Scratching Records

Contributor
Rachelle Haroldson Rebecca Wampfler
Type Category
Instructional Materials
Types
Lesson/Lesson Plan , Experiment/Lab Activity
Note
This resource, vetted by NSTA curators, is provided to teachers along with suggested modifications to make it more in line with the vision of the NGSS. While not considered to be “fully aligned,” the resources and expert recommendations provide teachers with concrete examples and expert guidance using the EQuIP rubric to adapted existing resources. Read more here.

Reviews

Description

This 5E instructional sequence explores electrostatic interactions through student-driven investigations using latex-free supplies. Students observe and later explain how rubbing certain objects with a piece of wool  creates an electrostatic force that attracts or repels objects.  Students apply their new understanding of these invisible forces to the phenomena of rice crispies dancing!

Intended Audience

Educator
Educational Level
  • Upper Elementary
  • Grade 3
Language
English
Access Restrictions

Free access with user action - The right to view and/or download material without financial barriers but users are required to register or experience some other low-barrier to use.

Performance Expectations

3-PS2-3 Ask questions to determine cause and effect relationships of electric or magnetic interactions between two objects not in contact with each other.

Clarification Statement: Examples of an electric force could include the force on hair from an electrically charged balloon and the electrical forces between a charged rod and pieces of paper; examples of a magnetic force could include the force between two permanent magnets, the force between an electromagnet and steel paperclips, and the force exerted by one magnet versus the force exerted by two magnets. Examples of cause and effect relationships could include how the distance between objects affects strength of the force and how the orientation of magnets affects the direction of the magnetic force.

Assessment Boundary: Assessment is limited to forces produced by objects that can be manipulated by students, and electrical interactions are limited to static electricity.

This resource is explicitly designed to build towards this performance expectation.

Comments about Including the Performance Expectation
The effects of the electrical interactions are clearly observed, with the causes becoming more evident as the students proceed through the investigations. The relationship between the causes and their effects can then be easily made explicit by the teacher as they discuss their observations and the results of their investigations. Students should be also be encouraged to make this relationship explicit as they explain the interaction between the various objects being tested. To more explicitly align to the Performance Expectation, it is further recommended that multiple opportunities be provided for students to ask questions, and that these questions drive the investigations.

Science and Engineering Practices

This resource appears to be designed to build towards this science and engineering practice, though the resource developer has not explicitly stated so.

Comments about Including the Science and Engineering Practice
Through the series of investigations, students will observe that rubbing certain objects with a piece of wool will create an electrostatic force that attracts (pulls), or repels (pushes) objects. Connecting their observations to prior experiences with the positive and negative attractions of magnets will enable students to understand the phenomena in terms of positive and negative charges. It is suggested that any explanation of the concepts observed be elicited through a discussion of the phenomena observed. It is also recommended that students record the results of each investigation on their lab sheet or science notebook to serve as evidence of the phenomenon that electrostatic force attracts and repels objects.

Disciplinary Core Ideas

This resource is explicitly designed to build towards this disciplinary core idea.

Comments about Including the Disciplinary Core Idea
Through their investigations, students will observe that objects do not need to be in contact for electrostatic forces to be observed. While they will observe evidence of electrostatic force in each of the investigations, the results will vary depending on the type of material, its size and mass, and its distance from the record or rod. Students also observed that the procedure used to conduct their investigation, and the length of time the record was rubbed also affected the results. To further develop students' understanding of this Disciplinary Core Idea, it is recommended that students extend the investigations to include the testing of different materials that will produce the greatest electrostatic charge (http://www.education.com/science-fair/article/material-with-most-static-electricity/). Note that unlike investigations in Scratching Records, the resource cited here requires the use of a latex balloon.

Crosscutting Concepts

This resource is explicitly designed to build towards this crosscutting concept.

Comments about Including the Crosscutting Concept
As discussed in the tips for the Performance Expectations, the effects of the electrical interactions are clearly observed, with the causes becoming more evident as the students proceed through the investigations. The relationship between the causes and their effects, can then be easily made explicit by the teacher as they discuss their observations and the results of their investigations. Students should be also encouraged to make this relationship explicit as they explain the interaction between the various objects being tested.

Resource Quality

  • Alignment to the Dimensions of the NGSS: This resource is strongly aligned to the dimensions of the NGSS with grade-appropriate elements of the Practices, Disciplinary Core Ideas, and Crosscutting Concepts working together to support students in making sense of phenomena. Identification of cause and effect relationships are recommended to strengthen the alignment of this resource to the Performance Expectations and Crosscutting Concepts. The Elaborate phase of this lesson is especially compelling because it enables students to plan their own investigations and engage in the practice of obtaining, evaluating and communicating information. If students engage in the drawing of a diagram to represent the interactions with static electricity as documented in the Extend phase, the students are also engaging in the practice of developing and using models. To further engage students in this practice, it is recommended that the students draw an initial model of electrostatic interactions observed in the Engage phase, then revising their model and providing an explanation in the Extend phase of the lesson.

  • Instructional Supports: This resource develops a deeper understanding of the dimensions by building on students’ prior knowledge. Connections are made between their prior knowledge of the positive and negative attraction of magnets with the pushes and pulls of positive and negative electrostatic charges. Connections are also made in a discussion examples of electrostatic charges the students have experienced in their own lives. Opportunities to express, represent, and represent their ideas were evident in the Explore and Elaborate phases of the lesson. While not explicitly stated, the presentation of the investigation and findings in the Elaborate phase opens the door for teacher and peer feedback. In addition, differentiation could be addressed by having students assigned different roles for the presentations based on their ability and needs. The discussion regarding the charging and movement of particles exceeds the expectation for this grade level. Again, it is recommended that the concepts be explained in terms positive and negative charges, with an emphasis on the push or pull as a result of the electrostatic force. Finally, it is suggested that the defining of concepts be developed through the application of data as they discuss their investigations.

  • Monitoring Student Progress: Formative assessments are embedded in the instruction. The teacher listened to their discussions and asked questions as the students conducted their investigations. The students' presentation notes were used to assess their developing understanding of static electricity. A rubric is provided to assess the student presentations. The extension activity has students applying their knowledge to draw a model of electrostatic interactions, which can be used as summative assessment data. Finally, evaluative post-activity questions are given, with a table of possible responses and student assessment samples provided.

  • Quality of Technological Interactivity: This resource does not include a technologically interactive component.