Serendip is an independent site partnering with faculty at multiple colleges and universities around the world. Happy exploring!

Final Project for Inquiry Institute 2009

Instructions for the Final Project:

  • Prepare a 5 minute presentation of one of the lessons or topics that were covered in the Inquiry Institute.
  • A good focus for a final project is a lesson or topic that most surprised you and/or learned the most from.
  • Describe the lesson or topic as your understood it.
  • Discuss what you learned or re-discovered.  If you are discussing a particular lesson discuss if, and how, you intend to use it in your classroom

 

  • Please type an outline or reflection of your thoughts in the Forum below.

 

Comments

Syreeta Bennett's picture

  In kindergarten, the

 

In kindergarten, the curriculum starts with the child and expands to the world. It starts with the fives senses and moves to trees. I like the connection of the tree and the young child.  As a tree,  the  young child grows physically, and mentally. Their curiousity blooms and like a tree,  the child has basic needs to allow their metacognitive skills to flourish. It is our job as educators to water and feed them as a gardener does.

I looked at the curriculum in Science, Math, Literacy, and Social Studies because they are standards that I have to teach in order to keep administrators off my back. I then look for common strands across each subject and thought how could I do an inquiry on plants.  I would do a KWL as a pre-assessment. I like KWL because it allows me to see what they know and what questions they have.  Then using their questions, I would develop lessons and space(physical and cognitive) that allows them to answer their questions.

Since it is based on their questions, this unit is fluid.   In science the students are studying the five senses and trees. The students can use their five senses to observe a tree and then different types of trees. They can also compare themselves to trees, comparing their basic needs and parts to that of a tree. They can also look at patterns they see in nature.  The studetns are doing patterns in math and Science so I can touch another standard.

In math, students are expected to describe different attributes of a object. They can achieve this by looking at leaves and fruit that they bring in. They can  practice sorting as well. I also want to bring trees to a smaller scale by studying plants in the class. I have described a lesson I want to do with my class in an earlier blog. In the lesson I want to grow plants and change variables, (light, water, air, and soil). In this lesson they are going to measure plants using nonstandard units and eventually standard units. They can compare the lengths of different plants as the variable change.  They can show what they learned and their data though bar graphs, journaling, a five senses report, etc.

In the beginning of the year students are studying Africa and its natural resources. I saw this as a perfect opportunity to continue our exploration of trees. They can study trees in the different regions of Africa, and how different environments affect tree growth. In literacy one component of  the curriculum is looking at animals. The children can look at animals who habitat is trees. We can discuss the food that trees produce that animals eat.  I was also thinking of doing a herb garden in the room, and using their multi-senseory skills they can explore the herbs.   

I want to stress this is how how an inquiry of trees could look like in my classroom and still teach what "they need to Know". However, it could look different based on their questions and ideas. This requires me to be flexible, patient and willing to devote time and resources to promote inquiry. I also have to be willing to take risk and collaborate with my own peers.  Inqury is not just  engaging the kids in their questions and thoughts but it has to be meaningful for me as well. It requires me to think about my own meta-cognive skills but also think about how do I teach.

 

Edward Bujak's picture

Virtual Manipulatives in an Inquiry-Based Curriculum

 

Virtual Manipulatives in an Inquiry-Based Curriculum

 

Final Project

Inquiry Institute 2009 – Bryn Mawr College

 

 

Ed Bujak

 

Screencasts:

#1 - intro (basically this document)  (4:39 minutes) <-- CLICK HERE (rather than read this document)

#2 - demos/models (4:41 minutes)

#3 - demo/model (continued) (4:53 minutes) - let the students loose to play, collect data, resolve conflicts, loop, present, socialize

 

 

Resources (just google “virtual manipulatives”):

 
See summary at end.

 

 

The Good and the not so good

 

Manipulatives (all kinds)

            Advantages:

            Address all Visual-Auditory-Kinesthetic-Tactile (VAKT) teaching methods

                        Provides opportunities for optional or differentiated instruction (space)

No real mistakes (conflict, but less frustration)

Safe place to play

Open process à develop strategies, manipulate, observe, collect data, loop

                        Multiple representations (PA Standards: GANV - Graphical, Analytic,

Numeric, Verbal)

                        Modeling

Visualization

Accelerate learning in things that matter high level, abstractions, synthesis, transference)

 

            Disadvantages:

                        Sometimes expensive

                        Sometimes unsafe

                        Often get lost

Sometimes huge, hard to store, limited shelf life

 

 

Virtual manipulatives (subset of above)

            Advantages:

                        Less likely to get lost or broken

                        Free

                        Safe

                        Always available (24/7) – no permissions needed – free exploration!

