The Sciences

SciStarter's Back to School Citizen Science Backpack!



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SciStarter Goes Back to School! (Image Credit: Shutterstock / YuriImaging ) It's that time of the year when SciStarter goes back to school! Our Project Finder is full of citizen science projects perfect for the classroom. Why citizen science in the classroom you ask? Well here are 8 great reasons why citizen science works in the classroom! We highlight 10 projects here that can be used in the classroom, as homework assignments, or as after school family activities across a variety of subjects and age groups. For more classroom projects take a look at our classroom picks!

Project Budburst

Participating in Project BudBurst, a NEON citizen science program, is easy. Everything needed to participate is on the web site. Choose a plant to monitor and share your observations with others online. Not sure where to start? Take a look at the Ten Most Wanted species. Get started!

Cell Slider

Help cancer researchers identify cancerous cells by looking at online slides from drug trial data and identifying colored sections using prompts. The results will help researchers better understand drug trial data. Get started!

The Sun Lab

Help Nova Lab explore what makes the Sun so volatile and get access to the same data and tools scientists use to predict solar storms-so that you can predict them for yourself. 

Get started!

Celebrate Urban Birds

Help ornithologists learn about 16 key species of urban birds by tracking them for 10 minutes in a small area. Celebrate Urban Birds provides all of the necessary materials to get you started. Get Started!

World Water Monitoring Day

On September 18, join other classrooms sampling local water bodies to measure temperature, acidity (pH), clarity (turbidity), and dissolved oxygen. You'll need to purchase an easy-to-use test kit. Get started!

Help NASA manage the large amount of data from the Red Planet. Earn Martian credits by helping place satellite photos on Mars’s surface, counting craters, and even helping the rovers Spirit and Opportunity by tagging photos with descriptions. Get started!

Be a Martian

Help researchers and organizations by discovering and documenting local wildlife on your mobile phone. Missions can range from photographing specific frogs or flowers to tracking migrating birds or invasive species or logging the effects of the oil spill. 

Project NOAH

Get started!

Help learn more about dragonfly migration in North America. Monitor the spring and fall movements of the 5 main migratory species in North America, or report on these species throughout the year at a pond or wetland of your choice. by reporting movements of 5 main migratory species. Get started!

Dragonfly Migration

School Of Ants

Help map ant diversity and species ranges across North America by collecting ants from your schoolyard or backyard. Researchers will ID the ants and add the species list to the big School of Ants map. 

Get started!


Measure rain, hail and snow falling near your home or school and share the data with meteorologists. Your reports are immediately available for viewing so you can also compare your school to other schools' precipitations! Get started!

Want even more? Subscribe to SciStarter’s newsletter! 

Editors Note: A version of this post appeared on the SciStarter blog.

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