Finally! The first in a series of posts about free resources for teaching and learning about science! I am starting with astronomy, which is a subject that is near and dear to my heart, though none of my kids give a hoot about it. There are definitely sites that I am not listing by choice, but I’m sure I also unknowingly missed some good ones, so please let me know of any that you think are great. Due to the sheer volume of websites about astronomy, I am only including sites with interactive activities, directions for offline educational activities, printables, lesson plans, or information presented in a particularly kid-friendly format.
Amazing Space – this site has interactive games, teaching tools, a video guide to the night’s sky, and lots more!
Cosmic Quest – this site, from The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, has lots of information, presented in a kid-friendly format, but I personally like the Living in Space game best
Cosmos 4 Kids – a semi-online textbook, complete with quizzes
Nine 8 Planets Just for Kids – Lots of interesting information presented in a kid-friendly format
Hubble Gallery – lots of seriously cool photos from the Hubble Telescope
Journey to the Stars is a wonderful show that you can see at the American Museum of Natural History. They were giving away free copies to educators, but ran out. You can request to be added to the list to find out when more copies will be available.
KidsAstronomy.com – animations, “online classes”, games, puzzles, jokes, information, coloring pages and more!
Moon Base Alpha is a computer simulation/game about colonizing the moon.
NASA: Challenging the Space Frontier is a timeline about NASA from Scholastic. There is a free teacher’s guide that you can download on the bottom of the page.
NASA’s Educational Media Archive
NASA for Students – for grades K-12, lots of information, games, coloring pages, videos, etc.
NASA Kids’ Club – news, photos, and games for kids in grades K-4, includes a teacher’s area
NASA Mars for Kids – a site based on the exploration of Mars with games, activities, information, videos, images, etc.
NASA Quest – NASA Quest Challenges are FREE Web-based, interactive explorations designed to engage students in authentic scientific and engineering processes. The solutions relate to issues encountered daily by NASA personnel. NASA Quest offers a wide range of FREE online tools and resources for teachers, students, parents and others including Web and print lesson plans, educator guides and workbooks.
NASA Science for Kids – Come and explore your world and beyond through NASA’s eyes. Experience an inspiring view of science with games, activities, movies, and even resources to help you with your homework.
NASA Solar System Exploration – some activities, puzzles, news about the solar system, etc. (Check out Space School Musical!)
NASA Space Place – offers information, games, and cool activities for both kids and teachers.
NASA StarChild – for early elementary, information, puzzles, teacher resources
Ology is the kids science site of the American Museum of Natural History. The Astronomy portion has many fun and interesting activities, including directions for hands-on projects.
Scale of the Universe – Interactive tool that allows users to see how big everything is in relation to everything else
Star Zones Animation – watch various stars form and die with these animations
We Choose the Moon allows users to explore the flight of Apollo 11.