You can make experiments the most fun and engaging part of your science class. Experienced educators and curriculum specialists have developed each of these lessons, and we have tested them in real classrooms. PocketLab middle school lessons span across all the Next Generation Science Standard (NGSS) disciplines. Browse all the middle school lessons below or use the filters to search for specific content.
Middle School Science
Introduction to Calibration
Sensor-based inquiry is a dominant force in today’s science education, with the calibration of sensors being essential for high-quality measurement. Wikipedia® defines calibration as “the comparison of measurement values delivered by a device under test with those of a calibration standard of known accuracy.” In this lesson students will study the process of calibration in an experiment to determine the speed of the intelino engine as the accelerator is incremented in ten equally spaced steps from zero to full throt
Have you ever felt like you are going in circles? In this lesson you will have PocketLab Voyager going in circles while riding an intelino smart train engine. If you are not familiar with intelino, here is a quick overview. Designed for all ages, intelino is intuitive with its app, has built-in sensors to provide an interactive experience for the user, and is easily programmed with color snaps that allow the user to control intelino's actions. Most elementary and junior high school students enjoy playing with trains. So why not sneak some physic
The purpose of this lesson is to challenge your students to design an experiment for which data from PocketLab Voyager is used to determine the "floor-it" acceleration and maximum speed of the intelino smart train engine. Required data should be obtained in a single run of data collection by the PocketLab app. Figure 1 shows a picture of Voyager attached to the top of an intelino smart engine. Designed for all ages, intelino is intuitive with its app, has built-in sensors to provide an interactive experience for the user, and is easily programmed with colo
Periodic motion is motion that repeats itself in regular intervals. If the motion has characteristics that are sinusoidal, then the motion is said to be simple harmonic (SHM). In this lesson, periodic motion that is not simple harmonic is studied. Never-the-less, the motion shows many characteristics of SHM, as can be seen when studying the position, velocity, and acceleration graphs. This lab makes use of PocketLab Voyager that has hitched a ride on an "intelino® smart train" and is running on the VelocityLab app. Int
Math students are typically introduced to the concept of slope in the 7th grade, learning that slope has to do with steepness. By the 8th grade many learn how to calculate the slope of a line as the rise divided by the run or rise over run. If the rise is positive, then the slope is positive (sloping upward). On the other hand, if the rise is negative, then the slope is negative (sloping downward). If the line is horizontal, then the slope is zero.
Introduction to Pi
There is probably no number that has received more interest since ancient times that the number pi, symbolized by the Greek letter π. Originally defined as the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter, it has been given approximate values including 3.14 and 22/7. Proven to be an irrational number, supercomputers have computed the value of pi to more than one trillion digits.
Have you ever been told not to follow too close to the driver ahead of you? To keep a safe distance? To abide by the "3-second rule"? To keep a distance of at least one car length for every ten miles per hour of speed? These questions all deal with the issue of stopping distance versus speed in order to avoid crashes. A great way to investigate the relationship between stopping distance and speed is to interface Voyager with an "intelino® smart train". Designed for all ages, intelino is intuitive with its app, has bui
This lab, featuring Voyager and intelino, designed for junior high math students, will help your students understand the true nature of randomness. By the time youngsters enter junior high school, they have encountered randomness in a variety of situations. They have likely seen random ping-pong balls drawn in lotteries. They have seen coin tosses before the start of football games. They may have been asked to draw a random card in a card trick. Perhaps they or their parents have purchased tickets for a raffle. The list could g
In these two design challenges, students will design and construct their own thermos/storage device using craft materials and measure its effectiveness to insulate a liquid with a PocketLab temperature probe. These activities are aligned with two middle school NGSS standards and are a great open-ended, hands-on project for students to engage their critical thinking and engineering skills.