Colorado State University, College of Natural Sciences Education and Outreach Center and the National Park Service partnered to make park science come to life in classrooms. Through this partnership, CSU has developed hands-on STEM activities for students grades 4th – 12th. The goal is to create place-based and culturally relevant STEM experiences that help students understand the science behind critical regional issues.

Plankton to Plastic Pollution

Ice Science in Alaska National Parks

  • The Vital Ice STEM kit has model ice cores that let your students explore real data collected in Denali National Park. The kits are largely self-guided and work well for both middle and high school students. The kits cover permafrost and glacial ice cores and take approximately two hours of class time.

Park contact info: Stacia Backensto 907.455.0669

Water Science at Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park, Hawaiʻi

Available STEM Activities:

  • Anchialine Pool STEM Kit: The models illustrate the saltwater-freshwater interactions and the effects of over consumption of freshwater on anchialine pool chemistry and biology. These materials are appropriate for grades 4 – 12 and adult professional development.
  • Waters of Kāne Dice Game This is an Hawaiian adaptation of the classic Incredible Journey game from Project Wet.
  • Waters of Kāne Clever Catch Ball Students toss a beach ball that has fun water-related questions that promote class disucssion.
  • The Waters of Kaloko-Honokōhau Self-Guided Nature Trail Guide: Learn about the interactions between groundwater and surface water. This self-guided walk teaches you about why freshwater is such a precious resource. The guide is suitable for 4th through 12th grade students, home schoolers, and life long learners.
  • Electrical Conductivity Backpack: This kit is available at the park and can be used in tandem with The Waters of Kaloko-Honokōhau self-guided walk. Teachers can borrow the pack at the park. It contains a classroom set of self-guided walk booklets and seven individually packaged probe sets with instructions for easy measurement of the salt content all of the types of water found along the walk.
  • Kaloko-Honokōhau 3D Paper Model: This simple paper model depicts the underground interaction of freshwater and saltwater in three dimensions.
  • Schoolyard Water Budget STEM Kit: This kit teaches about the water cycle by having students assess all of the water inputs and outputs of their school grounds. Teams explore Evaporation, Precipitation, Infiltration, Runoff and Transpiration and determine if their school’s water use is in balance with the environment or not. These materials are appropriate for grades 4 – 12. The kit is available for one-week loans through the park.

Park Contact Info: KAHO Water Brochure

For more information, contact: Andrew Warnock