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An illustration of water on a hydrophobic surface. The water forms perfect spheres.


A compilation of water public engagement resources and activities; topics include water quality, pollution, supply, hydrological cycle, properties at the small scale including hydrophobic and hydrophilic properties, bubbles, ice, and clouds. Also included are resources for annual events including Groundwater Awareness Week, World Water Day, Earth Day, World Oceans Day, National Pollution Prevention Week, Coastal Cleanup Day, Earth Science Week, and Imagine a Day Without Water.

Scientific Image - Water Droplet on Hydrophobic Sand

Photograph of drops of water sitting on purple hydrophobic sand.

Scientific Image - Water Droplets on Hydrophobic Sand

Zoomed in photograph of water drops on purple hydrophobic sand.
Oil spill video activity two comparison cups of oil, water, and sand

Oil Spill Clean Up Simulation

In this activity, learners use natural sand and hydrophobic sand to learn about oil spills and cleanup.
Group of two learners and two facilitators observe as one learner carefully applies drops of water onto colored sand

Exploring Products - Nano Sand

In this activity, learners explore how water behaves differently when it comes in contact with nano sand and regular sand.
Exploring Products - Nano Fabrics acitivty components including signs, guides, and mini pants coated with nano materials

Exploring Products - Nano Fabrics

In this activity, learners investigate the hydrophobic properties of pants made from nano fabric and ordinary fabric.
Nano is different slide showing gold, nano gold, and stained glass

Nano 101 Intro to Nano slide presentations

Introduction to nanoscale science and technology slide presentations for educators.
Family engaging with sand, plants, and pants

Sand, Plants and Pants

In this activity, learners explore how the application of nano-sized particles or substances can change a bigger material’s properties.
Learner experimenting with magic sand

Magic Sand / Nanosurfaces

In this activity, learners discover that "magic" sand repels water because of a nanoscale hydrophobic coating on the grains of sand.
Chemistry oil spill activity materials with dye absorbent cups and tongs

Cleaning Oil Spills with Chemistry

In this activity, learners will experiment with different methods of cleaning up a model oil spill.
A lotus leaves in a small, man-made concrete pond.

Zoom into a Lotus Leaf video

In this video, learners get an up close look at the tiny nanostructures that give the leaf its unique superhydrophobic behavior.
The supervillain Dr. Blot dressed in a crazy costume

I Got No Stains on Me

In this O Wow Moments video, Mr. O explores how nanotechnology is used to create clothes that are stain resistant.
Oil coating demonstration on a lense that is oleophobic

Oleophobic Surfaces - Anti-Graffiti Demo

In this activity, learners explore several surfaces that display oleophobic properties due to material science research at the nano scale.
Facilitator showing learners the lotus leaf effect

Lotus Leaf Effect

In this activity, learners explore how some leaves are self cleaning and repel water due to their nanoscale features.
National chemistry week logo

National Chemistry Week

National Chemistry Week is a community based program of the American Chemical Society (ACS). NISE Network has compiled a set of resources and activities suitable for National Chemistry Week, Chemists Celebrate Earth Week, and chemistry events.

NISE Network at the USA Science and Engineering Festival

October 23, 2010 - October 24, 2010
The grand finale of the USA Science and Engineering Festival takes place on October 23-24, 2010 with a two-day EXPO on the National Mall and surrounding venues in Washington D.C. The expo will include over 1,500 fun, hands-on interactive activities...

2013 MRS Fall Meeting

December 1, 2013 - December 6, 2013
Materials Research Society (MRS) Meeting and Exhibit.
Brookhaven National Laboratory logo

Partner Highlight: Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, NY - Adventures in Nanoscience

July 27, 2021
Susan Frank, Brookhaven National Laboratory
Brookhaven National Laboratory’s Science Learning Center in Upton, NY develops a virtual "Adventures in Nanoscience" summer program for students entering 4th to 6th grade.

Nano Haiku - April

March 27, 2009
Vrylena Olney
Untitled Margaret Glass Raindrops roll and drop from a hydrophobic leaf leaving it clean (Dew on Nasturtium Leaf image by Elucidate )

Seven New NanoDays Activities for 2011

December 9, 2010
Vrylena Olney
NanoDays will be celebrating its fourth birthday this year, and the kit's gotten a bit of an update in honor of that birthday. In particular, this year's kit includes seven brand-new activities. All the materials to run the activities are...

Partner Highlight: MOST, Syracuse, New York

July 26, 2011
Vrylena Olney
What do 17th-century Japanese literature and a science summer camp in Syracuse, NY have in common? Haiku! The Milton J. Rubenstein Museum of Science and Technology (MOST) in Syracuse, New York has been working to incorporate nano content into their...
Port Discovery logo

Partner Highlight: Museum on the Move: Traveling Nano Exhibition to Reach a New Audience in Maryland

January 4, 2016
Sarah Zimmerman, Port Discovery Children’s Museum
Nanoscience and technology were found in an unlikely location when Port Discovery Children's Museum partnered with The James and Anne Robinson Nature Center in Columbia, Maryland. Part of Port Discovery’s mission states that we "extend our impact by taking our...

Partner Highlight: The Power of HI-Nano, 'Imiloa Astronomy Center in Hilo, Hawai'i

February 26, 2014
Frank Kusiak
Coauthored by: Ahia Dye from 'Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawai'i If you ever find yourself on Hawai'i, aka The Big Island, make your way to Hilo and the beautiful and engaging 'Imiloa Astronomy Center . 'Imiloa is the premier learning...
NISE Newsletter Logo with a newspaper icon on the left

Newsletter: June 2016

Welcome to the June e-newsletter for the National Informal STEM Education (NISE) Network and community. INSIDE THIS ISSUE Community News - NISE Network partner honored with 2016 Nancy Hanks Award, Building with Biology news and updates, "NanoDays Collection" printed book
Newsletter archive
NISE Newsletter Logo with a newspaper icon on the left

Newsletter: May 2016

Welcome to the May e-newsletter for the National Informal STEM Education (NISE) Network and community. INSIDE THIS ISSUE Community News - "NanoDays Collection" printed book shipping soon to active NISE Network partners in the US, New opportunity! Forum stipend available
Newsletter archive