The goal of this lab: TO see if students can figure out which material is the best insulator to keep an ice cube from melting.
This lab works with physical science because we are looking at how a solid melts, but it also can be used for just teaching general science experimenting skills like:
- Choosing the independent variables
- Collecting data
- Measuring with sciences tools (scales)
- Organizing data on a line graph
- Drawing conclusions
- Looking for potential errors in the experiment
The instructions for the students are typed out clearly so that they can understand and be able to complete the experiment on their own without a bunch of questions.
I've split this lab into 4 days because I find that if the students understand more at the start of the experiment then it will go smoother once they have the materials and are told to begin. The first 2 days of the experiment will NOT take a whole class. (maybe 20mins at most)
Day1: choose your 3 insulators (then bring in supplies from home)
Day2: Make the insulators (stuffing the plastic cups)
Day3: Begin the experiment, measure ice cubes and set timers to check it every 5 mins and remeasure
Day4: Make line graph and draw conclusions