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Investigating a Crime Scene


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Two suspicious dogs and a shredded book provide a perfect combination for focusing on the process of science and to do so with a bit of a chuckle. This powerpoint has been developed so that you can ask for student responses throughout.



Nature and Process of Science

30 minutes

Teaching tips:
Download this powerpoint to your desktop for use with your students. Pedagogical research indicates that students learn better if they are actively engaged. This investigation reinforces the logic of a scientific approach, emphasizes the importance of posing and testing multiple hypotheses, and provides a good opportunity for discussing the role of assumptions in science, avoiding bias, and the relevance of science in our everyday lives.

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

  • 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)

  • 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 test their ideas using multiple lines of evidence.

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

  • Raw data must be analyzed and interpreted before we can tell whether a scientific idea is likely to be accurate or inaccurate. (P4, P5)

  • Scientists try to be objective and work to identify and avoid bias.

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

  • Anyone can participate in science.

  • Scientific knowledge helps us make decisions that affect our lives every day.

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

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