Middle Schoolyard Programs
View the Request a Schoolyard Program form.
Know Soil, Know Life
Students will look at the importance of soil and how we live. They will discuss the origin of soils across North Carolina, and investigate in particular the soil that is found in their own schoolyard.
Science Essential Standards Correlations: 6.E.2.3, 6.E.2.4
Students will explore how studying turtle populations can teach us about changing habitats over time. They will learn about turtle species found in Gaston County and discuss impacts to these turtle populations including limiting factors, competition, and human activities. They will have the opportunity to meet Bowser, our pet red-eared slider, and learn what they can do to become "turtle ninjas" who help protect these fascinating creatures.
Science Essential Standards Correlations: 6.L.2.3
Students will explore major players in the climate system including air and water currents and the cycling of gases. They will discuss human impacts to the climate system, and how we may engage responsibly with it through monitoring and stewardship.
Science Essential Standards Correlations: 7.E.1.3, 7.E.1.4
Students will learn about the distribution of water and the drinking water systems in their local community. They will participate in an interactive, outdoor activity highlighting changing water use over time. Warning: some students may get wet!
Science Essential Standards Correlations: 8.P.2.2, 8.E.1.1, 8.E.1.4
Ask the Bugs
Students will explore the importance of water quality and learn about different ways humans can monitor and steward our water resources. They will learn about macroinvertebrates as bio-indicators and participate in a hands-on simulation of macroinvertebrate sampling.
Science Essential Standards Correlations: 8.E.1.3, 8.E.1.4
Students will model the function of a watershed, and apply these concepts to an investigation of the Catawba River Basin. They will discuss human impacts on the Catawba, and learn about water conservation practices.
Science Essential Standards Correlations: 8.E.1.1, 8.E.1.4
To CRISPR or not to CRISPR
CRISPR is a ground-breaking, controversial new technique of gene editing that promises big advances in the medical and agricultural fields… if we pursue it. Students will investigate CRISPR through science news articles and multimedia, before participating in a class-wide, guided discussion about the technique. Should we fund research to advance CRISPR's possibilities? If so, how far should we go? Students will have the opportunity to process information from different sources, think critically, and practice respectful discussion with their classmates as they discuss the question: to CRISPR, or not to CRISPR?
Science Essential Standards Correlations: 8.L.2.1