Lesson Plans

The Leonardo is committed to providing educators of all backgrounds and levels with inventive, high quality teaching material that promotes inquiry, creative thinking, and problem solving. Use these free lesson plans and other resources to increase engagement and learning in science, technology, engineering, math, and art -- and to promote vital 21st-century skills in your classroom.

Bubble Blast Off!

Use baking soda and vinegar to propel a film canister into the air or pop a Ziploc bag with a bang! Learn how this chemical reaction is related to photosynthesis. All ages. 15-20 min.
Core: 5th Science; 8th Science

Bubble Blocks

Experiment with different geometrical configurations of soap film and bubbles while discovering how light behaves when it passes through the soap and water. All ages. 10-15 min.
Core: 6th Science; 8th Science; Geometry; Chemistry

Color Shadows

Students will use three colored lights to create their own pallet of endless color. All Ages.  15-20 Min.
Core: 5th Art; 6th Science, Art, Theater; 7th-12th Art, Theater, Film, Photography; 8th Science

From Discarded to Superhero

Create a superhero from a discarded toy using what you have learned about simple machines. All ages.  1 hr+
Core: 7th Science, 8th Science, Biology, 7th-12th Sculpture

Gel Optics

Create home-made prisms with gelatin and learn how light can be bounced around and bent in many different ways.  All ages. 10-15 min.
Core: 5th Art; 6th Science, Art; 7th-12th Art, Sculpture; 8th Science

Glow Sticks vs. Paint

Explore the differences between colors of light and colors of pigment and use that understanding to create color recipes and a collective, temporary work of art. All ages. 10-15 min.
Core: 5th Science, Art; 6th Science, Art; 7th-12th Art, Painting; 8th Science

The Great Salt Lake: A Dense Resource

Explore crystal formation, density, buoyancy, and other salt water properties. This exercise relates to the Morphology field trip. All ages. 90 min.
Core: 7th Science; 8th Science; Chemistry; Earth Systems; Biology; 7th-12th Painting

Hunting For Algae

Decipher those big names in the ingredient lists of foods and beauty products to discover how many came from algae. This is a pre-visit exercise for the Morphology field trip. All ages. 10-30 min.
Core: 5th Science; 7th Science; 8th Science; Chemistry; Biology

Power Cars

Compare the various forms of energy and collaborate to create an ideal mode of transportation. This exercise can be used with the Energy theme of The Leo on Wheels. All ages. 45 min.
Core: 5th Art; 6th Art; 8th Science; 9-12th Art, Earth Systems, Biology, Physics

Searching for Simple Machines

Search your home or classroom to find simple machines. Then design a compound machine to accomplish a task. All ages.  50 min.
Core: 5th Art; 7th-12th Art; 8th Science; Physics

Stitching Through CO2

Learn how food, fuel, plants, and humans affect the carbon cycle. This exercise relates to the Morphology field trip. All ages. 50 min.
Core: 5th Science, Art; 6th Science, Art; 7th Science, Art; 8th Science, Art; Earth Systems; Biology; Chemistry; 9th-12th Art

Water Erosion

Explore how water changes the surface of our earth through erosion. All ages. 15-20 min.
Core: 5th Science, Art; 6th Art; 7th Science; 8th Science; Earth Systems; Biology; Physics; 7th-12th Art;

Wind Erosion in a Box

Witness the effects of wind on our Earth’s surface from a bird’s eye view and explore how plants and humans can impact the results of wind erosion. All ages. 20-25 min.
Core: 5th Science; 7th Science; 8th Science; Earth Systems; Biology; Chemistry