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Transit Math

This series of activities from NASA take a mathematical approach to looking at transits, eclipses and occultations. They are intended as supplementary problems for students looking for additional challenges in mathematics and physical science from age 11 to 19 years.

The problems were created to be authentic...

The Rotational Period of the Sun

This activity, from the Royal Observatory Greenwich, introduces students to ways of combining errors (uncertainties) from two independent measured quantities. Using the equation for Doppler shift, the error in the rotational velocity and time period are calculated.

The content of the files are identical,...

The Age of the Universe

This activity, from the Royal Observatory Greenwich, looks at Hubble’s law, whereby students use real data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey to plot a graph from which they can obtain the Hubble constant. Students then look at the possible sources of error in their data and use this to calculate the uncertainty in...

Where Would You Photograph? (7-11)

In this activity children take on the role of Earth observation scientists submitting a request for an image they would like for their research. This gives them the opportunity to consider the possibilities of pictures taken from orbit (and the limitations) and to write scientifically for a specific audience. It...

Space Weather Math

This series of activities from NASA take a mathematical approach to looking at space weather. They are intended as supplementary problems for students looking for additional challenges in mathematics and physical science from age 11 to 19 years.

The problems were created to be authentic glimpses of modern...

Seeing Temperatures

This activity allows students to investigate how images are produced from data streams by using first a spreadsheet and then an image-processing program. They then go on to see how the usefulness of such a monochromatic image may be enhanced by using lookup tables and calibration. The materials used focus on the...

Plants

This issue of Big Picture provides lots of interesting information about flowering plants and their uses.

The plant hormones animation explores the action of indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) and shows how scientists used experimental evidence to explain the role of auxins in a phototrophic response.

The...

Fat

Fat is a word that carries a lot of weight, conjuring up topics as diverse as obesity, hibernating animals, and what we eat and how we cook it. This issue of the Big Picture looks at the fats and lipids to find out what they do, not just inside us and other organisms but also in the world around us.  Curriculum...

Drugs

Published by the Wellcome Trust, the 'Big Picture' explores issues around biology and medicine. While providing immense benefits, drugs are not the perfect solution.

They only work on a proportion of patients, sometimes they harm us, and we're not very good at taking them as we should. For some diseases,...

Health and Climate Change

Published by the Wellcome Trust, the 'Big Picture' explores issues around biology and medicine. The Earth's climate is changing ever faster, and human activities play a role in speeding up this change.

The Earth’s climate is changing. In fact, it has always been changing. What is different now is the speed...