Lesson (3x): Cellular Respiration set


  • Do Nows (3 questions each) for each lesson

  • Gallery walk of average family’s weekly meal around the world

  • 1 full lab investigation w/ procedure, data charts, & questions

  • 1 extension lab investigation

  • Organizes cellular respiration by input & output

Time: 3 lessons (~70 min each)
Goals: NGSS HS LS 1-7
Essential question: What happens when humans get tired?


Lesson 1: Sugar

Lesson Question: How do humans get energy from food?

Lesson 2: CO2 output

Lesson Question: Does your body produce more/less CO2 when you exercise?

Lesson 3: O2 input

Lesson question: How does O2 affect your cell's energy?


  • Do Nows, 2 lab investigations with analysis questions, note-taking

  • Next iteration will add a rubric and more scaffolded examples of a nutritional plan


  • Created whilst at the Exploratorium’s Summer 2018 Teacher Institute, using their generous support and resources

  • Hungry Planet: What the World Eats by Peter Menzel

  • coaches at the Exploratorium Summer Teacher Institute (Daisy, Devin, & Katie)

Lesson: Opportunity Cost

Time: 60 minutes


  • Identify the opportunity cost of a decision.

  • Apply the concepts of scarcity, trade-offs, and opportunity cost to a decision by a hypothetical high school student (Franklin) who had to choose how to use his after-school time among three alternatives.

  • Explain the rationale for the recommended decision.

Additional prep required: Task card from Activity 3 in (PDF)


  • Video: explanation, timer

  • Do now

  • Group instructions

  • recommendations to an imaginary high schooler)


  1. Do Now

  2. Video: What is Opportunity Cost?

  3. Opportunity Cost…in Minecraft? (or village settlement if students are unfamiliar with survival sandbox games)

  4. Franklin’s Decision


Written explanations of recommendation based on persuasive writing.

Recommended Extension: Applying A Decision-Making Model: You & Your Future (PDF)


  • Focus: Economics of Personal Decision Making – Activity 3: Franklin’s Decision (PDF) (National Council for Economic Education)


Lab: Exploratorium's Ocean Acidification In A Cup

Time: 60 min

Goal: Model an ocean-atmosphere interaction and explain how carbon dioxide gas diffuses into water, causing the water to become more acidic.


  • Lab worksheet (instructions, questions, etc.)

  • Slides for Exploratorium’s Ocean Acidification In A Cup

  • Videos with timers, safety review, and lab procedure demo, applications to coral bleaching, etc.

Note to self: (To Do) add inquiry-driven portion for students to devise questions together (requires more chemistry than mere carbon cycling stations activity)


Lesson (2x): Claim-Evidence-Reasoning

Time: 55 minutes + 70 minutes


  • Identify the claim, evidence, and reasoning in a scientific explanation.

  • Identify relevant evidence to support a scientific explanation, using real NASA photos from Mars.

Additional Prep Required: download external materials from here

Agenda (Pt 1, 55min)

  1. Do Now

  2. Video: Dad is an alien!

  3. Slides: Explaining Science - CER

  4. CER: Penny

  5. Solo: Analyze

  6. Pairs: Peer Review


Formative (CER: Analyze; Mars check-ins); Summative: Mars Spoken Explanation

Agenda (Pt 2, 70min)

  1. Do Now

  2. Video: Are cats liquid or solid?

  3. Slides: Claim - Evidence - Reasoning

  4. Activity: Identifying Relevant Evidence…on Mars!

  5. Pairs: Peer Review


Learning Design Group, Reteaching Loop: Understanding the Role of Relevant Evidence in Supporting a Claim

copyleft notice:

You are free to copy and adapt all the teaching resources on this page. I appreciate feedback on what to keep/toss/expand/scaffold.

4 Favorite Non-Verbal Community Builders



1. 20+ identical, lightweight disposable cups (
e.g. SOLO, Dixie brands)

2. Rubber Band

3. String (2ft long/pc)

Tie 4 to 5 strings to 1 rubber band. Do this for each group.

  1. Instructor stacks cups into a random setup (e.g. pyramid, etc.)

  2. Each group member takes a string. Without talking, the group must use the rubber band to arrange their own stash of cups into the instructor’s setup.

  3. Increase complexity and repeat.

    Too easy? Have only one group member see the target stack. Set a timer.

    Reflect: How did talking affect your other abilities? Were you still able to accomplish the task? What helped you build the tower?

Full resource document with lesson background and cutouts here.

An excerpt from the document, which contains many variations for different age groups, etc:


1. This exercise must be played in complete silence. No talking.

2. You may not point or signal to other players with your hands in any way.

3. Each player must put together their own circle. No one else may show a player how to do it or do it for them.

4. This is an exercise in giving. You may not take a piece from another player, but you may give your pieces, one at a time, to any other members of your group, and other group members may give pieces to you. You may not place a piece in another person's puzzle; players must complete only their own puzzles. Instead, hand the piece to the other player, or place it beside the other pieces in front of them.


Now you may take the pieces out of your envelope and place them in front of you, colored side up. This is a group task, and you will have 10 minutes to make your circles.

Remember, the task is not finished until each of you at your table has a completed circle in front of you. When all of you have finished, raise your hands.

Reflect: What was most challenging? What was easiest? What did you like the most about this activity? What did you like the least about this activity? What messages do you think this activity might be trying to say about working in groups?

GoogleDoc of Do Now, Instructions, & Exit Tickets, and photos of game pieces coming soon.

Writing Checks: Building Narratives From Evidence

Full resource page with lesson background here

GoogleDoc of lesson for my classroom coming soon.

GoogleDoc adaptation of it for my classroom setup coming soon

copyleft notice: You are free to copy and adapt all the teaching resources on this page.
I appreciate feedback on what to keep/toss/expand/scaffold.

Lesson: Cognitive Bias (An Intro)

Time 50-60 minutes

Goal Identify and explain different types of cognitive bias


  1. Do Now

  2. Video: Why do human brains love fake news?

  3. Recognizing types of bias

    1. Notes (graphic organizer included)

    2. Review Quiz

  4. Poster: Examples & Prevention

  5. Exit Ticket


  1. Formative

    1. Do Now

    2. Graphic organizer

    3. Exit Ticket

  2. Summative

  3. Poster (group)


coming soon