Reflection: Connection to Prior Knowledge Data Collection: Using Metric Units & Collecting Quantitative and Qualitative Data - Section 3: Guided Practice


If you have the time or inclination, another neat way to discuss metric conversions and prefixes is the evolution of digital storage media.


If you have access to such ancient artifacts, a 3.5 inch floppy disk is a great tangible to show the class and pass around the room.  If not, a picture should suffice (if students have never seen one in real life, they should at least be familiar with the "save" icon used by many programs).

ancient artifact


I explain that the digital storage capacity of such a disk is 1.44 Mb or 1,440,000 bytes.  I then ask students if anyone has a flash drive and ask what storage capacity it has.  These of course vary, but today they typically range from 1 Gb upwards to 32 Gb or 64 Gb.  Even a lowly 2 Gb flash drive can store more than 1,000 times more data than a 3.5 inch floppy disk.


In addition to the chance to use a real world review of the relationship Mega- and Giga-, a cool activity might be to measure the volume of a 3.5 inch floppy and the volume of a modern flash drive.  Then, have students calculate how much volume would be required to store the number of 3.5 inch flash drives necessary to store the amount of data that can be stored on a modern flash drive.  Talk about efficiency!   

  The Evolution of Digital Storage Media
  Connection to Prior Knowledge: The Evolution of Digital Storage Media
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Data Collection: Using Metric Units & Collecting Quantitative and Qualitative Data

Unit 1: The Nature of Science
Lesson 3 of 9

Objective: Students will practice making detailed observations when collecting different types of data and make conversions between metric units.

Big Idea: Both quantitive and qualitative observations provide useful data to scientists.

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23 teachers like this lesson
Science, metric system (Science Skills), quantitative vs. qualitative data
  65 minutes
image literally measuring a
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