Visualization and sound capabilities are astounding –allowing for more inquiry, more observations, more loops

           

Disadvantages:

Usually require some type of run-time player or environment (Java, Flash, some other layer) à needs IT support to install

                        Possibly blocked by severe mechanism in school environments

 

 

How manipulative is the manipulative?

            More controls, more variation à more inquiry-based

            Student can create their own à more inquiry-based

            Adaptive technologies

 

How/Why?

Students must present – sometimes individually and sometimes in a group of 2

Each marking period a team of 2 students must present an original manipulative (cross-curricular activities are strongly encouraged)

Part of students archive portfolio

Digital content creation

Socialization – community of learners (multiple stories)

Emotional support – encourage each other

Meta-cognition – students need to reflect on their work and even have other students new to the topic comment on his/her/their work

 

 

VM brief intro in a flash:

 

National Library of Virtual Manipulatives – NLVM - http://nlvm.usu.edu

Gizmos - http://www.explorelearning.com/

MathForum - http://mathforum.org/

Mathematica – installed software  - http://www.wolfram.com/

Mathematica Demonstrations - http://demonstrations.wolfram.com/

Mathematica Wolfram Alpha - http://www.wolframalpha.com/

 

 
 
Moira Messick's picture

Moira's Final Project

My Final Project was Inspired by the Article:  “Reflections on Openess and Structure in Education.”

 

Gardening under an ONE STORY MODEL approach:

Teaching students about gardening and composting. 

Showing them effective methods then having them carry them out in the field.

Main Weaknesses:  Everything is predictable

                                    No changes in perspective

                                    No interaction among the group and the individual

                                    Few new emerging insights

 

Gardening under an INFINITE STORY MODEL approach:

Setting kids loose in the garden area and saying “go for it”

Main Weaknesses:  No successes (in gardens, compost, other content)

 

An Inquiry  Approach to This Year’s Communique Organic Garden

What learning do you want to bring with you to our sister garden?

 

My Background Story

Communique has been organically gardening for the past seven years.  We started off with the Square Foot Gardening Method and  most recently focused on colonial plantings.  This year, we are planning to collaborate with a first grade class in Philadelphia to further cultivate their naturalistic intelligences.   

We would visit them every (other) month and students would teach the children one area of the Pennsylvania environmental, nutritional, and biological standards they are most interested in...colonial plant usage, organic gardening benefits, planting procedures...

 

Gardening under the BALANCE OF STORIES MODEL approach:

Structure I will provide:  Students will be given various topics to choose from…

                                          Books, websites, and experts in the field

                                         

 

Flexibility I will provide:  Students will be able to choose an area of gardening that they are interested in pursuing.  I will provide a base story while acknowledging the classroom as a place of change.  This allows for new opportunities and value to be placed upon student’s emerging ideas.

 

Compost Crew

            Research various composting methods.

           

 

Gardening Group

            Research and implement IPM (Integrated Pest Management) methods.

                        Organic methods

                        Companion Planting

 

                        Biological control of insects and weeds

           

Focus on our garden’s plants and their contributions to colonial life.

            Culinary

            Medicinal

                        (Coneflower, goldenrod, ginseng, chamomile, peppermint.)

            Aromatherapy

            Paper Making

            Leaf Printing

            Nutrition

Natural Dyes (Autumn: goldenrod or apple bark, Winter: onion skins & pine cones, Spring:  forsythia or bracken fern)

            Other

Importance of Native Species

Creating a field guide/dichotomous key for our garden

 

 

 

Assessment

Students will work together to develop lessons and assessments for both their 7th grade classmates and the first graders based on the topic they have selected to investigate. 

The structure I will provide is to hold a brainstorming session for “Which criteria is vital for an effective rubric?” 

The flexibility comes in when they actually map out the criteria & content meaningful to the topic they have selected to pursue.

 

I am really excited about this new partnership and project. 

Thank you, Serendip!

