We began our unit on scientific investigation.  Over the past week and a half, the students have been learning how to select an appropriate science fair question.  They’ve also learned how to write a meaningful purpose for their project.  Over the next week, all students will conference with a teacher to double check the quality of their question and purpose. 

We’ll also begin online researching skills.  We’ll work on mastering how to:
 generate keywords for searching
 refine a search
 expand a search
 evaluate a website’s quality and usefulness for research
 bookmark a site
 read a website for information (including web highlighting and summary notes)
 create a bibliography
 share new information with others

As you can tell, that’s a lot to learn—most people spend their entire life improving those skills!  Developing strong research skills is a challenging, but critical process.  We’ll  work diligently on this, but will probably take us quite a bit of time. 

The current due date for student research and bibliography is Friday, October 23rd.  We’ll complete most of this work in class.  

I’d rather the students learn the basics of research than rush to complete an assignment.  I’m confident that with hard work on their part, they should be able to complete this assignment during school hours.  Depending on how much support the students need conducting research, we may need to push this date back a few days.  Stay tuned for updates!

You may still want to ask your student about what they learned, or continue digging deeper into their science concepts at home.

Also, keep in mind the following due dates:

·       Pre-approval form: Thursday, October 15th

·       Research & Bibliograph: Friday, October 23rd

·       Variables: Tues, Oct 27, 2009

·       Procedure, Material Lists, and Hypothesis: Fri, Oct 30, 2009

·       Typed Mission Plan: Tues, Nov 3, 2009


For all of these assignments, we will learn how to complete that stage of the scientific method in school.  We will also begin the assignment in class, although they will need to complete the remainder at home.  Because the actually experiment will be conducted at home, you probably will want to have your child share his/her procedure and material list with you before turning it in.  In fact, you may wish to work with your child as he/she writes the procedure and mission plan (while keeping in mind that it is the 5th grader’s project).  That way you’re not surprised when it comes time to conduct the actual experiment.

4/14/2012 10:27:43 pm

re not surprised when it comes time to conduct the actual exp

4/18/2012 12:55:40 pm

re not surprised when it comes time to

6/6/2012 05:35:18 pm

not surprised when it comes time to


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