What our Simple Science Experiment STEM lesson plan includes
Lesson Objectives and Overview: Simple Science Experiment STEM teaches students about different types of experiments. Students will learn the steps of the scientific method that scientists use to conduct these tests. They will also discover how to use it themselves to conduct an experiment of their own. This lesson is for students in 5th grade and 6th grade.
Every lesson plan provides you with a classroom procedure page that outlines a step-by-step guide to follow. You do not have to follow the guide exactly. The guide helps you organize the lesson and details when to hand out worksheets. It also lists information in the yellow box that you might find useful. You will find the lesson objectives, state standards, and number of class sessions the lesson should take to complete in this area. In addition, it describes the supplies you will need as well as what and how you need to prepare beforehand. For this lesson, gather sugar cubes, plastic cups, water, thermometers, a microwave, stopwatches, measuring cups, microwavable bowls, scissors, colored pencils, and graph paper.
Options for Lesson
In the “Options for Lesson” section of the classroom procedure page, you will find several suggestions of additional ideas and activities. One idea is to teach this lesson in conjunction with one on the scientific method. This could help reinforce students’ grasp of the various steps. You could perform the activity yourself and have students simply record their observations and answers. Students could also work in pairs or small groups instead if you wish. Another option is to have students display or share the comics they make for homework by creating a class book or by putting them on a bulletin board.
The paragraph on this page gives you a little more information on the lesson overall and describes what you may want to focus your teaching on. It explains that the goal of this lesson is for students to solidify their knowledge of experiments. The blank lines are available for you to write out any thoughts or ideas you have as you prepare.
SIMPLE SCIENCE EXPERIMENT STEM LESSON PLAN CONTENT PAGES
The Scientific Method
The Simple Science Experiment STEM lesson plan contains two content pages. First, students will learn that people conduct experiments every single day. An experiment is simply a scientific procedure to make a discovery, test a hypothesis, or demonstrate a known fact. For instance, a person might test a medication to determine whether or not it works on a disease. Another person might analyze various chemical properties to discover how fast water can turn into a gas.
Some experiments are simple while others can become extremely complicated. Regardless of how simple or complicated the experiment, they all follow the scientific method. The scientific method is a series of organized steps people follow to properly conduct an experiment. The page displays a diagram that outlines this process from asking a question to trying again if the hypothesis was untrue.
In order, the first step is to pose a testable question. This means that the question you want to answer must be one you can actually prove or disprove somehow. The next step is to conduct background research surrounding the question. Third, you form a hypothesis, which is basically the answer you believe you will get to your question at the end of the experiment.
The fourth step is to design the experiment. This step would include all the preparation work before testing the hypothesis. Performing the experiment is the fifth step. Then it’s time to collect data by recording the information you learned throughout the experiment. This information leads to the final step, drawing conclusions. This is where you discover whether or not your hypothesis was correct.
Types of Experiments
There are three main kinds of experiments: lab, field, and natural. Lab experiments are those scientists conduct under highly controlled conditions. It does not, however, have to occur in a laboratory; it simply must have a particular and standard procedure. Lab experiments are easier to replicate because of the required standard method and highly controlled variables. On the down side, this kind of test is hard to apply to real-life situations because they are so controlled.
Field experiments are those that people perform in a real-life environment. You could conduct a field experiment in the middle of a busy city or in the cold tundra. Regardless, a field experiment requires a natural environment. The person conducting the experiment can manipulate the independent variable. Scientists can better reflect real life using these kinds of experiments.
Finally, natural experiments, similar to field experiments, take place in real life. The participants usually go about their daily life while scientists observe them to understand what happens. There is no control over variables, and the participants (people, animals, etc.) are unaware that they are being studied. Examples of this kind of experiment includes researching patterns of ants as they gather food or observing how twins separated at birth are similar.
SIMPLE SCIENCE EXPERIMENT STEM LESSON PLAN WORKSHEETS
The Simple Science Experiment STEM lesson plan includes three worksheets: an activity worksheet, a practice worksheet, and a homework assignment. These worksheets will help students demonstrate what they learned throughout the lesson and reinforce the lesson concepts. The guide on the classroom procedure page outlines when to hand out each worksheet to your students.
SIMPLE SCIENCE EXPERIMENT STEM LESSON PLAN ACTIVITY WORKSHEET
The activity requires students to conduct an experiment that has to do with homemade lemonade. Students will figure out how to make the best lemonade by testing the rate at which sugar dissolves at different temperatures. Students will write out a question and develop a hypothesis to test it. Following the steps on the worksheets, they will conduct the experiment and record their observations and answers as they go along. At the very end, they will share any challenges or problems they faced as they performed their test.
STEPS OF THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD PRACTICE WORKSHEET
For the practice, students will cut out slips of paper from the worksheet. They must place each of the five steps in order and glue them onto a sheet of paper. You should ensure students don’t have access to the content pages so that they can demonstrate their grasp of the material.
COMIC STRIP HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT
Students will be able to use their creativity for the homework assignment. They must draw a comic about the scientific method. They can use the shapes and boxes provided on the worksheet or create their own. The students must include the whole process from observation to conclusion.
Worksheet Answer Keys
The lesson document provides answer keys for the worksheets. All the correct answers are in red to make it easy for you to compare them to your students’ work. For the activity, the answer key provides a sample response for each part of the experiment. Students’ responses will likely vary. In addition, the homework answer key does not have any direct answers because of the nature of the assignment. Only the practice worksheet answer key has definitive answers that students’ responses should mirror. If you choose to administer the lesson pages to your students via PDF, you will need to save a new file that omits these pages. Otherwise, you can simply print out the applicable pages and keep these as reference for yourself when grading assignments.