Supplemental Kit Materials

Educators may find it useful to review the supplemental materials before introducing lessons to your students/class.

Sound Level Meter information
Some lessons recommend that students use a sound level meter (SLM). We recommend downloading the Free National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Sound Level Meter for iOS available here: 

Read about the app here:

You may also be interested in the blog post about the accuracy of smartphone SLM apps:

You can also read the articles published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America (JASA)

Evaluation of smartphone sound measurement applications & Evaluation of smartphone sound measurement applications (apps) using external microphones—A follow-up study

Process Skills
All of the lessons include process skills. These are skills that students will practice while learning about acoustics. Here, you can read the definitions for each of the process skill terms.

Download the Process Skill definitions: Word Document or PDF

Basic Skills

Observing – a statement made using the senses (Taste, touch, sight, sound, and smell). There are two kinds of observations:

Quantitative – Using numbers to observe
Qualitative – Using descriptive words to observe

Inferring – drawing a tentative conclusion based on prior knowledge. An inference is an interpretation of observations.’

Measuring – quantitative (with numbers) observations

Communicating – giving explanations of observations.

Graphically (line graph, bar graph, histogram)

Classifying – arranging objects or information by using their attributes

Binary – sorting into two groups
Multistage – set of binary sorts resulting in one unique attribute for each object
Serial – sorting objects in a logical order (size, alphabetical, etc)

Predicting – making statements about future outcomes based on prior knowledge or experience. This is a forecast for what might happen.

Comparing – Noticing the similarities or differences between the objects to be compared.

Integrated Skills

Hypothesizing – a suggested explanation based on background knowledge.

Making models – creating a visual representation of an event or object

Data collection

Data tables – quantitative data in chart form
Graphing – a representation of data


Controlling variables

Dangerous Decibels Materials

Some lessons from the Dangerous Decibels Educator Training Workshop have been included in the Teacher Activity Kit. Additional activities can be found in the Educator Resource Guide and on the Dangerous decibels Website:

Educator Resource Guide – Complete set (105 pages) of Dangerous Decibels materials

Materials – Introductions to materials used for Dangerous Decibels activities

Physics of Sound – Description of the physics of sound presented in a straight-forward, conceptual level. This can also be assigned as reading for more advanced students.

Modifying Lessons – An excerpt from the Educator Resource Guid about adapting lessons for different grade levels.

Videos demonstrating how to use kit materials with lessons plans. All videos are password protected. The password is provided in the Teacher Activity Kit. If you received a kit prior to 2017 you will need to contact for a password.