## May the Force Be with You

By Jared Hottenstein

The movie Star Wars relied greatly on a mystical ability called “the Force.”  You can’t see it.  It’s an invisible energy that interacts with everything around it.  A little green guy named Yoda uses this mystical “Force” to move objects around.  Intriguing, sure, but it’s just Hollywood special effects.  However, thanks to science—and Sir Isaac Newton—we know that force is a real thing in our world.  In fact, we use it every day.  (And we don’t even need to summon Yoda!)

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## Potential and Kinetic Energy Explained

by Arthur Murray

Teaching about potential and kinetic energy is always exciting, whether your students are in kindergarten or college.  There is so much to explore, and the world is full of examples of these types of energy in action.  Any time that you’re chewing gum, typing on your computer, or launching a rubber band into the air…  you are demonstrating potential and kinetic energy in all its glory.

## You Said It! STEM Product Reviews

STEM education (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) is a curriculum driven by problem solving, exploration, and discovery while incorporating technology and engineering into the teaching of science and mathematics.

Educational Innovations carries a number of products like astronomy and space science tools that fit perfectly into the STEM classroom.  These materials promote exploratory learning, and require students to actively engage themselves to discover the solution to the situation or problem at hand.

If you have a favorite STEM experiment or product, please let us know in the comments section below!

## Using the ZigZag Density Tumbler In (and Out) of the Classroom

by Linda Dunnavant

The ZigZag Density Tumbler is an elegant desk “toy” and much more.  Turn the tumbler over and watch two different colors of droplets float down in a relaxing zigzag pattern.  I like to keep mine on my desk.  I often pick it up and watch it while I clear my head.  Not only is the tumbler a soothing, relaxing activity for busy adults, but it also provides so many possibilities for calming, inspiring, and teaching students. Read the rest of this entry »

## Center of Mass Challenge

By Jeremy Johnson

In my 13 years of classroom teaching experience, I’ve learned a few tricks to keep my students from becoming overwhelmed—or bored—by their science textbooks.  One of my favorite tricks is to get my kids up on their feet, doing science instead of reading about it.

When I teach about gravity and center of mass, for example, I like to shake things up by turning our classroom into an impromptu biokinetics lab.  I challenge my students to perform a series of seemingly simple physical tests, described below.  Lift a chair?  Raise your leg?  Pick up a quarter?  No problem!  (Or so they think…)