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Day 32: Intro to Chemistry Unit October 2, 2006

Posted by Admin in Chemistry, Experimental Design.
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After turning in the final lab reports (complete with the typed report, graph, diagram, and self-evaluation form), we began the chemistry unit.  Today we did this by completing the first two columns of a K-W-L form.

By completing the K (Knowledge) portion of the KWL, I will have a better grasp on the level of knowledge students already have about chemistry as we begin this unit.  Furthermore, I will be able to incorporate some of their interests by compiling the “Want to know” from the”W” column into daily lessons.

The rest of the week will see us more involved in the chemistry unit:

  • Tuesday (10/03):  Reviewing chemistry concepts from last year
  • Wednesday (10/04): Earth chemistry (8 most common elements in the Earth’s crust)
  • Thursday (10/05): Atomic structure
  • Friday (10/06): The Periodic Table

Day 31: Experimental Design Lab – Day 5 September 29, 2006

Posted by Admin in Experimental Design, Test.
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During the fifth and final day of our Experimental Design Lab, we completed writing our lab reports and printed them. Before turning them in on Monday, we will complete the  Lab Report Evaluation Form to the report.  Feel free to check it now so that you can make sure you have all the needed components to earn an “A” on this report.  See previous posts for copies of the other handouts that go with this lab.

Lab reports will be graded during the upcoming week. Grades should appear no later than one week from the due date.

Remember, this completed lab report is due on Monday, 10/02/06 for full credit and is counted as a test grade!

Day 30: Experimental Design Lab – Day 4 September 28, 2006

Posted by Admin in Experimental Design, Test.
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Today we focused on completing our formal lab reports. With the notebook computers, each student began typing their lab report following the format outlined in the Writing a Lab Report handout. Remember that this lab report is an individual project.

Remember that this formal lab report will count as a test grade. That means it is worth 50 points – just like the last test – and allows you the means of significantly improving your grade before the quarter is over should you chose to complete the report with all of the necessary components. I will be in before/after school for help and work time throughout the week and on Monday too.

The final report is due in class on Monday. Our last in-class work day is Friday (tomorrow).

Day 29: Experimental Design Lab – Day 3 September 27, 2006

Posted by Admin in Experimental Design.
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In continuing with the Experimental Design Lab activity, today we completed our data collection and spent the better part of each class period analyzing our results. The analysis – including one graph per person and one diagram (examples would be a flight path diagram or a scale model drawing of your plane) are due in class tomorrow (Thursday).

After ensuring the results were complete, some groups begain constructing a rough outline for their lab reports. Tomorrow we will discuss the details that must go in to a full, detailed lab report as outlined on the Writing a Lab Report handout.

Day 28: Experimental Design Lab – Day 2 September 26, 2006

Posted by Admin in Experimental Design.
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In continuing our Experimental Design lab, today we stayed on schedule by carrying out the experiments as outlined by the proposals completed yesterday. Today’s handout on Conducting the Experiment has been uploaded. The Planes were consructed, flights were completed, and observations recorded.

Following the recording of observations, derived measurements were calculated (area of wings, speed of flight, etc…) and the analysis of results began. The results analysis will continue in class tomorrow and lab report writing on Thursday.

Day 27: Experimental Design Lab – Day 1 September 25, 2006

Posted by Admin in Experimental Design.
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Today we began a week-long lab designed to highlight the major tenets of experimental design. We will be drawing from the previous five weeks’ work on the scientific method and its steps to design, conduct, and report on a full inquiry experiment. The schedule for the week is planned as follows:

  1. Monday: Experiment PreLab – The Proposal
  2. Tuesday: Conduct the Experiment (upon approval of proposal)
  3. Wendesday: Analyze Results
  4. Thursday: Write a formal lab report (typed on the notebook computers)
  5. Friday: Communicate our results to the class

A copy of today’s Pre-Lab; the Experimental Design Proposal Form has been uploaded for review. Don’t forget about the Current Event Article write-up that is due in class tomorrow (Tuesday).

Day 26: Quiz & Current Events September 22, 2006

Posted by Admin in Experimental Design, Homework, Science in the News.
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Today, we concluded our Quantitative Science unit with a quiz over Scientific Notation and Significant Figures. Quiz scores will be updated on PowerSchool by Monday.


Following the quiz, we read an article on the US Population nearing the 300 million mark. In disucssing the dynamic nature of the US population shifts, a great deal of numbers are analyzed, thus incorporating many of the concepts of quantitative science discussed this week. This article is the first of many current events articles that we will read in class. A copy of the article can be found stored here as well as a link to the source here. Additionally, I have uploaded the directions for the Current Events Writing Assignment that accompanies all current events articles.


Check out these great links about the US Population:

Day 25: Accuracy & Precision September 21, 2006

Posted by Admin in Experimental Design.
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Today we discussed the definitions of Accuracy and Precision, as well as their importance in science. These definitions tie directly to our discussion of significant figures and scientific notation earlier in the week since significant figures are what allow scientists to convey their level of precision.

The slides from today’s presentation on Accuracy and Precision have been uploaded. Again, don’t forget about tomorrow’s quiz that will cover Scientific Notation and Significant Figures. Look to the previous days’ posts for more information on each of those topics.

Day 24: Significant Figures – Day 2 September 20, 2006

Posted by Admin in Experimental Design, Homework.
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Today we completed our discussion of Significant Figures and the slides from today’s disucssion have been posted. Also posted is the Significant Figures Problem Set.

Remember, the homework problem set is due in class tomorrow (Thursday) and this material will be included on the upcoming 15-point quiz that has been moved to Friday.

Day 23: Significant Figures – Day 1 September 19, 2006

Posted by Admin in Experimental Design.
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Today we focused on why it is important to use significant figures in science. Significant figures are a way for scientists to convey how much precision a measurement or other value has. For example, if I measured my textbook, I could not say with certainty that it is 22.37090000 centimeters across beacuse I simply cannot measure that precisely. More appropriately, I’d say the textbook measured 22.4 centimeters across.

Lots of Links: Attached is the Quantiative Science Guide that we will be completing this week as well as the Significant Figures Presentation Slides . Just a reminder: the quiz on both Scientific Notation and Significant Figures has been moved to Friday.