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The NSF-sponsored NanoSense project was created to address the question of how to teach nanoscale science at the secondary level.  This web site contains the materials developed by the NanoSense team, which include four comprehensive curriculum units to introduce teachers and students to nanotechnology.  Each unit has been classroom tested and provides extensive content support.  Users may download cost-free lesson plans aligned to national standards, Power Point lecture materials, student activity guides, and related assessments.  The materials were developed in a modular fashion to enable use for a short classroom introduction or a longer experiential learning project.  Topics include 1) introduction to nanotechnology, 2) light and matter interactions, 3) solar energy and nanoscience, and 4) the water crisis.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Classical Mechanics
- Work and Energy
= Conservation of Energy
Education Practices
- Active Learning
= Problem Solving
- Curriculum Development
General Physics
- Measurement/Units
= Scaling
- Properties of Matter
Modern Physics
- Atomic Physics
= Absorption
- Elementary Particles
- Nanoscience
- High School
- Collection
- Instructional Material
= Activity
= Curriculum
= Instructor Guide/Manual
= Laboratory
= Lesson/Lesson Plan
= Problem/Problem Set
= Project
= Student Guide
- Assessment Material
Appropriate Courses Categories Ratings
- Physical Science
- Physics First
- Conceptual Physics
- Algebra-based Physics
- AP Physics
- Lesson Plan
- Activity
- Laboratory
- Assessment
- New teachers
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Access Rights:
Free access
This material is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license.
Rights Holder:
SRI International
NSF Number:
Nano, PBL, UV light, best practice, electromagnetic radiation, electromagnetic spectrum, experiential learning, high school unit, instructional unit, light, nanotechnology, problem-based learning, solar energy
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created June 5, 2009 by Caroline Hall
Record Updated:
August 12, 2013 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
February 10, 2008

AAAS Benchmark Alignments (2008 Version)

3. The Nature of Technology

3A. Technology and Science
  • 9-12: 3A/H1. Technological problems and advances often create a demand for new scientific knowledge, and new technologies make it possible for scientists to extend their research in new ways or to undertake entirely new lines of research. The very availability of new technology itself often sparks scientific advances.

4. The Physical Setting

4D. The Structure of Matter
  • 9-12: 4D/H8. The configuration of atoms in a molecule determines the molecule's properties. Shapes are particularly important in how large molecules interact with others.

8. The Designed World

8B. Materials and Manufacturing
  • 9-12: 8B/H4. Increased knowledge of the properties of particular molecular structures helps in the design and synthesis of new materials for special purposes.

11. Common Themes

11A. Systems
  • 6-8: 11A/M2. Thinking about things as systems means looking for how every part relates to others. The output from one part of a system (which can include material, energy, or information) can become the input to other parts. Such feedback can serve to control what goes on in the system as a whole.
  • 6-8: 11A/M3. Any system is usually connected to other systems, both internally and externally. Thus a system may be thought of as containing subsystems and as being a sub-system of a larger system.
  • 9-12: 11A/H1. A system usually has some properties that are different from those of its parts, but appear because of the interaction of those parts.

AAAS Benchmark Alignments (1993 Version)


D. The Structure of Matter
  • 4D (9-12) #1.  Atoms are made of a positive nucleus surrounded by negative electrons. An atom's electron configuration, particularly the outermost electrons, determines how the atom can interact with other atoms. Atoms form bonds to other atoms by transferring or sharing electrons.

This resource is part of a Physics Front Topical Unit.

Topic: Particles and Interactions and the Standard Model
Unit Title: Teaching Nanoscale Science

The NSF-sponsored NanoSense project was created to address the question of how to teach nanoscale science at the secondary level. Includes four comprehensive curriculum units to introduce teachers and students to nanotechnology.  Each unit has been classroom tested and provides extensive content support -- all designed to be adaptable for short introductions or longer classroom projects.

Link to Unit:
ComPADRE is beta testing Citation Styles!

Record Link
AIP Format
(SRI International, Menlo Park, 2005), WWW Document, (https://nanosense.sri.com/).
NanoSense (SRI International, Menlo Park, 2005), <https://nanosense.sri.com/>.
APA Format
NanoSense. (2008, February 10). Retrieved May 26, 2024, from SRI International: https://nanosense.sri.com/
Chicago Format
SRI International. NanoSense. Menlo Park: SRI International, February 10, 2008. https://nanosense.sri.com/ (accessed 26 May 2024).
MLA Format
NanoSense. Menlo Park: SRI International, 2005. 10 Feb. 2008. 26 May 2024 <https://nanosense.sri.com/>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Title = {NanoSense}, Publisher = {SRI International}, Volume = {2024}, Number = {26 May 2024}, Month = {February 10, 2008}, Year = {2005} }
Refer Export Format

%T NanoSense %D February 10, 2008 %I SRI International %C Menlo Park %U https://nanosense.sri.com/ %O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source %D February 10, 2008 %T NanoSense %I SRI International %V 2024 %N 26 May 2024 %8 February 10, 2008 %9 application/pdf %U https://nanosense.sri.com/

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Citation Source Information

The AIP Style presented is based on information from the AIP Style Manual.

The APA Style presented is based on information from APA Style.org: Electronic References.

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Contains NanoSense: Clear Sunscreen - How Light Interacts with Matter

A unit of instruction on the interaction of light and matter.

relation by Caroline Hall

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