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© R.I.C. Publications<br />

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<strong>Science</strong>: A <strong>STEM</strong> <strong>approach</strong> (<strong>Year</strong> 6)<br />

Published by R.I.C. Publications ® 2017<br />

Copyright © R.I.C. Publications ® 2017<br />

ISBN 978-1-925431-99-5<br />

RIC–6176<br />

Titles in this series:<br />

<strong>Science</strong>: A <strong>STEM</strong> <strong>approach</strong> (Foundation)<br />

<strong>Science</strong>: A <strong>STEM</strong> <strong>approach</strong> (<strong>Year</strong> 1)<br />

<strong>Science</strong>: A <strong>STEM</strong> <strong>approach</strong> (<strong>Year</strong> 2)<br />

<strong>Science</strong>: A <strong>STEM</strong> <strong>approach</strong> (<strong>Year</strong> 3)<br />

<strong>Science</strong>: A <strong>STEM</strong> <strong>approach</strong> (<strong>Year</strong> 4)<br />

<strong>Science</strong>: A <strong>STEM</strong> <strong>approach</strong> (<strong>Year</strong> 5)<br />

<strong>Science</strong>: A <strong>STEM</strong> <strong>approach</strong> (<strong>Year</strong> 6)<br />

All material identified by is material subject to copyright<br />

under the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) and is owned by the Australian<br />

Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority 2017.<br />

For all Australian Curriculum material except elaborations: This is<br />

an extract from the Australian Curriculum.<br />

Elaborations: This may be a modified extract from the Australian<br />

Curriculum and may include the work of other authors.<br />

Disclaimer: ACARA neither endorses nor verifies the accuracy of the<br />

information provided and accepts no <strong>res</strong>ponsibility for incomplete or<br />

inaccurate information.<br />

In particular, ACARA does not endorse or verify that:<br />

• The content descriptions are solely for a particular year and<br />

subject;<br />

• All the content descriptions for that year and subject have been<br />

used; and<br />

• The author’s material aligns with the Australian Curriculum content<br />

descriptions for the relevant year and subject.<br />

You can find the unaltered and most up to date version of this<br />

material at http://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/<br />

This material is reproduced with the permission of ACARA.<br />

Copyright Notice<br />

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The publisher licenses the individual teacher<br />

who purchased this book to photocopy these<br />

pages to hand out to students in their own<br />

classes.<br />

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Foreword<br />

<strong>Science</strong>: A <strong>STEM</strong> <strong>approach</strong> (Foundation to <strong>Year</strong> 6) is a series of books written with the intent to support<br />

Australian Curriculum <strong>Science</strong> while offering a way to introduce a <strong>STEM</strong> project based on the science<br />

concepts taught.<br />

All <strong>Science</strong> Understanding and <strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills for each unit are included, and any connecting<br />

Technologies or Mathematics curriculum concepts are also incorporated.<br />

The <strong>STEM</strong> project al<strong>low</strong>s students to apply the science knowledge and understanding, and includes<br />

any curriculum links to Technologies and Mathematics curriculum.<br />

If you would like us to feature your completed <strong>STEM</strong> projects on our website, please<br />

email a photograph, video or audio of the project to<br />

.<br />

If you would like to view completed <strong>STEM</strong> projects and get some inspiration, please<br />

go to .<br />

Introduction.............................................................. iv<br />

Unit description ...................................................iv–vi<br />

Biological sciences:<br />

I’m a survivor!.................................................. 1–36<br />

Overview...........................................................2–3<br />

Lesson 1............................................................4–7<br />

Lesson 2..........................................................8–11<br />

Lesson 3....................................................... 12–15<br />

Lesson 4....................................................... 16–19<br />

Lesson 5....................................................... 20–22<br />

Lesson 6....................................................... 23–25<br />

Assessment................................................. 26–28<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project............................................... 29–36<br />

Chemical sciences:<br />

Reversible and irreversible changes..........37–70<br />

Overview...................................................... 38–39<br />

Lesson 1....................................................... 40–43<br />

Lesson 2....................................................... 44–46<br />

Lesson 3....................................................... 47–49<br />

Lesson 4....................................................... 50–54<br />

Lesson 5....................................................... 55–56<br />

Lesson 6....................................................... 57–59<br />

Assessment................................................. 60–62<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project............................................... 63–70<br />

Contents<br />

Earth and space sciences:<br />

The effects of a natural disaster................71–100<br />

Overview...................................................... 72–73<br />

Lesson 1....................................................... 74–76<br />

Lesson 2....................................................... 77–79<br />

Lesson 3....................................................... 80–82<br />

Lesson 4....................................................... 83–85<br />

Lesson 5....................................................... 86–87<br />

Lesson 6....................................................... 88–89<br />

Assessment................................................. 90–92<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project............................................. 93–100<br />

Physical sciences:<br />

Make it spark............................................ 101–134<br />

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Overview..................................................102–103<br />

Lesson 1...................................................104–106<br />

Lesson 2...................................................107–109<br />

Lesson 3...................................................110–113<br />

Lesson 4...................................................114–116<br />

Lesson 5...................................................117–120<br />

Lesson 6...................................................121–124<br />

Assessment.............................................125–127<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project...........................................128–134<br />

R.I.C. Publications® – www.ricpublications.com.au 978-1-925431-99-5 YEAR <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH iii


Introduction<br />

What is <strong>STEM</strong>?<br />

In a nutshell, <strong>STEM</strong> is the integration of science,<br />

technologies, engineering and mathematics<br />

concepts using project-based and cooperative<br />

learning. Educators have been integrating learning<br />

areas since the beginning of time, so although the<br />

idea behind <strong>STEM</strong> is not new, this series hopes<br />

to make it easier for you to execute learning<br />

integration in the classroom.<br />

The Australian Government, and governments around the world, have placed a high priority on<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> skills. The future workforce will require current students to be creative and critical thinkers who<br />

can collaborate and design solutions to problems. The skills utilised in <strong>STEM</strong> have never been more<br />

valued.<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> education aims to prepare students for the roles of the future with skills such as innovation,<br />

creativity, reasoning, problem-solving, and technical science skills such as questioning, observing,<br />

systematic experimentation, and analysis and interpretation of data.<br />

Format of this book<br />

This series focuses on delivering a comprehensive and contemporary science program, culminating in<br />

a <strong>STEM</strong> project which applies the scientific knowledge acquired during the science lessons. The series<br />

incorporates the use of online <strong>res</strong>ources, digital devices and iPad® applications where appropriate, in<br />

order to enhance the use of technology in the classroom.<br />

The units<br />

The science units are organised by sub-strand—Biological sciences, Chemical sciences, Earth and<br />

space sciences and Physical sciences. At the start of each sub-strand unit, keywords, a unit overview<br />

and curriculum scope and sequence are provided, as shown be<strong>low</strong>.<br />

Each unit contains a term’s worth of work with 6 lessons, a summative assessment of the science<br />

knowledge with teacher notes, and a <strong>STEM</strong> project.<br />

Unit overview<br />

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Title page Unit overview Curriculum scope and<br />

sequence<br />

iv<br />

<strong>Science</strong>:<br />

A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH<br />

YEAR<br />

6<br />

978-1-925431-99-5 R.I.C. Publications® – www.ricpublications.com.au


Unit description<br />

Lessons<br />

The lessons are based on science knowledge and skills. The lessons contain a page of teacher notes,<br />

outlining the inquiry questions, science strands and any links to technologies and mathematics<br />

concepts, fol<strong>low</strong>ed by a suggested lesson plan. Any <strong>res</strong>ource sheets required for the lesson fol<strong>low</strong> on.<br />

Assessment<br />

Teacher notes Lesson plan Resource sheets<br />

A teacher page is provided outlining the assessment indicators and answers for the fol<strong>low</strong>ing<br />

assessment page(s). The assessment page(s) covers the science knowledge explored in the previous<br />

lessons.<br />

© R.I.C. Publications<br />

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Teacher notes<br />

Assessment page(s)<br />

R.I.C. Publications® – www.ricpublications.com.au 978-1-925431-99-5 YEAR <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH v


Unit description<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

The <strong>STEM</strong> project provides students with the opportunity to apply what they have learned in the<br />

previous science lessons while incorporating technologies, engineering and mathematics concepts<br />

where possible. The project entails group collaboration and an extended learning period of<br />

3–4 weeks. This gives students a real-life experience of working with ‘colleagues’ to share ideas<br />

and test designed solutions. Each <strong>STEM</strong> project contains an overview listing <strong>STEM</strong> concepts and<br />

alternative project ideas, curriculum links, teacher notes and a group assessment rubric, and a project<br />

brief and checklist for students. Any <strong>res</strong>ource sheets required are also provided, as well as a selfassessment<br />

sheet.<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project overview and<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> curriculum links<br />

Teacher notes<br />

Project brief<br />

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Project steps Resource sheets Self-assessment and<br />

Group assessment rubric<br />

vi<br />

<strong>Science</strong>:<br />

A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH<br />

YEAR<br />

6<br />

978-1-925431-99-5 R.I.C. Publications® – www.ricpublications.com.au


Biological sciences<br />

biome<br />

environment<br />

ecosystem<br />

survive<br />

physical conditions<br />

sunlight exposure<br />

temperatu<strong>res</strong><br />

precipitation<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Keywords<br />

air/wind conditions<br />

soil conditions<br />

fungi<br />

yeast<br />

microorganisms<br />

blubber<br />

hibernation<br />

migration<br />

guarding<br />

tundra<br />

deciduous fo<strong>res</strong>t<br />

coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t<br />

rainfo<strong>res</strong>t<br />

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grassland<br />

desert<br />

rainfall<br />

burrowing<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 1


Unit overview<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

The growth and survival of living things are affected by physical conditions of their environment<br />

(ACSSU094)<br />

Lesson 1<br />

What are the world’s<br />

major biomes and<br />

what are the physical<br />

conditions like in each?<br />

Lesson 2<br />

How does the<br />

temperature and<br />

precipitation of an<br />

environment affect<br />

the growth of plants in<br />

different biomes?<br />

Lesson 3<br />

How do the physical<br />

conditions of an<br />

environment affect the<br />

growth of fungi, such as<br />

yeast?<br />

Lesson 4<br />

How do the physical<br />

conditions in a rainfo<strong>res</strong>t<br />

affect plant and animal<br />

life?<br />

Lesson 5<br />

How do the physical<br />

conditions in extremely<br />

cold environments such<br />

as the Arctic tundra, affect<br />

plant and animal life?<br />

Lesson 6<br />

How do the physical<br />

conditions in hot and dry<br />

environments such as<br />

deserts and grasslands,<br />

affect plant and animal<br />

life?<br />

Summative assessment<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Claymation<br />

Students investigate different biomes around the world and the<br />

types of plants and animals that live in each, using an interactive<br />

game on the computer. They then compare the amount of<br />

sunlight and precipitation to the plants and animals that live in<br />

each major land biome, to predict how the physical conditions of<br />

an environment affect the plants and animals that live in it.<br />

Students plan and conduct an experiment to test how the amount<br />

of sunlight and rainfall an environment receives, affects grass<br />

growth in that environment. Students identify which physical<br />

conditions will be controlled or changed, and decide how they<br />

will measure the grass growth. Students plant their grass seeds<br />

according to their experiment plan and monitor the <strong>res</strong>ults<br />

throughout Lessons 3–6.<br />

Students explore different types of fungi, including mushrooms,<br />

yeasts and moulds. They plan and conduct an experiment to test<br />

yeast growth in water that is 10 ºC, 30 ºC and 50 ºC, identifying<br />

the controlled, changed and measured variables before testing.<br />

Students analyse their <strong>res</strong>ults to determine why fungi thrives in<br />

tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>ts.<br />

In small groups, students identify the plants and animals that<br />

grow in each layer of a tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>t and allocate a layer<br />

to each group member. Individually, students conduct online<br />

<strong>res</strong>earch about one plant and one animal that live in their<br />

allocated layer. Students then share their <strong>res</strong>earch with their<br />

group.<br />

Students plan and conduct an experiment to test how blubber<br />

helps sea animals survive in extremely cold environments, such<br />

as the Arctic tundra. Students also learn about other adaptations<br />

of plants and animals that al<strong>low</strong> them to survive in the physical<br />

conditions experienced by polar biomes.<br />

Students conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch to identify how meerkats<br />

have adapted to survive in the harsh conditions of the Kalahari<br />

Desert in Africa, which experiences both desert and savanna<br />

conditions. Students create a digital p<strong>res</strong>entation to show how<br />

meerkats survive the fluctuating temperatu<strong>res</strong>, limited rainfall/<br />

water availability, wide open spaces and large amounts of sun<br />

exposure.<br />

Students apply their knowledge of how the physical conditions<br />

of an environment affect the survival of plants and animals in that<br />

environment.<br />

Students design and create a claymation for young children,<br />

telling a short story of a squirrel on its perilous journey through a<br />

coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t in the harsh winter conditions, to find its stored<br />

acorns. The story must be set after an oak masting in which the<br />

squirrel has stored its food in several locations within one section<br />

of fo<strong>res</strong>t.<br />

Pages<br />

4–7<br />

8–11<br />

12–15<br />

16–19<br />

20–22<br />

23–25<br />

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26–28<br />

29–36<br />

2 <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH<br />

YEAR<br />

6<br />

978-1-925431-99-5 R.I.C. Publications® – www.ricpublications.com.au


Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Unit overview<br />

Curriculum scope and sequence<br />

SCIENCE UNDERSTANDING<br />

The growth and survival of living things are affected by physical<br />

conditions of their environment (ACSSU094)<br />

SCIENCE AS A HUMAN ENDEAVOUR<br />

<strong>Science</strong> involves testing predictions by gathering data and using<br />

evidence to develop explanations of events and phenomena and<br />

reflects historical and cultural contributions (ACSHE098)<br />

Scientific knowledge is used to solve problems and inform<br />

personal and community decisions (ACSHE100)<br />

SCIENCE INQUIRY SKILLS<br />

Questioning and predicting<br />

With guidance, pose clarifying questions and make predictions<br />

about scientific investigations (ACSIS232)<br />

Planning and conducting<br />

Identify, plan and apply the elements of scientific investigations<br />

to answer questions and solve problems using equipment and<br />

materials safely and identifying potential risks (ACSIS103)<br />

Decide variables to be changed and measured in fair tests, and<br />

observe measure and record data with accuracy using digital<br />

technologies as appropriate (ACSIS104)<br />

Processing and analysing data and information<br />

Construct and use a range of rep<strong>res</strong>entations, including tables<br />

and graphs, to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and describe observations, patterns or<br />

relationships in data using digital technologies as appropriate<br />

(ACSIS107)<br />

Compare data with predictions and use as evidence in<br />

developing explanations (ACSIS221)<br />

Evaluating<br />

Reflect on and suggest improvements to scientific investigations<br />

(ACSIS108)<br />

Communicating<br />

Communicate ideas, explanations and processes using scientific<br />

rep<strong>res</strong>entations in a variety of ways, including multi-modal texts<br />

