.  While the pace has seemed excruciatingly slow at times, it’s been necessary to allow everyone to learn, […]

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Wild Spirits: Measuring Life and Death with the Pasco Wireless CO2 sensor

A student once asked me why if carbon dioxide is so much heavier than air, how come the lower atmosphere doesn’t become thick with CO2 and kill everything? “Umm, well…because it…umm…doesn’t?” The student then asked if I was going to was going to answer her question with another question? Which of course is also a […]

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The Vernier Go Direct Motion Detector: A Modern Twist on a Timeless Design

Vernier Software and Technology has introduced the next generation of its ultrasonic motion detector. While the gold circle sensor portion looks much like it’s previous five generations, the self-contained battery power source, the cubic form factor and most importantly the Bluetooth radio, are all new. But first some backstory. In 2008 I had the enormous […]

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The Pasco Wireless Weather Station: Like having your own weather satellite

For almost 2000 years, Aristotle’s ideas about weather were the industry standard. Although our hindsight confirmed that many of the theories Aristotle put forth in his work Meteorologica were in error, the depth and breath of his observations and inferences were truly impressive especially given his lack of instrumentation and the non-non-existant units that an […]

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“It Gets Easier”: A Teacher’s Notes from the NGSS Trenches

It gets easier. Even after two summers of writing NGSS-aligned curriculum units with the Michigan Science Teaching and Assessment Reform (MiSTAR) project, I found my first pilot experience teaching a MiSTAR NGSS-aligned unit last year to be exhausting. The unit was three-dimensional, 21st century challenge-based, student-driven, and full of phenomena and productive talk. It had […]

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The Vernier Go Direct Radiation Monitor: Well Worth the 90-Year Wait

Stephen Hawking died recently marking 2018 as another date in science history from which events will be measured. Isaac Newton was born in 1642, the same year Galileo died. And it is that 1642 date that is often used as a convenient moment in time to label as the birth of modern science. Three hundred […]

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The Carson MicroMini 20x Pocket Microscope: An ounce of magnification is worth a pound of words.

There are a surprising number of so-called “Pocket Microscopes” available today. I even remember pocket microscopes advertised in the pages of comic books back when I was a kid. And at that time, comic books were not targeting adult readers. There were pocket telescopes as well, and combination pocket microscopes and telescopes. Also radio-pens, X-Ray […]

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Student Talk: The Use of Dialogue and Discussion

This summer a group of Oregon teachers prepared to launch the Oregon Science Project, which focuses on professional development for rural teachers around NGSS. During our 3-day facilitator’s training we focused on dialogue not discussion.  As a group, this distinction was new to us. What we found was we were spending most of our time […]

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The Carson SkeleScope: Less is More and More is Good

As the old saying goes, sometimes less is more. And such is the case with the Carson SkeleScope. Whether used to teach optics, engineering or perhaps even astronomy, having a clear view of the internals of a telescope can be quite engaging. If you make that inspection explorable as well, students will no longer have […]

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The Vernier Three-Axis Magnetic Field Sensor: A Magic Wand for Magnets

What could be better than one anisotropic magnetoresistance magnetic field sensor? How about three anisotropic magnetoresistance magnetic field sensors and a Hall effect sensor as well! Pack them all into a lightweight watertight housing with a rechargeable battery and wired or wireless connectivity and you’ve got yourself a Vernier Three-Axis Magnetic Field Sensor. I’ve been […]

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