Science Passages and Research-Based Question Sets


Kindergarten Reading Passages & Question Sets [top]

"Water" – Describes the difference between water and ice cubes and also suggests an experiment that readers can try [Lexile 370]

"Spiders" – Introduces different types of spiders and explains how spiders can be helpful to people [Lexile 380]

"Deserts" – Provides information about hot and cold deserts and what they have in common [Lexile 570]


1st Grade Reading Passages & Question Sets [top]

Note:  The grade level of these passages is based on Common Core Lexile reading levels. Therefore, certain passages are appropriate for multiple grades.

"Water" – Describes the difference between water and ice cubes and also suggests an experiment that the readers can try [Lexile 370]

"Spiders" – Introduces different types of spiders and explains how spiders can be helpful to people [Lexile 380]

"Stormy Weather" – Provides information about hurricane season, the dangers of hurricanes, and how hurricanes form [Lexile 420]

"Volcanoes" – Describes how a volcano erupts with information on the main parts of a volcano [Lexile 420]


2nd Grade Reading Passages & Question Sets [top]

"Amazing Animals" – Defines reptiles, mammals, and amphibians and describes animals from each of these three groups, including chameleons, cheetahs, and American bullfrogs [Lexile 590]

"Ants in Action" – Illustrates how and where ants live by examining three types of ants [Lexile 450]

"Arctic Life" – Explains the biological processes and natural methods of walruses, polar bears, and snowy owls to survive the cold Arctic [Lexile 720]

"Awake after Dark" – Discusses the ways bats, owls, and flying squirrels live nocturnally by highlighting a special attribute of each animal [Lexile 480]

"Dinosaur World" – Describes the way scientists classify dinosaurs based on their diet and provides basic information about fossil discovery [Lexile 470]

"Discover the Rain Forest!" – Details the four layers of the rain forest and highlights a few animals that live in those layers [Lexile 600]

"Explore Space" – Describes the sun and planets of our solar system [Lexile 450]

"Life in the Ocean" – Provides information about the three zones, or layers, of the ocean and some of the animals that live in these zones [Lexile 700]

"Penguin Power" – Describes the abilities, growth, habitat, and special attributes of penguins [Lexile 500]

"Space Junk" – Discusses the problem of debris in space and the efforts of scientists to lessen the amount of overall space junk [Lexile 690]


3rd Grade Reading Passages & Question Sets [top]

"A Final Journey" – Reports on the improvements and prospects of the Hubble Space Telescope [Lexile 630]

"Cloning Around" – Presents both sides of the debate regarding the practice of cloning [Lexile 610]

"On Shaky Ground" – Describes the dangers polar bears face in their natural habitat in northern Alaska and the U.S. government’s response to this possible endangerment [Lexile 660]

"Back from the Brink" – Provides information about the increased population numbers of a few species after years of protection [Lexile 780]

"Big Bird Found" – Gives a look into the discovery of fossils of the extinct species known as terror bird, the largest bird ever known [Lexile 750]

"Blue Bloods of the Sea" – Explains the effort to protect horseshoe crabs from the dangers that threaten their population as these crabs help doctors fight disease [Lexile 960]

"Coral Reef Goes Digital" – Describes the formation of coral reefs, the benefits they contribute to nature and humans, the dangers reefs face from people and natural disasters, and the rescue efforts to save reefs [Lexile 930]

"Eruption!" – Provides information about the imminent threat of the Colima Volcano in Mexico and the safety measures prepared [Lexile 820]

"Mohawk Monkey Discovered" – Details the discovery and traits of the new monkey species found in Tanzania called the highland mangabey [Lexile 730]


4th Grade Reading Passages & Question Sets [top]

"Alzheimer's Disease: The Mind Robber" – Presents ways to cope with an Alzheimer’s patient and discusses symptom-controlling treatments of Alzheimer’s [Lexile 760]

"Elephant Tales" – Explores the multitude of sounds elephants use to communicate with each other, including infrasound, and the risks that have endangered Asian and African elephants [Lexile 730]

"Frozen Home" – Focuses on the formation of two icebergs in the Weddell Sea near Antarctica and some animals, plants, and nutrients that make up an ecosystem around the icebergs [Lexile 760]

"Loopy Loops" – Provides information about Saturn including findings about Saturn’s rings from NASA’s spacecraft Cassini [Lexile 740]

"Monster Meals" – Provides both sides of the debate from scientists on whether the Tyrannosaurus rex was a hunter or a scavenger [Lexile 770]

