Looking for Science Activities?
NSTA Press publishes science activities for teachers of grades K through 12 on topics ranging from force and motion to Earth's changing climate. We've posted sample chapters and activities from our books for free download so you can look inside. Be sure to search our online Science Store for additional topics!
For more science activities, click here for our searchable database.
Click on the book titles below and scroll down on the Store page until you see the link “Read Inside” (under Details)—you’re just two clicks away from your first PDF of a free lesson.
Preschool and Elementary
Activities Linking Science With Math, K–4 by John Eichinger
• Free chapter: "What Makes a Boat Float?"
Bringing Outdoor Science In: Thrifty Classroom Lessons by Steve Rich
• Free chapter: "Rocks and Soils”
Buzz Into Action: The Insect Curriculum Guide for Grades K–4 by David Alexander
• Free chapter: "Bee Factory"
Developing Visual Literacy in Science, K–8 by Jo Anne Vasquez, Michael W. Comer, and Frankie Troutman
• Free chapter: "Visual Literacy in Life Science: Insect Metamorphosis"
Dig In! Hands-On Soil Investigations
Free chapter: "What Is Soil?: Soil Searching"
Even More Everyday Science Mysteries: Stories for Inquiry-Based Science Teaching by Richard Konicek-Moran
• Free chapter: "Here's the Crusher" (air pressure)
Everyday Science Mysteries: Stories for Inquiry-Based Science Teaching by Richard Konicek-Moran
• Free chapter: "The Magic Balloon" (properties of matter; temperature, gases)
The Frugal Science Teacher PreK–5: Strategies and Activities, edited by Linda Froschauer
• Free chapter: "Materials Repurposed: Find a Wealth of Free Resources at Your Local Recycling Center"
Hard-to-Teach Science Concepts: A Framework to Support Learners, Grades 3–5 by Susan B. Koba with Carol T. Mitchell
• Free chapter: "Understanding Changes in Motion”
A Head Start on Science: Encouraging a Sense of Wonder, edited by William C. Ritz
• Free chapter: "Introduction" (includes "Ramps" and "Pondering Pumpkins: The Insides")
Hop Into Action: The Amphibian Curriculum Guide for Grades K–4 by David Alexander
• Free chapter: "Lily Pad Venn Diagrams"
Inside-Out: Environmental Science in the Classroom and the Field, Grades 3–8 by Robert W. Blake, Jr., J. Adam Frederick, Sarah Haines, and Stephanie Colby Lee
• Free chapter: "Water"
More Everyday Science Mysteries: Stories for Inquiry-Based Science Teaching by Richard Konicek-Moran
• Free chapter: "Worms Are for More Than Bait" (life cycles; animal behavior)
More Picture Perfect Science Lessons: Using Children's Books to Guide Inquiry, K–4 by Karen Ansberry and Emily Morgan
• Free chapter: "Imaginative Inventions"
Outdoor Science: A Practical Guide by Steve Rich
Free chapter: "Birds, Bugs, and Butterflies: Lessons for Your Outdoor Science Classroom"
Picture Perfect Science Lessons, Expanded 2nd Edition: Using Children's Books to Guide Inquiry, 3–6 by Karen Ansberry and Emily Morgan
Free chapter: "Earthlets: Dr. Xargle's Book of Earthlets and Seven Blind Mice" (observation and inference)
Schoolyard Science: 101 Easy and Inexpensive Activities by Thomas R. Lord and Holly J. Travis
• Free chapter: "Schoolyard Gardens and Nature Areas"
Science the "Write"Way edited by Jodi Wheeler-Toppin
• Free chapter: "14 Writing Strategies"
Teaching Science Through Trade Books by Christine Anne Royce, Emily Morgan, and Karen Ansberry
• Free chapter: "Cloud Watchers"
The Everyday Science Sourcebook, Revised 2nd Edition: Ideas for Teaching in Elementary and Middle School by Lawrence F. Lowery
• Free chapter: "Weather"
Yet More Everyday Science Mysteries: Stories for Inquiry-Based Science Teaching by Richard Konicek-Moran
• Free chapter: "Lookin' at Lichens"(characteristics of organisms, organisms and environments)
Uncovering Student Ideas in Astronomy: 45 New Formative Assessment Probes by Page Keeley and Cary Sneider
• Free chapter: "Shorter Days in Winter"
Middle and High School
Activities Linking Science With Math, 5–8 by John Eichinger
• Free chapter: "Determining the Size and Shape of the Blind Spot"
Brain-Powered Science: Teaching and Learning With Discrepant Events by Thomas O'Brien
• Free chapter: "Air Mass Matters: Creating a Need-to-Know"
Climate Change From Pole to Pole: Biology Investigations by Juanita Constible, Luke Sandro, and Richard E. Lee Jr.
