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Overview:
This short activity quickly engages the participants in the process of developing testable hypotheses. Students come up with multiple hypotheses to explain a set of observations and figure out how to test these hypotheses.

Author/Source:
UCMP

Grade:
6-8

Discipline:
Life Science, Nature and Process of Science

Time:
10-15 minutes

Concepts:
Correspondence to the Next Generation Science Standards is indicated in parentheses after each relevant concept. See our conceptual framework for details.

  • Science aims to build explanations of the natural world. (P3, P6)

  • Science deals with the natural world and natural explanations.

  • Science works only with testable ideas. (P2, P3, NOS2)

  • Scientists strive to test their ideas with evidence from the natural world; a hallmark of science is exposing ideas to testing. (P3, P4, P6, P7, NOS2)

  • The process of science involves observation, exploration, testing, communication, and application.

  • Scientists test their ideas by predicting what they would expect to observe if their idea were true and then seeing if that prediction is correct. (P4, P6)

  • Scientists often try to generate multiple explanations for what they observe. (P7)

  • Hypotheses are potential explanations for what we observe in the natural world. (P6)

  • Problem-solving and decision-making benefit from a scientific approach.

Teacher background:

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