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The Animal Grossology Activities listed in this document are tied closely to an exhibition of the same name at the Da Vinci Science Center. Originally part of the Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, the center is now an independent non-profit with exhibits and programs that make science fun and accessible for learners of all ages. In a nod to Sylvia Branzei's popular children's books, both the exhibition and this curriculum are sure to appeal to kids of all ages with a focus on an array of fascinating subjects, such as creating models of animal skat, fish printing, and even making mealworm crispie treats. Through the exercises outlined in this PDF document, students will learn about the behaviors of birds, fish, reptiles, and mammals, as well as deepening their understanding of scientific observation, measurement, anatomy, dissection, and much more. The interactive activities "harness kid's natural curiosity about themselves and teach them about how animals function." Beyond their usefulness in traditional classroom settings, the lessons included would be ideal to integrate into science centers, after school programs, and homeschooling lessons.
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San Francisco's Exploratorium showcases the work of researchers at the Natural History Museum in London and Las Cuevas Biological Station in Belize, who are investigating the nature and diversity of life. From Jungle to Lab is part of the Exploratorium's Origin Project, created to explain how scientists explore "the beginnings of the universe, of matter, of the earth, and of life itself." This well-designed Web site contains loads of multimedia features, such as a slide show of Las Cuevas (including a 360 view of the biological station), video and audio clips of researchers explaining their work, Web casts, and much more. The contents of this site are thoughtfully organized and skillfully presented. For example, the section titled Ideas appears as a virtual field notebook, each page addressing a different aspect of evolutionary mechanism for biodiversity. In all, this is a fantastic Web site that is worth a visit for design features alone, if not the enlightening content.
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