• Free chapter: "Now You 'Sea' Ice, Now You Don't" (living systems; interdependence of organisms; importance of evidence in formulating scientific explanations)
Companion Classroom Activities for Stop Faking It! Force and Motion by William C. Robertson, Ph.D.
• Free chapter: "Acceleration"
Earth Science Puzzles: Making Meaning from Data by Catherine Oates-Bockenstedt and Michael Oates
• Free chapter: "How Do We Know What the Climate Was Like in the Past?"
Earth Science Success: 50 Lesson Plans for Grades 6–9 by Catherine Oates-Bockenstedt and Michael Oates
• Free chapter: "Meteorology"
Even More Brain-Powered Science: Teaching and Learning With Discrepant Events by Thomas O'Brien
• Free chapter: "Osmosis and 'Naked' Eggs: The Environment Matters"(osmosis)
Everyday Engineering: Putting the E in STEM Teaching and Learning by Richard Moyer and Susan Everett
• Free chapter: Toothbrush Design—Is There A Better Bristle?
EVO Teachers Guide: Ten Questions Everyone Should Ask About Evolution by Rodger W. Bybee and John Feldman
Free chapter: "Is Evolution Random?”
Extreme Science: From Nano to Galactic by M. Gail Jones, Amy R. Taylor, and Michael R. Falvo
• Free chapter: "Billions of Us: Scale and Population"
Forensics in Chemistry: The Case of Kirsten K. by Sara McCubbins and Angela Codron
• Free chapter: "The Cooler and Delivery Truck Evidence"(structure and properties of matter)
Front-Page Science: Engaging Teens in Science Literacy by Wendy Saul, Angela Kohnen, Alan Newman, and Laura Pearce
• Free chapter: "Can I Do This? Frequently Asked Questions"
Fuel for Thought: Building Energy Awareness in Grades 9–12 by Steve Metz
• Free chapter: "A Life-Cycle Assessment of Biofuels: Tracing Energy and Carbon Through a Fuel-Production System"
Gourmet Lab: The Scientific Principles Behind Your Favorite Foods by Sarah Young
• Free chapter: "Ballpark Pretzels: Using Microscopes to Observe Yeast Fermentation of Sugar"
Learning and Teaching Scientific Inquiry: Research and Applications by James Jadrich and Crystal Bruxvoort
• Free chapter: "Designing Scientific Tests and Investigations"
More Brain-Powered Science: Teaching and Learning With Discrepant Events by Thomas O'Brien
• Free chapter: "Measurements and Molecules Matter: Less Is More and Curriculum 'Survival of the Fittest'"(properties of materials, structure and properties of matter)
More Chemistry Basics: Faking It! Finally Understanding Science So You Can Teach It by William C. Robertson
• Free chapter: "Special Reactions"
Once Upon a Life Science Book: 12 Interdisciplinary Activities to Create Confident Readers by Jodi Wheeler-Toppen
• Free chapter: "The Case of the Tree Hit Man"
Predict, Observe, Explain: Activities Enhancing Scientific Understanding by John Haysom and Michael Bowen
• Free chapter: "Bernoulli's Principle"
Project Earth Science: Astronomy, Revised 2nd Edition by Geoff Holt and Nancy W. West
Free chapter: "The Greenhouse Effect"
Project Earth Science: Geology, Revised 2nd Edition by Paul D. Fullagar and Nancy W. West
• Free chapter: "Solid or Liquid? Rock Behavior Within Earth"
Project Earth Science: Meterology, 2nd Edition by William R. Veal and Robert A. Cohen
• Free chapter: "Weather Watch"
Project Earth Science: Physical Oceanography, 2nd Edition by Alfredo L. Aretxabaleta, Gregg R. Brooks, and Nancy W. West
• Free chapter: "A Pile of Water"
STEM Student Research Handbook by Darci J. Harland
• Free chapter: "Research Design"