Moira Messick

 

Moira Messick's picture

Moira's Final Project

Normal
0

false
false
false

EN-US
X-NONE
X-NONE

/* Style Definitions */
table.MsoNormalTable
{mso-style-name:"Table Normal";
mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;
mso-tstyle-colband-size:0;
mso-style-noshow:yes;
mso-style-priority:99;
mso-style-qformat:yes;
mso-style-parent:"";
mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt;
mso-para-margin-top:0in;
mso-para-margin-right:0in;
mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt;
mso-para-margin-left:0in;
line-height:115%;
mso-pagination:widow-orphan;
font-size:11.0pt;
font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif";
mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri;
mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman";
mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast;
mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri;
mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;}

My Final Project was Inspired by the Article:  “Reflections on Openess and Structure in Education.”

 

Gardening under an ONE STORY MODEL approach:

Teaching students about gardening and composting. 

Showing them effective methods then having them carry them out in the field.

Main Weaknesses:  Everything is predictable

                                    No changes in perspective

                                    No interaction among the group and the individual

                                    Few new emerging insights

 

Gardening under an INFINITE STORY MODEL approach:

Setting kids loose in the garden area and saying “go for it”

Main Weaknesses:  No successes (in gardens, compost, other content)

 

An Inquiry  Approach to This Year’s Communique Organic Garden

What learning do you want to bring with you to our sister garden?

 

My Background Story

Communique has been organically gardening for the past seven years.  We started off with the Square Foot Gardening Method and  most recently focused on colonial plantings.  This year, we are planning to collaborate with a first grade class in Philadelphia to further cultivate their naturalistic intelligences.   

We would visit them every (other) month and students would teach the children one area of the Pennsylvania environmental, nutritional, and biological standards they are most interested in...colonial plant usage, organic gardening benefits, planting procedures...

 

Gardening under the BALANCE OF STORIES MODEL approach:

Structure I will provide:  Students will be given various topics to choose from…

                                          Books, websites, and experts in the field

                                         

 

Flexibility I will provide:  Students will be able to choose an area of gardening that they are interested in pursuing.  I will provide a base story while acknowledging the classroom as a place of change.  This allows for new opportunities and value to be placed upon student’s emerging ideas.

 

Compost Crew

            Research various composting methods.

           

 

Gardening Group

            Research and implement IPM (Integrated Pest Management) methods.

                        Organic methods

                        Companion Planting

 

                        Biological control of insects and weeds

           

Focus on our garden’s plants and their contributions to colonial life.

            Culinary

            Medicinal

                        (Coneflower, goldenrod, ginseng, chamomile, peppermint.)

            Aromatherapy

            Paper Making

            Leaf Printing

            Nutrition

Natural Dyes (Autumn: goldenrod or apple bark, Winter: onion skins & pine cones, Spring:  forsythia or bracken fern)

            Other

Importance of Native Species

Creating a field guide/dichotomous key for our garden

 

 

 

Assessment

Students will work together to develop lessons and assessments for both their 7th grade classmates and the first graders based on the topic they have selected to investigate. 

The structure I will provide is to hold a brainstorming session for “Which criteria is vital for an effective rubric?” 

The flexibility comes in when they actually map out the criteria & content meaningful to the topic they have selected to pursue.

 

I am really excited about this new partnership and project. 

Thank you, Serendip!

Moira Messick

 

Kathy Swahn's picture

Final Reflections

I am leaving Inquiry more confused than I came…

I have spent a lot of time thinking about what I thought I knew…

I have come to know that I do understand what inquiry is. In my own words it is using a child’s natural inquisitiveness to promote learning. This comes very natural to me after all parents share with our children all of the time. What has left me flat is the thought that inquiry learning has to be non-directed.  While playing with our own children we have tons of learning time and so open-endedness is not a problem.  On the teacher side however we become saddled with PA state standards, standardized testing, school district expectations, complicated with parent expectations, student expectations, and time constraints I know that inquiry has to be guided. I am not saying that we need to tell our students what to think but we do need to plant the right seeds to help the garden grow and sometimes we need to pull a few weeds to keep what we planted healthy.

This becomes further complicated with the question of, do we test? What will we test on, and furthermore how will we test? Once again we need to find balance between all of the participants indicated above. With so much discussion and so many reflections it becomes a puzzle of how to fit the pieces together and remain happy in our teaching/learning adventures. I have come to the idea that you have to teach several different ways including guided inquiry to accommodate all learners and test in the same ways.

I am walking away with lots of great beginnings and shared ideas I enjoyed and plan to use:

Loopy Learning – Paul Grobstein as an intro into shared learning used often in science.

