Many students think an observation is what they can see, but that is an incomplete definition. This set of lab stations will have students understanding the true meaning of the term- using all 5 senses. Be sure to have already covered lab safety prior to this activity.
Also discuss the difference between an inference and an observation. For instance, "that egg sounds like it has pennies in it" is not an observation. They can say it sounds metallic (have a list of adjectives on the board if your students are struggling). Also discuss fact versus opinion (don't say that jelly bean was nasty).
Items needed for this lab:
- 2 sets of 7 plastic Easter eggs (numbered with sharpie) each filled with different items (paper clips, rice, string, etc.)
- 5 jelly beans per student (each of the 5 must be different flavors)
- 2 sets of 4 containers with lids (numbered with sharpie) each with a cotton ball inside and a different smelly substance (vanilla extract, peppermint extract, orange extract, vinegar, water, etc.)