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Free Teaching Resources from the Federal Government


The federal government provides access to free teacher resources through various agencies. They can be accessed using the Internet and some of them are listed below. Grade level, topic areas, resource types and standards information is shared when identified by the website. 

Created by Jennifer Kohn-Palecek

Government Publishing Office (GPO)

This site uses a Ben Franklin character to share government information for kids at 3 different levels including: Apprentice - Ages 4-8, Journeyperson – Ages 9-13, and Master - Ages 14 and up.

Grade Level(s): PreK-12th

Topic or Subject Area(s): Branches of Government, How Laws are Made, Symbols, Songs & Structures,  Election Process, Historical Documents, Federal vs. State Government, and Federally Recognized Tribes, Ben Franklin, U.S. Government Printing Office, Federal Library Depository Program

Resource Type(s): Lesson Plan on using Ben’s Guide, Infographic, Glossary, Games, Timeline

Associated Standards: Standards for the 21st-Century Learner, AASL/Common Core State Standards Crosswalk

National Science Foundation (NSI)

This National Science Foundation is a federal agency that promotes, supports, and funds scientific research (not including medical science).

Grade Level(s):  K-12th

Topic or Subject Areas:  Arctic & Antarctic, Astronomy & Astrophysics, Biology, Chemistry & Materials, Computing, Earth & Environment, Education, Engineering, Mathematics, Nanoscience, People & Society, Physics                     

Resource Type(s):  Lesson Plans, Various Web Resources

Associated Standard(s):  None identified

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

This U.S. scientific agency shares information on climate, weather, oceans and coasts and how to manage ecosystems and resources.
Grade Level(s): K-12th

Topic or Subject Area(s): Citizen Science, Ocean & Coasts, Weather & Atmosphere, Climate, Marine Life, Freshwater, Elementary Science, Data Resources for Educators, Education at Home

Resource Type(s): Lesson Plans, Resource Collections, Workbooks, Videos, Slideshow Presentation, Games, Coloring Book

Associated Standard(s):  Common Core (CCSS), Next Generation Science Standards, Ocean Literacy Principles, Climate Literacy Principles, National Education Standards, Education in the Environment Initiative Principles and Concepts

United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

The EPA is a U.S. federal agency whose mission is to protect human and environmental health through the study of environmental issues, developing and enforcing regulations, awarding grants and more.

Grade Level(s):  K-12th

Topic or Subject Area(s):  Air, Climate Change, Ecosystems, Energy, Health, Waste, Water                

Resource Type(s):  Lesson Plans, Various Web Resources, Homework Resources, Project Ideas

Associated Standard(s):  Next Generation Science Standards, Common Core State Standards (CCSS)

U.S. National Park Service (NPS)

The National Park Service oversees more than 400 national parks throughout the United States. The NPS works to preserve historic sites and also creates, maintains and provides access to various recreational spaces.

Grade Level(s): K-12th

Topic or Subject Area(s): Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies

Resource Type(s): Lesson Plans, Primary Sources, Posters, Videos, Activity Books, Virtual Field Trips, Maps, Distance Learning/Virtual Resources

Associated Standard(s):  Common Core State Standards (CCSS)

United States Mint

The U.S. Mint manufactures and distributes circulating coins, precious metal, collectible coins, as well as national medals.

Grade Level(s): K-12th

Topic or Subject Area(s): Math, Science, Social Studies, Language Arts, Technology, Art, Music, Economics, Drama

Resource Type(s): Lesson Plans, Maps, Videos, Games, Coloring Book

Standard(s): Common Core State Standards (CCSS) 

The Smithsonian

The Smithsonian Institution consists of the National Zoo and museums, buildings, galleries, gardens, which are identified below by name:

Anacostia Community Museum, Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Arts and Industries Building, Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, Freer Gallery of Art, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, National Air and Space Museum, National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, National Museum of African American History and Culture, National Museum of African Art, National Museum of American History, National Museum of the American Indian, National Museum of the American Indian’s George Gustav Heye Center, National Museum of Natural History, National Portrait Gallery, National Postal Museum, Renwick Gallery, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Smithsonian Institution Building

Each entity listed above offer various activities and resources for different grade levels and support different types of standards. The information listed in the following section gives information for the teaching resources that are offered by the National Museum of Natural History. Please see the website for additional information.

Grade Level(s):  K-12

Topic or Subject Area(s):  Anthropology, Earth Science, Engineering and Technology, Gems & Minerals, Geology, Life Science, Paleontology, Physical Science, Science & Nature, Social Studies, Science Literacy Resources,

Resource Type(s):  Featured Collections, Hands-On Activities, Posters and Worksheets, Subject Guides  

Standard(s):  National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies, Next Generation Science Standards

Library of Congress (LOC)

The Library of Congress is the largest library in the world and it officially supports the research needs members of Congress.

Grade Level(s): 3rd - 12th

Topic or Subject Area(s):  African American History, American History, American Indian History, American Revolution, Arts & Culture, City & Regional History, Civil War and Reconstruction, Culture & Folklore, Government, Immigration & Ethnic Heritage, Law & Politics, Maps & Geography, News - Journalism & Advertising, Oral Histories, Photographs - Prints and Posters, Poetry and Literature, Science, Sports - Recreation & Leisure, Technology & Business, Women's History, World History and Cultures, World War I

Resource Type(s): Lesson Plans, Primary Resources (Multiple Formats), Virtual Workshops

Standard(s): Common Core State Standards, Social Studies, Science, Library, Music

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

NASA is the government agency that oversees the United States space program and conducts research relating to aeronautics and aerospace.

Grade Level(s): K-12

Topic or Subject Area(s): Careers, Earth Science, Engineering, History, Mathematics, Physical Science, Space Science, Spanish, Technology

Resource Type(s): STEM Lesson Plans/Activities, Educator Guides, Play and Learn, Videos
Interactive Multimedia, Posters, Mobile Apps, Image Galleries, Websites

Standard(s):  Next Generation Science Standards, Common Core Math Standards

United States Census Bureau (USCB)

The Census Bureau is an agency that collects information about the people living in the United States, as well as data about the economy.

Grade Level(s): K-12  

Topic or Subject Area(s):  Statistics in Schools Program, Math, History/Social Studies, Geography, Sociology, English, Home and Distance Learning Activities

Resource Type(s):  Constitution Day, Data Access Tools, Fun Facts, Games, Historical Documents and Images, Learn About the Decennial Census, Maps, Monthly Highlights, Videos, Visualizations, Warm-Up Activities

Associated Standard(s):  Geography for Life: National Geography Standards, UCLA National Standards for History: U.S. History Content Standards and Historical Thinking Standards, Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects, Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and for Mathematical Practice, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics’ Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, American Statistical Association’s Guidelines for Assessment and Instruction in Statistics, Education, American Sociological Association’s National Standards for High School Sociology

  • Last Updated: Oct 17, 2023 9:13 AM
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