(ACSIS110)<br />

Lesson<br />

1 2 3 4 5 6 Assessment<br />

<strong>STEM</strong><br />

project<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3<br />

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3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

R.I.C. Publications® – www.ricpublications.com.au 978-1-925431-99-5 YEAR <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 3


Lesson 1<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What are the world’s major biomes and what are the physical<br />

conditions like in each?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• scanning a QR code using a QR scanner on an iPad ® or<br />

typing a URL into a web browser to load a website<br />

• reading information and fol<strong>low</strong>ing the instructions to<br />

build each biome, using an online interactive game<br />

• using a table to record information in the correct cells<br />

• using an application such as Seesaw on an iPad ® to<br />

p<strong>res</strong>ent information<br />

Background information<br />

• A biome is a large area of land or water that has<br />

specific physical conditions, including temperature,<br />

precipitation, sunlight, air/wind and soil, that impact the<br />

types of plants, animals and microorganisms that live<br />

there.<br />

• The location of a biome relative to Earth’s poles or the<br />

equator, determines the amount of sunlight it receives,<br />

which impacts its temperature and precipitation.<br />

• The air and wind conditions, and the amount of<br />

sunlight and precipitation a biome receives, affect<br />

the soil conditions needed for plants and animals to<br />

survive, including a plant’s ability to photosynthesise<br />

and an animal’s ability to protect itself against climatic<br />

conditions, predators and food and water scarcity.<br />

• Living things have specialised physical and behavioural<br />

adaptations that al<strong>low</strong> them to survive in the conditions<br />

of their environment, such as animals with thick fur or<br />

blubber in polar biomes, or plants with spines instead<br />

of leaves, in arid desert biomes. See examples of<br />

different adaptations at .<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use page 6 and students’ digital<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entations or completed copies<br />

of page 7, to assess their science<br />

inquiry skills, including predicting,<br />

planning and conducting an<br />

investigation and recording<br />

information accurately in a table.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online video—Biomes of the<br />

world for children: Oceans,<br />

mountains, grassland,<br />

rainfo<strong>res</strong>t, desert at <br />

• A copy of page 6 for each<br />

student<br />

• Computer access for each<br />

student<br />

• An iPad ® for each student,<br />

with a digital p<strong>res</strong>entation<br />

application such as Seesaw<br />

(optional)<br />

• A copy of page 7 for each pair<br />

(optional)<br />

• Online mind-mapping tool,<br />

such as the one at <br />

(optional)<br />

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4 <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH<br />

YEAR<br />

6<br />

978-1-925431-99-5 R.I.C. Publications® – www.ricpublications.com.au


Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 1<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. As a class, watch the video, Biomes of the world for children: Oceans, mountains, grassland,<br />

rainfo<strong>res</strong>t, desert at . This video gives a brief explanation of<br />

how the physical conditions of an environment can affect the plants and animals that live in that<br />

ecosystem and how similar ecosystems are grouped together to form biomes. Learn about each<br />

of the marine biomes, including saltwater (oceans and coral reefs) and f<strong>res</strong>hwater, then pause the<br />

video at 4:50. Note: The remainder of the video covers land biomes and will be watched later in the<br />

lesson after students have completed their investigation.<br />

Development:<br />

2. Individually, students go to the URL on page 6, and read the information about each of the six<br />

major land biomes of the world—tundra, taiga, deciduous fo<strong>res</strong>t, grassland, rainfo<strong>res</strong>t and desert.<br />

Students then play an interactive game in which they read clues to predict the correct plants,<br />

animals, temperature and precipitation for each biome. After building each biome, students record<br />

the summary of information about the plants, animals, temperature and precipitation of each<br />

biome, using the table on page 6. Note: This activity may be completed in pairs if <strong>res</strong>ources are<br />

limited. QP PC PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can work with a partner to complete the interactive game or sit as a<br />

group with the teacher reading the information aloud and each student building the biome on<br />

individual iPads ® .<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to record more specific information about each<br />

biome, using the information p<strong>res</strong>ented while selecting the plants, animals, temperature and<br />

precipitation of each biome.<br />

3. In pairs, students discuss the types of plants and animals that grow in each biome and the<br />

temperature and amount of precipitation received to predict relationships between the non-living<br />

and living things in each biome. Using an application on an iPad ® , such as Seesaw, or using the<br />

table on page 7, students record how they think plants and animals survive in each biome. Prompt<br />

students with questions including, What kinds of adaptations do plants and animals have to help<br />

them survive in their environment? How do non-living things in the environment, such as the amount<br />

of sunlight, precipitation, temperature, soil or air conditions affect the plants and animals that live<br />

there? How do producers, herbivo<strong>res</strong>, omnivo<strong>res</strong>, carnivo<strong>res</strong> and decomposers create a balance in<br />

the environment? QP PC PA<br />

4. Watch the remainder of the video from the Introduction. This part explains how plants and animals<br />

survive in different land biomes.<br />

Reflection:<br />

© R.I.C. Publications<br />

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5. Conduct a brainstorm on the whiteboard or using an online mind-mapping tool such as the<br />

one at . Create a parent node, entitled ‘Physical conditions in an<br />

environment’ and child nodes for each of the fol<strong>low</strong>ing physical conditions: temperature, sunlight,<br />

precipitation, air conditions and soil conditions. Divide the class into five groups and allocate<br />

a physical condition to each group. In their groups, students brainstorm examples of how their<br />

allocated physical condition affects the plants and animals of a biome. As students share their<br />

examples with the class, record them on the mind map and email a copy to each student. PA C<br />

R.I.C. Publications® – www.ricpublications.com.au 978-1-925431-99-5 YEAR <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 5


Lesson 1<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Major biomes around the world<br />

Biomes of the world<br />

Type the URL into a web browser to download an interactive<br />

game, called Build a biome. Open the game from the downloaded file.<br />

Read the information p<strong>res</strong>ented to learn about different land biomes, then click ‘Play the<br />

game’ to build each biome. Use the clues from the notebook and the facts panel to select the<br />

correct plants, animals, temperature and precipitation for each biome.<br />

After building a biome, use the table be<strong>low</strong> to record information about the plants, animals,<br />

temperature and precipitation in the correct cells.<br />

Tundra<br />

Taiga<br />

Deciduous<br />

fo<strong>res</strong>t<br />

Rainfo<strong>res</strong>t<br />

Grassland<br />

Desert<br />

Plants Animals Temperature Precipitation<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 1<br />

Plant and animal survival in each biome<br />

Biome How do plants survive in this biome? How do animals survive in this biome?<br />

Tundra<br />

Taiga<br />

Deciduous<br />

fo<strong>res</strong>t<br />

Rainfo<strong>res</strong>t<br />

Grassland<br />

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Desert<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 7


Lesson 2<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

How does the temperature and precipitation of an<br />

environment affect the growth of plants in different<br />

biomes?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students investigate how the amount of sunlight,<br />

and the amount and frequency of rainfall, affect<br />

the growth of grass.<br />

Background information<br />

• Temperate grasslands are found in the temperate<br />

climatic zones and have large, rolling plains of grasses,<br />

f<strong>low</strong>ers and herbs. Tropical grasslands, also known as<br />

savannas, are found in the tropical climatic zone. They<br />

are grasslands that also support some tree growth<br />

around water catchments.<br />

• The physical conditions in grassland biomes provide<br />

enough sunlight and rainfall to support grass growth.<br />

The long blades of grass are able to absorb the vast<br />

amounts of sunlight without being burnt by extremely<br />

hot temperatu<strong>res</strong> or frozen by extremely cold<br />

temperatu<strong>res</strong>. The nutrient-rich soil means that grasses<br />

have adapted to have fibrous root systems that absorb<br />

these nutrients and any rainfall that seeps into the soil.<br />

• Examples of grasses that grow in these biomes are<br />

purple needlegrass, wild oats, foxtail, ryegrass, and<br />

buffalo grass.<br />

• Watch the video at to<br />

see how amount of water and sunlight grass receives in<br />

a garden, affect its growth.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using materials and equipment safely<br />

when conducting an experiment<br />

• using formal measurements to ensure<br />

the amount of soil and grass seeds are<br />

controlled and the amount of water given<br />

is kept constant<br />

• taking digital photographs using an iPad ®<br />

and emailing them to each group member<br />

• using an iPad ® to insert digital<br />

photographs from an email, text and audio<br />

into a p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

ShowMe or Seesaw<br />

• saving and emailing a digital p<strong>res</strong>entation<br />

to the teacher<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use the digital p<strong>res</strong>entations from each<br />

group to assess their science inquiry<br />

skills, including predicting, conducting an<br />

experiment and recording observations<br />

using digital photographs.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online image of different<br />

environments at <br />

• Completed copies of page 6<br />

from Lesson 1 (optional)<br />

• For each group: a copy of<br />

page 10; 4 jumbo plastic<br />

cups; 4 cups of soil in a<br />

plastic container; a water<br />

sprayer; 2 tablespoons of<br />

grass seeds; measuring tools,<br />

including a tablespoon and a<br />

measuring cup<br />

• An iPad ® for each<br />

student, with a digital<br />

camera application and a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application,<br />

such as ShowMe or Seesaw<br />

• A copy of page 11 for each<br />

student<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 2<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Display the image at to revise or learn about the conditions in<br />

different environments, including mountainsides, savannas, deserts, rainfo<strong>res</strong>ts, Arctic tundra and<br />

woodlands. Using a think-pair-share, students discuss the types of vegetation that are supported<br />

in each environment. Note: Completed copies of page 6 from Lesson 1 may assist students in their<br />

discussions. QP PA<br />

Development:<br />

2. In groups of four, students read the experiment information on page 10 and decide who will take<br />

care of each plant. Students identify the controlled, independent and dependent variables by<br />

answering the questions, then discuss how they will control each of the controlled variables and<br />

how they will measure their <strong>res</strong>ults. Students use a calendar to record when they will need to water<br />

each cup and how much water each cup will receive. Note: Students should be encouraged to give<br />

the grass the same amount of water each time. PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can be grouped together to discuss the different variables with the<br />

teacher and how they will keep their test fair. Written information may be completed using an<br />

audio recorder.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to write or draw how they think the grass in each<br />

cup will look after four weeks of growing.<br />

3. Give each group four plastic cups, four cups of soil in a plastic container, a water sprayer and<br />

access to grass seeds. Using a grassed area outside, each student takes a cup and labels the<br />

test number on it with a permanent marker. Students fill their cup with soil, to approximately two<br />

centimet<strong>res</strong> be<strong>low</strong> the edge of the cup, then place two tablespoons of grass seeds in their cup<br />

and cover them with a thin layer of soil. They position their cups to receive the correct amount of<br />

sunlight, before watering each one according to their experiment plan. Using an iPad ® , students<br />

take a digital photograph of the cups in each position and email them to each group member.<br />

Clean away any mess and return to the classroom. PC PA<br />

4. Individually, students use page 11 to predict the <strong>res</strong>ults of the experiment. QP<br />

Reflection:<br />

5. Using an iPad ® , students individually insert the emailed photographs of their plants in both sunexposed<br />

and sun-limited environments, into a p<strong>res</strong>entation application, such as ShowMe or<br />

Seesaw. They add text to list the controlled variables, add a calendar to show how much water and<br />

how frequently each plant will be watered, and record audio of their predictions, by reading each<br />

question and answer on page 11. Students save and email their p<strong>res</strong>entations to the teacher or<br />

upload their p<strong>res</strong>entation to Seesaw for assessment. C<br />

Note: Students will need to continue to water their plants throughout the week as written in their<br />

experiment plan. Observations will not be recorded on page 11 until one week after planting.<br />

Students will continue to use page 11 throughout the remainder of this unit so it will need to be<br />

easily accessible.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 9


Lesson 2<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Growing grass experiment – 1<br />

Question:<br />

How does the amount of sunlight and rainfall in an environment affect the growth of grass?<br />

Instructions:<br />

1. Label the cups as shown be<strong>low</strong>.<br />

2. Place soil in each cup, filling to 2 cm from the top.<br />

3. Place two teaspoons of seeds in each cup and<br />

cover them with more soil.<br />

4. Place each cup in a position that suits its test<br />

and water them.<br />

Test 1<br />

Test 2<br />

Test 3<br />

Test 4<br />

Identify the variables:<br />

Physical conditions in each test<br />

An environment with:<br />

• moderate to high sunlight exposure, and<br />

• heavy and frequent rainfall.<br />

An environment with:<br />

• moderate to high sunlight exposure, and<br />

• limited and infrequent rainfall.<br />

An environment with:<br />

• limited sunlight exposure, and<br />

• heavy and frequent rainfall<br />

An environment with:<br />

• limited sunlight exposure, and<br />

• limited and infrequent rainfall.<br />

moderate to high sunlight exposure<br />

limited sunlight exposure<br />

Physical conditions Control Change<br />

Temperature<br />

Rainfall<br />

Sunlight exposure<br />

Air/wind conditions<br />

Soil conditions<br />

Can’t be<br />

controlled<br />

Equipment and materials:<br />

• 4 plastic cups<br />

• 4 cups of soil<br />

• grass seeds<br />

• water sprayer<br />

• measuring and recording tools<br />

heavy and frequent rainfall<br />

limited and infrequent rainfall<br />

Labels<br />

Explain how/why<br />

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How will you measure the growth of the grass?<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 2<br />

Predict the <strong>res</strong>ults:<br />

Growing grass experiment – 2<br />

1. Under which conditions will the grass grow most? Explain why.<br />

2. Under which conditions will the grass grow least? Explain why.<br />

3. Will the grass grow in all cups, even if it is at a s<strong>low</strong>er rate? Explain why.<br />

Record the <strong>res</strong>ults:<br />

Test 1<br />

Test 2<br />

Test 3<br />

Test 4<br />

Grass growth<br />

after 1 week<br />

Grass growth<br />

after 2 weeks<br />

Analyse the <strong>res</strong>ults:<br />

1. In which test did the grass grow the most?<br />

2. In which test did the grass grow the least?<br />

3. Did the grass grow in all tests?<br />

Explanation:<br />

Scan the QR code or type the URL into a web<br />

browser to see how different physical conditions<br />

affect grass growth in gardens.<br />

Evaluate your experiment:<br />

1. Did you conduct a fair and accurate experiment?<br />

2. How could you improve your experiment next time?<br />

Grass growth<br />

after 3 weeks<br />

Grass growth<br />

after 4 weeks<br />

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https://tinyurl.com/yaaj8mjn<br />

3. What other experiments could you conduct to see how the physical conditions of an<br />

environment affect grass growth?<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 11


