Creating an Anchor Chart of the Scientific Process

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SWBAT identify the steps in the scientific process and create an anchor chart to represent the steps.

Big Idea

Today you will lead your class through a discussion of the steps involved in the scientific process. Students will make connections from a previous experiment.

Setting the Stage

1 minutes

Materials:  a printout of the experiment from the previous lesson,  video for engaged section of lesson, picture cards, chart paper, and markers.

 Today the students will revisit an experiment from a previous lesson as we work as a whole group to identify and learn the steps in the scientific process.  I am choosing to revisit an experiment in order to focus on the steps of the process and not the experiment itself.  By using a completed experiment, the students will be familiar with it and abel to move sway from the actual investigation and focus not he process.

NOTE:  Our district in transitioning to the NGSS.  Although we are implementing some of the units this year, I am still required to teach units that have now been assigned to other grade levels. This unit is one of those units that has been effected by the shifts in grade levels.  I continue to teach this unit because it focuses on the National Science Standard (k-4) B.  "As students describe and manipulate objects by pushing or pulling, throwing, dropping, and rolling, they also begin to focus on the the position and movement of objects."  

It is important that students understand that "the position and motion of an object can be changed by pushing or pulling.  The size of the change is related to the strength of the push or pull."  Establishing this knowledge base will prepare them for 3rd grade when the NGSS requires them to apply concepts of force and motion into their learning (3-PS2).


10 minutes

I gather the students on the carpet and ask them to face the Smart board.  

"Today we are going to look at the experiment that we did during our last science class.  I want to first watch this video."

I am using this video to introduce the idea of the scientific process.  We have been working on the steps, in isolation, during this unit but now want to tie it all together.  I play the song a few times during the introduction as well as throughout the week (during meeting).  I want them to get the chorus of the song in their memory.

"Now that you have heard the song, What do you think the purpose was?  What did you learn?"

I foster a brief conversation about their ideas and then talk about the process.

"When scientist conduct experiments or investigates, they follow a set of steps. These steps are called the scientific process."

This lesson is culmination of the lessons throughout the unit.  It will ask the students to take identify the parts of the scientific process and will be abel to pull form the components that war introduced and focused on in previous lessons.


20 minutes

"Let's start by listing the steps of the process.  Who can remember one of the steps from the song?"  

 I list the steps in order on a piece of chart paper.  I write each step in a different color to individually distinguish them.  I am not worried about the order at this point because we will cut the chart up and put them in order after.  If the students can't remember all of the steps, I will give them the missing ones and put them on the chart too.

"I now want to show you some pictures.  These pictures are clues and can help us remember the steps in the scientific process.  Let's go through each one."

I show them the pictures that I have pre-cut and introduce each one.  I want to make sure that they understand what each picture is or represents.  I have included a photo of the pictures but not the actual document itself.  I purchased these online and do not have permission to post them as a printable document.  You can get use the photo to get the idea and create your own.

"Now, let's take our chart and cut it apart.  I will cut out each step so that it is its own strip.  Now that we have all of the steps, I want to match up each picture with the appropriate step.  Whow can tell me  as rep and the picture that goes with it?"

I continue to do this until all of the steps have pictures. 

"Now we are going to take the steps and create an anchor chart for the scientific process.  This chart will be a resource that you can use whenever needed."

With the class, we put the chart together.

It is expected that students can plan and carry out an investigation to answer questions or test solutions to problems (SP3).  By creating an anchor chart, students can use this as they work to become independent with this expectation.


15 minutes

"Now you are going to work in teams.  I have made a copy of yesterday's experiment and have filled out the entire sheet.  I want you to work with a partner and label each step of the scientific process.  You can write on the paper.  You can use the anchor chart, that we just created, to get the correct spelling and to help you remember all of the steps."

I am choosing to give them all the same copy of the experiment and also one that I filled out because of neatness and not wanting kids to be worried about who's work it is.  This way no student has any attachment to it.  

"When you and your partner are done, I want you to go and sit on the carpet for science circle."

As students are working, I will circulate and help any group that might be struggling to identify a step. I want students to start to understand that their is a process when conducting experiments.  I am not worried about mastery (at this point) but rather exposure to the concept.  


5 minutes

"I would like you each to open up your science notebook.  The first thing I want you to do is put the date and focus in the top corner.  I want you to work with someone sitting next to you and write  the steps of the scientific process, in order.."

"Once you are done, I want you to look back through the experiments and investigations that we have done so far, and find an example of one step from the scientific process.  Once you had found one, bring your notebook up to me and tell me which example/step you found."


10 minutes

As an exit ticket today, I have the students find an example from previous work (in their science notebooks).  This is a very informal assessment checkout, that will allow me to see if students are able to connect the concepts from today's lesson with other scenarios.