Create Your Own Experiment

In class we have been practicing using the scientific method. You will put this knowledge to the test. You need to come up with your own idea for a simple (and inexpensive) experiment. Make sure that this is something that you can do safely at home. Then you need to complete the lab and write up all the steps of a formal lab report. You may complete this with a partner. 

Before you begin the experiment...

Turn in a sheet of paper with your experiment idea and it must be signed by a parent or guardian.  This activity can be worth up to 7 Extra Credit test points!!!

Good Luck!

Lab Write Up Guidelines
click here for a printable, pdf version

Title

The title can be as catchy or serious as you want, as long as it tells what the lab will be about.

Question or Problem Statement

- This is sometimes given to you.This question explains the purpose of the lab.
The first word is “To”
The second word is an action verb such as observe, test, record, measure, which is followed by “the affect of”

Variables

Independent Variable (IV) - Is what the experimenter is changing on purpose.
- Starts with “The independent variable, which will be changed and tested is…”
Dependent Variable (DV) - Is something that can be measured in numbers (unless teacher tells you otherwise).
Starts with “The dependent variable, which will be measured is…”

Control Group

- This is what everything else is being compared to.
- Starts with “The control is…”

Hypothesis

- The hypothesis is a prediction of what you think will happen based on what you already know.
- Starts with “If the (DV) is related to the (IV), then (prediction) .”

Materials

- Make a bulleted list of all the materials. Include the quantities.

Procedure

Make a numbered list of what is to be done in the experiment.
The steps should begin with action verbs (pour, measure, write, etc).
Make sure to include repeat trials.
Draw a diagram of the set up of the experiment.

Data Table/Observations

- Create a data table to display the results of the trials
- Include appropriate headings, units, and a title.
- The title should follow the format “The effect of (IV) on the (DV)”

Graph

- Choose an appropriate graph based on the type of data gathered- Include a title that matches the data table, labels for the x and y-axis, and all the units.

Results (paragraph form)

- Must have an introduction and a conclusion.
- Explain what happened.
- Summarize the data table (be specific).

Sources of Error

- Describe 3-5 human errors, environmental factors, or problems with materials that may have affected the results. Write as a sentence.

Conclusion (paragraph form)

1st sentence – state the purpose of the lab
2nd sentence – restate the hypothesis-
3rd sentence – state whether your hypothesis was correct or not
4th sentence – summarize the results of the data table -
5th sentence – explain how this lab helps you understand the world around you 

 


NASA Daily Image

NASA Image Of The Day
International Space Station?s 3-D Printer
The International Space Station?s 3-D printer has manufactured the first 3-D printed object in space, paving the way to future long-term space expeditions. The object, a printhead faceplate, is engraved with names of the organizations that collaborated on this space station technology demonstration: NASA and Made In Space, Inc., the space manufacturing company that worked with NASA to design, build and test the 3-D printer. This image of the printer, with the Microgravity Science Glovebox Engineering Unit in the background, was taken in April 2014 during flight certification and acceptance testing at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, prior to its launch to the station aboard a SpaceX commercial resupply mission. The first objects built in space will be returned to Earth in 2015 for detailed analysis and comparison to the identical ground control samples made on the flight printer prior to launch. The goal of this analysis is to verify that the 3-D printing process works the same in microgravity as it does on Earth. The printer works by extruding heated plastic, which then builds layer upon layer to create three-dimensional objects. Testing this on the station is the first step toward creating a working "machine shop" in space. This capability may decrease cost and risk on the station, which will be critical when space explorers venture far from Earth and will create an on-demand supply chain for needed tools and parts. Long-term missions would benefit greatly from onboard manufacturing capabilities. Data and experience gathered in this demonstration will improve future 3-D manufacturing technology and equipment for the space program, allowing a greater degree of autonomy and flexibility for astronauts. Image Credit: NASA/Emmett Given...
26 Nov 2014