3 Free Online Sources for Articles for Student Reading in Science

  • Sometimes a book is just too much.
  • Perhaps a student forgot their book and they don’t want to start a new one. They need something to read for today.
  • Looking for an interesting article for a mini-lesson?

These 5 online sources might provide you with the answer. Check out these free online resources for reading articles!

Useful Science

This website is best for older students. It provides articles in the following categories:

  • nutrition
  • education
  • fitness
  • happiness
  • health
  • enviroment
  • parenting
  • persuasion
  • productivity
  • sleep

The articles vary in length and complexity, The source of the article is available with a short description. The site is super simple and is nothing more or less than a curated list of articles of interest to people interested in science. 

To give you an idea of the articles available, I found these on a recent visit to the site:

  • Increasing water consumption by 2-3 cups per day is associated with eating less junk food and an overall reduction in daily calorie intake. Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, ScienceDaily
  • Students who took notes by hand outperformed laptop note takers on understanding of concepts possibly because laptops increased the tendency for students to record information word for word. Psychological Science, NPR
  • In an analysis of 33 NBA playoff series, teams facing elimination were more likely to lose than expected, suggesting that adding extreme pressure does not improve performance. Frontiers in Psychology, Frontiers Blog
  • People can form relatively accurate judgments about others within 30 seconds of observing them. Psychological Bulletin
  • Athletes who increased the amount of sleep they got each night improved their athletic performance.

Check out the website at usefulscience.org to see if this works for your classroom!

NASA Visualization Explorer

Amazing content from NASA delivered directly to IOS and Android devices. The app has beautiful graphics and remarkable stories written by writers, producers, scientists and animators from the Goddard Space Flight Center. New stories are added weekly. Using a drop-down menu, students can easily navigate and select their stories by topic. As I was writing this blog, there were 281 articles on Earth, 130 in Planets and Moons, 91 on the sun and 98 about the Universe. 561 stories are available, enough to keep those interested in Space intrigued for hours. There is an option to save stories to be read offline. Students can also keep track of the articles read. 

Many of the stories contain videos. The articles, images, videos, and simulations are compelling. The icon at the lower right of the screen allows you to copy a story and open it on the NASAViz Web Site, text it, or share the URL via social media.

Click here to visit the NASA Visualization Explorer. 

Science News for Students

This online resource focuses on science, health and technology aimed at students ages 9 to 14. Stories include links to further resources, glossary terms, and readability levels. 

Topics include news stories (generally short), longer features, information about careers, research, and blog posts.

  • body and brain
  • earth and environment
  • genes and cells
  • humans and society
  • inventions and innovations
  • life and evolution
  • math and technology
  • physics and chemistry
  • space
  • research
  • cool jobs

A feature called Analyze This asks students to interpret information through a visual. The feature Scientists Say features a vocabulary term, an audio clip to help with the Common Core English Language Arts standard for reading informational text. The feature Eureka! goes through the scientific method. 

Click here to be redirected to the Science News for Students site. 

Check out these science related resources available from My TPT Store. 

Studying Space? This bundle contains passages about the International Space Station, Challenger Disaster, Apollo 13, and Voyager I. 

Check out these Differentiated Reading Passages written at three reading levels and with comprehension questions. Buy purchasing the bundle not only will your students receive relevant content information, but you will receive progress monitoring data on their reading comprehension. Each leveled passage contains 5 questions–main idea, vocabulary, organizational pattern, inferencing, and sequencing. A chart is provided so students can monitor the types of questions they correctly answer and the areas they may need reinforcement–and all at a significant discount!

Click here for my Space Bundle or any of the resources can be purchased individually. 

Scientists and inventors are the subjects for these differentiated passages.Read engaging passages introducing famous scientists in history. In addition to providing background information on each of these scientists, purchasing the bundle allows the teacher to collect data on the reading comprehension of your students. Each title consists of three differentiated passages written at a 9-10 grade level, an 8 grade level, and a 6-7 grade level. (They may be used with younger students with teacher support). Following the passage there are five comprehension questions. Each passage at each level contains a question in the following categories:
* main idea
* vocabulary
* organizational pattern
* inference
* summarizing

A chart is provided so each student can collect data on the type of questions they can answer successfully and those which might need additional attention. 

Engaging passages–developing background knowledge–and data collection all in one package! Read about these important women in history with your students while collecting important information about their reading skills and preparing for standardized testing.

Click here for the Scientists in History Bundle or any of the resources can be purchased individually.