Reflection: Discourse and Questioning Egg Drop Engineering Project- Part 3 - Section 3: Explore/Explain/Elaborate/Evaluate


It's important to teach students about how to have scientific discourse with their peers. They also need to understand the "why" of an investigation or an engineering design project. A great way to teach this is through CER, or Claim, Evidence, and Reasoning. 

I have just started using this method or structure and when I taught it to my students, I connected it to how we have been using text evidence when we read for language arts.

For this particular project I told the students to write a Claim statement describing whether or not their egg capsule would be successful. I then told them that they needed to describe the evidences as to why their capsule would be successful and give reasons for this. This led to students being very detailed about how they made their designs and describe the specific materials in their capsules that would prevent the egg from breaking. 

Examples of these statements are in the Powerpoints the students presented. A great resource for supporting your students with CER as well as for improving scientific dialogue is the book Supporting Grade 5-8 Students in Constructing Explanations in Science- The Claim, Evidence and Reasoning Framework for Talk and Writing, by Katherine McNeill and Joseph Krajcik. 

  Teaching students how to use CER
  Discourse and Questioning: Teaching students how to use CER
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Egg Drop Engineering Project- Part 3

Unit 3: Gravity
Lesson 10 of 11

Objective: SWBAT design a capsule and test it to see if they can drop a raw egg without it breaking.

Big Idea: In the third part of the project, students will test their creations and change their design if needed.

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