Science Alive

K-12 Teacher Professional Development and Curriculum

COVID 19 Update for Green Boxes & STEM Kits

Green Boxes & STEM Kits are available for educators over the summer break! Click on the “Reserve a Green Box” button below to browse the titles and register for a box.

We will be implementing health and safety guidelines to ensure the safety of educators and students, as well as our staff, when handling Green Boxes. The pandemic situation in Nevada is evolving and our Green Box availability and protocols are subject to change dependent upon institutional, state, or school directives.

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Green Boxes

The Science Alive program aims to leverage the cutting edge research and 21st technology being conducted and developed at DRI into tangible classroom resources for Pre-K – 12 teachers throughout the state.

Green Boxes are self-contained teaching kits that provide educators with a unit of lesson plans along with all of the supplies necessary to conduct each activity. Every box employs active learning strategies to engage students in hands-on projects that foster critical thinking and problem solving skills. These standards-based lessons are designed to enhance student literacy in various STEM subject areas, from water conservation in the Desert Southwest to the environmental impact associated with natural resource extraction. Best of all, this resource is offered FREE of cost to any formal or informal educator in Nevada!

Reserve a Green Box

High quality STEM units delivered right to your classroom.

Rent. Teach. Repeat.

1. Reserve a Green Box that meets your needs. Our diverse inventory of grade and grade band-specific lesson plans support teachers in their implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Click here to reserve your Green Box today.

2. Implement entire unit or choose to augment your own. There is no wrong way to use a Green Box. Each kit is designed as a complete unit, but can be piecemealed in order to enhance existing curriculum. Feel free to share this resource with colleagues while you have use of it, too!

3. Return and get another! Not only can Green Boxes be rented free of charge, but they are conveniently delivered right to your school. Once your reservation period has expired, simply pack up the kit and send it back to us.

What are Green Boxes?

Green Boxes are traveling teaching kits that encompass instructional material focusing on applied science, 21st century technology, environmental science and STEM topic areas. Each kit provides educators with detailed lesson plans, consumable and non-consumable materials and a variety of teaching aids (e.g. worksheets, game pieces, etc.).

infographic describing Green Boxes

What is a Green Box?

Who are Green Boxes for?

Green Boxes are for any PreK-12 educator within Nevada, including those affiliated with informal education groups or homeschool organizations. During the academic year, priority will be given to schools within a Nevada school district (i.e WCSD, CCSD, etc.). Please note that we are unable to accommodate any Green Box request that will serve less than ten students.

How can I reserve a Green Box today?

Visit our Reserve a Green Box page to register for the box of your choice. Our inventory is organized by grade band to make navigation a breeze. Once you find the kit that works for you, select the “Book Now” option. You’ll be directed to a brief registration form that should take no more than five minutes to complete. You should receive an email confirming your reservation. We have four predefined terms during which you will have use of the kit. Check this Green Boxes web page to find current dates. Once the box is reserved, you will get a confirmation email.

There are no Green Boxes available. What can I do?

Green Boxes are available to reserve on a first-come, first-serve basis per term. We regularly release new boxes or will have someone cancel a box. Please sign up for our newsletter and follow us on Facebook to be notified of availability.

What can I expect to find in a Green Box?

All units come with a curriculum binder, a USB stick with all of the worksheets and teaching aids, and instructions on how to return the unit. Each box will have different consumable and non-consumable items. These range from books, cameras, GPS units, balances, microscopes and other scientific items to paper, glue, and teaching aids like pictures and games.

Infographic showing contents of a Green Box

What can I expect to find in a Green Box?


How is a non-consumable item different from a consumable item?

A non-consumable item is something that an educator will need to perform the lesson, but once it is used it can be used again. Examples of a non-consumable items are: books, sand, scales, some cups, markers, crayons, glue.

  • A consumable item is something that an educator will need to perform the lesson, but once it is used it cannot be used again. Examples of consumable items are: plastic wrap, paper, candy, baking soda.
  • There are some items that are both consumable and non-consumable. Chalk can be used many times, but will eventually no longer be usable. Plastic cups can be dried and returned to us.
  • If an item isn’t used or broken, please send it back to us.

Some of the items in the Green Box I recieved are missing or broken. What can I do?

Items can get damaged during shipment or inadvertently lost/broken in the classroom. Not to worry! Please help us prepare to replace these items by filling out the comments form and let us know so that we can order more.

If you are missing items, it may be because those items are something that cannot be shipped. You will have to come to our campus and pick up those items. Please check the materials list in the curriculum and contact us if you need to come pick up those items.

Do the Green Boxes support any standards?

Yes! All of our Green Box units can support teachers in their implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). With feedback gathered from teachers and education specialists across the state, we are currently modifying several of our instructional units to be more in line with NGSS.

Can I get training on these boxes?

Science Alive does not provide specific training on individual boxes, but our workshops and trainings will usually incorporate part of one unit. These trainings rotate on a regular basis, please check out the Training tab to find out about upcoming opportunities.

How are Green Boxes made?

Infographic showing how a green box is created

How is a Green Box created?


To leave an evaluation of the effectiveness of Science Alive’s Green Box program, please continue to our evaluation form.

Your ideas matter.

Is there a performance expectation that you’re having trouble building towards? Are there particular topics you’d like to see highlighted in a Green Box unit? We’d love to hear from you!

Science Alive strives to provide Nevada’s educators with high-quality, relevant teaching materials. All suggestions will be taken into consideration as we continue to grow our inventory of resources.

To leave a suggestion for the Green Box program, please use our Suggestion Box form.


Mackenzie Peterson
Education Program and Curriculum Development Lead 


Desert Research Institute
2215 Raggio Parkway
Reno, NV 89512


Office of Education