Bubble-ology - Joyce Theriot using the color changes and reflection in the light and sound unit.

Understanding Scale – Paul Burgmayer in coordination with understanding scale of the solar system going from one extreme to another.

Water Chemistry – Paul Burgmayer in Earth’s Internal Processes unit to answer the question, “Can rocks hold water?” and later “Which volcanoes are most explosive and why?”

Exploring Electricity and Circuits – Joyce Theriot fits completely into my unit on electricity which is a new section for me to teach this year so I gain quite a bit of insightful ways in which to do electric labs and apply the learning to the students’ everyday life. I had taught simple circuits in science camp but this was my most useful lesson to date.

 

 

 

 

RecycleJack Marine's picture

Final Project Reflection

When we think of scale we often think of length (like the distance from Pennsylvania to Florida).  But the idea of scale can be applied to any scientific measurement.  Some of the more familiar measurements where scale is important include:

 area

electric charge

currency

density

energy

frequency

length

mass

power

pressure

specific heat capacity

speed

temperature

time

volume

 

 

I was hooked by Paul Burgmayer’s presentation of scale. While watching his PowerPoint presentation I was intrigued by some of the images. I can’t say that I am a visual learner, although I am often fascinated by odd visuals in the environment. But I favor my sense of smell, taste, and touch too. Here’s my understanding of SCALE: It can be about anything you see or think about. It’s what’s different from the norm.

I’ve visited many other countries, and I always pay attention to the scale of things. Scale isn’t always just about size, it can be the way things are different in different countries or cultures. In China I noticed dog tails sold at an outdoor market. In Israel I saw spices sold in an outdoor market that were more fragrant and in Brazil, the  quality of freshly caught lobsters were much different from those I buy at Super Fresh- But in Israel I saw a fighter jet fly across the horizon- you don’t see that on the Main Line. I want to take this idea of comparing objects into the classroom and talk about scale and differences.

Have you ever thought about the scale of what happens when you get injured? Many years ago I caught a live rockfish in the Atlantic Ocean and holding it in my hands I showed it off to friends. Later that same day, my hand swelled up to the size of a softball from this poisonous fish! What a difference in the size of my hand- hence scale.

Seeing the photographs of Paul’s paper mill machinery reminded me of a denim mill I visited in Hong Kong. There were a lot of things I now realize was out of my scale of normalcy. What will my students know about the scale of things in their world? Will they know about scale at all? When I first teach students about properties, they think it’s about things they own- but in science properties describe characteristics of something.

In the denim mill, the sounds were LOUD, the smells were STRONG, and the machines were BIG.  If you want to see how a denim mill runs, go to:

www.x-pertex.com

So I will use this idea of scale to compare molecular structures to life size objects with the middle school students in my new position.

I was also fascinated with Wil’s Fast Plants project. I am in the process of creating a curriculum unit involving soil. Since plants grow in soil and soil type is critical to plant quality, and paper is made from plants there is a real connection here. Then you can connect Paul’s scale idea to different sized trees and show students a tree seedling and a Giant Sequoia.

I connected with the Wisconsin Fast Plants because I took a training many years ago using these plants, but I couldn’t find a way to apply it with my classes at that time. Now that I am a seasoned science teacher, I now understand how you can measure the environmental and genetic characteristics of these plants.

Here’s the whole process of growing Wisconsin Fast Plants:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KZXC3XL60Ts

 

 

 

Stephen Cooney's picture

Final Project-metacognition

Critique of Alison’s lesson

 

Alison’s lesson was a powerful tool to get us to have students subconsciously draw out the essence of learning for the individual.  Story is innate behavior for humans, so the notion of telling a narrative is calming.  The additional instructions that told us the narrative would not be read out loud or shared, made it easier to be more personal.  Those are essential parts of the instructions.  That she told us later of her own concerns about wording the instructions correctly (to the point of writing out exactly what she wanted to say) indicates their importance. 

I note the similarity to Paul’s lesson yesterday, accessing the subconscious.  It is clearly an important aspect of getting to the root of the (any??) problem/situation.

 

The second activity, analytically looking at the narrative to discern what you needed for learning in that singular environment was very powerful.  Do I need all of those attributes every time I learn, doubt it, but it would be interesting to identify which, if any, I do.

 

The final activity of identifying what the teacher needed to give to me to be successful in that situation was another important tool of self-analysis.

 

I certainly plan on adapting this lesson for my own classes.

