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"Using Spreadsheets to display Science Lab Data as Graphs and Tables" icon

Using Spreadsheets to display Science Lab Data as Graphs and Tables

This is a lesson designed to help students understand scientific data representation (graphs, tables, etc) by having them create their own graphs after completing a scientific lab in class.  Sharing data information through Google Docs Spreadsheets will allow students the ability to compare their results with their classmates.  This lesson can be applied to any chemistry, physics, or other science related lab....

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Chris Hren
Chris Hren (Teacher (K-12))
11 years ago

I think this lesson plan does a fine job of outlining a way in which to teach ACT preparation through the use of technology. I especially liked the beginning piece of the activity where students will be graphing and examining data about the use of cell phones in schools. I think that will really get their attention and help them to focus on the material presented throughout the lab. I also really like the idea of integrating Google Docs into the lab section as I believe it leads to a great deal of collaboration and cooperation within the groups. Finally, I think the technology expectations are well within the ability of students today and that it could be done quite well in a classroom.

My only questions arose when I wanted to actually know what the lab you are doing is. Perhaps as a chemistry teacher that matters more to me then it would others. In truth though I am just curious what lab you are actually doing with this material? I ask because as all science teachers know some labs go far easier with things like this then others do. Also, as a suggestion for making the lesson seem more impactful perhaps including actual content or ACT standards would be a good idea for the instructional objectives. I believe from looking at it that you synthesized those objectives yourself which I think is always a good idea but perhaps including some Michigan HSCEs, ACT standards, or Common Core standards might be a good idea.

Technical Remarks:

In terms of technical aspects of the activity I find no problems. The actual lesson plan document worked perfectly and I believe the lesson described is well within a high school student’s technical ability.

Time spent reviewing site: 40 Minutes
Jessica Haggerty
Jessica Haggerty (Teacher (K-12))
11 years ago

Thanks for this lesson idea.  I also teach sophomores and juniors and am always looking for more ways to prepare them for the MME as schools are so focused on the results.  I like that the students are making their own graphs and ask to come up with conclusions about the data.

One suggestion I would make is to have groups do different sets of data and have each group come up with questions that relate to their graph.  One the students share their graphs and data, the other groups can answer the questions.  This way all groups are not only practice analzying data, but also answering quetisons on data they are just seeing,

Technical Remarks:

Reading through this lesson it looks like this would all flow very smoothly with the technology.  Another thing you could do in addition to this lesson is to then have students collect data using a temperature or pH probe and practice collecting data using another form of technology.

Time spent reviewing site: 15 min