Reflection: Lesson Planning Exploring Controlled Experiments (Part 2/2) - Section 4: Evaluate


The concept of controlled variables can be particularly difficult for students to master. From years of trying different strategies and instructional methods, the best I've been able to do is to provide lots of concrete practice before and after the assessment.

Every year, I discover a substantial group of students that need additional practice once I have graded the quiz. Students who are not proficient receive a copy of the Controlled Experiments Relearn Activity attached to their quiz. Depending on the number of students who are struggling with the concept, I may return to working with students or groups of students to provide additional instruction.

However, if the majority of the class is ready to move on, I utilize technology to help facilitate the relearn and reassess process.  In this case, I created a Controlled Experiments Blend Space site for students to use for help relearning. This site offers a customizable menu of choices students can choose from to help them learn the material. By having students use technology as their tutor, they are required to practice interfacing with a different type of instruction (which may very well be better than what I provided) and practice working independently to manage their own learning process.

  Lesson Planning: Using Technology to Assist Relearning
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Exploring Controlled Experiments (Part 2/2)

Unit 3: Scientific Inquiry Practices
Lesson 3 of 5

Objective: SWBAT identify factors of a controlled experiment.

Big Idea: Investigation versus experimentation -- students learn the difference between "just messing around" and designing an experiment.

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