My lesson on Meta-cognition, with thanks to Alison.  For 9th grade and 12th grade students who are at least a little aware of meta-cognition.  I envision this at the beginning of the school year, laying the groundwork for us to always be ‘thinking about our thinking’.

 

Beforehand, for a day or two, (two’s more likely than one) we will have discussed the notion that physics is the science that helps to describe how the world around us works.  For example, this quote is on my wall about Newton’s Laws of Motion;

“His three Laws of Motion are ‘rules’ of nature that have been subjected to many tests of their validity and appear to accurately model and therefore predict how velocity, mass, force and acceleration are inter-related.”

This message nicely matches with the notion Paul G put forth of a summary of observations.  While we now know that these 'laws' are not true on a quantum level, they are true on a ‘macro’ level, the world we live in.  That sort of thing will be part of the discussion, that there are no absolute 'rules' in physics, only the best set of shared observations that have been made to date.  Physics is and will always be changing as our observations change.  This will be an open inquiry discussion, going in whatever direction each class takes it.  I plan to record each session and make the discussions available to all students. 

 

Now to the lesson.

Here is how I will pose the question/instruction.  For non-aural learners and/or slow processors, there will be a hard copy of the instructions for part 1.  A hard copy of instructions with room for a list of items for parts 2 and 3 will be given to everyone.  For those that need to type, usually 10-15% of my students, an e-version will be provided.

FIRST

“I’d like you to write a short story about a time you learned something, actually anything, in or out of school.  If you can think of one that is in some way connected to learning something about physics, all the better, but it does not have to do with physics.  I’ll give you a few minutes to compose the story in your head before you start writing.  You’ll have about 5 minutes to write, so let’s be done by____.  [Keeping the writing time short will ensure that they don’t try to over analyze the question]  I will not be asking you to read or share any specific parts of this story with the class.  You, however, will be using the story by drawing on what you write.”

SECOND

 I will ask them to “List at least three things from the story that indicate items/skills/actions important for your learning success in the story (Because kids will always take the easiest way out, insisting that they list at least three things will help ensure that they do some real reflection).  Use your own language to describe the prime components of your learning.”

 

THIRD

“Now, think about the teacher or person that helped you with that learning.  What did the teacher/lesson giver do to facilitate your learning for each item you listed above.  Use your own language to describe the help.”

 

 

 

FOLLOW-UP

It will be important to generate those lists that Alison posted on the board, but I don’t know that I’d number them (creating a specific link for each student’s learning issues and teacher needs), but rather keep the two lists separate and identify the terms/thoughts/ideas/topics that came up more than once (we are more alike than we are different) just like Paul G did when we did our subconscious brainstorm with him.  On a subsequent day after we get finished in each class, I’d bring out (in front of each group) the lists from each of the other classes and create a master list for both learning styles and teacher ‘duties’ that would be posted in the room.  When we are sharing the lists from the other classes it will be a great opportunity for more inquiry type sharing.

 

Stephen Cooney's picture

 

 

GShoshana's picture

my final project

 Many aspects impressed me in this class. We were looking at different approaches to teach children according to how they need to be taught. One topic that specially spoke to me, was ‘transparency’. It showed me many important tools for students to feel that they are part of the learning process and to allow the student to feel that they have a role in their own learning. This helps the teacher identity different and personalized ways to reach the student. Most importantly it showed the teacher how to teach the child, according to how that student needs the to be taught; to reach address the learning needs of all the students.

 

The philosophy was based on a metaphor where by the teacher has many different keys. Every key represents different approaches and ways of teaching.

The teacher needs to understand that every key will open the doors and ways to teach the child and their specific teaching needs.

 

If the teacher understands this idea, the teacher shows more patience and respect for the students’ different learning approach and the appropriate time each student needs to process how and what they are learning will be given.

 

It’s important to give each student the feeling of success, to teach them at their own level, and challenge them.

 

Last week we were watching a lesson from Mrs. Cook-Sather and I was very impressed by it.  We wrote a story that helped us identify independent thinking. We then read our own story and identified through the details of our story how we learn with self critique.  We came to learn our own expectations as teacher. By taking the angle of the student, we were able to identify what areas we needed help in, and there for the we the teachers knew what to focus on, in order to teach the students in areas they specially need assistance with.

