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How Hydropower Dams Work [Interactive Explainer]

Science | November 17, 2014

How Hydropower Dams Work [Interactive Explainer]

Although hydropower has been in use for centuries, largely in the form of water wheels, hydroelectricity is a more recent phenomenon. Hydroelectricity is a type of hydropower and is created as moving water powers machines that produce electricity. Here’s an interactive explainer that shows you how it works.

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Should Fracking Be Banned?

Science | October 28, 2014 | 96 Comments

Should Fracking Be Banned?

The November 2014 ballot contains an initiative to ban hydraulic fracturing for three counties in California. Hydraulic fracturing, otherwise known as “fracking,” is steeped in controversy, from the amount of water it uses to how and where that water is eventually disposed.

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Is Project-Based Learning the Way to Go?

Science | October 14, 2014 | 44 Comments

Is Project-Based Learning the Way to Go?

More than 5,000 schools nationwide have transitioned from traditional learning methods to project-based learning (PBL). Should all schools move in this direction and implement PBL in their science classes?

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How Do We Prioritize Protecting Species in the Face of Climate Change?

Science | October 1, 2014 | 56 Comments

How Do We Prioritize Protecting Species in the Face of Climate Change?

Plants and animals are responding to climate change in different ways, altering ecosystems all over the world. How do we balance protecting species with human interests in dealing with and adapting to climate change? What do we prioritize?

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Are Consumers or Corporations Responsible for Reducing Carbon Emissions?

Science | September 16, 2014 | 7 Comments

Are Consumers or Corporations Responsible for Reducing Carbon Emissions?

Scientists have long known that reducing greenhouse gas emissions can help mitigate climate change, but that is easier said than done. Who is responsible for curtailing emissions? Is it carbon-emitting industries and businesses who manufacture consumer goods, or us, the consumers of those goods?

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Shaking Things Up: Ten Resources for Exploring Earthquakes

Science | August 27, 2014 | 2 Comments

Shaking Things Up: Ten Resources for Exploring Earthquakes

What a way to start out the school year!  Did the South Napa quake trigger a landslide of questions from your students about why earthquakes happen, what faults are, or if scientists can predict quakes?  Explore the science of earthquakes, from the Bay Area and beyond, with the following resources. Earthquake Explainer This media-rich collection […]

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Cap-and-Trade for Carbon?

Science | August 11, 2014 | 0 Comments

Cap-and-Trade for Carbon?

In 2012, California launched its cap-and-trade program. In this program, the government sets a limit on the total amount of allowable carbon emissions from businesses, refineries, manufacturers and power plants. Some people think that a tax on carbon emissions would be better. How do you think companies can best be regulated to reduce greenhouse gas emissions?

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How Would You Design a Bicycle?

Science | June 13, 2014 | 3 Comments

How Would You Design a Bicycle?

Learning to ride a bicycle is a strong memory from many of our childhoods. How did you learn how to ride a bicycle? What would you change about how today’s bicycles are designed?

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Sexism in Science is Caused by Traditional Gender Roles

Science | June 12, 2014 | 2 Comments

Sexism in Science is Caused by Traditional Gender Roles

Women have made great strides in fighting for equality in America, but are there factors that still hold women back in certain areas like science? In our #DoNowSexism post, we asked students, What do you have to say about the reasons and realities of sexism in science? What are the barriers, if any, to women in STEM careers?

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An Interactive Map Tracking Western Wildfires

Science | June 2, 2014 | 0 Comments

An Interactive Map Tracking Western Wildfires

Wildfires have always plagued the West, but according to the National Interagency Fire Center, thirty-six wildfires burned through eight western States this past year. Around 2.5 million acres have been burned across the west in states ranging from California to Wyoming.

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