Here’s the latest in my end-of-the-year “The Best…” lists. As usual, sites on this list must be available free-of-charge and student resources must be accessible to English Language Learners.
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Here are my choices for The Best Science Sites Of 2011:
“San Diego Zoo Kids” has tons of accessible information and online games on…animals.
The Kitchen Pantry Scientist is a neat site to get quick, easy, and inexpensive ideas for science experiments.
Sizing Up The Universe is a neat interactive from the Smithsonian that does a very good job at helping users gain an understanding of how big planets and moons really are.
The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has a site with a number of excellent science interactives which provide audio support for the text.
Evolution of renewable energy is a very useful interactive tracing renewable energy use from 8000 BC to the present.
The Exploratorium has reorganized all their interactives into one Explore page.
“Conversations With The Earth” is a new site from the Smithsonian. Here’s how it describes itself:
This exhibition—the first of its kind devoted to indigenous science—provides a Native perspective on global climate change. Through photographs, video, and audio of tribal communities from the Arctic to Brazil, the environmental impact of pollution is found in the stories of imposed mitigation and its consequences on local livelihoods.
Conversations with the Earth offers the voices of the Earth’s traditional stewards in the search for a viable response to the challenges of climate change. In the words of Inupiat leader Patricia Cochran, chair of the Indigenous Peoples Global summit on Climate Change, “We are a harbinger of what is to come, what the rest of the world can expect.”
“Science Of Everyday Life” is a neat interactive timeline of inventions, and comes from Discovery Education.
A Journey Through Climate History is a very, very impressive interactive from ABC in Australia. It highlights key events affecting climate change over the past one hundred ten years.
National Geographic unveiled a new site to support their extravaganza on “Great Migrations.” It’s an amazing site, filled with incredible videos, interactives, photos — the works — all on animal migrations.
Curiosity is a website — and a new television series — from the Discovery Channel. People send in their questions — and there are some fascinating questions — and get accessible multimedia answers in return. You can also apply to become an expert to help answer questions, too.
Earlier this year, Richard Byrne posted about a neat BBC interactive on rocks. I was pretty impressed, because it had subtitles and was relatively accessible to English Language Learners. So I explored the site a little further and found that the BBC Schools Bitesize KS3 site had a whole series of similarly accessible activities.
First, go to their main Science page. Next, click on any of the four primary categories:
Organisms, behaviour and health
Chemical and material behaviour
Energy, electricity and forces
The environment, the Earth and the universe
Each of these four sections has multiple “activities,” which are animated exercises that have audio and subtitles.
McDougal Littell’s Class Zone site is on many of my Social Studies related “The Best…” lists — their interactives are incredible (the links I have in this post may, or may not, bring you directly to the interactives. If you get sent to a map, just click the subject you’re interested in and click on California. That will lead you to different textbooks — then click on one of them. That will lead you to the interactives). However, I realize I’ve never written about their equally as impressive high school biology sites. It, too, has plenty of interactive, and most provide audio support for the text.
Feedback is welcome.