 

As a teacher this helps me understand the student’s needs and try to focus on teaching in a style that will be successful for that child. I will use these techniques on Back-to-School Night when I see the parents to show them the continual education and constant effort we the teachers are making to see that we reach every student in our class. The parents have valuable information about how their children learn. We need to be a team and I will also ask the parents to give me specific details of their child’s learning habits, needs, and styles so that I will have more tools to reach their child.

 

 

Another topic which I felt was very important was ‘exploring without content’ – creating independent thinking. The class really emphasized how important it is for a child to learn and to explore independently, and the teacher needs to create an environment where the child sees how important it is to explore and solve, so that they can use these independent skills to confidently solve problems and be comfortable with their own opinions. It’s very important to start the lessons with a substantive question with no correct answer. They can be divided into groups to brainstorm answers and together to summarize and come to conclusions, by listening to all the members of the group’s opinions. This should encourage all the students to feel confident to give their opinions and to increase the class participation by showing how each student’s opinion is important by sharing their thoughts with others. All these exercises are meant to give the children tools to deal with ideal life matters, and life skills for the future.

 

Assessment very important and I feel it is a tool for the teacher to monitor the progress of the students.  On the other hand, the assessment needs to be varied to address the needs of each student, so that the students do not feel like they are not succeeding / successful.  If on the initial assessment a student has not done well, give the student the opportunity to have a second chance; by way of reviewing with the teacher the work, completing a project, etc.

Diane Balanovich's picture

Circuits

I enjoy the way Joyce introduces her topic and leads her students toward understanding. The way she asks leading questions and rephrases student's questions allows her to faciliate their learning.  I thought the lesson allowed students to experiment with circuits and allow them time for trial and error.  I would adapt this lesson by adding an assessment component.

After working on circuits, I would assess my students on their knowledge by:

Materials:

Dominoes, light bulbs, batteries, wire, bulb holder

Misc. items- These items can be used to change the direction on the current

large flat areas for models to be built

energy ball

www.stevespanglerscience.com to purchase energy ball

Introduction:

I would give the students an energy ball to explore. The students will eventually, make the ball light up and start to create a sound.  When this happens, students will be asked how this is occuring.  Allow students to share ideas.  Discuss

Group Activity: The students  stand in a circle holding hands. One student in the circle puts a finger on one side on the energy ball and another student does the same thing on the other side of the ball. (Just make sure the two students on either side of the energy ball are not touching each other.) Discuss that this is a closed circuit. The Energy Ball will light up and make an erie sound. Then have two students in another part of the circle stop holding hands. The Energy Ball will not light up or make an erie sound. This is an open circuit.
Extention: How many people would it take before the circuit was too big to light the ball?

 

Reminder: Use paper cut out of light bulbs and batteries. Use string for the wire.

Extention:  I would assess the lesson on circuits by allowing the students to use dominoes to create a model that would demonstrate open and closed circuits.  This would allow the students to be creative and would show the depth of their knowledge depending on how intricate they made their model.  Students could demonstrate the different ways that currents travel by having one domino hit several others and change the direction of the electricitiy. It can also be used to demonstrate parallel circuits, by removing some domoninoes and showing how it still completes the circuit.


Reminder: Carolina Science sells light bulbs where you can see through it. This will help demonstrate how the circuit completes.

Stephanie Dubin's picture

Final Project

Bubbleolog: Second Grade

Lesson Review:

I. Materials

a.    Dish detergent

b.    Water

c.    Styrofoam plate

d.    Straw

e.    Medicin dropper

f.     Ruler

g.    Timer

Before:

Students were asked to close their eyes and write responses to prompts on a read aloud. Students broke into pairs and asked to share their responses.

Middle:

Students were given instructions and asked to experiement with the materials to make the best bubble.

End:

Students discussed their experiences withmaking bubbles and make a conclusion about what makes the best bubble.  

 

The lesson was very well prepared and easy to carry out. I plan to use this lesson with my students with a few moderations. To start with the younger grades will need more modeling. They need more modeling for the sake of time and my sanity. Older students would know how to measure and pour water, work the timer, measure the bubble ect. My students would be ableto figure out how to do it but it would take a lot longer and more accidents would occur, modeling would save a drastic amount of time.

            I would also have a lab sheet pre-made for them. To get the experiment rolling I would tell the students to measure the bubble with the ruler. I would allow them to determine how to measure it without popping it and ask them to discover on their own other ways to measure a bubble. The lab sheet will make the students feel more secure and I can use it for my data book.

