STEM Fair. Oliver Beach Elementary Wednesday, April 23, 2014. Scientific Method. Step 1: Summary and Approval Form. Step 2: BACKGROUND INFORMATION (Research Report).
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Oliver Beach Elementary
Wednesday, April 23, 2014
The next step in your project is to collect as much factual information as you can about your topic. This is not about your experiments and should not include any predictions. Your research report should be at least 2 paragraphs. Each paragraph should be about 4 – 6 sentences. You need to include a bibliography.
Books Magazines Newspapers
All resources that you use in your project must be listed with your research report. Make sure you list each one alphabetically and in proper format. You should have at least 3 references. The more references you have, the better your project will be.
Author’s last name, First name, Title of the book, where published: publisher, year published, pages used
Hemphill, Gene, Lima Beans and You, New York, NY: Hyde Publishing Corporation,2004, pp.34-43
Inside the log book: brainstorm project topics, take notes for your research report. Record your: question, hypothesis, materials, procedure, variables, chart, drawings and diagrams, graph, written results and conclusion.
The first step in the scientific method is to identify your problem. It should be written in the form of a question. You can use your problem as the title of your science fair project.
What is a Testable Question?
Testable questions are those that can be answered through hands-on investigation by the student. The key difference between a general interest science question and a testable question is that testable questions are always about changing one thing to see what the effect is on another thing.
A good question must lead to an investigation (experiment) not a report, a demonstration or model. The question may ask about the effect of one thing upon another.
should be one from which you can collect data (ideally measurements or direct observation) rather than opinions.
should be specific rather than really broad.
is one which the materials needed to experiment with are easy to find.
Now that you understand your project a little better you have to predict what your experiment’s results will be. This is your hypothesis. A hypothesis is no ordinary guess. It is an “educated” guess, because you will use your background research to help you predict the results of your experiment before you actually perform it.
Write your hypothesis as an “If/Then/because” statement.
If I water the plants, then they will grow, becausemost plants need water in order to survive.
After recording steps 3 – 7 in your log book, show them to your teacher. If your teacher approves them, you are now ready to begin experimenting!
It’s a good idea to have an adult present when experimenting!
After you have finished your experiment run it at least two more times. You must complete at least three trials. The more the test are repeated, the more accurate your results will be. Find the mean/average of these three trials.
Remember to keep a record (log book) of all the data you have gathered in your experiment. Use data chart or table, graph (line or bar), diagrams and photographs to help show your data. Using your data and observations, tell your findings. Give only the facts to back up your results.
You should begin your conclusion by saying if your hypothesis was supported by your data or not supported by your data. You should answer your original question. You should include inferences that can be made from the results of the experiment. Tell about any problems that happened during your experiment that may have affected the results. Include any questions the could be investigated in the future, related to your original investigation. At the end of your conclusion, tell how your project could contribute to real life situations. This is known as your application.
A good experimental project involves the student in a journey of discovery, driven by curiosity. It must be based on a testable question or problem. It includes a problem or question; hypothesis; independent, dependent, and controlled variables; data display in the form of a graph or chart showing the results of the manipulation of the independent variable; a conclusion including a restatement of the problem or question, a statement of support or non-support of the hypothesis, an explanation and analysis of the results, and a description of further research.Experimental Projects …
Projects based on a question formed from prior observations and includes a hypothesis, data collected by scientists, observation, or surveys of people , animals, or the environment displayed in the form of a chart or graph, an explanation of the data identifying patterns and trends, and a conclusion that answers the question.
Link to BCPS website to help students and inform parents