Lesson 3<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

How do the physical conditions of<br />

an environment affect the growth of<br />

fungi, such as yeast?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students investigate how the<br />

growth of yeast is affected by the<br />

temperature of an environment<br />

and conduct an experiment to<br />

test their predictions.<br />

Background information<br />

• Fungi come in different types, including<br />

mushrooms, moulds and yeasts. To read<br />

more about different types of fungi, go to<br />

.<br />

• Yeasts are microscopic, single-celled fungi<br />

that grow on the surface of overripened<br />

fruits and decaying plants and animals,<br />

where they extract sugar as food. They<br />

use this food to grow by converting the<br />

carbohydrates into energy, which creates<br />

alcohol and carbon dioxide as byproducts.<br />

• Yeast grows in warm, humid environments<br />

such as tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>ts, where the<br />

temperatu<strong>res</strong> are constantly warm and<br />

rainfall is plentiful all year round. As yeast<br />

is not a plant, it doesn’t require sunlight<br />

to grow, making the fo<strong>res</strong>t floor an ideal<br />

place to live.<br />

• Yeast bought in supermarkets and<br />

often used in baking, is a collection of<br />

dehydrated yeast cells that become active<br />

when combined with sugar and warm<br />

water. See <br />

for more information.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using measuring tools accurately to measure the amount<br />

of each ingredient, the temperature of the water in each<br />

test and the height of grass and yeast<br />

• using a stopwatch or countdown timer to measure<br />

five-minute intervals<br />

• using an iPad ® to take digital photographs, scan QR codes<br />

or type URLs into a web browser, and participate in an<br />

online discussion forum to communicate their science<br />

understanding<br />

• recording measurements in a table and creating a line<br />

graph of the <strong>res</strong>ults<br />

• using an application on an iPad ® , such as Numbers, to<br />

create digital tables and graphs (optional)<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use completed copies of pages 14 and 15 to monitor<br />

students’ science inquiry skills.<br />

• Use students’ comments in the online discussion forum<br />

to asses their understanding of how physical conditions<br />

affect the growth of fungi, including yeast.<br />

Resources<br />

• Individual copies of page 11 from Lesson 2<br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a digital<br />

camera, a QR scanner and a communication<br />

application, such as GroupMe<br />

• A ruler for each student<br />

• For each group: 3 × 600-mL plastic<br />

bottles; 3 satchets of dry yeast powder;<br />

6 tablespoons of sugar; 3 balloons;<br />

measuring tools, including a tablespoon, a<br />

measuring jug, a timer and 3 thermometers<br />

• Permanent marker for each student or<br />

group<br />

• Online image—Forms of fungi at <br />

• A double-sided copy of pages 14 and 15 for<br />

each student<br />

• Microscopes (if available)<br />

• Online video—Fungi fantastic at <br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 3<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Note: Before commencing Lesson 3, students observe the grass growing experiment from Lesson 2,<br />

and take a digital photograph of the grass growth in each cup. Students choose an appropriate unit of<br />

measurement (millimet<strong>res</strong> or centimet<strong>res</strong>) and measure the height of the grass in each cup. Students<br />

record their measurements in the table on page 11, under the heading ‘Grass growth after 1 week’.<br />

PC PA<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Display the image at to see the three main types of fungi in the<br />

fungi kingdom—mushrooms, yeasts and moulds. Explain that students will be investigating how the<br />

growth of yeast is affected by the temperature of its environment.<br />

Development:<br />

2. Divide the class into groups of three and give each student a double-sided copy of pages 14<br />

and 15. As a group, students read through the experiment plan on page 14, then discuss the<br />

questions under the ‘Identify the variables’ heading. Individually, students record their group’s<br />

answers to each question to identify the controlled, independent and dependent variables and<br />

write their own predictions at the bottom of page 14. QP PC<br />

3. In their groups, students allocate a test/temperature to each student and conduct the experiment<br />

according to the instructions, to test how the growth of yeast is affected by the temperature of<br />

its environment. Students use a timer and a permanent marker to record the growth of the yeast<br />

at five-minute intervals, by marking a line around each bottle at the height of the yeast foam and<br />

taking a digital photograph of the three bottles with an iPad ® . Students measure the thickness of<br />

the foam to see how much the yeast has grown in each test, at each time interval. Students then<br />

record their <strong>res</strong>ults in the table on page 14, and complete the graph and analysis questions to<br />

compare the growth of yeast in each temperature. Note: If microscopes are available, students<br />

should be encouraged to look at the yeast under the microscope. PC PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can use an iPad ® to record audio of their answers to each question on<br />

pages 14 and 15, to identify the variables within the experiment, and to predict and analyse the<br />

<strong>res</strong>ults.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to use an application on an iPad ® , such as Numbers,<br />

to digitally record their <strong>res</strong>ults in a table and a graph.<br />

4. Using an iPad ® , students scan the QR code on page 15 or type the URL into a web browser, to<br />

watch a video of a similar yeast-growing experiment, testing the use of cold water, boiling water<br />

and body-temperature water, approximately 37 ºC (both with and without a cover). In pairs,<br />

students compare the <strong>res</strong>ults of the experiment in the video, to their <strong>res</strong>ults to find patterns, then<br />

evaluate their experiment by discussing the questions at the bottom of page 15. PC PA E<br />

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Reflection:<br />

5. Watch the Fungi fantastic video at . Students compare how<br />

the growth of the fungi in the video is similar or different to the growth of yeast. Using a<br />

communication application on an iPad ® , such as GroupMe, or a classroom blog, start a discussion<br />

forum by asking, In which biome do you think fungi will grow best and why? Students use their<br />

understanding of yeast growth to discuss and justify their answer. They should be encouraged to<br />

reply to other students using agreed ethical, social and technical protocols. C<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 13


Lesson 3<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Question:<br />

Growing yeast experiment – 1<br />

How does the temperature of an environment affect the growth of yeast?<br />

Instructions:<br />

1. Label the plastic bottles as shown be<strong>low</strong>.<br />

2. Inflate the balloon to stretch it, then set it aside.<br />

3. Pour the water, at the desired temperature, into<br />

each bottle. Be careful with hot water!<br />

4. Place a funnel into the bottle and add the yeast,<br />

then the sugar.<br />

5. Quickly remove the funnel and place the<br />

opening of the balloon over the top of the<br />

bottle.<br />

6. Mark a line at the top of the water level, and<br />

place each bottle in the centre of the desk.<br />

Test 1 Test 2 Test 3<br />

Temperature 10 ºC 30 ºC 50 ºC<br />

Identify the variables:<br />

Equipment and materials:<br />

1. How will you control the size of the environment (bottle) and the balloon?<br />

2. How will you control the amount of each ingredient added to the bottles?<br />

(a) yeast<br />

(b) sugar<br />

(c) water<br />

3. What is the independent (changed) variable?<br />

4. How will you measure the temperature in each test?<br />

5. How will you measure the thickness of the foam (yeast growth) in each test?<br />

Predict the <strong>res</strong>ults:<br />

1. At which temperature will the yeast grow most?<br />

2. At which temperature will the yeast grow least?<br />

3. Will the yeast grow in all three temperatu<strong>res</strong>?<br />

14 <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH<br />

YEAR<br />

6<br />

• 3 × 600-mL plastic bottles<br />

• 3 sachets of yeast<br />

• 6 tablespoons sugar<br />

• 3 balloons<br />

• 250 mL water at each<br />

temperature<br />

• measuring jug<br />

• tablespoon<br />

• thermometer<br />

• ruler<br />

• permanent marker<br />

• iPad ®<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 3<br />

Record the <strong>res</strong>ults:<br />

Growing yeast experiment – 2<br />

1. Mark the thickness of the foam with a permanent marker at each interval and take a digital<br />

photograph of the bottles.<br />

2. From the waterline mark, measure the height of the yeast foam at each interval and record<br />

it in the table be<strong>low</strong>.<br />

Test 1: 10 ºC<br />

Test 2: 30 ºC<br />

Test 3: 50 ºC<br />

5 minutes 10 minutes 15 minutes<br />

Analyse the <strong>res</strong>ults:<br />

1. Record your <strong>res</strong>ults on the graph to compare each test. Use a different coloured pencil to<br />

record and connect the measurements of each test.<br />

Yeast growth in<br />

2. Answer the questions to analyse your <strong>res</strong>ults.<br />

different temperatu<strong>res</strong><br />

26<br />

(a) In which test did the yeast grow the most?<br />

24<br />

22<br />

20<br />

(b) In which test did the yeast grow the least?<br />

18<br />

16<br />

14<br />

(c) Did the yeast grow in all temperatu<strong>res</strong>?<br />

12<br />

10<br />

(d) What is the height difference between the<br />

8<br />

yeasts with the most and least growth?<br />

6<br />

4<br />

2<br />

0 0 5 10 15<br />

Time (minutes)<br />

Compare your <strong>res</strong>ults to a similar experiment:<br />

Scan the QR code or type the URL into a web browser to<br />

see a variation of this experiment. Compare your <strong>res</strong>ults<br />

to the <strong>res</strong>ults of this experiment.<br />

https://tinyurl.com/h9b7nu6<br />

Growth of yeast (cm)<br />

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Evaluate your experiment:<br />

1. Did you conduct a fair and accurate experiment?<br />

2. How could you improve your experiment next time?<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 15


Lesson 4<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

How do the physical conditions in a rainfo<strong>res</strong>t affect<br />

plant and animal life?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students investigate how the growth of yeast is<br />

affected by the temperature of an environment and<br />

conduct an experiment to test their predictions.<br />

Background information<br />

• Tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>ts are located near the equator<br />

and have greater biodiversity than any other<br />

biome. They have four layers which exhibit a<br />

unique set of physical conditions and plant<br />

and animal life. These include the fo<strong>res</strong>t floor,<br />

understorey, canopy and emergent layer.<br />

• Tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>ts are characterised by their<br />

constantly warm temperatu<strong>res</strong> and large amounts<br />

of rainfall all year round. While sunlight is<br />

abundant near the equator, the canopy blocks<br />

95% of the sunlight from reaching the understorey<br />

and fo<strong>res</strong>t floor, creating dark and sheltered layers.<br />

• Trees in the emergent layer are often exposed to<br />

strong winds that are sheltered from <strong>low</strong>er levels<br />

by the canopy. The soil contains a thin layer of<br />

nutrient-rich soil, which supports the growth of<br />

plants with shal<strong>low</strong> or above-ground root systems.<br />

• Many plants and animals have had to adapt<br />

to these conditions in various ways. For more<br />

information about tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>ts and the<br />

plants and animals that live there, go to .<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using measuring tools accurately to<br />

measure the height of grass<br />

• using an iPad ® to take digital<br />

photographs, type URLs into a web<br />

browser, conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch<br />

and p<strong>res</strong>ent information using an<br />

application such as Popplet or Seesaw<br />

• sharing digital p<strong>res</strong>entations with the<br />

teacher and the class via email, a class<br />

website or dropbox<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital p<strong>res</strong>entations<br />

from Step 2 and Step 6 to assess their<br />

understanding of how the physical<br />

conditions in a rainfo<strong>res</strong>t affect the<br />

plants and animals that survive.<br />

Resources<br />

• Individual copies of page 11 from<br />

Lesson 2<br />

• A ruler for each student<br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a<br />

digital camera and a p<strong>res</strong>entation<br />

application, such as Popplet or<br />

Seesaw<br />

• Online video —Amazon wildlife—<br />

Andes to Amazon at <br />

• Website—Rainfo<strong>res</strong>t layers at<br />

<br />

• A copy of page 18 for each group<br />

• A copy of page 19 for each student<br />

(optional)<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 4<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Note: Before commencing Lesson 4, students continue to observe the grass growing experiment<br />

from Lesson 2, and take a digital photograph of the grass growth in each cup. Students choose an<br />

appropriate unit of measurement (millimet<strong>res</strong> or centimet<strong>res</strong>) and measure the height of the grass<br />

in each cup. Students record their measurements in the table on page 11, under the heading ‘Grass<br />

growth after 2 weeks’.<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Watch the online video, Amazon wildlife—Andes to Amazon at .<br />

Write the fol<strong>low</strong>ing questions on a whiteboard, What are the climate and soil conditions like in a<br />

tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>t? How do the physical conditions of a tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>t affect the growth and<br />

survival of plants and animals? Individually, using a digital p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as Popplet<br />

or Seesaw, students write each question and record their predictions. QP PA<br />

Development:<br />

2. Write the website on the whiteboard and divide the class into<br />

groups of four. Groups allocate a layer of the rainfo<strong>res</strong>t to each student—fo<strong>res</strong>t floor, understorey,<br />

canopy or emergent. Using an iPad ® , students type the URL into a web browser, and read the<br />

information p<strong>res</strong>ented about their allocated layer of the rainfo<strong>res</strong>t. Using page 18, students choose<br />

one plant and one animal species that can be found in their allocated layer of the rainfo<strong>res</strong>t and<br />

record which plant and animal will be <strong>res</strong>earched by each group member. Alternatively, students<br />

can choose their own plant and/or animal and record each group member’s choices in their<br />

science journal. PC<br />

3. Students conduct individual <strong>res</strong>earch about their chosen plant and animal, to identify how the<br />

physical conditions in the rainfo<strong>res</strong>t layer affect the growth and survival of each. Students may use a<br />

copy of page 19 or a digital application such as Popplet, to take notes. PC PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can be encouraged to <strong>res</strong>earch a plant or animal that is familiar to them<br />

and provided with books and online videos or websites to learn about the physical condition<br />

and living things in each. Students may also use an audio recorder to record their information.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to <strong>res</strong>earch a plant or animal that is less familiar to<br />

them or <strong>res</strong>earch more than one plant or animal.<br />

4. Students share their <strong>res</strong>earch with their group and clarify any questions that their group members<br />

have, then give a copy of their notes to each group member. PA<br />

Reflection:<br />

5. Individually, students revisit their digital p<strong>res</strong>entation from Step 2 and compare their predictions<br />

to their <strong>res</strong>earch. They create a new p<strong>res</strong>entation using the same digital application, to answer the<br />

same questions, based on their <strong>res</strong>earch. They will also need to provide examples of how plants<br />

and animals have adapted to survive these conditions. C<br />

6. Students then share their p<strong>res</strong>entations with the class via email, a class website or dropbox. Note:<br />

Students may also be encouraged to email both their p<strong>res</strong>entations to the teacher for assessment.<br />

C<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 17


Lesson 4<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Rainfo<strong>res</strong>t layers<br />

Fo<strong>res</strong>t floor Understorey Canopy Emergent<br />

Plants<br />

Animals<br />

Choose one plant and one animal from each<br />

rainfo<strong>res</strong>t layer and <strong>res</strong>earch:<br />

• the physical conditions, including the climate<br />

and soil conditions in each layer of the<br />

rainfo<strong>res</strong>t<br />

• how that plant is affected by the physical<br />

conditions of its environment (think about the<br />

needs of plants)<br />

• how that animal is affected by the physical<br />

conditions of its environment (think about the needs of animals).<br />

Which plant and which animal will you <strong>res</strong>earch for each layer?<br />

Emergent<br />

Canopy<br />

Understorey<br />

Fo<strong>res</strong>t floor<br />

Emergent<br />

Canopy<br />

Understorey<br />

Fo<strong>res</strong>t floor<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 4<br />

Rainfo<strong>res</strong>t <strong>res</strong>earch<br />

How do plants and animals survive the physical conditions in each layer of a tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>t?<br />

Physical<br />

conditions<br />

Sunlight<br />

Water<br />

Air<br />

Temperature<br />

Soil<br />

conditions<br />

Rainfo<strong>res</strong>t layer: Plant: Animal:<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 19