            Something I would change about the lesson is to have students work in groups of three and rotate the jobs. In Joyce’s demonstration one person did the blowing and one person tracked the data. The children would all want a chance to participate in every part of the experiment.

To finish the lesson I would have my students graph the children’s results and discuss them as a group. I would also provide the students with a hard copy of the experiment with directions and materials so they could take a copy home to do with their family.

This lesson is easy to carry out, time controlled and promotes inquiry in the classroom. This is a perfect way to put inquiry to the test, while teaching students to work in groups.

 

Dalia Gorham's picture

Dalia & Deidre Final Project

 

Philadelphia Science Standards:  Generate questions about objects, organizms, and/or events that can be answered through scientific investigation.

Materials:

1. fast plants  2. artifical light (plant lamps)  3. Window area with a lot of natural sunlight 

4. tap water   5. fresh spring water  6. soil 

 

Rationale/Objectives:

Students will be introduced to structured inquiry so that the teacher may lead students into guided inquiry. Students will also be able to use  scientific method as a guide for inquiry.

 

Lesson:

1. Teacher will assess students prior knowledge through the use of a KWL chart.

(what we know, what we want to learn, what we learned)

 

2. Teacher will explain the scientific method (as a refresher) to students.

3. Teacher will convey to  the students that we will be conducting an experiment to find out what environment a plant will grow best in, artifical light vs. natural sunlight  &  tap water vs. bottled spring water.  Teacher will ask students to brainstorm in their groups to decide the best way they think we could conduct this experiment.  As a whole group we will develop the procedures for the experiment.

4. Students will work in groups to develop a hypothesis about what environment they think the plants will grow best.

 

 5. In groups students will plant their seeds, and place their plants in the different environment (natural light, artifical light).  They will water their plants as labled (spring water, tap water)

 

6.  Students will keep a journal and record data collect, students will measure the plants, draw pictures, note observations- how many flowers, strength of stem. ect.

 

7. At  the end of 3 weeks students will report results and draw conclusions. In groups students will discuss what variables may have accounted for any differing results.

 

8. Students will refer back to WHAT section on the KWL, to develop a inquiry experiment.

EX: Will the color of a light bulb affect how a plant grows, Is there better fertilizer, etc.

 

9. In groups students will conduct new experiments.

 

Rachel Roberts's picture

Re: Final Project- Bubbleology Rachel Roberts

Rachel Michelle Roberts

Final Project: Bubbleology 5th grade

 

Objective: The students will explore variables in order to try to form the best bubble.

Materials:

1.      Soap- Powder and Liquid

2.      Straws- various sizes (3)

3.      Water- warm and ice cold

4.      Plates- Styrofoam and Plastic

5.      Eye dropper

6.      Timer

7.      Ruler

8.      Pre-printed Lab sheet with variables

Grouping: 6 tables of 5 students

Anticipatory Set: How many of you have blown a bubble? How did you do this? Explain in detail how you were successful. Now close your eyes: Students are given a story about bubbles and they are to fill in the blanks and picture what they see and write down there responses. At each table the students will discuss there reactions and thought that were triggered from the story.

 

Middle of Lesson:  The students in groups will explore their thoughts on how to make the perfect bubble. I will give the different variables to each group along with a pre-printed lab sheet so they can write down their results and think of how they can alter the effect of the bubble if this is actually possible. I would start them off and allow them to use inquiry during the lab to explore other possibilities.

Example:  Group 1-  variables: warm water, powder soap, plastic plate, Mcdonald’s type straw

                  Group 2- Ice water, liquid soap, styrofoam plate,skinny straw(stirring straw)

 

End of Lesson: Students will have an open discussion regrding their findings, share ideas of how we could alter the lab and come to some conclusions regarding what would make the best bubble.

 

I would use this lesson as an opening for the first few days of school. This will allow the students to work collaboratively, become partners, introduce eachother and learn how to work in cooperative groups by discussing what worked and what didn’t.

I would explore this lab for 2 days so that the students can come away with a better sense of trial and error as well as building confidence and finding leaders within the classroom environment.

 

 

RecycleJack Marine's picture

Is there room in inquiry for targeted answers?

I think students who are striving for a targeted answer can still achieve inquiry. On the way they go througfh many steps and a whole lot of thinking, reflecting - and exploring goes on - but there still is an answer at the end. But Paul did say everything is wrong and right, so there's always another route to go on from there at the target...towards another newer target.

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.
5 + 4 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.