Before: (Day 1-2)
The teacher will guide a class discussion about the students' experience with being asked to help someone fix something or create something.
The teacher will introduce the lesson by playing the video to help guide the students learning of how to define a problem and then the process that is used in order to evaluate a solution: Defining a Problem: Crash Course Kids #18.1
The teacher will define the vocabulary words:
strength- the quality or state of being strong
flexibility- the ability to be bent, usually without breaking; easily bent
hardness- the state or quality of being hard
texture-the characteristic physical structure given to a material, ex: rough, coarse, smooth
absorbency- the level of ability to soak up something
The students will make flashcards to study the five terms listed previously to be incorporated into their discussions and reflections as it applies to the collection and evaluation of the data collected to determine appropriate uses of materials based on their property.
The teacher will explain to the students that they will soon begin to evaluate multiple scenarios (situations or instances) by hypothesizing a solution to the scenario, determining which material would best solve the problem, and identifying the property that makes the material effective. For example, for Scenario 1, will students have to spill a cup of water, then use the materials in the Scenario 1 bag to clean up the spill.
The teacher will introduce the lesson by displaying and distributing the student copy of the article from k12reader that can be accessed at the following link: The Scientific Method
The teacher will have the boys read the first paragraph, and the girls read the second paragraph and so on to ensure that students are participating in the reading.
The teacher will ask the probing questions,”How do we determine if something has solved a problem? How do we determine if it is the most effective choice to solve the problem?”
- The teacher will write the three essential phases of the activity on chart paper for students to refer to throughout the process.
- Students will write the three essential phases of the activity into their Science Journals. The three essential phases of the activity are:
- Hypothesize a solution to the scenario two materials (Example 1: toilet paper and a paper towel could be tested to clean up a water spill).
- Determine which material most effectively solves the problem posed in the scenario. (The teacher will explain that students should feel free to test one additional material than what their hypothesis states. Students are responsible for documenting the results of each tested material in each scenario).
- What property made the material so effective and how is that measured? (Reply to example 1: The paper towel was more effective due to its more absorbent properties as evident by less water on the table after using the paper towel.)
The teacher will distribute Finding Suitable Solutions Activity Sheet to each student: see chart in attachments. (The teacher may choose to create one that better suits the needs of students as long as the components are consistently transferred to another chart.)
The teacher will read through each scenario and then allow wait time for students to brainstorm ideas independently.
The students will take “silent wait time” (10-30 seconds) to think about what may be a better approach to the scenarios.
Next, the students will write their idea on a Post-it note.
The students will then turn and talk to their elbow partners about what they wrote on their Post-it note.
The teacher will listen to student elbow partner conversations and will acknowledge on task thinking, unique ideas, and incorporation of vocabulary taught.
The teacher will prompt students in peer discussions if any students appear to be off task or are having trouble conveying ideas.
Finally, the teacher will choose a couple of Post-it notes per table and write the students ideas on chart paper as it would appear on their activity as an example to refer to.
During: (Day 3-4)
The teacher will provide a paper bag with appropriate and common materials. Possible materials are as listed:
- Scenario 1 bag (either paper bag or Ziploc bag): one full closed water bottle, paper towels (3-4 sheets), Kleenex tissue (3-4 sheets), and tissue paper(3-4 sheets).
- Scenario 2 bag (either paper bag or Ziploc bag): one full closed water bottle, dirty composition notebook with outside cover removed in one piece, paper towels (3-4 sheets), Kleenex tissue (3-4 sheets), tissue paper (3-4 sheets), scotch tape (1 roll of the easy dispense tape), duct tape (1”-2” rolls), glue stick (1 stick).
- Scenario 3 bag (either paper bag or Ziploc bag): one full closed water bottle, small broken pot w/ fake flowers, paper towels (3-4 sheets), Kleenex tissue (3-4 sheets), tissue paper (3-4 sheets), scotch tape (1 roll of the easy dispense tape), duct tape (1”-2” rolls), glue stick (1 stick), sandpaper (one 4 inch x 4 inch square), wood (scrap pieces from your local hardware store or possibly a box of shims-thin wooden pieces), and rocks (handful or what the kids can collect from the school yard).
Students will be grouped (3-4 students per group) strategically to begin testing each of the scenarios.
- Scenario 1: Your teacher came into class this morning in a rush. She spilled her water that came from her plastic bottle. What is the most effective way to help your teacher clean up the spilled water so that class can get started for the day?
- Scenario 2: Your classmate had a rough morning. It rained when he left the house this morning. When getting on the bus, he dropped his journal in a mud puddle. As he picked it up, it appeared undamaged and dirty. When he got to class, and placed it on his desk, the front and back of the journal came completely off in one piece. What are the most effective ways to help your classmate clean up his journal and bind it back so that he can get started on his morning work?
- Scenario 3: When getting home this afternoon, you see that the dog has knocked over your mom’s favorite vase. Thankfully, it has only been broken into a few pieces. She will be upset because you made this vase for her when you were in the first grade. What is the most effective way to clean up the mess, and restore or reuse the vase?
The teacher will model a well-written hypothesis on the anchor chart with the three essential phases of the activity. For example, the teacher could say, “If I brush my teeth every day, then I will not develop cavities.”
Students will collaborate with their group to create two most likely hypotheses for each scenario. The students will document these hypotheses on the Finding Suitable Solutions Activity Sheet. The teacher may need to provide scaffolding for this part of the lesson.
Students will collaborate with their group to test each hypothesis in isolation to each scenario.The students will document the results on Finding Suitable Solutions Activity Sheet under Result 1 and Result 2. Teacher will guide students to refer to Example 1 if they are having difficulty. Teacher will facilitate experiments as students work through them.
Students will collaborate with their group to document which of the two hypothesized materials was more effective in solving the solution to the scenario. Students will highlight with a highlighter, which one of the hypotheses were more effective than the other before moving on to the next section.
Students will collaborate with their group to document on the Finding Suitable Solutions Activity Sheet what property of the material lead to it being more effective by circling all options that apply. Students need to make a note as to how they measured this. Example 1, The paper towel was more effective due to its more absorbent properties because there is less water on the table after using the paper towel. This paper towel was stronger and the texture may have caused the strength and the absorbency.
The teacher will ensure students are completing activity sheet in attachments to track their testing and results.
After: (Day 5-6)
The students will create a Google Slides presentation of at least 3 slides using the data collected from their activity that shows the scenario, hypothesis, outcome of the test, and the property or properties that contributed to the effectiveness of the materials used. (Students may choose to put each scenario on an individual slide, or they may choose to place each task on an individual slide.)
Teacher will use the rubric provided to assess the presentation: Finding Suitable Solutions Presentation Rubric