Lesson 5<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

How do the physical conditions in extremely cold<br />

environments such as the Arctic tundra, affect<br />

plant and animal life?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students predict and investigate how plants<br />

and animals survive in the physical conditions<br />

of extremely cold environments, such as the<br />

Arctic tundra.<br />

Background information<br />

• The polar tundra, including the Arctic and Antarctic<br />

tundras, are located near the north and south poles<br />

<strong>res</strong>pectively.<br />

• These biomes both experience extremely cold<br />

temperatu<strong>res</strong> and little precipitation in terms of liquid<br />

water. Because of their location, these biomes have<br />

long, cold winters and short, cool–warm summers.<br />

These biomes are often exposed to cold air and<br />

permanently frozen soils, known as permafrost.<br />

• In the Arctic tundra, only small, specially adapted<br />

plants like lichens, mosses and <strong>low</strong> shrubs can<br />

grow. Go to and<br />

click on ‘Small but tough’ or ‘Arctic plants’ for more<br />

information about plants in the tundra.<br />

• Animals have special adaptations that al<strong>low</strong> them<br />

to survive the cold conditions. See examples of<br />

adaptations to extreme cold at or .<br />

• Whales and other mammals have a thick layer of<br />

blubber which is used for temperature regulation in<br />

extremely cold conditions, as well as being an energy<br />

source. For a video of a similar blubber experiment<br />

and explanation go to .<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using measuring tools accurately to measure<br />

the height of grass, the temperature of the<br />

water and record time using a countdown<br />

timer<br />

• using an iPad ® to take digital photographs<br />

and p<strong>res</strong>ent information using an<br />

application such as Notes, Seesaw or an<br />

audio recorder<br />

• sharing digital p<strong>res</strong>entations with the<br />

teacher and the class, via email, a class<br />

website or dropbox<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students' digital p<strong>res</strong>entations as an<br />

assessment of their understanding about<br />

how plants and animals are affected by the<br />

physical conditions of the Arctic tundra.<br />

Resources<br />

• Individual copies of page 11<br />

from Lesson 2<br />

• For each student: a ruler; an<br />

iPad ® with a digital camera<br />

and a digital application such<br />

as Notes, Seesaw or an audio<br />

recorder; a copy of page 22;<br />

access to water and ice blocks;<br />

two plastic cups; a plastic<br />

spoon or craft stick (to spread<br />

the lard on their finger); a fatty<br />

substance, such as lard or<br />

shortening<br />

• Online video—Tundra biome at<br />

<br />

(pause at 3:20)<br />

• Measuring equipment,<br />

including a thermometer and<br />

a 10-second timer for each<br />

student or pair<br />

• Website about animal<br />

adaptations to extremely cold<br />

conditions at <br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 5<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Note: Before commencing Lesson 5, students continue to observe the grass growing experiment<br />

from Lesson 2, and take a digital photograph of the grass growth in each cup. Students choose an<br />

appropriate unit of measurement (millimet<strong>res</strong> or centimet<strong>res</strong>) and measure the height of the grass<br />

in each cup. Students record their measurements in the table on page 11, under the heading ‘Grass<br />

growth after 3 weeks’. PC PA<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Watch the video Tundra biome at , stopping it at 3:20. This video<br />

describes the physical conditions in the Arctic and Alpine tundras, and explains how plants and<br />

animals adapt to the Arctic tundra. It focuses mainly on plant adaptations but also states some<br />

animal adaptations, such as thick fur or fat, hibernation and migration. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. Write the question, How does blubber help sea animals to survive in extremely cold conditions? on<br />

the whiteboard. Using an iPad ® , students individually record their prediction using an application of<br />

their choice, such Notes, Seesaw or an audio recorder. QP<br />

3. In pairs, give each student a copy of the experiment worksheet on page 22, and the materials<br />

and equipment listed on the page. Students read the experiment steps together, clarifying<br />

any information they are unsure of, then discuss and record the controlled, independent and<br />

dependent variables. Students both complete the experiment individually and record theirs and<br />

their partner’s <strong>res</strong>ults at the bottom of page 22. Students then compare their <strong>res</strong>ults and discuss<br />

how they think blubber helps sea animals survive in the icy waters of the tundra. PC PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can be grouped together to discuss the different variables with the<br />

teacher and how they will keep their test fair. Written information may be completed using an<br />

audio recorder on an iPad ® .<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to <strong>res</strong>earch and write an explanation of how<br />

blubber helps sea animals survive in the icy waters of the tundra.<br />

4. Using the same iPad ® application used in Step 2, students compare the <strong>res</strong>ults of their experiment<br />

to the information in the video in Step 1. They record any further information, then reflect on their<br />

experiment to suggest how they could improve their experiment next time. PA E<br />

5. Display the website on an interactive whiteboard. As a class, read<br />

through the information and discuss different adaptations that animals have to al<strong>low</strong> them to<br />

survive in the extremely cold conditions, where food sources and sunlight are limited. PC PA<br />

Reflection:<br />

6. Using an iPad ® application such as Seesaw, students create a p<strong>res</strong>entation to answer the question,<br />

How do plants and animals survive in the physical conditions of the Arctic tundra? Students provide<br />

information and examples about the adaptations that plants and animals have that al<strong>low</strong> them<br />

to survive in an environment with cold temperatu<strong>res</strong>, limited sunlight and precipitation, soils<br />

containing permafrost and strong winds. C<br />

7. Students share their p<strong>res</strong>entation with the class via email, a class website or dropbox. Note:<br />

Students may also be encouraged to email both their p<strong>res</strong>entations from Steps 4 and 6 to the<br />

teacher for assessment. C<br />

© R.I.C. Publications<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 21


Lesson 5<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Blubber experiment<br />

Experiment:<br />

Materials and equipment:<br />

1. Create a cup of icy water that is between 0 ºC and –5 ºC. • 2 plastic cups<br />

2. Completely coat your index finger on one hand with a<br />

thick layer of fat.<br />

3. Completely coat your middle finger on the same hand<br />

with a thin layer of fat.<br />

4. Check the temperature is still between 0 ºC and –5 ºC.<br />

5. Place your index, middle and ring finger in the cup of icy<br />

water for 10 seconds.<br />

Note: Take your ring finger out of the water if it gets too cold<br />

to bare. Record how long it lasted in the water.<br />

Variables for a fair test:<br />

• 1 plastic spoon or a<br />

craft stick<br />

• tap water<br />

• ice blocks<br />

• fatty substance<br />

• thermometer<br />

• 10-second timer<br />

Controlled variables—How will you control the temperature of the water throughout the<br />

experiment? How will you adjust it if needed?<br />

Independent variables—What will you change to test how fat helps sea animals survive in<br />

icy waters and how will you change it?<br />

Dependent variables—It is hard to measure how cold/warm each finger gets accurately.<br />

How will you observe which finger endured the icy waters better?<br />

Results:<br />

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What were your <strong>res</strong>ults?<br />

What were your partner’s <strong>res</strong>ults?<br />

22 <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 6<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

How do the physical conditions in hot and dry<br />

environments, such as deserts and grasslands, affect<br />

plant and animal life?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students predict and investigate how plants and<br />

animals survive in the physical conditions of hot and<br />

dry environments, such as deserts and grasslands.<br />

Background information<br />

• Deserts are located in the arid climatic zone,<br />

receiving minimal rainfall each year and constantly<br />

fluctuating temperatu<strong>res</strong>, from extremely hot during<br />

the day, to extremely cold at night.<br />

• Grasslands are found on every continent, except<br />

Antarctica. They can be tropical or temperate<br />

depending on the amount of rainfall received and<br />

the temperature.<br />

• The Kalahari Desert, located in Africa, is classified as<br />

a semi-arid sandy savanna. It receives extremely hot<br />

daytime temperatu<strong>res</strong> and extremely cold night-time<br />

temperatu<strong>res</strong>, with little rainfall for most of the year.<br />

In winter, heavy rains produce wet soils and excess<br />

water catchments which support grasses, small<br />

plants and some tree growth. Many animals travel<br />

here seeking food after the rains, and leave when the<br />

water and food supply run short.<br />

• Meerkats remain in the Kalahari Desert all year<br />

round. They live in burrows underground to protect<br />

themselves against the extreme conditions and<br />

predators. Meerkats are able to survive the droughts<br />

by obtaining water from the food they eat and<br />

limiting their activity to dawn and dusk. For more<br />

information about meerkat adaptations go to the<br />

websites listed on page 25.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using measuring tools accurately to<br />

measure the height of grass<br />

• using an iPad ® to take digital<br />

photographs, scan QR codes or type<br />

URLs into a web browser, conduct<br />

online <strong>res</strong>earch and p<strong>res</strong>ent information<br />

using an application such as Seesaw or<br />

ShowMe<br />

• sharing digital p<strong>res</strong>entations via email,<br />

a class website or dropbox<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital p<strong>res</strong>entations<br />

to assess their understanding of how<br />

plants and animals are affected by the<br />

hot and dry conditions in desert and<br />

grassland biomes.<br />

Resources<br />

• Individual copies of page 11<br />

from Lesson 2<br />

• A ruler for each student<br />

• An iPad ® for each student<br />

with a digital camera and a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

Seesaw or ShowMe<br />

• Website—Earth observatory –<br />

Grassland and Desert <br />

• A copy of the meerkat <strong>res</strong>earch<br />

card on page 25<br />

• Online video—Fighting for<br />

survival in the Kalahari Desert,<br />

Africa at <br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 23


Lesson 6<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Note: Before commencing Lesson 4, students continue to observe the grass growing experiment<br />

from Lesson 2, and take a digital photograph of the grass growth in each cup. Students measure the<br />

height of the grass and record their measurements in the table on page 11, under the heading ‘Grass<br />

growth after 4 weeks’. Students analyse their <strong>res</strong>ults by answering the questions on page 11 and then<br />

watch a video explaining how the physical conditions of an environment affect grass growth. As a<br />

group, students discuss whether they conducted a fair test, how their experiment could be improved,<br />

and suggest another experiment that could be conducted to test how the physical conditions of an<br />

environment affect grass growth, such as different soil conditions. PC PA E<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Go to the NASA Earth observatory information about grasslands at . As a class read through the information. Then go to the information about deserts at<br />

or just click on ‘Desert’ listed on the right-hand side under Biomes.<br />

Briefly compare the similarities and differences between each environment, including the small<br />

amount of rainfall and hot temperatu<strong>res</strong>. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. Using an iPad ® , students conduct individual <strong>res</strong>earch to find how meerkats survive in the Kalahari<br />

Desert, which exhibits more grassland conditions than desert conditions. Give each student a card<br />

from page 25 to conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch. Students use a p<strong>res</strong>entation application, such as Seesaw<br />

or ShowMe, to insert images of meerkats, and describe how their adaptations al<strong>low</strong> them to survive<br />

in the fluctuating temperatu<strong>res</strong>, limited rainfall/water availability, wide open spaces and large<br />

amounts of sun exposure. Students also describe how meerkats use the soil for burrowing and<br />

obtaining food. PC PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can work with a partner to <strong>res</strong>earch and discuss information about<br />

meerkats. Students can use an audio recorder to explain how meerkats survive in the Kalahari<br />

Desert.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to <strong>res</strong>earch their own information about meerkats<br />

and their environment. They can also <strong>res</strong>earch a plant in the Kalahari Desert to see how it<br />

survives in the same conditions.<br />

3. Watch the online video, Fighting for survival in the Kalahari desert, Africa at . Using a think-pair-share, students compare how mole rats survive in the desert to<br />

how meerkats survive in the desert, including through burrowing, living together, hunting food,<br />

obtaining water and creating shelter from the elements. PA<br />

Reflection:<br />

© R.I.C. Publications<br />

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4. Students use an iPad ® application such as Seesaw or ShowMe, to create a p<strong>res</strong>entation explaining<br />

how the conditions of a hot and dry environment, such as a desert or a grassland, can affect plant<br />

and animal life. They insert their photograph of the Growing grass experiment, taken four weeks<br />

after the start of the experiment, and an image of a meerkat, and explain how each of these living<br />

things is affected by the hot and dry conditions, using text or audio. C<br />

5. Students then share their p<strong>res</strong>entations with the class via email, a class website or dropbox. Note:<br />

Students may also be encouraged to email both their p<strong>res</strong>entations from Steps 2 and 4 to the<br />

teacher for assessment. C<br />

24 <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

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YEAR<br />

6<br />

978-1-925431-99-5 R.I.C. Publications® – www.ricpublications.com.au


Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Lesson 6<br />

Meerkat <strong>res</strong>earch<br />

Meerkat <strong>res</strong>earch<br />

Scan the QR codes or type the URLs into a web browser to <strong>res</strong>earch information about how<br />

meerkats survive in the fluctuating temperatu<strong>res</strong> and limited rainfall of the Kalahari Desert.<br />

Watch the video Kalahari desert Meerkats—Wild Africa at:<br />

https://tinyurl.com/y8tm96t8<br />

Read about meerkats in the Animal fact guide at:<br />

https://tinyurl.com/ja8u8tf<br />

Watch the video Marvellous meerkats at:<br />

Meerkat <strong>res</strong>earch<br />

Scan the QR codes or type the URLs into a web browser to <strong>res</strong>earch information about how<br />

meerkats survive in the fluctuating temperatu<strong>res</strong> and limited rainfall of the Kalahari Desert.<br />

Watch the video Kalahari desert Meerkats—Wild Africa at:<br />

https://tinyurl.com/y8tm96t8<br />

Read about meerkats in the Animal fact guide at:<br />

https://tinyurl.com/ja8u8tf<br />

Watch the video Marvellous meerkats at:<br />

https://tinyurl.com/y8pogek4<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 25


Assessment<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> knowledge<br />

The growth and survival of living things are affected by physical conditions of their environment<br />

(ACSSU094)<br />

Indicators<br />

• Identifies the physical conditions of an environment.<br />

• Identifies how plants survive each physical condition in the polar tundra.<br />

• Identifies how the physical conditions in each layer of a tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>t, affects the plants that<br />

survive in each layer.<br />

• Explains how meerkats have adapted to survive in the harsh conditions of the Kalahari Desert.<br />

