By: John Haysom
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Science Fair Warm-Up, Grades 8–12: Learning the Practice of Scientists
|Type of Product:||NSTA Press Book (also see downloadable PDF version of this book)
|Publication Title:||Science Fair Warm-Up Series
|Grade Level:||Middle School, High School
|Read Inside:||Read a sample chapter: Variables And Their Controls: Isolating Variables: Reducing Complexity
Our reviewers—top-flight teachers and other outstanding science educators—have determined that this resource is among the best available supplements for science teaching.
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To the teacher:
Although this book is intended as a guide for your students, NSTA has you covered as well! Science Fair Warm-Up, Teachers Guide: Learning the Practice of Scientists provides all of the information you need to guide your students through the activities included in this book.
To the student:
If you have used the other books in the Science Fair Warm-Up series, you already have an idea of what a science fair project and real scientific investigation is like; if not, don’t worry.
Science Fair Warm-Up, Grades 8–12 provides you with the opportunity to choose a great project. For instance, you might carry out experiments that explore the pollution of our planet’s water or the possibility of growing plants on the Moon. If you prefer, you can select an inquiry of your own and even work with a partner.
As you work on your project, your teacher will give you help along the way. Together you will explore some of the challenging problems other students have encountered: problems of designing and carrying out experiments, collecting and making sense of your findings, and sharing and presenting what you have learned.
As you follow in the footsteps of scientists, you will learn about the ways in which scientists carry out scientific research and begin to understand how they have uncovered so much about how our universe works.
(mouse over for full classification)
Scientific habits of mind
Using scientific equipment
|Intended User Role:||High-School Educator, Middle-Level Educator, Teacher
|Educational Issues:||Classroom management, Science safety, Teacher preparation, Teaching strategies
Chapter 1: Starting Points
* Paper Helicopters
* What Makes Seeds Grow?
* Check Rust
* What Makes Sow Bugs Move?
* Bouncing Balls
** Louis Braille’s Invention
** Archimedes’ Screw
** Electric Cells
** The Right Nail for the Right Job
** Suffocating Candles
*** Women Can! Men Can’t!
*** Smoking Chimneys
*** Acid Rain and Pollution
*** Life on the Moon
*** Falling Leaves
Chapter 2: An Overview of the Nature of Scientific Inquiry
***Simplifying Complex Scientific and Technological Problems
Chapter 3: Science Without Numbers
***Searching for Patterns
Chapter 4: The Numbers Game
***Designing Your Own Measures
Chapter 5: Variables and Their Control
***Isolating Variables: Reducing Complexity
Chapter 6: Experiment Design
***Preparing Experimental Designs
Chapter 7: Sources of Error
***Sampling: An Introduction
Chapter 8: Making Sense of Your Results
Chapter 9: Explanations
***Deepening Your Understanding: Analogies and Models
Chapter 10: Sharing Your Findings
***Talking About Your Project
Chapter 11: Judging Projects
Chapter 12: Generating Ideas for Projects
***Ideas From the Scientific Literature
Appendix A. Science Fair Project Judging Criteria
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National Standards Correlation
This resource has 16 correlations with the National Standards.
- Science as Inquiry
- Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
- Design and conduct a scientific investigation.
- Use appropriate tools and techniques to gather, analyze, and interpret data.
- Think critically and logically to make the relationships between evidence and explanations.
- Communicate scientific procedures and explanations.
- Identify questions and concepts that guide scientific investigations. (9-12)
- Formulate and revise scientific explanations and models using logic and evidence. (9-12)
- Understandings about scientific inquiry
- Scientists use different kinds of investigations depending on the questions they are trying to answer.
- Types of investigations include describing objects, events, and organisms; classifying them; and doing a fair test (experimenting).
- Simple instruments, such as magnifiers, thermometers, and rulers, provide more information than scientists obtain using only their senses.
- Current scientific knowledge and understanding guide scientific investigations. (5-8)
- Science advances through legitimate skepticism. Asking questions and querying other scientists' explanations is part of scientific inquiry. (5-8)
- The accuracy and precision of the data, and therefore the quality of the exploration, depends on the technology used. (9-12)
- In presenting data, graphs are used to convey comparisons or trends. (9-12)
- Teaching Standards
- Teachers of science guide and facilitate learning. In doing this, teachers
- Encourage and model the skills of scientific inquiry, as well as the curiosity, openness to new ideas and data, and skepticism that characterize science.
- Focus and support inquiries while interacting with students.
- Challenge students to accept and share responsibility for their own learning.
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