The overall aim of this blackline
masters book is to present science as a field of study that follows a particular
method – the Scientific Method.
The work in this book will be
most suited to middle school students aged between 10 and 14 years.
Initially, students are
introduced to various fundamental skills of scientific research. These are:
Representation of data
(tables, bar and line graphs);
Fair testing and using
Definitions, explanations and
examples are included with each concept. Therefore, students should be able to
proceed through many of the worksheets and activities at their own pace. While
some worksheets have specific answers that are included in the answer key, most
are open-ended, in line with a learning outcomes-based approach. As such, class
discussion and teacher monitoring of student work is necessary to maintain that
students are acquiring the skills correctly.
The book is presented as a
sequential and cumulative attainment of a variety of interlocking skills. Most
of the activities deal with new concepts or a higher level of a concept already
introduced. Sometimes, previous activities are referred to. For these reasons,
it is important that the book be covered in order and that most, if not all, of
the worksheets/activities are attempted.
Some of the worksheets are very
simple and should only take five minutes; others are detailed activities
requiring more time.
Scientific Method - Experiments
After these fundamental skills
have been learned, the Scientific Method and writing of scientific reports is
The steps to testing an idea
using the Scientific Method are:
observation of a happening;
making an educated guess
(hypothesis) as to why this occurred;
designing a fair experiment
to test this guess;
recording observations and
forming a conclusion or
altering the test.
It is important that students
have an understanding that an experiment is performed because an observation was
made initially. The experiment is a way of testing if the observation occurs all
the time, or of determining its significance.
Here is an example of the Scientific
Method that you may wish to use as an introduction.
A student notices that he hears
the same bird call every morning but that the time he hears
it changes during the year. (observation)
He decides that the bird
calls when it sees the sun. (hypothesis
- an educated guess)
He may decide to test this by
waking before sunrise each day to hear the bird. (designing
He may note that the bird
does actually sing as the sun rises every day. (making
He may conclude that his
hypothesis was correct. (conclusion)
NOTE: If he did not hear the bird
sing every morning as the sun rose, he may want to change his hypothesis and
Ready-Ed Publications; May 2002
- ISBN: 9781863974608
- Edition: 1
- Read online, or download in DRM-free PDF format
- Title: Let's Do Science
- Author: Francesconi; Terry Allen (ill.)
Imprint: Ready-Ed Publications