Hydropower Ideas for the Classroom… and the World


Roy Bentley

By Captain Roy Bentley

Renewable energy is a hot topic around the world.  What IS renewable energy?  As you probably already know, it is energy sourced by a power that is not depleted when used.  As nations strive to reduce the impact of CO2 and other pollutants on the Earth, there’s a global push toward zero emission energy sources.  In other words, renewable energy.

Examples of renewable energy are Wind, Solar, Tidal, Geothermal, and Hydropower.  

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DIY Bioplastics!


DIY Bioplastics - Educational Innovations Blog

by Sabrina Smoke

Making bioplastics is a fantastic experiment to try at home or in the classroom.  It’s a fun, hands-on way to learn about bioplastic alternatives that are environmentally safer for our planet than traditional plastics.  Creating a bioplastic keepsake is likely to inspire further investigations and, in some cases, even future careers for young scientists!  Plus, they’re gorgeous!

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Blown Away with Databot at ISTA!


By Robert O. Grover

Not too long ago, we traveled to North Idaho and the beautiful town of Coeur d’Alene where the annual Idaho Science Teachers Association (ISTA) was holding the great Idaho STEM Together!  Over 300 educators and STEM enthusiasts showed up to partake in activities, professional development sessions, and field trips.  Of course Team databot was there!

As advertised, we held a competition to see who could deliver the highest CO2 level possible.  The prize for the highest level?  A complete databot kit! Read the rest of this entry »


STEM Galore with OneCar and More!


by Priscilla Robinson

If you teach STEM,  you’ll want to learn about the OneCar system.

The performance components in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) have spawned many wonderful chances to explore STEM in the classroom.  The STEM curriculum is based on the idea that an interdisciplinary, applied approach is the best way to teach students these four specific disciplines.   When your students are searching for solutions to real-world problems, they are more engaged, and their learning is more authentic.

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A Light at the Smithsonian: Notes from a Spectroscopist


Alex Scheelineby Alex Scheeline

The Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History, on the national mall in Washington, D.C., has an especially fascinating exhibit on Thomas Edison.  The exhibit highlights the development of electricity and lighting, and, more generally, invention.  In late 2017, I visited an area that featured a set of lamps—including a low-pressure sodium vapor lamp, a mercury lamp, an incandescent lamp, and a compact fluorescent lamp.

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