Natural history museums Teacher Resources

Find Natural history museums lesson plans and worksheets
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The Hidden Worlds within Natural History Museums

For Students 5th - 12th Standards
Behind the closed doors of natural history museums lies a hidden world of scientific research and discovery that goes unseen for visitors. Follow along as this short video explores different scientific mysteries that have been solved...
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Artificial Selection

For Teachers 6th - 8th Standards
The second lesson in the series begins with a starter activity discussing wild versus domesticated animals. Then, scholars play a card game, with optional variations, to emphasize artificial selection. Next, they attend a field trip to a...
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Poetic Reflections

For Teachers 3rd - 5th Standards
Poetry is a wonderful way to explore language, express topical understanding, and incite creative thinking. After a trip to the local natural history museum (or zoo), learners write an acrostic or a cinquain poem describing one of their...
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National Museum of Natural History

For Teachers 3rd - 6th
Young scholars explore U.S. history by participating in a class field trip. In this museum lesson, students attend a field trip to the Natural History Museum and identify cultural stories and art pieces they enjoy. Young scholars...
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Peanut Butter Geology

For Teachers 6th - 12th Standards
Why are there old dinosaur bones in the museum? Because they can't afford new ones! The chapter contains seven hands-on activities at four different levels covering geological eras, dinosaurs, timelines, and statigraphy. 
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You Ol’ Fossil

For Teachers 6th - 12th Standards
Geologists are gneiss, tuff, and a little bit wacke. The fifth chapter of seven includes ten activities at four different levels. The hands-on activities cover fossils including how they are formed, vertebrates, invertebrates,...
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What's In A Name?

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Students create a binomial system of nomenclature for classifying organisms they encounter in a field trip to a natural history museum or from pictures in library books. They work in small groups to create accurate drawings and place...
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Lesson Planet

Carl Akeley's Striped Hyenas

For Students 6th - 12th Standards
Ever wonder how to create museum dioramas? Examine the newly created striped hyena exhibit through the eyes of a scientist using a video from a larger playlist on mammals. Content includes the origins of the hyenas in the display, why...
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The Young Naturalist

For Teachers 4th - 8th Standards
Beginning with a brief history of our 26th president, Theodore Roosevelt, then followed by a discussion of his interest in nature, young scientists take to the outdoors to locate and observe local plants and insects. Scholars return to...
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Wildlife Habitat Checklist

For Teachers 2nd - 4th Standards
Take a walk on the wild side with a project about animal habitats. After kids observe a chosen animal in its home, they describe the animal's food and water sources, shelter, and how it raises its young. They then write a short fictional...
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World of Insects: Characteristics, Orders, and Collecting

For Students 9th - 12th Standards
Every bug is an insect, but not all insects are bugs. A presentation lists the characteristics of insects, describes their body parts, and explains metamorphosis. It also details every order and includes photographs and multiple facts...
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Nature in a Flick of the Eye

For Teachers 6th - 12th
Students explore the visual information a diorama artist provides by thinking of all the details for the background of a location described by their teacher. They investigate diorama artists and their importance in creating the illusion...
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History of Life on Earth

For Teachers 7th - 9th Standards
Cleopatra lived closer to the first moon landing than the building of the pyramids at Giza. If your pupils are struggling to understand the timeline of the 4.6-billion-year history of the Earth, a lesson about the Geologic Time Scale is...
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Out and About: Minibeasts

For Teachers 2nd - 8th
Students get up close and personal with invertebrates. In this mini-beasts lesson, students may visit the Natural History Museum, the Bramley Frith Education Centre, the Edinburgh Butterfly and Insect World online or in-person to...
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Nutrition

For Teachers 4th - 6th
What can teeth tell us about an animal's diet? Learners examine animal skulls to determine what their canines, incisros, premolars, and molars reveal. 
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Out & About: Dinosaurs

For Teachers 1st - 5th
Students discover details about dinosaurs in Great Britain. In this dinosaur lesson, students visit selected museums and learning centers online and in person to examine and study dinosaur exhibits.
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Introduction to Evolution and Natural Selection

For Students 10th - 12th
The evidence for natural selection is presented as a random variation of a characteristic allowing a particular strain of organism to survive with a higher probability of successful reproduction. Population change over a short period of...
10:45
Lesson Planet

The Gem Room

For Students 6th - 12th Standards
Some artists carve into gemstones as their artistic medium. As part of the Brain Scoop Fossils and Geology playlist, the Field Museum opens the vault to share amazing gems, including some that people carved. From a solid gold purse to a...
5:34
Lesson Planet

Chicago Adventure, Part Three: Little Skeletons

For Students 6th - 12th Standards
How do museums keep up with all of the tiny creatures they collect? Go behind the scenes through a video from a larger playlist covering mammals. The narrator shows how skeletal parts are numbered, then examines the museum's collection...
6:26
Lesson Planet

Chicago Adventure, Part 7: Octopus Sex

For Students 9th - 12th Standards
Octopi transfer sperm by a modified arm tip. Other interesting and weird facts about octopus sex in included in an intriguing video. Brain Scoop presents the seventh part of a series on an adventure at the Field Museum as part of its...
Lesson Planet

Role of Masks in African Cultures

For Teachers 3rd - 8th
Young scholars explore ancient tradition and craft of mask making, examine role or function of masks in African culture, create instruments, and participate in class projects.
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Pardon Me, Your Modifier is Dangling

For Teachers 11th - 12th Standards
Lost! (or misplaced) a modifier. Last seen dangling at the end of a sentence! Reward offered! To underscore the humor, class members are each given a sample sentence to illustrate (A woman passed by, leading a Springer Spaniel, in a long...
Lesson Planet

Making a Living and Leisure Activities

For Teachers 4th - 12th
Students investigate the economic and daily activities in a typical African community. They design and construct a small scale house, play an African board game, create African money, discuss vocabulary, and write an essay.
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The Meaning of Rock Art

For Teachers K - 12th
Students examine the significance of rock art. They discuss and view examples of historical rock art, and create a design on a rock that tells a story using African and American symbols.

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Natural history museums