Drops on a Penny Experiment: Learn How to Design a Fair Test

Grade Levels
6th - 9th, Homeschool
Formats Included
  • PDF (8 pages)
  •  Activity
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Easel Activity Included
This resource includes an interactive version of the PDF that you can assign to students to complete on a device, using Easel by TpT. Learn more.

Also included in

  1. Both labs can be done at home with minimal supplies. Students pages can be printed or be TpT Digital Activities. Two experiments that my students plan and perform to learn the basics of experimental design, collecting data and summarizing results. Through these labs students are challenged to do the
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  2. COMPLETE UNIT ON CONTROLLED EXPERIMENTS, GRAPHING DATA AND DATA ANALYSISAll of the resources either have a Google doc version or can be used as a TpT Digital Activity.1. Three Lessons on Deconstructing the Parts of a Controlled Experiment - experimental questions, hypotheses, variables, data analysi
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Begin by asking my students, “Is this experiment a fair test?” The goal is for them to begin to think critically about experimental design and to grasp the importance of holding all conditions constant except the one variable whose affect is being tested.

This is a two part discovery lab, with complete teacher directions (including a slide show) and introductory materials, through which students will compare two variations of a simple experiment and determine why one is a “fair test” and the other is not.

Students are directed to identify variables and constants, make predictions, summarize results and analyze experimental design.

Your purchase includes:

1. A complete teacher’s guide and student worksheets for two experiments

2. Answer keys

3. An animated Google Slides presentation that does the following:

• introduces variables and constants in an experiment

• introduces the concept of a fair test in science

• provides step-by-step guidance for conducting the experiments

• leads students through critical thinking exercises regarding experimental design

AT HOME - As long as students have a pipette or eye dropper they can do this lab at home.

Total Pages
8 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Plan and conduct an investigation to gather evidence to compare the structure of substances at the bulk scale to infer the strength of electrical forces between particles. Emphasis is on understanding the strengths of forces between particles, not on naming specific intermolecular forces (such as dipole-dipole). Examples of particles could include ions, atoms, molecules, and networked materials (such as graphite). Examples of bulk properties of substances could include the melting point and boiling point, vapor pressure, and surface tension. Assessment does not include Raoult’s law calculations of vapor pressure.
Develop a model to generate data for iterative testing and modification of a proposed object, tool, or process such that an optimal design can be achieved.
Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 9–10 texts and topics.
Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks, attending to special cases or exceptions defined in the text.
Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 6–8 texts and topics.


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