• Describes the ideal physical conditions for grass growth, with justification based on the student’s<br />

grass-growing experiment.<br />

• Describes the ideal physical conditions for yeast growth, with justification based on the student’s<br />

yeast-growing experiment.<br />

Answers<br />

Pages 27 and 28<br />

1. The physical conditions of an environment are the<br />

amount of sunlight it receives, the amount and types of<br />

precipitation, the temperature, the air/wind conditions<br />

and the soil conditions.<br />

2. Teacher check<br />

3. Teacher check<br />

Emergent layer—Very tall trees grow in this layer as they<br />

compete for constant sunlight exposure. Because of the<br />

shal<strong>low</strong> nutrient-rich soil, trees often have root system<br />

adaptations which al<strong>low</strong> them to obtain water, nutrients<br />

and air, while supporting the tall tree to stand upright in<br />

the windy conditions of the emergent layer.<br />

Canopy—Tall trees grow in this layer with leaves<br />

branching out to create a ‘roof’ over the fo<strong>res</strong>t. This helps<br />

these trees absorb as much sunlight as possible. Trees<br />

in this layer have lots of small leaves to al<strong>low</strong> rain to fall<br />

through to the <strong>low</strong>er layers. Vines and air plants grow on<br />

other trees to reach the sunlight and rainfall received in<br />

this layer.<br />

Understorey—Smaller plants with leaf adaptations that<br />

maximise the amount of sunlight they receive, survive in<br />

this sheltered layer. Because of the constantly wet soil,<br />

plants in this layer often have adaptations that al<strong>low</strong><br />

excess water to run off their leaves.<br />

Fo<strong>res</strong>t floor—Not many plants survive in this layer as<br />

there is not enough sunlight for them to survive. Moss<br />

and some <strong>low</strong>-lying ferns survive in the warm, moist<br />

conditions on the fo<strong>res</strong>t floor, which is mostly covered by<br />

fungi and other micro-organisms, rather than plants.<br />

4. (a) Meerkats dig burrows in the soil<br />

to protect themselves from the<br />

hot daytime temperatu<strong>res</strong>, cold<br />

night-time temperatu<strong>res</strong>, strong<br />

winds and from the occasional<br />

heavy rains.<br />

(b) Meerkats have dark rings<br />

around their eyes which protect<br />

them from the glare of the<br />

bright sunlight, similarly to how<br />

we use sunglasses.<br />

(c) Meerkats are active at<br />

dawn and dusk to protect<br />

themselves against the extreme<br />

temperatu<strong>res</strong> during the day<br />

and at night.<br />

(d) Meerkats are able to survive<br />

long periods of drought by<br />

obtaining water from the grubs,<br />

scorpions and plants they eat.<br />

(e) Meerkats live in mobs and<br />

work as a team to survive.<br />

They help each other dig<br />

extensive networks of burrows<br />

underground and protect each<br />

other against predators using a<br />

scout and warning calls.<br />

5. Teacher check<br />

6. Teacher check<br />

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50 120<br />

45<br />

110<br />

40<br />

100<br />

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90<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Assessment<br />

1. What are the physical conditions of an environment?<br />

2. Use key words to describe how plants and animals survive each physical condition in the<br />

polar tundra.<br />

Plants<br />

C 0 F0 50<br />

Animals<br />

3. Label each layer of a tropical rainfo<strong>res</strong>t on the diagram, then describe how the physical<br />

conditions in each layer affect the survival of plants with different adaptations.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 27


Assessment<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

4. Describe how each of these adaptations help meerkats survive in the Kalahari Desert.<br />

(a) Burrowing<br />

(b) Dark rings around their eyes<br />

(c) Being active at dawn and dusk<br />

(d) Obtaining water from the food they eat<br />

(e) Living in mobs<br />

5. What are the ideal physical conditions for grass growth? Justify your answer.<br />

6. What are the ideal physical conditions for yeast growth? Justify your answer.<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Claymation<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project overview<br />

Students design and create a claymation for young children, telling the story of a squirrel on<br />

its perilous journey through a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t, in harsh winter conditions, to find its stored<br />

acorns. The story must be set after an oak masting in which the squirrel has stored its food in<br />

several locations within one section of fo<strong>res</strong>t.<br />

Concepts overview:<br />

<strong>Science</strong><br />

• Apply knowledge of how squirrels use food storage to survive the winter months in a<br />

coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t.<br />

• Use science inquiry skills to plan and conduct science <strong>res</strong>earch about coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>ts, oak<br />

masting and squirrel adaptations and rep<strong>res</strong>ent these accurately as a model.<br />

• Communicate science understanding about squirrel survival using a claymation.<br />

Technology/Engineering<br />

• Apply the design process to plan, create and evaluate a model of a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t with oak<br />

trees and a squirrel who has stored acorns in several locations to eat during winter.<br />

• While working collaboratively, use project management processes to ensure accountability of<br />

both group members when planning, organising, controlling <strong>res</strong>ources, monitoring time lines<br />

and meeting design criteria.<br />

• Use an application on an iPad ® , or a digital camera and computer software, to create a<br />

claymation that incorporates sequenced images at a minimum of five frames per second, and<br />

text and audio recordings of a story.<br />

Mathematics<br />

• Create a map of a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t using a cartesian plane, with acorn storage places marked<br />

at specific coordinates.<br />

Alternative project ideas:<br />

• Using a blank map of the world as a background, draw pictu<strong>res</strong> to show where each main<br />

land biome of the world is located. Choose an animal that migrates from the extremely cold<br />

conditions in the polar tundra biome to warmer locations during winter. Students draw their<br />

chosen animal’s migration path and code a Bee-Bot to fol<strong>low</strong> its path. Students create a video<br />

of the animal migrating and explain why animals migrate.<br />

• Students create a time-lapse video of a deciduous fo<strong>res</strong>t showing how the trees change with<br />

each season. They record audio over the video explaining how each season affects the plants<br />

and animals that live in a deciduous fo<strong>res</strong>t. Watch A year in 40 seconds at for an example of a deciduous fo<strong>res</strong>t time-lapse video.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 29


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> curriculum links<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Understanding<br />

SCIENCE CURRICULUM<br />

• The growth and survival of living things are affected by physical conditions of their environment (ACSSU094)<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills<br />

Planning and conducting<br />

• Identify, plan and apply the elements of scientific investigations to answer questions and solve problems using equipment<br />

and materials safely and identifying potential risks (ACSIS103)<br />

Processing and analysing data and information<br />

• Construct and use a range of rep<strong>res</strong>entations, including tables and graphs, to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and describe observations, patterns<br />

or relationships in data using digital technologies as appropriate (ACSIS107)<br />

Communicating<br />

• Communicate ideas, explanations and processes using scientific rep<strong>res</strong>entations in a variety of ways, including multi-modal<br />

texts (ACSIS093)<br />

TECHNOLOGIES CURRICULUM<br />

Design and Technologies Knowledge and Understanding<br />

• Investigate characteristics and properties of a range of materials, systems, components, tools and equipment and evaluate<br />

the impact of their use (ACTDEK023)<br />

Design and Technologies Processes and Production Skills<br />

• Critique needs or opportunities for designing, and investigate materials, components, tools, equipment and processes to<br />

achieve intended designed solutions (ACTDEP024)<br />

• Generate, develop and communicate design ideas and processes for audiences using appropriate technical terms and<br />

graphical rep<strong>res</strong>entation techniques (ACTDEP025)<br />

• Select appropriate materials, components, tools, equipment and techniques and apply safe procedu<strong>res</strong> to make designed<br />

solutions (ACTDEP026)<br />

• Negotiate criteria for success that include sustainability to evaluate design ideas, processes and solutions (ACTDEP027)<br />

• Develop project plans that include consideration of <strong>res</strong>ources when making designed solutions individually and<br />

collaboratively (ACTDEP028)<br />

Digital Technologies Knowledge and Understanding<br />

• Examine the main components of common digital systems and how they may connect together to form networks to transmit<br />

data (ACTDIK014)<br />

Digital Technologies Processes and Production Skills<br />

• Acquire, store and validate different types of data, and use a range of software to interpret and visualise data to create<br />

information (ACTDIP016)<br />

• Design a user interface for a digital system (ACTDIP018)<br />

• Implement digital solutions as simple visual programs involving branching, iteration (repetition), and user input<br />

(ACTDIP020)<br />

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Measurement and Geometry<br />

MATHEMATICS CURRICULUM<br />

• Introduce the Cartesian coordinate system using all four quadrants (ACMMG143)<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project:<br />

Teacher notes<br />

Students design and create a claymation for young children, telling the story of a squirrel on<br />

its perilous journey through a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t, in harsh winter conditions, to find its stored<br />

acorns. The story must be set after an oak masting in which the squirrel has stored its food in<br />

several locations within one section of fo<strong>res</strong>t.<br />

Estimated duration: 4–6 weeks<br />

1. Introduce the project<br />

• Divide the class into pairs and give<br />

each a copy of page 32. Read through<br />

the problem, the task and the criteria,<br />

and clarify any queries students have.<br />

Conduct a websearch of Oak masting in<br />

Florida, USA, to add a real-life context to<br />

the project.<br />

• Give each pair a copy of the project steps<br />

on page 33, so students can manage<br />

and assess their prog<strong>res</strong>s, and an A3<br />

copy of the cartesian plane on page 34<br />

for students to use during the planning<br />

stage.<br />

2. Investigate<br />

• Students <strong>res</strong>earch the landscape and<br />

physical conditions of the coniferous<br />

fo<strong>res</strong>t biome; and the adaptations of oak<br />

trees and squirrels to survive the cold<br />

temperatu<strong>res</strong> during winter.<br />

• As a class, watch the video Claymation<br />

(Animation 101) at to learn about claymation and<br />

different movies that have been created<br />

using this style.<br />

• Provide time for students to familiarise<br />

themselves with how to use a stop-motion<br />

animation application on an iPad ® or how<br />

to create a stop-motion animation using a<br />

digital camera and computer software.<br />

3. Design, plan and manage<br />

• Students write a fictional story of a<br />

squirrel on its perilous journey through<br />

a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t in harsh winter<br />

conditions, to find its stored acorns. The<br />

story must be set after an oak masting in<br />

which the squirrel has stored its food in<br />

several locations within the fo<strong>res</strong>t.<br />

• Students plan the three-dimensional<br />

setting for their story on an A3 copy of<br />

the cartesian plane on page 34. The<br />

exact coordinates of the acorn storage<br />

locations must be recorded at the bottom<br />

of the page.<br />

• Students collect or locate all the materials<br />

they will need to create their claymation.<br />

4. Create<br />

• Students create the three-dimensional<br />

setting on the A3 copy of the cartesian<br />

plane, using cardboard and craft<br />

materials for the physical featu<strong>res</strong> and<br />

plants of the coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t. They then<br />

create the squirrel and the acorns using<br />

clay and hide the acorns in their chosen<br />

locations, recording the coordinates at<br />

the bottom of page 34.<br />

• Students create the claymation by taking<br />

photographs of their clay using an iPad ®<br />

application such as Stop Motion or a<br />

digital camera and computer software.<br />

The claymation must be 30–60 seconds<br />

long, and must contain text, audio and<br />

images at a minimum of five frames per<br />

second.<br />

5. Evaluate and refine<br />

• Students evaluate their claymation to<br />

ensure it meets all the criteria listed<br />

on page 32 and make any changes<br />

necessary.<br />

6. Communicate<br />

• Students share their claymation with other<br />

students, the teacher or a buddy class, via<br />

email or a class blog, as requested.<br />

• Individually, students complete the selfassessment<br />

on page 35 to evaluate how<br />

well they cooperated with their partner to<br />

produce the claymation.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 31


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Project brief<br />

CLAYMATION<br />

The problem<br />

Each year, squirrels collect acorns and store<br />

them in their burrows underground or in tree<br />

hol<strong>low</strong>s to eat during winter; when food sources<br />

are scarce, and it is too cold for them to forage.<br />

Every few years in North America and Canada,<br />

oak trees go into masting, dropping an abundance of acorns all at the same time.<br />

Some squirrels begin hiding this excess food in different locations, to ensure<br />

other animals don’t find their entire supply. The acorns that are not found, survive<br />

to grow a new generation of oak trees.<br />

The task<br />

Design and create a claymation for young children, telling a short story of a<br />

squirrel on its perilous journey through a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t, in harsh winter<br />

conditions, to find its stored acorns. The story must be set after an oak masting<br />

in which the squirrel has stored its food in several locations within one section of<br />

fo<strong>res</strong>t.<br />

Things to consider<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

• You must work in pairs.<br />

• The short story must be written using simple sentences, with age-appropriate<br />

language. Both written text and an audio recording of the story must be added to<br />

the claymation.<br />

• A map of the environment must be drawn on an A3 cartesian plane, from a birdseye<br />

view, and labelled with the featu<strong>res</strong> of the environment. A minimum of three<br />

food storage locations must be marked at specific coordinates and recorded, to<br />

ensure they are found again when the scene is built.<br />

• You must create a three-dimensional cardboard setting for your claymation,<br />

including the landscape featu<strong>res</strong> and the physical conditions of a coniferous<br />

fo<strong>res</strong>t. You must also create three-dimensional little acorns to hide and a squirrel to<br />

animate using clay.<br />

• The physical featu<strong>res</strong> of a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t must be built in the correct positions<br />

on top of the map, with acorn collections buried underground or in trees at<br />

the marked coordinates. The squirrel must be able to manoeuvre around its<br />

environment during the claymation.<br />

• The claymation must be created using a sequence of photographs from a stationary<br />

camera, with text remaining on the screen long enough for young children to read.<br />

It must contain a minimum of five frames per second and have a duration of 30–60<br />

seconds.<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Project steps<br />

Investigate<br />

Identify the seasonal changes in a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t and how this impacts plant and animal<br />

life.<br />

Research the meaning of oak masting and how cities in America, such as Florida, have<br />

been affected by the abundance of acorns that fall.<br />

Research the life of squirrels in coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>ts and how they use food storage as a<br />

survival technique.<br />

Scan the QR code or go to to learn how to<br />

make a claymation, by manipulating clay slightly between each frame.<br />

Learn how to use an iPad ® application or computer software to create a<br />

claymation.<br />

See how the movie Shaun the sheep was made using stop motion at .<br />

Design, plan and manage<br />

Write a short story of a squirrel’s perilous journey to find its food sto<strong>res</strong>, during harsh<br />

winter conditions in a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t. Remember to use simple sentences and ageappropriate<br />

language for young children to read.<br />

Decide which plants you will need to include in the coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t, and how you will<br />

rep<strong>res</strong>ent the seasonal changes in the environment throughout the story.<br />

Plan the setting on a cartesian plan, including where the trees, burrows and each food<br />

store will be located. Record the coordinates of each food storage location.<br />

Collect or locate all the materials you will need to create the claymation.<br />

Create<br />

Create the three-dimensional landscape featu<strong>res</strong> and physical conditions using craft<br />

materials.<br />

Create the three-dimensional squirrel and acorns using clay.<br />

Build the scene on the cartesian plane and position the squirrel and acorns at the correct<br />

coordinates, according to your plan.<br />

Take digital photographs using an iPad ® or a digital camera, to create the frames for each<br />

scene.<br />

Use an iPad ® application such as Stop Motion or iMovie ® , or computer software such as<br />

Moviemaker to create the claymation.<br />

Add written text and an audio recording of your story to the animation.<br />

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Evaluate and refine<br />

Ensure the claymation scenery and featu<strong>res</strong> meet the criteria and make any necessary<br />

changes.<br />

Ensure the short story uses simple sentences and age-appropriate language and make<br />

any changes necessary.<br />

Communicate<br />

Share your claymation with other students, your teacher or a buddy class, via email or a<br />

class blog, as requested by your teacher.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 33


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Cartesian plane<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

