Week 5

Session 1

Guiding Question

  • How can we make sand stand tall?

Subquestions

  • Where should we place the reinforcement? Top, bottom, or all over?

Outcomes

  • Describe and test the best placement for reinforcement.

CT Components

Data Collection

  • Conducting experiments with placing reinforcement materials.

Algorithms

  • Deciding the procedures for the reinforcement experiment.

Simulation & Modeling

  • Following the similar/same process, testing and hypothesizing results from the placement experiment.

Communication

  • Discussions on the placement of reinforcement.

Entry Event

10 minutes

The facilitator reviews the previous sections. The facilitator asks student “what have you learned about the reinforcing sand? We did several experiments last week, do you remember what we did? Who can tell me what you learned about the layers of reinforcement and the amount of the reinforcement materials? Will more materials result in stronger sand? How will the strength of the materials help? The stronger the better?” After a discussion with student, the facilitator introduces the focus of this session:” Now we will think about where we want to place the materials. Where do we place the materials to get the most strength?”

Placement of Reinforcement

Small-group Hands-on Scientific Inquiry (40 minutes)

Students will experiment with the placement of the materials, top, bottom, close, or far away. The facilitator reminds students “It is important that you follow the instructions on the worksheet to document your observations”. The facilitator hands out the worksheets.

The facilitator asks the guiding questions:

  • Will the placement of the reinforcement make a difference on the sand strength?

  • Where do we place the reinforcement for the strongest sand?

Directions

Case 1: Reinforcement on the bottom

  1. Label the container 2″ from the bottom and pour the sand into the container until it reaches 2″ high

  2. Place the wire mesh on the surface of the sand

  3. Pour the sand to fill the rest of the container.

  4. Guess and document the sand level when putting the weight on the sand

  5. Put the weight on the sand

  6. Observe and document the sand level

Case 2: Reinforcement in the middle

  1. Label the container ½ way horizontally and pour the sand into the container until it is half filled.

  2. Place the wire mesh on the surface of the sand

  3. Pour the sand to fill the rest of the container.

  4. Guess and document the sand level when putting the weight on the sand

  5. Put the weight on the sand

  6. Observe and document the sand level

Case 3: Reinforcement on the top

  1. Label the container 2″ from the top of the container and pour the sand into the container until it reaches 2″ from the top.

  2. Place the wire mesh on the surface of the sand

  3. Pour the sand to fill the rest of the container.

  4. Guess and document the sand level when putting the weight on the sand

  5. Put the weight on the sand

  6. Observe and document the sand level

Resources

10 minute break

Whole Group Discussion

15 minutes

The facilitator leads a discussion using the following guiding questions:

  • What did you observe?

  • What did you learn from Case 1 to Case 3?

  • What can you conclude about how the placement of reinforcement impacts the sand strength?

  • How can these ideas relate back to friction and density we learned last week? (not sure about this one)

The general conclusion from this hand-on activity should be that with single layer, the placement (top, middle, down) should not make much difference.

Student Pre-Survey

20 minutes

Students fill out the pre- survey in the first session to establish the baseline data. The researchers will prepare the surveys. Teachers will collect the completed surveys and return the surveys to the researchers on site.

End of Session Reflection and Debriefing

5-10 minutes

Teacher briefly explains the computational thinking (CT) skill embedded in the Problem Solving Process Diagram. Using the problem solving process diagram, the teacher will ask students to identify what kind of problem solving skills/process/computational thinking they used in this session and explain how they used it. The following are some sample questions that can guide the debrief.

  • What did I learn today?

  • What problem solving skills/processes or CT components in this diagram did I use today?

  • How did I use the problem solving skills/processes/CT components?