Quest@Home

Spark Curiosity & Learn Together

Welcome to Quest@Home!  Here you’ll find engaging activities, information and opportunities to explore science and technology in our lives during these challenging times. Our goal is to provide trusted resources to help you stay safe, make science-informed decisions and have ‘questing’ activities to enjoy together at home.  This site will be updated weekly on Mondays.  If you have questions, requests, or suggestions, please let us know!

June 1, 2020

 

You may have noticed patterns in flowers, leaves, and trees when walking through your neighborhood and parks. Fifth-grade students from Marylin Avenue Elementary School sent in pictures of patterns in nature that caught their eye. We include some of their photos in this week’s issue of Quest@Home.

Does a positive antibody test result mean you are protected from future infection?  Learn what we know today about antibody testing in a recent San Francisco Chronicle report.   A New York Times article reports on the current percentage of the population with antibodies and what is needed to reach herd immunity.  A strategy for learning more about the spread of COVID-19 that includes serology testing and what a positive or negative test result means has been developed by the CDC

Antibody testing is critical to understanding the full scope of COVID-19, but are the results of available tests reliable?  You can dive deeper into what current antibody tests show in a recent article in Discover.  

Each week we highlight a world-class science center and this week we selected the Oakland Zoo.  Resources and educational activities bring the zoo to you through virtual visits on their webpage and Facebook page.

If you are looking for hand-on-learning activities for home Maker Camp offers ideas to make, create, and share.

Don’t miss the New York Times article on the SpaceX launch which includes dramatic photos of The Crew Dragon capsule as well as a brief visual timeline of past launches.  See retired astronaut, Jose Hernandez, talk about the upcoming launch in a Fox News segment.

Below are new and previously recommended resources for home activities, coronavirus information, ways to engage in science exploration from home, and more.

Learn at Home
NEW! Virtually Maker Faire

Tools2Thrive A website devoted to maintaining our mental health, coping with stress & creating healthy living routines

Museum of Science+Industry, Chicago  Explore a world class museum with a special section that focuses on learning at home.

Tuesday Tales Science stories for young children, provided by the Museum of Science & Industry, Chicago

Learning Resources at the National Air & Space Museum A large collection of K-12 material, including STEM 30, a 30 minute video podcast for middle school students

Lawrence Livermore National Lab Distance Learning – David Rakestraw’s high school physic’s curriculum using cell phone sensors

What Engineers Do When Quarantined – Check out this creative use of toilet paper and share with us your own version

Golden Gate Audubon Society – Local birding resources and locations as we enter the peak of the spring migration season

Enjoying Spring from Quarantine – Learn how to enjoy nature and birding during social distancing with a recent episode of Science Friday

KQED At-Home Learning – Learning resources for children and youth affected by school closures

Bring Science Home – Scientific American’s extensive educational activities page

Coronavirus Science Activities – Engaging ways to learn about viruses and human interactions from the Exploratorium

Talking to Children about the Coronavirus – Suggestions from the CDC (English and Spanish)

Handwashing – A short video demonstrating effects of improper handwashing from Science Buddies

Mystery Science – Free K-5 science lessons and activities by grade (English and Spanish)

Engage with Apps

Earth Challenge 2020  Join a citizen’s science initiative to collect valuable data using an app on your phone.  The project focuses on air quality & plastics pollution.

Timelooper – Visit East Bay Regional Parks virtually

Phyphox – Access all the sensors on your smart phone to collect data and turn it into a mobile physics lab

eBird – Learn about birds in your backyard or find current birding hotspots with this comprehensive birding website and app, Sycamore Grove Park and Shadow Cliffs Regional Park

UCSF Eureka Research App – Help fight COVID-19 and contribute to research about the infection, use Study Key “COVID-19”

iNaturalist – Connect with scientists around the world to help identify plants and animals in your community

Google Science Journal – A science notebook and set of tools for conducting interesting experiments with your phone

Globe Observer – Join an international network of community scientists to learn about our environment and the changing climate

Original Content by Quest Scientists

Ask a Scientist – Inviting all elementary students to submit challenging or puzzling science questions to Quest scientists

Requested – For this first episode, Caleb Cheung interviews Dr. David Rakestraw about his work responding to the COVID -19 pandemic at the Lawrence Livermore National Labs (LLNL) and his development of a high school physics course using cell phone sensors

Final Update May 11! The Coronavirus Pandemic: How is Alameda County Doing? – Tracking data for Alameda County and the surrounding area to provide our region with a local analysis of the progression of the pandemic, by Rick Stulen, Quest Director

Local Makers Helping Frontline COVID-19 Workers – Learn how Quest Advisory Board Member June Yu and her husband Brian McGinnis designed a DIY 3D printed face mask for health workers

Understanding the Math behind the COVID-19 Challenge – A deep dive into the mathematics behind the pandemic and analysis to make the data more meaningful, by Alan Burnham, Quest’s Founder and CFO

A Q&A with David Galas – Learn about the origins of the quick-turnaround test that is now in production for COVID-19

Learning About Coronavirus
NEW! Antibody Testing – Big Questions Remain   SF Chronicle – The technology needed for antibody testing is still largely unproven. a significant number of commercial tests were performing poorly (May 9)

NEW! COVID-19 Serology Surveillance Strategy  CDC: an overarching strategy for learning more about how many people have been infected with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and how it is spreading through the U.S. population (May 17)

NEW! Can Antibody Test Results be Trusted  Discover: The tests are crucial to understanding the full scope of the COVID-19 pandemic. But right now, the results aren’t reliable. (May 22)

COVID-19 Projections Latest data on infection & tracing testing in California.  How much are hospital resources being used: ICU patients & ventilators

COVID Testing insights!  This Johns Hopkins University Initiative provides a clear understanding & the limitations of the two types of COVID-19 tests: viral and serology.