"Reefs at Risk" – Describes the causes of coral reef destruction, the formation of reefs, and the methods currently employed to protect reefs [Lexile 780]

"Storm Chasers" – Explains how a hurricane forms and the job of Hurricane Hunters, a part of the U.S. Air Force Reserve that flies into hurricanes to collect data about these storms [Lexile 690]

"The Science of Fun!" – Describes the scientific concepts of the center of gravity and Isaac Newton’s first law of motion wihtin the context of circus stunts [Lexile 760]

"The Scoop on ADHD" – Discusses ADHD and strategies for dealing with the disorder [Lexile 820]

"Tiger Tale" – Depicts the dangers tigers that are headed toward possible extinction face in their habitats in Asia and the goal of world leaders to save tigers and increase their populations [Lexile 680]


5th Grade Reading Passages & Question Sets [top]

"A Distant Relative" – Focuses on the discovery of the Toumai skull estimated to be 6 to 7 million years old and the debate among scientists as to whether the skull is linked to humans or apes [Lexile 850]

"A New World!" – Compares and contrasts Earth to the exoplanet known as Gliese 581c, the most Earthlike exoplanet discovered so far [Lexile 840]

"Asteroid Attack!" – Explains different asteroids and the possible threats posed by asteroids that may come into contact with Earth [Lexile 840]

"Astral Bodies" – Explores the challenges astronauts face in space from the lack of gravity and the strategies they use for maintaining basic hygiene, health, and fitness [Lexile 880]

"Focus: Understanding How the Brain Works" – Gives an overview of the means by which the brain is constantly remaking itself to process and retain information, the problems and diseases that can develop in the brain, and tips for taking care of it [Lexile 870]

"Hard Rocks" – Illustrates the creation and dispersal of diamonds to different parts of the earth and the measurement of diamonds compared to other minerals [Lexile 860]

"Meet the Microbes" – Identifies the harmless and disease-producing germs in the four categories of microbes (viruses, bacteria, fungi, and protozoa) as well as how harmful germs cause disease, how the body naturally fights against them, and how to reduce the chance of getting sick [Lexile 850]

"Oh No! Volcano" – Explains the perils of vog, ash, and lava from a volcanic eruption to all nearby life-forms by examining notable volcanic events in history [Lexile 870]

"Reef Rescue" – Details the benefits of coral reefs and the Australian government’s efforts to rescue the Great Barrier Reef from threats causing it stress and damage [Lexile 830]

"Rise Up" – Discusses how the nervous system works by examining the successful operation and treatment of baseball pitcher Rob Summers after having been rendered paraplegic [Lexile 920]


6th Grade Reading Passages & Question Sets [top]

"Arms Race" – Examines the exaggerated features, such as horns and antlers, of animals and their relation to the two kinds of sexual selection: female choice and male competition [Lexile 950]

"Buzz Off" – Looks into the pros and cons of genetically engineering mosquitoes so as to stop the spread of tropical diseases like the dengue fever [Lexile 1010]

"Cracking Up" – Describes the geological process that is slowly building a new ocean in eastern Africa [Lexile 980]

"Energy Control" – Focuses on the importance and functions of the thyroid in regulating the body’s energy and the types of common diseases that can infect the thyroid [Lexile 950]

"First Life" – Explores the work of scientist Robert Hazen who is studying how life forms may have arisen on Earth through his experiments with minerals and extreme heat [Lexile 970]

"Heart Sick" – Provides the alarming statistics on the high premature death rate from fibrosing cardiomyopathy of gorillas in captivity and the continuing research into the cause of this heart disease [Lexile 1040]

"Lake of Fire" – Describes volcanologist Ken Sims’s field study at Nyiragongo, an active volcano in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, to collect data for predicting future eruptions [Lexile 1000]

"Survivor" – Illustrates the intellectual advantages of the Cro-Magnons for outlasting the Neanderthals by surviving through a worldwide disaster, freezing climates, and an arduous lifestyle [Lexile 980]

"Holy Cow" – Examines the issue of cows producing a significant amount of methane that contributes to the Earth’s pollution problem as well as some potential solutions [Lexile 950]

"Ice Picks" – Explores how the IceCube, a telescope buried beneath the Antarctic ice, is used to detect subatomic particles called neutrinos as a way of gaining understanding about the universe, including dark matter and the causes of gamma-ray bursts [Lexile 1000]