Reflection: Writing Across the Disciplines Using PhET Simulation Observations and Data to Find Patterns and Make Evidence-based Arguments About Density (Day 2) - Section 3: Analyzing Results and Developing Evidence-based Arguments

 

I initially asked my students to write a CER for each of the 5 parts of the simulation, but they floundered.  I didn't want them to become frustrated and lose sight of the point of the activity, which was to decipher the various outcomes to build deep understanding of density.  As a result, I decided to provide questions to help guide students without giving them the answers.  In particular, I wanted students to analyze certain aspects of the simulation, so I framed the questions to help students.  For example, in the same volume simulation, I wanted students to see that volume alone doesn't determine density.  I asked students: " Do objects with the same volume have the same density and respond the same way in water?"  This helped students focus on the relationship that volume has on density.  

  Supporting Student Responses with Guiding Questions
  Writing Across the Disciplines: Supporting Student Responses with Guiding Questions
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Using PhET Simulation Observations and Data to Find Patterns and Make Evidence-based Arguments About Density (Day 2)

Unit 6: Density
Lesson 6 of 8

Objective: SWBAT: Analyze the results from each simulation to find patterns and develop evidence-based arguments about the factors that explain why some objects float, while others sink.

Big Idea: Giving students time to analyze data, develop arguments, listen to others' arguments can lead to deeper understanding. Using evidence to support claims is a crucial part of science and is used here to deepen students' understanding of density.

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  45 minutes
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