Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Proper Teaching in the Classroom Involving the Scientific Method

I always try to incorporate the scientific method into my classroom teaching. Let’s take a research report for example. Students always ask me what the steps are for writing a research report. I then respond stating the scientific method steps which flow like this: 1) State the problem (Find a problem to solve) 2) Collect data and research the problem 3) Form a hypothesis 4) Test the hypothesis 5) Come to a conclusion about the problem 6) State whether it has been solved or not (Theory step) Take the following example for instance. Suppose a baseball player breaks his bat at baseball practice. At this point, he obviously has a problem. He needs a new bat! He then begins to ask his coaches about what bats are the best bats to hit with. He also goes to the local sporting goods place and asks about the best bats. He also searches the internet for the best bats and then formulates that the Demarini T6 bat is the best. The coaches also mentioned that the Easton Stealth was a good bat. To test these bats, he then approaches the sporting goods owner and asks if he could use the two demo models. He takes 100 swings with the Demarini and hits 5 home runs, 10 doubles, and 7 triples while at practice. He then swings 100 times with the Easton Stealth and hits 4 home runs, 6 triples, and 7 doubles. He also notes that he likes the feel of the Demarini much more. He then draws a conclusion that the Demarini is better and forms a theory, that until proven false will mean that he will purchase and use the Demarini. I then explain that this problem solving method can be used with any problem in life that students may encounter. As students become better at recognizing and applying the steps of the scientific method, this technique taught in the classroom will make life much easier for students in the future.