10<br />

–8<br />

–7<br />

–6<br />

–5<br />

–4<br />

–3<br />

–2<br />

9<br />

8<br />

7<br />

6<br />

5<br />

4<br />

3<br />

2<br />

1<br />

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1<br />

–1<br />

–2<br />

–3<br />

–4<br />

–5<br />

–6<br />

–7<br />

–8<br />

–9<br />

–10<br />

2<br />

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3<br />

4<br />

5<br />

6<br />

7<br />

8<br />

Where are the acorns located?<br />

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Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Self-assessment<br />

Student name:<br />

Date:<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project: Claymation<br />

1. Colour a face to rate how cooperatively your team worked.<br />

All group members contributed ideas to the team.<br />

All group members listened carefully to the ideas<br />

of others.<br />

All group members encouraged others to<br />

contribute their thoughts and opinions.<br />

All group members spoke <strong>res</strong>pectfully to other<br />

group members.<br />

All group members compromised (when needed)<br />

to create the best possible product.<br />

2. List three ways the team helped each other to create the product.<br />

3. List one difficulty the group encountered when working as a team.<br />

4. How could a similar issue be <strong>res</strong>olved in future projects?<br />

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5. What was the most enjoyable part of the project?<br />

6. What was the least enjoyable part of the project?<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 35


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Group assessment rubric<br />

Biological sciences<br />

I’M A SURVIVOR!<br />

Group members:<br />

Project task:<br />

Design and create a claymation for young children, telling the story of a squirrel on its perilous<br />

journey through a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t in harsh winter conditions, to find its stored acorns. The<br />

story must be set after an oak masting in which the squirrel has stored its food in several<br />

locations within one section of fo<strong>res</strong>t.<br />

CRITERIA<br />

<strong>Science</strong> knowledge<br />

Applies knowledge of how squirrels use food storage to survive the winter months in a<br />

coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t.<br />

<strong>Science</strong> skills<br />

Plans and conducts online <strong>res</strong>earch about coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>ts, oak masting and squirrel<br />

adaptations.<br />

Creates accurate rep<strong>res</strong>entations of a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t to model how squirrels use food<br />

storage to survive extremely cold winters.<br />

Communicates science understanding correctly, clearly and concisely, using scientific<br />

terminology.<br />

Technology/Engineering skills<br />

Plans, designs and creates a cardboard model of a coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t with oak trees, and a<br />

clay squirrel and acorns.<br />

Uses <strong>res</strong>ources safely and sustainably, when creating the cardboard model of the<br />

coniferous fo<strong>res</strong>t and the clay models of the squirrel and acorns.<br />

Evaluates designed products to ensure they meet the criteria and makes any necessary<br />

changes.<br />

Takes a sequence of photographs using an iPad ® or a digital camera in a fixed position,<br />

moving objects slightly between each photograph.<br />

Uses an iPad ® application or computer software to create a claymation lasting<br />

30–60 seconds, that incorporates sequenced images at a minimum of five frames per<br />

second, as well as text and audio recordings to tell a short story.<br />

Types and sends an email with their claymation file attached.<br />

Mathematics skills<br />

Uses a cartesian plane to position the featu<strong>res</strong> of their claymation setting and records the<br />

coordinates of each acorn storage location.<br />

Group skills<br />

All group members contributed fairly and appropriately.<br />

All group members collaborated and communicated effectively.<br />

Group members were able to <strong>res</strong>olve conflicts independently.<br />

1 = Be<strong>low</strong> expectations<br />

2 = Meeting expectations<br />

3 = Above expectations<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

reversible change<br />

irreversible change<br />

chemical change<br />

melting<br />

REVERSIBLE AND<br />

IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Keywords<br />

boiling<br />

cooling<br />

evaporating<br />

condensing<br />

dissolving<br />

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cooking<br />

baking<br />

burning<br />

freezing<br />

mixing<br />

rusting<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 37


Unit overview<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Changes to materials can be reversible or irreversible (ACSSU095)<br />

Lesson 1<br />

What are reversible and<br />

irreversible changes?<br />

Lesson 2<br />

What methods are used<br />

to change the state<br />

of water? Are these<br />

changes reversible or<br />

irreversible?<br />

Lesson 3<br />

What changes occur<br />

when a substance<br />

is dissolved to form<br />

a solution? Is this<br />

change reversible or<br />

irreversible?<br />

Lesson 4<br />

What changes occur<br />

when you bake<br />

biscuits? Are these<br />

changes reversible or<br />

irreversible?<br />

Students compare and contrast simple examples of different<br />

changes to materials to predict the meaning of a reversible<br />

and irreversible change. After <strong>res</strong>earching the correct<br />

meanings, students use pieces of crepe paper to demonstrate<br />

reversible and irreversible changes.<br />

Students watch a video to revise changes to a substance’s<br />

state of matter. They then plan and conduct an experiment that<br />

uses melting, heating, evaporating, condensing and cooling<br />

to move water from its solid state in one container to its liquid<br />

state in another container, using only heat from the sun. Note:<br />

This lesson will need to be conducted in the morning to al<strong>low</strong><br />

time for observations throughout the day.<br />

Students watch a video about dissolving and solutions and<br />

then plan and conduct an experiment to test if sugar, sand,<br />

flour, salt and pepper dissolve in tap water. They predict which<br />

of the mixtu<strong>res</strong> they think can be reversed and which they<br />

think are irreversible, and place each jar in a sunny position to<br />

evaporate. Students create a p<strong>res</strong>entation to explain dissolving<br />

and evaporating as reversible changes.<br />

In groups, students fol<strong>low</strong> a recipe to bake a batch of biscuits<br />

to identify if cooking is a reversible or irreversible change.<br />

They record data and observations before, during and after the<br />

cooking process to determine if a chemical change has taken<br />

place. Students then watch a video to understand why cooking<br />

is an irreversible change.<br />

Lesson 5<br />

Students revise melting as a reversible change, to predict if<br />

What is burning? Is it a<br />

burning is reversible or irreversible. They conduct a candle<br />

reversible or irreversible<br />

burning experiment to observe the changes made to the wax<br />

change?<br />

and the wick. Students use the signs of a chemical change from<br />

the previous lesson to determine if burning is a reversible or<br />

irreversible change.<br />

Lesson 6<br />

Students plan and conduct an experiment to see how rust<br />

What is rusting? Is it a<br />

forms on steel wool and to identify the elements that are<br />

reversible or irreversible<br />

required for rusting to occur. Students use the signs of a<br />

change?<br />

chemical change to determine if rusting is a reversible or<br />

irreversible change.<br />

Summative assessment<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

A crystal castle<br />

Students apply their knowledge of reversible and irreversible<br />

changes to answer questions about real-life situations.<br />

Students design and create a miniature model of a crystal<br />

castle for a movie set, that can withstand warm, dry<br />

environments without melting, while the movie is being filmed.<br />

They create and share a blog post giving visual, written and<br />

verbal step-by-step instructions of how to create a miniature<br />

crystal castle using only reversible changes.<br />

Pages<br />

40–43<br />

44–46<br />

47–49<br />

50–54<br />

55–56<br />

57–59<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Unit overview<br />

Curriculum scope and sequence<br />

SCIENCE UNDERSTANDING<br />

Changes to materials can be reversible or irreversible<br />

(ACSSU095)<br />

SCIENCE AS A HUMAN ENDEAVOUR<br />

<strong>Science</strong> involves testing predictions by gathering data and using<br />

evidence to develop explanations of events and phenomena and<br />

reflects historical and cultural contributions (ACSHE098)<br />

Scientific knowledge is used to solve problems and inform<br />

personal and community decisions (ACSHE100)<br />

SCIENCE INQUIRY SKILLS<br />

Questioning and predicting<br />

With guidance, pose clarifying questions and make predictions<br />

about scientific investigations (ACSIS232)<br />

Planning and conducting<br />

Identify, plan and apply the elements of scientific investigations<br />

to answer questions and solve problems using equipment and<br />

materials safely and identifying potential risks (ACSIS103)<br />

Decide variables to be changed and measured in fair tests, and<br />

observe measure and record data with accuracy using digital<br />

technologies as appropriate (ACSIS104)<br />

Processing and analysing data and information<br />

Construct and use a range of rep<strong>res</strong>entations, including tables<br />

and graphs, to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and describe observations, patterns or<br />

relationships in data using digital technologies as appropriate<br />

(ACSIS107)<br />

Compare data with predictions and use as evidence in<br />

developing explanations (ACSIS221)<br />

Evaluating<br />

Reflect on and suggest improvements to scientific investigations<br />

(ACSIS108)<br />

Communicating<br />

Communicate ideas, explanations and processes using scientific<br />

rep<strong>res</strong>entations in a variety of ways, including multi-modal texts<br />

(ACSIS110)<br />

Lesson<br />

1 2 3 4 5 6 Assessment <strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

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3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 39


Lesson 1<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What are reversible and irreversible changes?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students identify reversible changes such as<br />

melting, freezing, scrunching and bending,<br />

and irreversible changes such as whisking,<br />

cutting, burning and cooking encountered in<br />

everyday life.<br />

Background information<br />

• A reversible change is a physical change in a<br />

material that can be undone, with the material<br />

returning to its original form. Reversible changes<br />

occur when the chemical bonds in the material<br />

have been stretched or comp<strong>res</strong>sed without being<br />

broken.<br />

• Reversible changes include bending and<br />

straightening, scrunching and flattening, folding<br />

and unfolding, melting and freezing, boiling and<br />

cooling, evaporating and condensing, dissolving<br />

and combining with various separation techniques.<br />

• An irreversible change is a physical or chemical<br />

change in a material that cannot be undone.<br />

Irreversible changes occur when the chemical<br />

bonds in the material have been broken or a<br />

chemical reaction has taken place.<br />

• Irreversible changes include cutting, whisking,<br />

frying, baking, burning, rusting and some kinds<br />

of mixtu<strong>res</strong> such as cement and water, and<br />

bicarbonate soda and vinegar.<br />

• The difference between physical and chemical<br />

changes is covered in the <strong>Year</strong> 8 <strong>Science</strong><br />

curriculum.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Popplet to<br />

create a brainstorming diagram<br />

• scanning a QR code or typing a URL into a<br />

search engine to link to a website<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as ShowMe to<br />

create a T-chart and to create a p<strong>res</strong>entation<br />

that includes digital photographs<br />

• cutting a 16-cm length of crepe paper into<br />

eighths<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital p<strong>res</strong>entations from<br />

the Reflection as an assessment of their<br />

understanding of how things change and the<br />

difference between reversible and irreversible<br />

changes.<br />

Resources<br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a<br />

brainstorming application such as<br />

Popplet, a p<strong>res</strong>entation application<br />

such as ShowMe, and a QR<br />

scanner<br />

• A copy of page 42 for each<br />

student (optional)<br />

• A copy of page 43 for each<br />

student<br />

• <strong>Science</strong> journals (optional)<br />

• A 16-cm length of crepe paper for<br />

each student<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 1<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Using page 42 or an iPad ® application such as Popplet, students create a brainstorm of their prior<br />

knowledge of how materials change. What can we do to change the size of a material? How can we<br />

make it bigger or smaller? What can we do to change the shape of a material? How can we change<br />

the colour of an object? What processes do we use to change water from one state of matter to<br />

another? QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. Give each student a copy of page 43. Individually, students look at the examples listed in the<br />

columns to predict the meaning of reversible and irreversible changes. Students record their<br />

prediction, then type the URL or scan the QR code to see an example of a reversible change<br />

(melting chocolate) and an example of an irreversible change (cooking an egg). Students click each<br />

drop-down arrow to read a description of a reversible and irreversible change and then decide if<br />

the two changes at the bottom of page 43 are reversible or irreversible. QP PC PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can work in pairs to discuss why they think each example in the T-chart<br />

on page 43 is a reversible or irreversible change, before predicting a definition for each word.<br />

Students may also use an audio recorder instead of completing written tasks.<br />

• More capable students may choose some examples of reversible and irreversible changes from<br />

the T-chart on page 43 and write the process that was used to make each change on the back<br />

of the page. For reversible changes, students can also write the process for how to reverse the<br />

change.<br />

3. In pairs, students review their brainstorms from Step 1 and compare information. Students add any<br />

of their partner’s examples to their brainstorm using a different colour, and discuss any differing<br />

answers. PA<br />

4. In the same pairs, students draw a T-chart in their science journals or using an iPad ® application<br />

such as ShowMe, and label the columns, ‘Reversible changes’ and ‘Irreversible changes’. Students<br />

look at the processes we use to change a material’s shape, size, colour and state from the<br />

brainstorm in Step 3, and write specific examples of each in the appropriate column on the T-chart,<br />

to predict if each change is reversible or irreversible. PA C<br />

Reflection:<br />

5. Using a 16-cm length of crepe paper streamer cut into eighths, students perform a reversible<br />

or irreversible change to each piece of crepe paper and take a photograph of it using an iPad ®<br />

application, such as ShowMe. Prompt students with questions including: How can you change the<br />

shape of the crepe paper? How can you change the size of the crepe paper? What happens if you<br />

add water to the crepe paper? Can you change the colour of the crepe paper? Students then add<br />

text or audio to explain the change that was made to each piece and whether it is reversible or<br />

irreversible. Note: If students used a digital camera, they may print the photographs and create a<br />

poster for reversible changes and one for irreversible changes or upload them to a computer and<br />

create posters using a word processing program. C<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 41


Lesson 1<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Brainstorm<br />

Changing shape<br />

Changes to<br />

materials<br />

Changing size<br />

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Changing colour Changing state<br />

42 <strong>Science</strong>:<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 1<br />

Reversible vs irreversible changes<br />

1. What is a reversible change?<br />

2. What is an irreversible change?<br />

Go to or scan the QR code for an<br />

explanation of each word.<br />

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3. Are these changes reversible or irreversible?<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 43


Lesson 2<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What methods are used to change the state of water?<br />

Are these changes reversible or irreversible?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and information<br />

