Wednesday, 15 February 2012

New experiments with Grade 6 Science

In recent weeks the Grade 6 Science students at our Dover Campus have been using technology in some wonderful ways to enrich and deepen the learning experience.

The Middle School Science teachers including Valerie Newton and the Digital Literacy Coaches have developed some lessons on using the electronic Data Probes to collect real time data of changes in acidity levels in a neutralization experiment. Neutralization is an important concept for the students to understand as this summarizes their study acids and alkalis.

Traditionally the neutralization experiments are done in a few different ways, including with litmus paper and static measurements once in the experiment.

The Data Probes are sensors which can collect data from different variables including temperate and also pH levels. With an electronic pH sensor attached and a piece of software called Data Studio, students were able to collect some rich quantitative data that clearly highlighted the of neutralization of two chemicals with different pH levels. The students added drops of a chemical to the solution and recorded the pH level after each subsequent drop with the data probes. By adding more drops of chemical, the piece of software highlighted the changing pH level and the eventual neutralization of the solution. This is on a nice graph as shown below.

In the next piece of assessment, students are designing their own experiments to measure the effectiveness of different indigestion remedies. The data probes could be used in one of their experiments allowing them to collect a rich source of data and then test this against litmus paper and other traditional tests.