Group screening” for COVID Describes a new way to get more testing done by pooling diagnostic samples and using a little math, lets more people get tested with fewer assays

Contact Tracing Explained  A Time magazine article describes how public health workers will track COVID-19. Using insights gained from Ebola & other outbreaks, tracking can be an effective tool in stopping COVID-19’s spread.

Contact Tracing Explained  Describes how California will deploy up to 10,000 contact tracers across the state.

What is Quarantine Fatigue & what can you do about it – Are you getting tired of being house-bound…you’re not alone.

“Mobility Changes”  How are people moving around as country opens up?…a special report (pdf)

Bay Area progress towards opening up – How are Bay Area counties moving into Stage 2?

The Lockdowns worked…what’s next? – Exit strategies around the world.

Resilience Roadmap – Governor Newsom modified the state-wide order permitting counties to move into Stage 2

Bay Area Health Orders Remain in Effect – loosening restrictions

Contact Tracing 101 – How it works, who could get hired, and why it’s so critical in fighting coronavirus

Antibody Research – What antibody studies can tell you and more importantly, what they can’t

Interview with Paul Romer – Why the American Economy Can’t Reopen Without Widespread Coronavirus Testing

Why are viruses hard to kill? – Virologists explain why these tiny parasites are so tough to treat

Testing Major League Baseball employees – Stanford researchers test MLB employees for COVID-19 antibodies

Llamas and COVID-19 – Antibodies from llamas could help in fight against COVID-19

San Francisco Chronicle Coronavirus Tracker – Updated normalized data for the Bay Area and California

Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation – Forecasting the COVID-19 containment strategy in the U.S. and each of the 50 states

Ex-astronaut José Hernández has NASA-approved tips – How to stay sane in isolation and communicate in a crowded environment, via NBC

How some cities ‘flattened the curve’ during the 1918 flu pandemic – Social distancing isn’t a new idea, it saved thousands of American lives during the last great pandemic, via National Geographic

Playing point on bad intel – Stanford basketball great Kate Starbird fights coronavirus misinformation as a University of Washington researcher, via East Bay Times

What immunity to Covid-19 might actually mean – How your body will try to save you from the new coronavirus, via Vox

Reusing and decontaminating N95 masks – how hospitals can decontaminate and reuse scarce N95 masks to fight COVID-19, via Stanford News

How the Bay Area Came to Lead the Nation into Shelter in Place – Listen to an interview with Dr. Sara Cody who is on the forefront of fighting the COVID-19 outbreak, via KQED

National Daily Health Survey – Help Stanford Medicine collect data to track and fight COVID-19

Worldometer – Extensive site on global COVID-19 data with normalized statistics for comparison between regions

California Hospital Data – Infections and hospitalization data by county for California, via CA Open Data

COVID Near You – Contribute and view publicly reported data across the country. Source: Harvard Medical School

Coronavirus facts, myths and information – Answers to common questions from the public. Source: CNN

Why outbreaks like coronavirus spread exponentially – Understanding exponential growth and why we need to flatten the curve. Source: Washington Post

How to Clean Your Home for Coronavirus – Cleaning advice and warnings about chemical reactions from an expert. Source: Vox

Science Center of the Week

NEW Oakland Zoo  Visit our local zoo virtually to learn about the animals and their stories via the zoo’s webpage and Facebook page

Museum of Science+Industry, Chicago  Explore a world class museum with a special section that focuses on learning at home.

National Air & Space Museum A vast collection of science related exhibits, including K-12 learning resources and STEM 30, a video podcast for middle school students.

Museum of Science – Visit one of the oldest science museums in the country located in Boston..

History of Science Museum – Learn about artifacts, stories, and the history behind how science has developed and evolved over time at this unique museum at the University of Oxford.

National Museum of Natural History – Explore a museum known for an extensive collection of past and present animals specimens from around the world

Exploratorium – Take a virtual tour and try out home versions of their exhibits (snacks)

California Academy of Sciences – Visit their Academy@Home page to see animal webcams, activities, live streams and more

Earth Day

Earth Challenge 2020  Join a citizen’s science initiative to collect valuable data using an app on your phone.  The project focuses on air quality & plastics pollution.

Timelooper – Visit East Bay Regional Parks virtually

Phyphox – Access all the sensors on your smart phone to collect data and turn it into a mobile physics lab

eBird – Learn about birds in your backyard or find current birding hotspots with this comprehensive birding website and app, Sycamore Grove Park and Shadow Cliffs Regional Park

UCSF Eureka Research App – Help fight COVID-19 and contribute to research about the infection, use Study Key “COVID-19”

iNaturalist – Connect with scientists around the world to help identify plants and animals in your community

Google Science Journal – A science notebook and set of tools for conducting interesting experiments with your phone

Globe Observer – Join an international network of community scientists to learn about our environment and the changing climate

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