Ooze, Days 1-3
"Perfect ... gives whole
idea of element of fun ... make a mess and learn ...
good cooperative activity."
Good. Very structured - nailed down what they were
gonna test. You have to be careful not to loose the
class in the mess. The experiments were not viable - too
Students came up with good questions and the activity
got them to think, but it was too messy; too much
clean-up for the teacher.
I had difficulty getting them to focus on qualitative
and quantitative observations.
This really goes through the process of science very
well. This lesson is great. The students understood the
difference between qualitative and quantitative
Good lesson. I wouldn't change anything.
"Tremendous, really great." We did all three days and
used the ooze outside. The students really understood
quantitative versus qualitative.
Ecosystem Boxes, Days 4-5
enjoy this activity. They could actually come up with
questions at such an early stage. They were very curious
as to what's in the boxes. Could make it a surprise when
you reach in.
Worked well. I had the students make the boxes.
Parents and students worked together to make the
boxes. The students understood what a comparison
research question is. Classes that brought more things
for their boxes asked better questions and got into the
activity more than the other classes.
Worked. Took longer than I thought to come up with
Students brought items in to put in the plastic bins
used during the ooze activities. The students understood
how to ask a testable research question and how to state
a null hypothesis.
Students had some difficulty asking good comparison
I mixed this with the field methods lesson and took
three days. The students had to state what methods they
would use to answer their question. I used different
colors of papers for each team and copied them so all
the students had all the example questions in their
I added lots of picture cards from language lesson
Paper Towels, Days 11-12
Love it ...
problems with how they stacked the weights ... hard to
control the classroom ... fell apart a little ... needed
more discussion ... still successful but hard to control
... not sure how much the students understood the
concepts because there was so much going on.
Good lesson. The students enjoyed it and got a lot
out of it.
Good. No problems.
We used 2-liter pop bottles and that worked but we
had to modify several things. The students understood
the concept of repeatability. We did need more weights
though. We did the second day and that went really well.
We built on the ooze experiments in our discussions.
We did both days and took it as far as it could go.
I used quart yogurt containers and had the students
hold the towel (no clips). Quieter. This was one of the
best lessons for teaching the importance of methods.
Need way more washers.
Wigglin Worms, Days 13-14
expected it to be difficult to find different
environments but it wasn't ... students were intense and
methodical ... "workable" ... very measurable experiment
good model, simple materials but complex thinking ...
have to be careful not to drown the worms.
Students had fun. Dampness of soil makes a big
difference. The teacher needs to make sure that the
moisture level is the same in all the soil being used
and that the students add the proper amount of water,
depending on their treatment type.
Didn't do it. They had enough without it.
Wheel of Inquiry, Day 15
Rules need to be
better specified ... wanted to play for several days ...
phrases were fun to come up with... have teachers make
up new questions and post on web site.
Students really liked this.
They wanted to play this over and over. I had to make
up more questions. I put them on laminated cards so they
could choose the questions. Need a web-based library of
LOVED that. They wanted to play it again so we did it
with math facts too. You need to keep the questions
organized so you can check off the ones you've already
asked or it gets really hard to find a new question at
the end of the game.
Aqueous Averages, Day 22
straightforward. No problems. Students already know
averages ... fun.
We did a survey of candy preferences instead.
The drawing got old so you have to increase the
snappiness. Do it over two days? The students know about
averages already but this goes much deeper.
Faux Fish, Day 25
hard but students did
remember it ... cutting fish takes time but kinda fun.
The cutting fish is tedious and some of the fish were
lost, otherwise a good lesson.
Good. It does illustrate the point and the students
got it. It is one of those lessons with lots of students
doing lots of different things and it's hard to make
sure all the students get it.