Reflection: Problem-based Approaches Which One Is the Fastest?-A Continuing Investigation of Speed - Section 1: Opening


The investigation in the lesson was fun for the students to carry out, but the important part of the lesson was the thinking that occurred in the opening.  I wanted the students to really think how they could figure out which car was the fastest from a group of four cars when they could only race two cars at a time.  I wanted to spark critical thinking.

The students had some good discussions, but I found it was interesting how they could not move past the idea of racing two cars and finding the winner, to comparing the winner of each group.  I didn't realize that this was really a complex problem for kindergartners to grapple with.

As a result, I really needed to change my approach during their discussion.  I was hoping to stand back and just observe their conversations, but instead, I needed to ask guiding questions to get the students to understand that they needed to compare the winners of each group.  Even though no group of students came up with how to test the cars on their own, I think the discussion was still a success because of the modeling that occurred.  This modeling serves as scaffolding for future challenges like this one.  Students cannot be expected to be proficient at these types of discussions without the opportunity for trial and error.


  A Challenging Discussion
  Problem-based Approaches: A Challenging Discussion
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Which One Is the Fastest?-A Continuing Investigation of Speed

Unit 4: Fast or Slow
Lesson 4 of 9

Objective: Students will be able determine which toy car is the fastest by conducting a simple investigation.

Big Idea: In the previous lesson, students had exposure to conducting a simple investigation. Now the students will take this investigation one step further by comparing the speeds of several vehicles.

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10 teachers like this lesson
Science, Science Skills, speed (Motion), questioning, movement, weight, force
  40 minutes
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