PA<br />

• Communicating<br />

C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students use their knowledge of how water<br />

changes state to investigate reversible changes<br />

used in everyday life, such as melting and freezing,<br />

boiling and cooling, evaporating and condensing.<br />

Background information<br />

• A change in state occurs when a material changes<br />

between a solid, a liquid and a gas. Water is the only<br />

substance on Earth that can be found naturally in all<br />

three states.<br />

• When heat is added to an ice block (a solid), it<br />

melts and changes into water (a liquid). The melting<br />

process can be reversed by removing heat from the<br />

water through freezing, changing the liquid back into<br />

solid ice blocks.<br />

• When heat is added to water (a liquid), it boils and<br />

evaporates as water vapour (a gas). The water vapour<br />

cools as it rises and condenses back into a liquid.<br />

• A change in the state of a substance such as water,<br />

is a reversible change. Melting can be reversed<br />

through freezing, boiling can be reversed through<br />

cooling, and evaporating can be reversed through<br />

condensing. Substances that change state through<br />

cooking or burning are irreversible.<br />

• The experiment conducted in this lesson shows<br />

some of the stages of the water cycle but not all. The<br />

processes used in the water cycle are covered in the<br />

<strong>Year</strong> 7 <strong>Science</strong> curriculum.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using materials and equipment safely<br />

when conducting an experiment<br />

• taking digital photographs using an iPad ®<br />

at hourly intervals to make observations<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Seesaw<br />

to record observations, insert digital<br />

photographs and communicate science<br />

knowledge<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital p<strong>res</strong>entations as an<br />

assessment of their understanding of<br />

the reversible methods used to change<br />

water during the experiment, including<br />

heating, melting, evaporating, cooling and<br />

condensing.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online video—Phases of<br />

matter at <br />

• A copy of page 46 for each<br />

student<br />

• For each group: a large glass<br />

bowl; a small glass; 1 2<br />

cup of ice<br />

blocks; 3 marbles or weights;<br />

plastic food wrap<br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

Seesaw<br />

• Individual science journals<br />

(optional)<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 2<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Note: This lesson should be conducted in the morning to al<strong>low</strong> time for students to monitor and<br />

record the <strong>res</strong>ults of their experiment at hourly intervals throughout the day. Additional time should<br />

be provided for students to conduct their observations. Step 3 should be completed after students<br />

have placed their experiment in the sun and Step 4 should be completed at a later time when all<br />

observations have been made.<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Watch the video at , pausing it at 7.55. This video explains different<br />

methods of changing states of matter that are too dangerous to perform in a classroom, such as<br />

melting steel, boiling water and using liquid nitrogen. Using a think-pair-share, students discuss<br />

the questions: How else can we change states of matter using safe processes? How can we use only<br />

heat from the sun to change states of matter? Are these changes able to be reversed? QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. Divide the class into groups of three and give each student a copy of page 46, a large glass bowl, a<br />

small glass, 1 2<br />

cup of ice blocks, three marbles or weights and plastic food wrap. Students conduct<br />

an experiment to apply their knowledge of reversible changes, to change the ice in the bottom<br />

of the bowl into liquid water, and capture the liquid water in a glass jar in the centre of the bowl,<br />

using only heat from the sun. Students then position their glass bowl with the glass inside of it, in a<br />

sunny position and ensure the marbles or weights are positioned above the glass. Note: Students<br />

will need to monitor their experiment and use an iPad ® to take digital photographs at hourly intervals<br />

throughout the day. They should discuss their observations with the other students in their group.<br />

Observations can be recorded using an iPad ® application, such as Seesaw or their science journals<br />

at each time interval. PC PA<br />

3. Individually, students label the diagram on page 46 to predict the reversible changes they think<br />

will be used during the experiment and how they might be used. Students then explain their<br />

hypothesis. For example: I think the ice will melt into water, then evaporate into a gas which will<br />

rise up and collide with the plastic food wrap. It will then condense back into a liquid and roll down<br />

the plastic food wrap to the weighted end, where it will drip into the glass as liquid water. Students<br />

share their predictions with the <strong>res</strong>t of their experiment group and discuss any similarities or<br />

differences. PC PA<br />

Reflection:<br />

4. Using an iPad ® application such as Seesaw, students create a diagram to show the processes<br />

used to change water from a solid, to a liquid, to a gas and then back to a liquid. Students insert<br />

images of water in each state and draw arrows to show how heat is added or removed, to make<br />

each change. Students record audio of themselves explaining the changes that occur when heat is<br />

added to or removed from a state of matter. Prompt students with questions including: How do we<br />

change ice to water? What happens to the ice? Is this process reversible or irreversible? How do we<br />

reverse the change? What happens to the material? Students should be encouraged to complete<br />

the liquid to gas changes independently. C<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can insert the image and add audio<br />

to describe each change shown in the diagram. For example: When you add heat to a solid, it<br />

changes to a liquid by melting.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to graph the phase changes using an iPad ®<br />

application or graph paper, as shown at . Students may also be<br />

encouraged to show the phase changes as the water cools.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 45


Lesson 2<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Instructions:<br />

1. Create the experiment as shown in the diagram.<br />

2. Place the bowl carefully in a warm, sheltered place, in<br />

direct sunlight and leave it there.<br />

3. Ensure the glass is in the centre of the bowl and the<br />

weight is positioned above the glass.<br />

weight<br />

rubber<br />

band<br />

Materials and equipment:<br />

• 1 large glass bowl<br />

• 1 small glass<br />

1<br />

• cup ice blocks<br />

2<br />

• 3 marbles (weights)<br />

• A warm, sunny place,<br />

sheltered from the wind<br />

Investigation question:<br />

Which changes are needed to transfer the ice in the bowl bowl, to water in the cup, using only<br />

heat from the sun? glass bowl<br />

Hypothesis:<br />

rubber<br />

band<br />

Changes in state experiment plan<br />

ice blocks<br />

glass<br />

weight<br />

plastic food wrap<br />

glass<br />

plastic<br />

food wrap<br />

Label the diagram to show how the water will change states, and explain your hypothesis.<br />

glass bowl<br />

ice blocks<br />

glass<br />

plastic food wrap<br />

glass<br />

Observations:<br />

Take a digital photograph and record your observations at hourly intervals throughout the<br />

day.<br />

bowl<br />

plastic<br />

food wrap<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 3<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What changes occur when a substance is<br />

dissolved to form a solution? Is this change<br />

reversible or irreversible?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students investigate the solubility of<br />

common substances and whether<br />

mixtu<strong>res</strong>, including solutions, are<br />

reversible or irreversible.<br />

Background information<br />

• A mixture is a combination of two or more<br />

substances. These substances can be solids,<br />

liquids or gases.<br />

• A solution is a type of mixture in which the<br />

particles in one substance become dispersed<br />

among the particles in a liquid. The substance<br />

being dissolved is called the solute and the<br />

substance in which the solute dissolves, is the<br />

solvent.<br />

• A soluble substance is one that will dissolve; an<br />

insoluble substance is one that will not. Solubility<br />

describes a substance’s ability to dissolve in a<br />

liquid. If a substance dissolves easily into a liquid,<br />

it has high solubility in that liquid. If a substance<br />

does not dissolve easily in a liquid, it has <strong>low</strong><br />

solubility.<br />

• All mixtu<strong>res</strong>, including solutions, can be reversed<br />

using various separation techniques, including<br />

evaporation and filtration. These and other<br />

separation techniques are explored in <strong>Year</strong> 7.<br />

• Evaporation is the process of changing a<br />

substance in a liquid state, into a gas state,<br />

through heating. A solid-liquid mixture can be<br />

reversed by heating the liquid so it evaporates.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using materials and equipment safely when<br />

conducting an experiment<br />

• using formal measurements to control variables in<br />

an experiment<br />

• taking digital photographs using an iPad ® or a<br />

digital camera<br />

• using an iPad ® to insert digital photographs, text<br />

and/or audio into a p<strong>res</strong>entation application such<br />

as Seesaw<br />

• saving and emailing a digital p<strong>res</strong>entation to the<br />

teacher<br />

• recording predictions and observations in a table<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital p<strong>res</strong>entations from the<br />

Reflection to assess their understanding of mixing<br />

and dissolving as reversible changes.<br />

Resources<br />

• A pre-prepared glass of water with<br />

coffee dissolved into it<br />

• Website—Dissolving at <br />

• A copy of page 49 for each student<br />

• A plastic cup and spoon for each<br />

student<br />

• Access to the fol<strong>low</strong>ing substances:<br />

tap water, sugar, sand, flour, salt and<br />

pepper<br />

• Access to a range of measuring<br />

devices, including measuring jugs,<br />

measuring cups, kitchen scales and<br />

measuring spoons<br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

Seesaw<br />

• Online interactive activity—Different<br />

changes at (optional)<br />

• Online video—The great picnic mix up<br />

at <br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 47


Lesson 3<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Teacher notes<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Display a glass of water with coffee dissolved into it. Students think about the questions: What is in<br />

the glass? Which two substances have been mixed in this glass? In which state are each of the two<br />

substances? Why can only liquid be seen? What happened to the solid? QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. As a class, read through the information at . This website describes<br />

what is meant by a solution, a solvent, a solute, and soluble and insoluble substances. Individually,<br />

students read the experiment question on page 49 and predict which of the five substances being<br />

tested will dissolve in water and which will not. Students record their predictions in the table. QP<br />

3. In groups of five, students discuss the questions about variables on page 49 to determine the<br />

controlled, independent and dependent variables for their experiment. Each student should<br />

individually record the group’s answer to each question, as they will need to fol<strong>low</strong> the same<br />

guidelines throughout the experiment. PC<br />

4. Give each student a plastic cup and spoon and access to water, various measuring tools including<br />

rulers, measuring jugs, measuring scales and measuring cups, iPads ® or digital cameras and each<br />

substance—sugar, sand, flour, salt and pepper. Note: Students will need approximately 200 mL of<br />

water and 1 teaspoon of each substance. In their groups, each student chooses a substance to<br />

test and collects the materials they will need to perform their test. As a group, students fill their<br />

individual cups with the same amount of tap water by choosing appropriate measuring devices.<br />

They add their substance to the water and stir the mixture for approximately one minute, then al<strong>low</strong><br />

it to sit for two minutes. Students use an iPad ® or a digital camera to take a photograph of each<br />

substance as soon as the stirring has finished and at the end of the two-minute <strong>res</strong>ting time.<br />

Note: If time is limited, students can watch the video at which<br />

shows a similar experiment for students to observe the <strong>res</strong>ults. PC PA<br />

5. Students record their <strong>res</strong>ults next to their predictions in the table on page 49, then compare.<br />

As a group, students discuss if their experiment was a fair test and how they could improve the<br />

experiment. They then predict which of the mixtu<strong>res</strong> and solutions they think can be reversed and<br />

which they think are irreversible. Students place each mixture in a sunny position until the liquid has<br />

evaporated. PA E QP<br />

6. As a class, watch the video The great picnic mix up at . This video<br />

revises how mixtu<strong>res</strong>, including solutions, are made by combining two or more substances and<br />

how mixtu<strong>res</strong> can be reversed by evaporating the water from a solution to leave the solute behind.<br />

Reflection:<br />

7. Using an iPad ® application such as Seesaw, students answer the question, What is dissolving and<br />

is it a reversible or irreversible change? Students use the digital photographs of the mixtu<strong>res</strong> and<br />

solutions created in their experiment to justify their answers, then email their p<strong>res</strong>entations to the<br />

teacher. Note: If <strong>res</strong>ources are limited, students may write in their science journals. C<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can use audio recordings to explain their answers to each question.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to write a paragraph for each question, justifying<br />

their answers with information from the video and their experiment.<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 3<br />

Investigation question:<br />

Dissolving experiment<br />

Will sugar, sand, flour, salt and pepper dissolve in tap water?<br />

Test Substance Prediction Results<br />

1<br />

2<br />

3<br />

4<br />

5<br />

Instructions:<br />

• Stir each substance into a cup of water and take a photograph.<br />

• Al<strong>low</strong> each test to sit for 1-2 minutes and observe the changes.<br />

• Take another photograph of each test.<br />

Controlled variables:<br />

1. How will you control the amount of tap water in each test?<br />

2. How will you control the amount of each substance added to each test?<br />

3. How will you control the amount of time spent stirring?<br />

Independent variables:<br />

4. What will you change in each test and how will you change it?<br />

Dependent variables:<br />

5. What will you observe in each test?<br />

6. How will you know if your predictions were correct?<br />

Coffee powder<br />

is soluble. It will<br />

dissolve when<br />

mixed with water.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 49


Lesson 4<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What changes occur when you bake<br />

biscuits? Are these changes reversible or<br />

irreversible?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students investigate the changes<br />

that occur when baking biscuits, to<br />

determine if cooking is a reversible or<br />

irreversible change.<br />

Background information<br />

• Cooking is a change that requi<strong>res</strong> a large<br />

amount of heat to change the chemical<br />

composition of the food. This is known as a<br />

chemical change.<br />

• At this age, students do not need to know how<br />

the molecules interact in a chemical change,<br />

but they will be able to identify common signs<br />

that an irreversible chemical change has taken<br />

place. These common changes are listed on<br />

page 54.<br />

• During the cooking experiment, students<br />

should observe that heat is absorbed by the<br />

biscuits, the colour of the cooked biscuits is<br />

different from the colour of raw biscuit batter,<br />

a smell is produced by the biscuits, and a gas<br />

is produced as the moisture in the biscuits<br />

evaporates into water vapour.<br />

• This chemical change caused by cooking is<br />

irreversible as the original ingredients can not<br />

be taken back out of the mixture.<br />

• Cooking popcorn can also be used to show the<br />

irreversible changes of cooking. See for more information.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using materials and equipment safely when<br />

conducting a cooking experiment<br />

• using formal measurements to measure the<br />

ingredients in a cooking experiment, and to measure<br />

the temperature of the cookies throughout the<br />

cooking process<br />

• taking digital photographs using an iPad ® or a digital<br />

camera<br />

• using an iPad ® to insert digital photographs, text<br />

and/or audio into a p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

Seesaw<br />

• recording observations in a table using page 53 or an<br />

appropriate iPad ® application<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use page 53 to assess the students’ observation and<br />

recording skills while conducting an experiment, and<br />

the digital p<strong>res</strong>entation from Step 7 to assess their<br />

understanding of cooking as an irreversible change.<br />

Resources<br />

• A simple biscuit recipe such as the one<br />

at <br />

Note: This recipe contains eggs. If you<br />

have students with allergies, choose<br />

another appropriate biscuit recipe<br />

• A copy of page 52 with the recipe<br />

written out and photocopied for each<br />

student (optional)<br />

• Ingredients and materials required for<br />

the chosen recipe<br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

Seesaw<br />

• Oven access<br />

• Thermometer for each group<br />

• A copy of page 53 for each student<br />

(optional)<br />

• A timer for each group or one for the<br />

class to share<br />

• A copy of page 54 for each student<br />

• Online video—Chemical changes at<br />

<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 4<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Using the interactive whiteboard, display a simple biscuit recipe such as the one at . Note: This recipe contains eggs. If you have students with allergies, choose<br />

another appropriate biscuit recipe. Explain where to find the ingredients and equipment and<br />

how to conduct the procedure safely. Write the words 'temperature', 'colour', 'smell', 'size' and<br />

'consistency' on the whiteboard and explain that students will observe any changes that occur<br />

to these characteristics. Alternatively, a biscuit recipe may be written out onto page 52 and<br />

photocopied for students to use, or students can write the procedure during an English lesson.<br />

Development:<br />

2. In groups, students create their biscuits based on the recipe provided and take a digital<br />

photograph of the uncooked biscuits using an iPad ® . Before placing their biscuits in the oven,<br />

students use a thermometer to measure the temperature of the biscuits and make observations<br />

about their colour, smell, size and consistency. Students use the table on page 53, or create a<br />

similar table using an iPad ® application to record their measurements and observations in the<br />

column ‘Before cooking’. PC PA<br />

3. Place the trays of biscuits in the oven to cook and have students set a timer to ring halfway<br />

through the cooking time. When the timer rings, remove the biscuits from the oven for students to<br />

measure the temperature of the biscuits and make further observations of their colour, smell, size<br />

and consistency. Students take a digital photograph of the biscuits during cooking. Note: Ensure<br />

students use oven mitts while making observations as quickly as possible to avoid the biscuits<br />

cooling too much. PC PA<br />

4. Place the trays back into the oven and have students <strong>res</strong>et the timers for the remainder of the<br />

cooking time. While the biscuits are continuing to cook, students record their observations from<br />

