1st and 2nd grade students collecting and analyzing data, 7th graders too!

Collecting and analyzing data follows observational steps in science inquiry. To get inspired about expanding your students’ science experiences, read about the data collection by first and second grader teams who are National Elementary School Winners for Grades K-2 of the 2010-2011 Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge!
The different teams:

  • Idling of vehicles is prohibited.Used stop watches to measure how long it takes for a car to move through the parking lot, calculated how much gas was burned by idling cars waiting for student pickup, and analyzed queues (lines) with the goal of making them move faster and more efficiently,
  • Analyzed plant use of water and soil types, mapped to see where the water runoff goes to find out where the water flows after the rainfall, and found out how much water is used for the school yard.
  • Gathered data from one local landfill, and counted plastic bag use at grocery stores.

Congratulations to the Concord Hill Greenies, the From Plastic to Fantastic team, the Water Rescuers team, and all participating teams on successfully taking on the Siemens Challenge! Maybe some of their teachers will share their experience at a National Science Teachers Association conference.
On the NSTA General Science list serve, teachers are sharing ideas and resources for projects that “make a difference with science.” Chicago teacher David White of Louisa May Alcott School  reports that three of his 7th grade Science students volunteered to create a No Idling PowerPoint presentation, designed to convince parents not to idle their cars when they are dropping off or picking up their kids at school. They presented it to the Local School Council, which then decided to adopt a no-idling policy.
“The girls felt very good about making a difference in our school, and when I asked them if I could share their presentation with the NSTA group, they felt even better – knowing that what they did may eventually make a difference at other schools, as well.”
No idling. Children breathing.
The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control supports school efforts to decrease idling and publishes an information sheet on collecting data for this project. 
 Hooray for data collection at every age and for sharing resources,

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