The starters typically take 5 minutes or less to complete and provide students with a focused activity to start class. I also like to use the starters to review material we have covered in class. It helps me gauge what they have remembered from previous lessons or lets me know that additional lessons are needed. Feel free to use the starters as they are provided or adapt them to fit your units of study.
I provide students with a Science Starters answer sheet that has room for nine weeks worth of answers. The answer sheets are collected every Friday to be graded and then I return them on Monday for the new week. I also have an answer sheet with room for four weeks worth of answers or a weekly Science Starters bookmark available as an alternative to the standard answer sheet.
NOTE: I don't use these in order or as sets, but rather mix them up throughout the unit. For example, during the Chemistry unit I will use Element Challenge starters for two days of the week, one Elemental Pun for another day, and pick others to fill in the last two days of the week. I use an answer sheet to help me keep track of the starters I have used.
MiddleSchoolScience.com - Liz has developed starters for her classes and will be adding new ones throughout the school year.
Thanks to Helen Cleveland for sharing her
"create your own" template
... Her students create their own word
scramble Science Starters to challenge their
Links for more ideas ...
About.com - Science Warm-Ups - This site is a good source for questions to use as your class warm-up activities.
Awesome Stories - Explore this website for videos and audioclips that can be used to create starters for your classes.
Classroomtools.com Warm-Ups - Explore this site for great ideas to develop your own warm-up questions to challenge your students.
How Stuff Works Videos - Use the site search to find video clips on topics you address in your science classes.
Internet4Teachers - Daily Doses - Scroll down this page to find the science section with links to websites with ideas for class challenges.
JLab Videos - Visit the Frostbite Theater to find videos you can use to create warm-ups for your physical science classes or incorporate them into a science lesson.
PBS Wired Science Podcasts - Create a warm-up using one of the podcasts available from this site. Listen to the podcast and then challenge your students to answer questions about the material.
More podcasts: Science Friday, Dragonfly TV, National Geographic, Bytesize Science, All Science Videocasts
RadioLab - Browse this site for podcasts that can be used for warm-ups for your science classes. Use their site search to find podcaasts on the topics you need!
Space.com Videos - This site provides a huge collection of videos for an assortment of topics in astronomy!
Need more ideas?
- Check out your state's Department of Education website to find sample assessment questions that you can use to create warm-ups.
- Visit Science News sites to find the latest news to share with your students - Science Daily, Science NOW, NOVA Science, Eureka Science News, New York Times Science.
Science Starters Topics
Do you have starters that you'd like to share? If so, e-mail them to me and I'll add them to this section!