Take-Home Chemistry: 50 Low-Cost Activities to Extend Classroom Learning by Michael Horton
• Free chapter: "Density Column in a Straw”
Take-Home Physics: 65 High-Impact, Low-Cost Labs by Michael Horton
• Free chapter: "Understanding Force and Motion"
Team Teaching Science: Success for All Learners by Ed Linz, Mary Jane Heater, and Lori A. Howard
• Free chapter: "Team Teaching Science at the High School Level”
Tried and True: Time-Tested Activities for Middle School by Inez Liftig
• Free chapter: "How the Brain Visually Perceives the World"
Uncovering Student Ideas in Physical Science, Volume 1: 45 New Force and Motion Assessment Probes by Page Keeley and Rand Harrington
• Free chapter: "Just Rolling Along"
Using Forensics: Wildlife Crime Scene! by Laura M. Sanders Arndt
• Free chapter: "Lesson 5: Hair Identification"
Virus and the Whale: Exploring Evolution in Creatures Small and Large, edited by Judy Diamond
• Free chapter: "Diatoms: One-Celled Wonders"
Watershed Investigations: 12 Labs for High School Science by Jennifer Soukhome, Graham Peaslee, Carl Van Faasen, and William Statema
• Free chapter: "Plant Identification"
Welcome to Nanoscience: Interdisciplinary Environmental Explorations, Grades 9–12 by Andrew S. Madden, Michael F. Hochella Jr., George E. Glasson, Julie R. Grady, Tracy L. Bank, André M. Green, Mary A. Norris, Andrew N. Hurst, and Susan C. Eriksson
• Free chapter: "Introduction to Nanotechnology"
You Want Me to Teach What? Sure-Fire Methods for Teaching Physical Science and Math by Norman LaFave
• Free chapter: "Yes, Virginia, Study Habits and Learning Techniques Are Key!"(study habits and learning techniques)
Teacher Professional Development
Beyond the Numbers: Making Sense of Statistics by Edwin P. Christmann
• Free chapter: "Standard Scores"
Connecting With Nature: A Naturalist's Perspective by Robert Stebbins
• Free chapter: "Goals of an Ecological Approach"
Exemplary Science for Resolving Societal Challenges by Robert E. Yager
• Free chapter: "Linking Science, Technology, and Society by Examining the Impact of Nanotechnology on a Local Community"
Mastery Learning in the Science Classroom: Success for Every Student by Kelly Morgan
• Free chapter: "What Is Mastery Learning?"
Models-Based Science Teaching by Steven W. Gilbert
• Free chapter: "Models and Science Teaching”
The NSTA Reader's Guide to A Framework for K–12 Science Education, EXPANDED EDITION: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas (e-book) by Harold Pratt, With Contributions from Rodger Bybee, Cary Sneider, Richard Duschl, and Joe Krajcik and Joi Merritt
• Free e-book
Rise and Shine: A Practical Guide for the Beginning Science Teacher by Linda Froschauer and Mary L. Bigelow
• Free chapter: "The First Week of School"
Science Education Leadership: Best Practices for the New Century, edited by Jack Rhoton
• Free chapter: "A New Challenge for Science Education Leaders: Developing 21st-Century Workforce Skills"
Science Stories: Using Case Studies to Teach Critical Thinking by Clyde Freeman Herreid, Nancy A. Schiller, and Ky F. Herreid
• Free chapter: "Selecting the Perfect Baby: The Ethics of 'Embryo Design'”
Science Teaching as a Profession: Why It Isn't, How It Could Be by Sheila Tobias and Anne Baffert
• Free chapter: "The Essentials Under Siege"
The Teaching of Science: 21st-Century Perspectives by Rodger W. Bybee
• Free chapter: "A Perspective on the Reform of Science Teaching"