This unit DOES NOT include PowerPoint presentations. If you want or need the PowerPoint presentations, check the links at the end of this description.
My students were comfortable with the first steps of the Scientific Method, but had trouble at the end stages. I think we often run out of steam or time performing experiments, and don't give students enough experience with the higher-level thinking skills involved in making meaning from their results. I created this unit to provide focused practice on: identifying independent, dependent, and control variables; setting up a line graph; analyzing the results (including explaining the relationship between the variables); drawing conclusions; and thinking about "next steps". I created this for my 7th grade classroom, but I think it would work for an advanced 5th grade or as review for high school. Please message me if you have any questions.
The downloadable preview shows two of ten student application worksheets and all student lesson handouts.
This product download includes:
- Four direct instruction lessons. Each lesson includes:
- 2-page student handouts with note and practice (and answer keys)
- 10 application worksheets/assessments (and answer keys)
See below for more detail:
The Scientific Method and Variables
- Review the steps of the scientific method
- Introduce new terminology (trials and theory)
- Define and practice identifying independent variable, dependent variable, and control variables
Making a Line Graph for Science Experiment Data
- Independent variable on the x-axis
- Dependent variable goes on the y-axis
- Choosing a reasonable scale
- Creating a title for the line graph
- Creating axis titles and labels
Identifying Relationships Between Variables
- Do the independent and dependent variables have a direct relationship, inverse relationship, or no relationship?
Analyzing Results, Drawing Conclusions and Next Steps
- identifying independent, dependent, and control variables
setting up a line graph; analyzing the results (including explaining the relationship between the variables); drawing conclusions; and thinking about "next steps".
10 practice application worksheets with answer keys for class, homework, and/or tests
Note, these are NOT actual experiments. The data tables are made up. The free product in my store is version A of this activity, so you can see exactly the format you will be getting. This product download is versions: B1, B2, C1, C2, D1, D2, E1, E1, F1, F2
I made two versions of five experiment scenarios:
Does time off task affect grades?
Do readers make better writers?
Does skateboard length impact speed?
Does the number of Mentos affect Diet Coke explosions?
Are foods with fewer ingredients healthier?
There are two versions of each scenario. The basic premise of the scenario stays the same, but I changed:
- the data table format so that students would not be able to identify the independent and dependent variables solely by location in the table. - the results
- Whether or not the hypothesis was correct, partially correct, or incorrect.
- Variable relationships (direct relationship, indirect relationship, or no relationship)
Because there are two of each scenario, you could have students compare different trials of the same experiment to graph as a double line graph, analyze data, determine next steps, etc. Or you can use them as stand-alone practice. When the students recognize the scenarios, it is another opportunity to remind them that good science requires multiple trials of the same experiment.
Do you you only need some of the pieces from this unit? Do you want the PowePoint presentations? Click on the links to buy individual pieces:
Experiment Analysis Unit with PowerPoint
Free analysis worksheet
Scientific Method and Independent, Dependent, and Control Variables
Experiment: How to Make a Line Graph
Experiment Variables: Direct Relationship or Inverse Relationship
Experiment: Analyze Results, Draw Conclusions, and Next Steps
Experiment Analysis Practice Packet