3 hole bottle inquiry activity
As I introduce the scientific method one of my favorite activities is the three hole bottle activity. It is a great way for students to practice writing a hypothesis and making observations. To start you, need a 2 liter bottle with three holes drilled into it in a vertical line in the middle of the bottle. In the picture they are behind the tape. They are slightly small than the diameter of a pencil eraser. I have the students set up a chart on the right side of their interactive notebook as seen below. To begin, I take the bottle filled with water and the tape over the holes (as pictured) around the room to each student so they can record as many observations as possible . They record these observations in the first column titled “cue column” . Next, for dramatic effect and to discuss bias I take one student volunteer to the front of the room and hold the bottle over their head (after I give them paper towel) and ask the class to make a prediction as to what will happen when the tape is pulled past the first hole. They record that in the first column. I then remove the tape from the first hole while holding the bottle above the volunteer student’s head (only a few drops usually comes out of the bottle). Students the record their observation and then make a hypothesis about what will happen when the tape is pulled past the 1 and 2 hole and then all three holes. To finish I turn the bottle on it’s side and have the students share their hypothesis with the class. Students then make a conclusion about their observations and a class discussion about what happened. On the left side, students were given the option to draw a graphic that explains everything that happened or they can fill the page with a written description (since a picture is worth a thousand words). I offered a homework pass for the most creative left and right side notebook pages with accurate descriptions and properly writing hypotheses.
Remind101.com is a website that allows users to receive text reminders from their teacher all while keeping their cell phone numbers private. I learned of this resource at Advance Placement Summer Institute training from a colleague. I have found the website very user-friendly and effective.
As I was preparing my first day lesson I realized I have failed to share on of my favorite first day activities with my readers. With a shortened schedule due to administrative tasks and going over the syllabus and the safety contract for my course I tend to shy away from getting into anything to in-depth the first day. I do however use the first day to go over necessary procedures and to learn the names of my students. To learn the names of my students I use a simple activity the I call “Dog” . It goes like this. I say my name followed by the word “dog” i,e. “Grey Dog” and then say another students name followed by “dog” i.e. “Jane Dog”. Jane would then have to say her name again “Jane Dog” and choose another student followed by the “dog”.As a class we go around the room randomly. Though the activity is a bit “corny” the students enjoy it and I learn over a 100 names within the first week. Knowing the students names allows me to address behavioral issue much more easily and during the game the outgoing and talkative students stand out which makes it easy to head off future issues.
I love TED talks! This is an excellent TED talk that I use to excite student about the diversity of life and classification of organisms.
TED talk: Underwater Astonishment
Today one of my students asked me “Can we do test corrections to improve our grade?”. After some deliberation, I caved. My objective is student learning and of course I am held accountable for their scores. They will have to earn those points. Below is the template I used. It worked well. It allowed student to use their notes and the book to help them figure out what they did wrong. They were not allow to ask their neighbors for any help.
Test Corrections Template:
Question#:____ Wrong Answer:____ Correct Answer:___
My original answer was wrong because ____________________________
The correct answer is correct because ____________________________
Show Work:(where applicable)
As an extension to inheritance of traits, students analysed and created a pedigree chart based on a passage that was given. The pedigree was placed into their Interactive Notebook as pictured below.
On left: Students create a pedigree based on the story. On Right: A key for making a pedigree chart.
Here is an excellent set of five punnett square practice problems students could complete after getting the basics down. I had my students color code them in their interactive notebooks.