- Course type: Self-paced
- Available Lessons: 104
- Average Lesson Length: 8 min
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Watch a preview:chapter 1 / lesson 1What is Earth Science?
Course SummaryThis Middle School Earth Science Curriculum Resource & Lesson Plans course is a fully developed resource to help you teach Earth science. You can easily adapt the video lessons, transcripts, and quizzes to take full advantage of the comprehensive and engaging material we offer. Make planning your course easier by using our curriculum as a guide.
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12 chapters in Middle School Earth Science Curriculum Resource & Lesson Plans
Course Practice TestCheck your knowledge of this course with a 50-question practice test.
- Comprehensive test covering all topics
- Detailed video explanations for wrong answers
How It Works
You can use this Earth science course as a template for designing and implementing your course. Here are the key components of the course and how you can use them:
- Chapters - Each chapter covers a unit of Earth science, from the definition of Earth science to the methods of conducting scientific investigations and experiments. Use these chapters as mile markers as you map out your course. We recommend planning to spend a week on each chapter, but you can always allocate the chapters according to the length of your specific Earth science course.
- Lessons - Within each chapter are video lessons that further break down topics into bite-sized chunks. These lessons cover single topics like evidence for continental drift or the properties of ocean water. Each one is often appropriate for a single class.
- Key Terms - Within each lesson are key terms. These are emphasized on screen and in the transcript. As you develop your syllabus, these key terms help you focus on the most important learning objectives. For example, the lesson on the formation of stream valleys includes key terms like erosion, stream valley and floodplain.
As you work on your Earth science lesson plans, save time by incorporating video lessons from this resource. Here's how:
- Introduce Topics - Your students will be in the right mindset for understanding topics like heat flow in solids and fluids if you begin class with a short video. It can be a jumping-off point for a lecture, group activity or class discussion.
- Break Up Lectures - The video format, which often includes animation, helps students visualize topics like the causes of earthquakes and how the sun fuels winds, currents and the water cycle.
- Assign For Homework - Each lesson in the course, from geologic folds to technologies used to make cleaner burning coal, can be assigned to your students as homework.
Each video lesson includes a complete transcript. You can utilize these transcripts in several ways:
- Lecture Notes - Do you need a guide as you plan a lecture, such as one on tidal energy or how to interpret geologic maps? The transcripts cover each topic in depth, with key terms highlighted for quick reference.
- Student Reading - Perhaps you'd like your students to learn about oil and natural gas reserves, but you don't have class time available. Assign the transcript as extra reading.
- Study Tools - When it's time for a unit exam on Earth's material resources, you can point your students to the transcripts on properties of water, water resource issues, soil, types of rocks, the origin of materials used to make common objects and related topics to help them study.
Each video lesson has a corresponding quiz. Here's how to use the quizzes:
- Homework - Assign a quiz to your students as homework. You'll receive an email with the results, which enables you to verify they've completed the assignment and that they've understood the material. Questions cover everything from the definition of a lagoon to key facts, like the causes of landslides.
- Tests - You can meld the material in the quizzes into your own student assessments, saving you valuable time. Need a few questions on volcanoes? There are plenty!
- Discussions - Jump-start a discussion with questions like: How does climate differ from weather?
Below is a sketch of the Earth science curriculum modeled on a 12-week course. This sample can be adapted based on your course schedule. Navigate the chapters and lessons for more detail.
|Week||Unit||Sample of Topics Covered|
|Week 1||Earth's Spheres and Structure||Forces that shape and change the Earth, including earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanoes, the spheres of Earth, the Earth's layers|
|Week 2||Understanding Plate Tectonics||Overview of Pangaea, theory of continental drift, plate boundaries|
|Week 3||Understanding Earthquakes||Components of an earthquake, aftershocks and foreshocks, the Richter scale|
|Week 4||Understanding Volcanoes||Types of volcanoes, volcanic landforms, lava flow, volcanic hazards|
|Week 5||Rock Deformation and Mountains||Causes of rock deformation, types of geological folds and faults, mountain building|
|Week 6||Shaping the Earth's Surface||Definition of topography, formation of stream valleys, how rivers and streams impact the Earth's surface|
|Week 7||Thermal Energy||The process of fuel becoming heat energy, how living organisms utilize energy, heat flow|
|Week 8||Energy in the Earth System||Solar energy, heat transfer, air masses and their impact on weather|
|Week 9||Ecology and Ecosystems||Levels of ecology, food chains, conservation biology, the carbon cycle|
|Week 10||Earth's Energy Resources||Renewable and nonrenewable resources, fossil fuels, nuclear energy, geothermal energy|
|Week 11||Earth's Material Resources||Definition of wilderness, rocks and minerals, types of rocks, the groundwater system|
|Week 12||Earth Science Investigation and Experimentation||Science vocabulary words, how to develop a scientific hypothesis, ways to present the findings of an investigation or experiment|
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