Curriculum Resources

Cambridge Rindge and Latin uses the Teaching for Understanding framework for currculum development. Thus GK-12 fellows work to create curriculum modules in their subject areas that work within the framework. Below you will find a sampling of the curriculum modules created by our fellows. As more modules are created and made ready for distribution they will be added.

We make these materials available in the hope that teachers and others will find them useful in the classroom. If you have any suggestions, comments or additions, we are eager to hear them. Please send us email telling us which module you used or are considering using and your thoughts, questions and/or suggestions about it. Where solutions are included they are password protected. In order to receive the password to view solutions, please email Kathryn Hollar at hollar@deas.harvard.edu with a short explanation of why you would like access to the solutions.

Right-Click (Windows) or Control-Click (Macintosh) on a resource to save it to your computer.

Teaching For Understanding Framework

Physics

  • Natural Resonant Frequency Worksheet
    • Description: Worksheet comparing natural resonant frequencies of real world objects across many scales.
    • Goal: Demonstrate that natural frequency is inversely proportional to size.
  • Cassini/Huygens mission to Saturn Worksheet
    • Description: Worksheet to accompany lesson on Cassini/Huygens mission to Saturn, involving a simple real-world engineering problem
  • Sample Answers to "Question-Box" Questions (set 1 | set 2)
    • Description: Examples of answers to "Question Box" questions: Why do ears get damaged by loud sounds? / What's the deal with global warming? / What is an X-ray? / Why are ocean currents important?
  • Induction Lesson Plan and Worksheet
    • The lesson plan explains concepts such as the meaning of a magnetic field, the forces on an electron moving through a magnetic field (direction and magnitude), the magnetic flux through a closed-loop, and details Faraday’s Law of Induction. All of these concepts are brought together through a brief description of how electric motor’s work.
    • The worksheet gives concept questions dealing with the concepts described in the lesson plan.
  • Moving Charge Lesson Plan and Worksheet
    • The lesson plan explains the concepts of moving charge and gives a definition of electrical current. Electrical energy and power is introduced and a discussion is given of how we are charged for the energy we use.
    • The worksheet contains a number of concept questions dealing with the information given in the lesson plan. The worksheet also gives a thought question about energy conservation (i.e. if you only had 100 kWh of power to use in a week, what appliances could you do without) and a question dealing with the cost of running a computer for a full year.
  • Simple Machines Lesson Plan and Activity
    • The lesson plan gives a mathematical foundation to understand how simple machines work. A brief discussion of the trigonometry of right triangles and an introduction to vectors is given. It is then shown how these concepts are used in analyzing an inclined plane.
    • The activity gives a brief discussion (as well as resources for finding more information on) other simple machines: lever, pulley, screwed, wheel and axle. The student’s assignment was to perform a mathematical analysis similar to that given in the lesson plan for the inclined plane for one of these simple machines.
  • Nuclear Power Worksheet
    • Goal: To learn about fission and power plants.
  • Particle Accelerator Article and Worksheet
    • Goal: To learn about how particle accelerators work and why they are used.
  • Superconductivity Reading and Worksheet
    • Goal: To introduce students to the concept of superconductivity.
  • Wave Motion Activity/Project
  • Wave Interference: Handout, Worksheet, Worksheet Solutions, Notes
    • Goal: To learn about interference and standing waves.
  • Electoral College Worksheet and Spreadsheet
  • Foam Coasters
  • Transistors and Integrated Circuits
  • Intro to Radio Propagation
    • Description: Gives a brief introduction to how communication takes places across a wireless channel. The concepts of multi-path and constructive/destructive interference of radio waves are used to describe why wireless communication is so difficult to do reliably.
  • How Wi-Fi Works
    • Description: Gives an overall discussion of the functioning of wireless local areas.
  • How Cell Phones Work
    • Description: Gives an overview of how cellular telephones work, from splitting coverage area into cells to the different techniques that have been standardized for use in cellular systems. A discussion is made about legacy (analog) systems and the migration to digital systems

Biology

Chemistry

  • Element Facts
    • Description: Element facts to be used in playing elemento.
    • Goal: To learn information about some of the more common elements.
  • Careers in Chemistry Presentation
    • Description: Discusses possible jobs in chemistry related fields as well as their education
      requirements.
    • Goal: to get the kids in chemistry classes thinking about careers and college

Electrical Engineering

  • Electric Generators Lesson Plan and Worksheet
  • Bits and Bytes
    • Description: Gives an explanation of the way that computers represent numbers and files in terms of base-2 (binary) numbers. A discussion is also made of the representation of characters using their ASCII representations. This document is meant as a precursor to the following document.
  • Boolean Logic
    • Description: Using the information presented in the preceding document, Boolean Logic is introduced through truth-tables given for simple (NOT, AND, OR) gates. It is then shown how more complicated functions may be produced using these elementary gates (an example of a full-binary adder is given). The document is concluded with a discussion of the function of a flip-flop (latch).

General Science/Teaching Interest

Computer Science

  • Methods and Variable Scope in Java HTML Presentation and Sample Program
    • Description: An presentation illustrating how variables are stored in memory as way of making understanding variable scope more intuitive. The presentation is based on the short sample program which calculates a person's recommended weight based on their height. Note that the program uses Walter Savitch's utils module to simplify user input, but it could easily be modified to avoid this.
    • Goal: To help students understand variable scope and argument passing in Java.
  • Digital Circuits and Logic Gates Handout/Worksheet
    • Description: Detailed worksheet guiding a student through understanding what digital circuits are and then through how logic gates are used to build circuits that can accomplish real-world tasks. This worksheet is also appropriate for physics students.
    • Goal: To introduce students to digital circuits and Boolean logic.
  • Encryption: Caesar Cipher Handout and Vigenere Cipher Handout
    • Description: Introduces students to some basic ciphers and the concept of encryption. Can be extended with a programming exercise in which one or both are implemented. Can also be extended with a discussion of public-key encryption works to provide the encryption we use online today. Note that the examples and problems given are best if they are customized to be phrases that are meaningful to the students in the class.
    • Goal: To introduce students to the field of encryption and have some fun doing it.