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Rio Tinto Hands-on Science Curriculum

The purpose of this website is to help busy teachers have access to tried and true hands-on inquiry lessons. These lessons engage students as scientists and engineers as they question, hypothesize, observe, record, analyze, and evaluate scientific processes. Engaging and problem solving based hands-on science curriculum is critical as teachers incorporate the Next Generation Science Standards into their classroom.

This science website, created in partnership with Rio Tinto, is a web-based lab science curriculum for kindergarten – 6th grade. The lab concepts explored are embedded in the Utah State Elementary Science Core Standards. Many of the labs were originally written and compiled at Indian Hills Elementary School by the science educator and later expanded and revised at Beacon Heights Elementary School.

Activities in the labs were either newly created or modified from existing labs to fit into a 45-minute or a 60-minute block depending on grade level. The labs are designed to facilitate the busy classroom teacher by: listing catalog numbers and companies where materials can be purchased directly in the lesson; organizing the website into lessons listed by science standards; providing very detailed procedures and pictures that, hopefully, leaves much of the guesswork out of the lesson; and finally, most labs are followed up by written assessments for the students to reinforce the science concepts explored during the lesson.

Rio Tinto Hands-on Science Curriculum Team

Ms. Rae Louie – Administrator, Principal Beacon Heights Elementary

Emily Mortensen – Grant writer, teacher outreach, 2nd grade teacher at Beacon Heights Elementary

Ruth Li – Curriculum design, K-6 Science Educator at Indian Hills Elementary

Deirdre Straight – Curriculum development, K-6 Science Educator at Beacon Heights Elementary

Tim Rausch – Website development, Library Media at Beacon Heights Elementary

Science Fair illustration
RioTinto Logo
Solar Energy illustration