Thursday, January 22, 2015

Website Review: The Why? Files

THE WHY? FILES: THE SCIENCE BEHIND THE NEW is an outstanding science website exploring the science connected with interesting and important news stories.
Sponsored by the University of Wisconsin-Madison with support from the National Institute for Science Education and National Science Foundation, the website features its newest stories on the entry page. Each story contains background information about the news story, a connection to the scientific topic of interest, related stories, and a bibliography. In addition, the stories incorporate interesting photographs, video clips, charts, diagrams, and other compelling images. A print-friendly version of each page is provided making these articles perfect for informational reading activities in the classroom.
The website includes the following key areas:
The Archives section provides a chronological list of articles by subject area including Arts & Humanities, Biology, Earth & Space, Environment, Health, Physical Science, Social Science, and Technology.
The Weather Guys section addresses questions related to weather science.
The Interactives section provides engaging games and other interactive experiences for youth.
The WHY-TV page displays short video clips on science topics.
The Book Review section focuses on book of interest to high school students and adults.
The Cool Science Images page provides a compelling image along with the back-story related to the visual. These would be wonderful images for scientific investigations or story starters.
The Teaching section is divided into Grades 5-8 and Grades 9-12. Educators can find stories that support the National Science Education standards. The classroom activities page provides discussion questions, activities, and quizzes related to science topics.
The built-in search engine can be used to locate articles by key word.
The website also connects to social media including Facebook and Twitter. The RSS feed makes it easy to incorporate into your library or school website.
To explore the website, go to