1. Review the commercial students viewed about Gorilla Tape.
2. Explain that a claim is a statement believed to be true.
3. Inform students that claims can be stated or written. In commercials, the specifics of the claim are often in the small print. In the case of this commercial, general claims are stated, but there is one specific claim that compares Gorilla Tape to a leading value brand that is written in the small print. Ask students to be on the lookout for any text that appears on screen.
4. Play the video once more and have students raise their hand when they hear or see a claim. Pause the video as soon as you see a hand and ask them to share the claim. Share the claim that was made in the commercial. Students will write down the claim in their Student Guide.
What is evidence?
1. Discuss with students that evidence is scientific data that supports the claim.
2. There are different types of data, including quantitative and qualitative data.
a. Quantitative Data: Measurable; collected with instruments (such as rulers, balances, thermometers, etc.)
b. Qualitative Data: Not measurable; collected by using senses (touch, smell, sound, sight).
3. Have the students go through the example images on the slide and categorize the data as either qualitative or quantitative. Answer: the beaker, scale, and ruler lengths are all examples of quantitative data. The image of the person looking through the microscope could indicate qualitative data if he were making observations, or quantitative data if he were making measurements in the microscope.
4. Did the Gorilla Tape commercial provide evidence to support the claim?
5. Direct students to fill in the “evidence” section of their Student Guide.
What is Reasoning?
1. Did the Gorilla Tape commercial provide reasoning to explain how the evidence supports the claim?
3. Direct students to fill in the “reasoning” section of their Student Guide.
Guide students to see the connection of reasoning to how the evidence in the experiment supported or refuted the claim. The example sentence starters below can be shared with students to help them frame the construction of their reasoning statements.
Sentence starters that can help you connect your evidence to your reasoning:
Because the evidence shows _______, this means _________.
Because the evidence demonstrates _______, this confirms _________.
If ________, therefore _______.
Reasoning Example 1
Note: This study was created for the purpose of this slide. It was not a real study.
1. Share the example on the slide with students.
2. How does the reasoning connect the claim to the evidence?
Answer: The reasoning explains how the evidence supports the claim.
We must test the claim using a logical process known as the “Scientific Method.”
1. Ask students if they have heard of the Scientific Method.
2. Students share answers.
Have students share out their prior knowledge of the Scientific Method or any experiences/exposure they have had to the Scientific Method.
Steps in the Scientific Method
1. Explain to students that they will conduct an investigation using the Scientific Method to test the Gorilla Tape claim.
2. Ask students if they know of any of the steps in the Scientific Method.
3. Students share out answers.
Explain to students that the Scientific Method contains many steps that can be organized into three main areas. In the first section, we will carefully plan our investigation. In the second section, we will conduct the test, and in the third section, we will analyze the information we gather in the experiment.
Step 1. Identify the Question to Test
1. Direct students to the relevant sections in their Student Guide (sections 1–5).
2. Ask students to identify the main claim stated in the commercial and from this claim, identify the key question that they’d like to test.
A helpful tip when thinking about the question to test is to rephrase the claim as a question.
Guide students with questions such as, “What does the commercial say the product can do compared to the competitor’s product?”
Step 2. Hypothesis
Explain to students that a hypothesis is the expected outcome of an experiment or phenomenon, used as a starting point for further investigation. It is written as an If-Then Statement. (For example: if I eat sugar, then I’ll be hyper.) Note that this is a generalization based on what has been observed, rather than what one thinks should be observed; it implies a cause-effect relationship, not a guess. The results of an experiment will either support or not support the hypothesis.
Facilitating questions include:
What experiences have you had with duct tape or Gorilla Tape?
What additional factual information can you gather through research to develop a valid hypothesis?
Step 3. Brainstorm Experiment Design
Brainstorm how you could test your key question. What are different ways you might test the question? Are certain tests more accurate and/or feasible than others? What qualitative and quantitative data will you be collecting?
Explain to students that observation is a major part of research that incorporates qualitative or quantitative approaches to data collection and analysis. Both approaches have their place in research and the gathering of information, and in many cases they are combined to create a comprehensive result. Certain types of research lend themselves more to qualitative observation, while others better lend themselves to quantitative observation.
Remind students that a thorough brainstorm will help guide the planning process. There are many ways they can approach their brainstorming section. They can include a rough outline of their experiments with steps, a sketch, materials needed, and data tables for quantitative and qualitative observations.
Guiding Questions to ensure students have a thorough brainstorm:
What are different ways we could investigate this question?
What factors will you need to consider when designing your experiment? Think back to the claim!
What will your experimental design look like? Include a sketch outlining the process.
What is quantitative data? What quantitative data will you be collecting? Where will you put this data?
What is qualitative data? What qualitative data will you be collecting? Where will you put this data?
Step 4. Materials Required
Let students know that materials are written in a list format and when students write the materials, they should be as specific as possible. For example, instead of writing “beakers,” we write “3 Beakers, 100 mL each.” Encourage students to think about and incorporate all necessary materials in this list.
