The Natural History Museum of Utah is one of the finest learning attractions in the state of Utah, and although their exhibitions are closed to the public right now they’ve been busy filling their website with online resources and offline activities for summer and distance learning. In today’s post in our Summer Reading and Learning 2020 series we’re highlighting a few of these resources.
This summer the museum is rolling out a series of Neighborhood Naturalists for Kids topic pages. Each page is filled with ideas and activities for exploring and learning about nature right where you are, including ways to actually participate in scientific research while you learn.
For example, their How to Be a Naturalist page features a video about exploring nature in your own backyard, as well as opportunities to engage in Citizen Science and instructions on using the iNaturalist app/website to identify and document the plants and animals you encounter as you explore near or far.
The museum will release a new Neighborhood Naturalists topic every two weeks, so check back on their web page throughout the summer for more ways to learn and explore outside in your neighborhood.
Virtual Field Trips
During social distancing closure the museum has built a Virtual Field Trips page, featuring videos allowing would-be visitors to explore many of the galleries and exhibitions found in the museum.
They have also created a 5-episode NHMU 2020 series, which features more in-depth natural history lessons from scientists and educators in the museum.
Research Quest is a library of online science investigation classes created by the museum for teachers and parents to share with students.
Led by NHMU scientists who are experts in their fields, students use the Research Quest website to analyze evidence and develop their own theories. Their goal? Help solve mysteries our own scientists are still trying to figure out!https://nhmu.utah.edu/research-quest
Described as aligned with educational standards and “packed with videos, 3D viewers, models, and interactive maps,” these lessons are geared especially towards middle school students. During the summer they are available on-demand for parents to share with their children. The museum offered live stream sessions of these classes in Spring 2020, and you can sign up as a teacher or parent to find out about future live sessions for the 2020-2021 school year.
More Resources for Educators
The museum provides many more resources besides those featured in this post, including a dedicated For Educators page filled with resources and ideas for teachers. Explore their website, follow their social media channels, or contact them to learn more.