Research Quest is a series of free online investigations created by the Natural History Museum of Utah for middle school teachers and students.These investigations engage your students in a variety of virtual museum activities designed by and featuring our all-star team of scientists and educators. The investigations will not only challenge your students with a real-world, phenomenon-based scientific mystery, they will also model how research scientists search for evidence and how they use critical thinking to answer scientific questions.
Next, your students will explore digitized museum collections and data to gather their own evidence for the research question at-hand. Depending on the investigation, your class might observe the nooks and crannies of a 3D image scan of a dinosaur jaw or examine aerial photos of pine trees to research the impacts of change in a montane environment. Throughout their work, your students will record their evidence and reasoning in their Research Assistant Notebooks, and test their ideas by sharing them with their classmates.
Sharon McGarry, Syracuse Jr High, 7th grade, Davis SD
Overall these were awesome investigations! My favorite was the Quarry because of the availability of evidence students could use to support their claim. I could really see my students engaging in higher level thinking. Another reason I think this was the best one is because it was the last one we did. I learned a lot from running the first two investigations. Next year will be even better!
Full access to all investigations and their activities.
Instructional Guides, Research Assistant Notebooks, and more for each investigation.
Assessment rubrics for student learning