Teaching with Laptops
Exemplary Lessons












The 1999 Toshiba/NSTA Laptop Learning Challenge selected 20 examples of effective use of laptops in science and mathematics instruction. These exemplary lessons serve as a reference collection and a basis for addressing major ideas in teaching and learning. The collection includes lessons in life science, physical science, Earth & space science, science & technology, and mathematics, as well as instruction for elementary, middle, and high school levels.

As you review the lessons, be aware of the variety of instructional strategies, student involvement, management approaches, and assessment opportunities. If you adapt lessons for your own students, include time to learn specific computer and data-analysis skills. Things to Remember offers additional suggestions about using the lessons, including information on time requirements and references.

You can download a description of the types of technology used in the 20 exemplary lessons: Download Technology Tools: tools.pdf

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The Exemplary Lessons
The following table lists the content categories for each exemplary lesson. Since all lessons use a laptop computer, they all have strong technology components in addition to the categories listed. Most lessons also ask students to graph or otherwise analyze the data.
Level key

Lesson

Content Categories

../lessons/elementary LevelSeaside Science Life Science: taxonomy, diversity within a community

Mathematics:
ratios, percentages
../lessons/elementary LevelThe Big Hand Challenge
Mathematics: size, area, percentages
../lessons/elementary LevelHabitat Dynamics
Life Science: habitat dynamics, ornithology, plant-animal interactions
../lessons/elementary LevelMath Hunt
Mathematics: geometric shapes and patterns, measurements
../lessons/elementary LevelFormula for Fitness
Physical Education: physical fitness

Mathematics: measuring, timing
../lessons/middle LevelTree I.D.
Life Science: leaf structure, regulation, diversity
../lessons/middle LevelWorm Weather Predicted Life Science: animal regulation and behavior
../lessons/middle LevelAt Issue: Light Pollution Physical Science: light absorption and reflection

Earth & Space Science: Earth in the solar system

Science in Personal & Social Perspectives: environmental issues of light pollution

Mathematics: trigonometry
../lessons/middle LevelExploring the Beach
Life Science: diversity of life, marine ecology

Earth & Space Science: beach slope and sand grain size

Mathematics: weight, slope, percentages
../lessons/middle LevelSolar Race Cars
Physical Science: electrical circuits, motion, speed

Earth & Space Science: solar energy

Science & Technology: solar power
../lessons/Controlling Robots
Physical Science: motion

Technology: electronics, robotics, computer programming
../lessons/Community Cartography
Earth & Space Science: geologic formations, projections, latitude and longitude, scales, topographic maps

Science & Technology: GPS, geography, cartography

Mathematics: geometry
../lessons/Aquatic Field Data

Life Science: water quality, aquatic ecology

Science in Personal & Social Perspectives: environmental quality, natural and human-induced hazards

Mathematics: area, volume, flow rate
../lessons/Mapping by Satellite

Physical Science: chemical reactions, soil analysis

Science & Technology: GPS applications, mapping
../lessons/Amusement Park Physics
Physical Science: motion, acceleration, gravitational forces

Mathematics: mathematical models for linear, quadratic, exponential, sinusoidal, and piece-wise functions
../lessons/informal LevelFor the Birds
Life Science: bird diversity, behavior

Mathematics: frequency, sum, and average
../lessons/informal LevelAnt Farm
Life Science: insect diversity, ant behavior
../lessons/informal LevelWatershed Biology
Life Science: water quality, aquatic ecology

Physical Science: chemical and physical data gathering and analysis

Science in Personal & Social Perspectives: environmental quality, natural and human-induced hazards, personal and community health
Informal LevelMeteor Monitor
Physical Science: electromagnetic waves

Earth & Space Science: Earth and meteors

Science & Technology: constructing antennae
../lessons/informal LevelTesting the Waters
Life Science: water quality, aquatic ecology, diversity of life

Physical Science: chemical and physical data gathering and analysis

Science in Personal & Social Perspectives: environmental quality, natural and human-induced hazards, personal and community health.
Level key


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October 1, 1999   NSTA Home    Laptop Learning Challenge Home    Contact Us