Rubber Band Contest
In order to learn about variables, students are going to be playing a game with too few rules and regulations. Very quickly, students will be identifying that the game is not set up properly, and will indicate that the game is “unfair.” Once it’s established that the game is unfair, students will be identifying ways in which we can make this game “fair.” A conversation about control, independent, and dependent variables will follow as well as the connection to designing a “fair” scientific test. (Tip: Rubber bands can be replaced with any other easily accessible classroom material. You can choose 3–4 students to participate in the game, or the whole class if enough space is available.
1. Inform students about the contest. For example: I am going to hand out a rubber band to each of you, and we are going to have a rubber band contest. Who can shoot the rubber band the farthest?
2. Do not control the students’ starting location. Have some stand at a “starting point” and others stand in front of it. Ensure no students are in the path of where the rubber band is going to be thrown. (Optional: have students wear goggles for eye protection.)
3. Have students catapult rubber bands and select a winner randomly. You may choose to give them a pretend “reward.”
4. At this point, students may be complaining that the test was not set up fairly and that the winner does not deserve the reward! Let students know that they are right! And that they have discovered something very important about setting up a test.
Variables: Rubber Band Contest
1. I hear a lot of you saying that the competition wasn’t fair. What would we need to make this contest fair?
b. Share out answers.
Potential answers may include: make a straight starting line, rubber bands of the same thickness, rubber bands of the same texture, rubber bands of the same size, same technique for every person, measuring a precise distance traveled for each rubber band.
Variables and Controls
1. All of the things that you’re listing are examples of variables and controls. As seen in your Student Guide, variables are factors (experimental elements) that can change the outcome of an experiment. There are certain variables that you want to keep the same (control variables) during the experiment in order to create a “fair test.”
2. Remind students that when possible, they should only change one thing, thus creating a controlled experiment.
On the next couple of slides, we’ll review some variables and controls.
Variables and Controls
1. When we conduct experiments, we have to identify what variable we want to change (the independent variable) and what variable we want to measure (the dependent variable). Then we have to control all the other possible variables that could affect the experiment. Why do you think this is necessary?
b. Share out answers.
Emphasize to students that control variables give you valid results because you know the independent variable is actually the only thing affecting your dependent variable. Reference the rubber band activity, if necessary.
Step 6. Procedure
Guide students to use a numbered step-by-step procedure that is clear and detailed. Explain to students that the procedure should be extremely clear so that anyone not having exposure to the commercial could set up the experiment and carry it out independently. It is extremely important at this point to be sure that students are thinking about variables. Direct their attention to the different variables their experimental setup includes. Encourage them to try their best to set up their experiment to change only one main factor—such as the brand of tape—and keep all other factors the same thus setting up a truly “controlled experiment.”
Helpful questions for students to think about before writing a procedure:
Have you ever carried out a procedure for another science experiment?
If so, what did it look like? How was it formatted?
Was it easy to follow?
Step 7. Conduct the Test
Explain to students that at this point we will carry out our experiment as a class.
What are some things you should be aware and cautious of as you complete your experiments?
Are all of your materials ready and placed in the correct position?
Students should review the controlled variables and the one factor they will be changing in their experiment (independent variable) with you. Use this time to double check their setup. Does it mirror their procedure and variables listed? If so, then they should be good to go. If not, have them make the necessary adjustments.
**It is critical here to allow students to figure out the process on their own. It’s often easier and quicker to give students the answer directly; however, it is important to allow students to work through and embrace this process as a class, sharing thoughts and ideas as a class.
Step 8. Data and Observations (Your Evidence)
Guiding questions to frame students’ thinking about their evidence:
What should you focus on observing in the experiment?
Where will you record your data?
What quantitative observations will you record? Where will you record this data?
What qualitative observations will you record? Where will you record this data?
Encourage students to use extreme care and precise methods and measurements to ensure that their controlled experiment is carried out effectively. Remind students that they should create a data table to record their quantitative observations and incorporate additional space for photos, sketches, and additional quantitative observations.
Students may require additional guidance when completing this step. If students ask questions such as, “Is this set up correctly? Am I controlling all of my variables correctly?” guide them to revisit their experimental setup and ask facilitating questions about whether they’re following their procedure precisely.
Step 9. Conclusion and Reasoning
At this point, direct students to the data and observations they have collected. This is their evidence to analyze and incorporate in order to draw appropriate conclusions and provide reasoning. Have them think about the story the data tells and how it relates to the question and hypothesis. It is important to remind students to limit their conclusion to the scope of the information in the hypothesis: no more, no less. For example, their conclusion should be limited to their question on strength.
Helpful guiding questions:
Did Gorilla Tape hold 3x the mass compared to the leading brand?
How do you know?
What specific data supports this claim? What specific data does not support this claim?