Week 2

Session 2

Guiding Question

  • How can we make sand stand tall?

Subquestions

  • What size and shape of sand particles make sand strong?

Outcomes

  • Explain/identify different sizes and shapes of sands

  • Hypothesize what sand particles make sand strong (Provide three different types of sand and let students test and see which type of sand stands the tallest)

CT Components

Data Collection

  • Observe & document sand sizes & shapes, and their physical properties with and without microscope

Data Analysis

  • Compare sand sizes & shapes with and without microscope

Problem Solving

  • Test, observe and hypothesize sand particles

Entry Event

10 minutes

The facilitator would first review what they did in the previous session about the “size of the soils” and ways they used sifts to differentiate different sizes of soils. The facilitator could start with the following questions:

  • What are types of soils? How are they different from each other?

  • How do we measure the sizes of different types of soils?

  • How do we describe them? For example?

  • Which type of soils has biggest size? Which one has the smallest?

  • How can we align four types of soils from biggest to smallest?

The facilitator could start the conversations on sands by asking, “Where can we find sands?” “Have you ever hold sands before?” If so, how does it feel? What do we do with sands?

Part 1

Shapes of Sand Particles

Small-group Hands-on Scientific Inquiry (30 minutes)

Come up with three types of sand (coarse, medium and fine)

Each group (3 students per group) will be given a set of sand samples including (coarse, medium and fine). Ask students to document observable physical characteristics of the sands in worksheet (Sand sizes & shapes):

  • Describe of shape and size of each type of sands

  • Test and hypothesize if each type of sands can stand by itself

  • Compare and contrast the similarity and differences of each type of sands

Resources

Whole Group Discussion

10 minutes

The facilitator could ask following questions to guide student thinking on analyzing their observations and sharing it with the whole group:

  • What did you observe? Color? Smell? Size? Shapes?

  • How do we describe the sizes and shapes of sands? How do we measure the sizes and shapes of different types of sands?

  • What are different shapes of sands? Can we see and describe them?

  • Which types of sands can stand? Which ones can’t?

Knowing the classification of the sizes of soils from previous session, and for Sand is range from 0.07 to 4mm. The facilitator can ask, “How big is a millimeter?” “ How big is 4 millimeters?” – indicating we could easily identify some sands that has size close to 4mm. “What about sands that are small in sizes?” Here, the facilitator can encourage students to describe the size of sand in fraction language. For example, if we know big is one millimeter, then 0.1mm is tenth of 1 mm, and 0.01 is one hundredth of 1mm, etc. Use fraction language to explain different types of sands. “What are the shapes of sands?”

Image Credit: https://dynamicmonitors.com/product/sand-size-card/

Part 2

Microscope Activity

Small-group Hands-on Scientific Inquiry

The facilitator will introduce the method of using microscopes to observe the shapes/sizes of sands, and ways how to use microscopes by providing students with procedures to use microscopes. Facilitators will show students how to use the microscope and then discuss with students about sharing the opportunity of using microscope as part of teamwork skill.

Review math – quantitative reasoning and different measurement system, metric (meters, centimeter, etc.) and U.S. (feet, inches, etc.) How big is 1 cm? 1 mm? 0.1mm? Ask, “What kinds of tools do we use to have linear measure?” “What kinds of tools to observe small size of particles?”

Whole Group Discussion

10 minutes

The facilitator could ask following questions to guide student thinking on analyzing their observations and sharing it with the whole group:

  • What did you observe? What shapes of sands are there?

  • How do we describe the sizes and shapes of sands? How do we measure the sizes and shapes of different types of sands?

  • What are different shapes of sands?

  • How can we categorize the shapes of sand particles?

  • Why is it important to know the shapes of particles?

  • What is more important to make sand strong? Size or shape? Explain your hypothesis

On a large poster paper, students will create a chart (binary table) regarding the sand sizes and shapes. The facilitator will record the students’ hypotheses. Facilitator could ask following questions to guide students thinking in completing the task:

  • What is your plan to organize what you have observed?

  • What information do you have so far? and what are they?

  • What are the sand sizes? What are the sand shapes? And how do you organize them so that other people can understand?

  • What information could you use from the worksheet?

Resources

3 microscopes - One for each group of six students

6 sets of sand samples of each coarse, medium, and fine with different shapes based on their sizes

Grid paper to document the shapes of the sands

Shape of Sand Particles (with Microscope)Worksheet

End of Session Reflection and Debriefing

5-10 minutes (will be recorded)

  • What did I learn today?

  • What worked well?

  • What didn’t work well?

  • What can I/we do differently next time?

  • Do you have anything else to share?