The innovation engine for new materials

Resources for Teachers

UCSB ScienceLine
MRL's "Ask-a-Scientist" project enables K-12 students to directly ask expert UCSB researchers their science questions. Topics include astronomy, marine biology, physics, computers, materials science, and earth science, among many others!

Bio-inspired Materials

MRL Youtube Channel
Classroom presentations, scientist interviews, explorations of Materials Science topics, teacher curriculum projects and more!  Also available on TeacherTube

Ask a Scientist

In this new project, K-12 students interview UCSB scientists about their career, their interest in science, or their specific research experiences. The scientists answer the questions on camera, adding a more personal face to the interaction.

Materials For Inquiry

 These are activities which are commonly introduced at our annual science teacher workshop.  The resources include an introduction, suggested activity, discussion topics, resources (including sources for materials) and associated CA state teaching standards.



Wearable Materials

This is a set of materials science related activities centering on our primary interface with our environment – clothing! Topics include Aerogel, Phase Change Materials, Piezoelectric materials and “Assorted” wearable materials (including super absorbent fibers, temperature sensitive cloth, suction cup tape and non-slip surface). Read More»


Classroom appropriate activities covering this exciting recent breakthrough in materials science which also can apply towards basic electronic circuits curricula. Topics include graphene exfoliation, “business card flashlight” and graphite potentiometer. Read More»

Photonic Crystals

Photonic crystals are an engaging materials science topic. This module includes explorations of natural photonics, synthetic photonics and thin films. Read More»

Making Stuff

A PBS feature on materials science with accompanying hands on activities and demonstrations. Resources include educator resources, a series overview and links to individual episodes and MRL Making Stuff resources list. Read More»

Lotus Effect

An activity with exploration and discussion of the properties, advantages and microstructure of hydrophobic materials. Read More»
Please note accompanying video on our YouTube channel

Ecological Impacts of Climate Change

Activities released during our 2010 annual science teacher workshop centering on climate change topics. Read More»

Ocean Acidification

Activities released during our 2010 annual science teacher workshop centering on climate change topics. Read More»

Alternative Energy

A set of activities centered around solar technology released during our 2010 science teacher workshop. Read More»