Try the NEW Participate Learning!
$0.99 Download
Learning about weather through engaging videos and photos and relevant info is great fun
$2.99 Download
Explore the solar system and its many components with this media-rich app
Free Download
With this app, you can navigate the sky and identify planets, stars, and constellations.
Free Download
Explore our world with Google Earth and its many exciting features.
$3.99 Download
Kids will enjoy the excellent graphics and great information with this real-time weather app.

About the Apps

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In middle school earth and space science, several of the apps that are educationally beneficial are tools that can be utilized as an integrated part of the classroom activities. While there are still educational apps for these topics that are good, many of the best apps are used in ways that are different from many of the learning apps in the elementary grades. Thus, some of the apps in this collection are resources or tools to be used in conjunction with the curriculum.

As the Next Generation Science Standards are undergoing final revision, the framework for those standards addresses the key concepts for student understanding of earth and space sciences. Topics for developing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) skills are also included in these apps. That among other reasons we explain are we these are the five best apps in the category.

• One of those concepts is "Earth's place in the universe." The apps Solar Walk and Go Skywatch Planetarium provide information and experiences for students to gain that understanding. While the universe seems abstract and unreal to young students, these apps can help to develop that understanding and make it more tangible.

• The second concept addressed in this framework is that students should have an understanding of "Earth's systems." Part of those systems is weather. The two weather apps, Extreme Weather and Weather HD – Live Weather Forecast with 3D NOAA Radar, can help foster and grow that understanding of the Earth's systems. The Google Earth app also relates to this concept, but it is so open-ended that it can fit in many areas of study.

• Finally, the third concept addressed is understanding of the relationship of "Earth and human activity." While none of these apps address this directly, Extreme Weather does contain information on extreme heat and cold and the causes of those conditions. This can be tied to environmental sustainability and the changing conditions of our warming planet, which is impacted by humans.

Earth and space science continue to hold mystery and wonder for children and adults alike. Using the great apps that are available in this content area is engaging for both children and adults.

Comments & Suggestions Have a suggestion for an educational app for this category you think we should feature? Let us know.

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