Science Fair: Bacteria Experiment for Science Fair or In Class:
Turn your students into real scientists with this long term experiment which teaches scientific literacy through the writing of a real scientific paper.
This product is an editable guided walk-through for the completion of a full scientific paper (Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, Works Cited) based on the question: "Which antibacterial chemical: ethyl alcohol (hand sanitizer), isopropyl (rubbing alcohol), or Triclosan (Antibacterial soap) is the most effective at inhibiting bacterial growth?
This product contains:
1. A teachers guide: Descriptions on how to set-up the experiment, materials needed, procedures, and helpful tips.
2. A lesson on Analyzing a Scientific paper utilizing a graphic organizer (Scientific Paper Included)
3. Student pages: a guided walk-through taking the students through the process of writing a full scientific paper.
This long term project (which takes about 2-3 months to complete, spread out intermittently) guides students through the process of writing a scientific paper in the same way scientists write their scholarly papers. Students are taught how to write an Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, and works cited section.
This guided walk-through covers the following topics:
* Explanations of what goes in an introduction
- What the study was about & the hypothesis
- Summary of how the study was done
- The results that were obtained
- Significance of the results including the hypothesis being supported or not supported
* Explanations of what goes in an introduction
- What bacteria colonies are and what they look like (color, size,shape texture, etc.)
- What Fungal colonies are and what they look like
- The Cellular processes by which ethyl alcohol, isopropyl, and triclosan work to kill bacteria
* Teacher notes and tips for conducting the experiment
* Instructions for:
- Calculating the average number of bacterial colonies
- Graphing the data
- Interpreting the data graph in words
- Describing the appearance of bacterial and fungal colonies
* Instructions for:
- Calculating the data to see if they are statistically significant
- Interpreting the significance of the data
- Calculating Percent effectiveness
- Supporting or not supporting the hypothesis
- Creating a theory to explain the results
- Creating an additional experiment that could be done to test the theory
- Discussing issues that occurred during in the experiment
This experiment is 5 years in the making with constant updates, tweaks, and revisions; and is, by far, the longest single project I have ever worked on. This experiment is my pride and joy, my little baby, and won praise and recognition from one of the assistant superintendents of Philadelphia.
Story behind this product:
Back in 2010 I was a judge at the Pennsylvania Junior Academy of Science (PJAS) State Science Fair. One presentation not only stood out and impressed me, it made me want to perform the same experiment with my students. The first year I performed this experiment with my students, I did not feel entirely satisfied because I felt that there was something missing. A year later one of my students decided to enter the science fair with this same experiment. During this time, she came to me and asked for help with the scientific paper she was writing. As I was helping her write her results and conclusions it dawned on me:
1. Students are never, or rarely, learn how to write like a scientist
2. Students never, or rarely, truly learn how to write true scientific papers.
3. One of my biggest difficulties i had in college was learning how to write scientific papers (due to #2)
I never anticipated that this project would expand the way it has over the years. It turned from a simple experiment growing bacterial colonies, into a full fledged scientific paper.
Late in 2014, one of the assistant superintendents of Philadelphia was performing a walk-through in my building (I teach in a blue ribbon magnet school), and he happened to come into my room and ask one of the students were working on. Since he came in towards the end of the project, he was able to read the nearly complete scientific paper one of my students completed. Later in the day I asked the principal if he mentioned me at all during his walk-through, she said he had. And I will never forget what she told me. She told me that he said to her: "Mr. Stein is exactly the caliber of teacher that is expected to be at this school."
I hope you have the same success I have had with this project!
Please check out the Preview for more in depth information about the project.
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This purchase is for you and your classroom. Duplication for an entire school, an entire school system, or for commercial purposes is strictly forbidden. Please have other teachers purchase their own copy. If you are a school or district interested in purchasing several licenses, please contact me for a district-wide quote.