Step 4 in the same table, under the heading ‘During cooking’. At the end of the cooking time,<br />

students complete their observations and record the final temperature of the biscuits in the final<br />

column of the table. PC PA<br />

5. Using page 54, students read the information about chemical changes and then review their <strong>res</strong>ults<br />

to answer the questions. Students determine if a chemical change has taken place and if they think<br />

this change is reversible or irreversible. PA QP<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can use an iPad ® to record audio of their observations or to answer the<br />

questions on page 54.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to <strong>res</strong>earch why cooking is an irreversible change in<br />

more detail.<br />

6. Watch the video Chemical changes at . This video reviews mixtu<strong>res</strong><br />

as reversible changes and explains how to identify if a chemical change has taken place, and if<br />

chemical changes are reversible or irreversible. It also demonstrates and explains the irreversible<br />

chemical changes that occur when baking a cake.<br />

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Reflection:<br />

7. Using an iPad ® application, such as Seesaw, students create a p<strong>res</strong>entation to explain the<br />

irreversible changes that occur when baking biscuits. Students insert the digital photographs of<br />

their biscuits before, during and after cooking, and use text or audio to record their explanation.<br />

Students may use their table of <strong>res</strong>ults and their answers to the questions on page 54 to assist their<br />

explanations. C<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 51


Lesson 4<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Cooking experiment – 1<br />

Ingredients:<br />

Equipment:<br />

Procedure:<br />

Oven temperature:<br />

Cooking time:<br />

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Observations and measurements :<br />

When to observe:<br />

Before the biscuits are placed in the oven.<br />

Halfway through the cooking time.<br />

What to observe:<br />

The temperature of the biscuits.<br />

The colour of the biscuits.<br />

Immediately after cooking.<br />

The smell of the biscuits.<br />

The size of the biscuits.<br />

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The consistency of the biscuits.<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 4<br />

Cooking experiment – 2<br />

Before cooking<br />

During cooking<br />

Immediately after cooking<br />

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Temperature<br />

Colour<br />

Smell<br />

Size<br />

Consistency<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 53


Lesson 4<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Chemical changes in baking<br />

A chemical change is a change in which two or more substances react together to form<br />

a new substance. We can identify if a chemical change has taken place by observing the<br />

changes during or after the cooking process.<br />

Signs a chemical change may have taken place:<br />

Heat was absorbed or produced.<br />

The colour of the substance changed.<br />

A smell was produced.<br />

Gases were produced.<br />

The reaction can’t be reversed.<br />

Evidence of a chemical change during cooking<br />

1. Was heat absorbed by the biscuits? Explain.<br />

2. Did the colour of the biscuits change? Explain.<br />

3. Was a smell produced? Explain.<br />

4. Were gases produced through evaporation? Explain.<br />

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5. Can the reaction be reversed? Explain.<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 5<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What is burning? Is it a reversible or<br />

irreversible change?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students investigate the changes that<br />

occur when a candle is lit, to determine<br />

if burning is a reversible or irreversible<br />

change. Students also watch a video<br />

about how fire is used in cultural festivals<br />

and everyday life.<br />

Background information<br />

• Burning or combusting, is a rapid chemical change<br />

that occurs when excessive heat and oxygen<br />

combine with a flammable object, to form a chemical<br />

reaction.<br />

• At this age, students do not need to know how the<br />

molecules interact in a chemical change, but they<br />

should be able to identify common signs that an<br />

irreversible chemical change has taken place. These<br />

common changes are listed on page 54.<br />

• During the candle experiment, students should<br />

observe that the heat from the original flame causes<br />

the wax to melt, which travels up the wick to fuel<br />

the fire. The burning candle gives off heat, light,<br />

smoke (gas), and a smell, as the fuel source (wax)<br />

is consumed. When the fuel source is completely<br />

consumed by the fire, students should observe that<br />

all that remains is a small amount of ash.<br />

• This chemical change is irreversible as the original<br />

candle can not be recovered from the ash that<br />

remains.<br />

• The irreversible change caused by a bushfire can<br />

cause devastating effects on our lives. Watch a video<br />

about the effects of the 2009 bushfi<strong>res</strong> in Victoria at<br />

.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using materials and equipment safely when<br />

conducting an experiment involving fire<br />

• taking digital photographs using an iPad ®<br />

• using an iPad ® to record predictions, observations<br />

and explanations by inserting digital photographs,<br />

text and/or audio into a p<strong>res</strong>entation application<br />

such as ShowMe<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital p<strong>res</strong>entations to assess their<br />

understanding of the changes that occur when an<br />

object is burnt, and whether burning is a reversible<br />

or irreversible change.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online video of wax crayons<br />

melting at <br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

ShowMe<br />

• Individual science journals<br />

(optional)<br />

• A tealight candle for each<br />

group. These may be placed<br />

inside a glass jar for additional<br />

safety if required.<br />

• Online video—Small candle time<br />

lapse at (optional)<br />

• Online video—How stuff<br />

changes at <br />

• Online image—Candle burning<br />

diagram at <br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 55


Lesson 5<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Teacher notes<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Watch the online video of wax crayons melting in the sun at .<br />

Using a think-pair-share, students explain what is causing the crayons to melt and if they could be<br />

changed back into their original state. C<br />

2. Revise that melting is a reversible change that alters the state of a substance from a solid to a<br />

liquid, without creating a chemical change. Because no chemical change has occurred and no new<br />

product has been created, the substance can be changed back into its original state.<br />

Development:<br />

3. Using an iPad ® application such as ShowMe or their individual science journals, students reflect on<br />

the melting wax crayons from the Introduction to predict if lighting a candle causes a reversible or<br />

irreversible change. Students record and explain their prediction using text or audio. QP<br />

4. In groups of five, place a tealight candle in the centre of each table. Note: The candles may be<br />

placed into a glass jar for additional safety if needed. Remind students of the safety requirements<br />

when using open fi<strong>res</strong>, including no touching. Light the tealight candle for each group and ask<br />

them to observe the candle. Using an iPad ® , students take a photograph of their candle at various<br />

stages to show any changes that occur to the wax, the wick and the metal container when burned.<br />

Alternatively, students can watch a short video at to see a tealight<br />

candle burning from start to finish, pausing and taking screen shots of the video to show the<br />

changes that occur. PC PA<br />

5. Using the same iPad ® application as Step 3, or their science journals, students create a new page to<br />

record their observations of the candle. What happened to the wax? Did it melt or did it burn? What<br />

happened to the wick? Did it melt or did it burn? PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can use an audio recorder or video camera on an iPad ® to record their<br />

observations.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to <strong>res</strong>earch or name other ways that fire causes<br />

irreversible changes, such as during a camp-fire or striking a match.<br />

6. Watch the online video How stuff changes at , pausing it at 5:13.<br />

This video explains how fire causes irreversible chemical changes in objects, such as the burning of<br />

a wooden statue at a Hindu festival, the burning of a candle and the burning of a magnesium wire.<br />

Reflection:<br />

7. Discuss the candle burning diagram at . Using the same iPad ®<br />

application from Steps 3 and 5, students create a similar diagram to explain the science behind<br />

their candle experiment. Students insert the photographs (or the screen shots if the video<br />

was used) of the experiment and use an audio recorder to explain what is happening in each<br />

photograph. What changes occurred initially? What changes occurred to cause the final <strong>res</strong>ult? Can<br />

the candle be changed back into its original state? Is burning a candle a reversible or irreversible<br />

change? C<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 6<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What is rusting? Is it a reversible or<br />

irreversible change?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students investigate the changes that<br />

occur when a metal such as steel rusts,<br />

to determine if rusting is a reversible<br />

or irreversible change. Students also<br />

watch a video explaining how rust<br />

affects our daily lives, such as when it<br />

occurs on cars.<br />

Background information<br />

• Rust is a chemical change that occurs when<br />

oxygen and water combine with a metal, such as<br />

iron.<br />

• At this age, students do not need to know how<br />

the molecules interact in a chemical change, but<br />

they should be able to identify common signs<br />

that an irreversible chemical change has taken<br />

place. These common changes are listed on<br />

page 54.<br />

• During the rusting experiment, students should<br />

observe that the jar containing air and saltwater<br />

forms the most rust on the steel wool. They<br />

should also observe that the jar containing air<br />

and water forms rust but not as quickly as the air<br />

and saltwater. This is because the salt acts as a<br />

catalyst for the chemical reaction to occur. It is<br />

important to mention that salt is not required for<br />

rust to form, but that it speeds up the process.<br />

• This chemical change is irreversible as the<br />

original steel wool can not be recovered from the<br />

rust.<br />

• To read more about rusting, go to .<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using materials and equipment safely when<br />

conducting a rusting experiment<br />

• using formal measurements to control variables in<br />

an experiment<br />

• taking digital photographs using an iPad ® and<br />

email them to their partner<br />

• using an iPad ® to insert digital photographs, text<br />

and/or audio into a p<strong>res</strong>entation application such<br />

as Seesaw<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use page 59 to assess the student's ability to<br />

conduct a fair experiment by controlling variables.<br />

• Use students' digital p<strong>res</strong>entations to assess their<br />

understanding of the changes that occur when an<br />

object rusts, and whether rusting is a reversible or<br />

irreversible change.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online image—Rusted car at <br />

• Online video—Rusting—Iron + water +<br />

oxygen = rust at <br />

• For each pair: a copy of page 59;<br />

5 glass jars with lids; 5 small balls of<br />

fine steel wool (these should be left<br />

fluffy and not rolled into a tight ball);<br />

access to tap water, boiling water,<br />

rock salt and vegetable oil<br />

• Access to a range of measuring<br />

devices, including measuring jugs,<br />

measuring cups, kitchen scales and<br />

measuring spoons<br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

Seesaw<br />

• Online video—<strong>Science</strong> concepts and<br />

projects: Speedy rust at <br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 57


Lesson 6<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Teacher notes<br />

Note: The experiment in this lesson will require daily observations over the course of a week as rust<br />

takes time to develop. Steps 6 and 7 should be completed the fol<strong>low</strong>ing week after all observations<br />

have been made.<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Display the image of a rusted car, such as the one at . Using a thinkpair-share,<br />

students answer the questions: What process has occurred to create the brown parts on<br />

the car? What colour was the car before this process occurred? Where has this process affected the<br />

car the most? What parts of the car have not been affected by this process? What type of material<br />

is affected by the process? Introduce rust as the orange-brown substance that forms on an object<br />

when a chemical change between a specific metal, such as iron or steel, and other elements<br />

combine to form a reaction. Note: It is important not to mention that water and oxygen are required<br />

as this will be explored in the experiment. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. Watch the video at to see a rusting steel nail experiment, pausing it<br />

at 1:30. Explain that students are going to conduct a similar experiment with steel wool instead of<br />

steel and galvanised nails, to test the same conditions.<br />

3. Divide the class into pairs and provide each a copy of page 59. Students discuss the experiment<br />

plan and how they could set up each test using the materials listed, to show each test condition.<br />

They then discuss and answer the questions to determine how they will control, change or measure<br />

the variables to conduct a fair test. Students list the ingredients they will add to each jar and<br />

how much of each ingredient they will use, ensuring the amount of steel wool, salt and water is<br />

controlled in each test requiring that ingredient. For example: If 150 mL of water is used for Test 3,<br />

then the same should be used for Tests 4 and 5. PC<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can use an iPad ® to record audio of their answers to each question on<br />

page 59.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to create two more jars to test if rust forms on steel<br />

wool in vinegar and in bicarbonate of soda.<br />

4. Students decide who will be Partner 1 and who will be Partner 2 for this experiment, and predict<br />

the <strong>res</strong>ult of each test by answering each question in the table on page 59. They then collect the<br />

materials required and conduct their experiment according to their plan. Using a camera on an<br />

iPad ® , students take a digital photograph of their jars each day for a week (roughly about the same<br />

time) and email them to their partner. PC QP<br />

5. Watch from 1:30 to 4:42 of the video showing the rusting steel nail experiment at . This section will demonstrate the <strong>res</strong>ults of the rusty steel nail experiment over the<br />

course of a few months. Students compare their <strong>res</strong>ults to the <strong>res</strong>ults in the video to determine the<br />

elements that cause rust on steel, and to suggest improvements to their experiment. PA E<br />

Reflection:<br />

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6. As a class, watch the online video explaining what rust is and how it forms at . Individually, students use an iPad ® application such as Seesaw to explain how rust forms<br />

on steel when water and oxygen are p<strong>res</strong>ent. Students insert the photographs of their experiment<br />

to prove the equation rust = steel + water + oxygen, and to explain why salt causes rust to occur at<br />

a faster rate. C<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Lesson 6<br />

Question:<br />

What elements are needed for rust to form?<br />

Equipment and<br />

ingredients:<br />

• 5 jars with lids<br />

• 5 balls of fine<br />

steel wool (keep<br />

it fluffy)<br />

• Rock salt<br />

• Tap water<br />

• Saltwater<br />

• Boiling water<br />

• Vegetable oil<br />

Rusting experiment<br />

Test conditions:<br />

Draw images to show how you will conduct each test.<br />

Test 1<br />

Air only<br />

Test 2<br />

Rock salt<br />

only<br />

Test 3<br />

Tap water<br />

and air<br />

Identify the variables:<br />

1. How will you control the amount of steel wool used in each test?<br />

2. How will you control the amount of each element added to the tests?<br />

(a) Salt:<br />

(b) Water:<br />

3. (a) Which three elements are being tested independently?<br />

(b) What combinations of elements are being tested?<br />

4. How will you know if the steel wool has rusted?<br />

Test 4<br />

Saltwater<br />

and air<br />

Test 5<br />

Water only<br />

Predict the <strong>res</strong>ults: Partner 1’s prediction Partner 2’s prediction<br />

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In which test will the steel wool rust<br />

the most?<br />

In which test will the steel wool rust<br />

the least?<br />

Will all tests produce rust on the<br />

steel wool?<br />

Which elements do you think are<br />

needed to produce rust?<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 59


Assessment<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> knowledge<br />

Changes to materials can be reversible or irreversible (ACSSU095)<br />

Indicators<br />

• Identifies the meaning of a reversible and irreversible change.<br />

• Labels a diagram to show the processes used to change the state of water.<br />

• Identifies that changing the state of water is a reversible change.<br />

• Explains how a mixture of sand and saltwater can be reversed to separate the sand, salt and the<br />

water out of the mixture.<br />

• Identifies if cooking popcorn is a reversible or irreversible change.<br />

• Explains how the burning of trees and buildings during a bushfire is an irreversible change.<br />

• Identifies the elements required for rust to form.<br />

• Identifies whether rust will form on a car faster if it is abandoned near a beach or parked in a<br />

garage.<br />

Answers<br />

Pages 61 and 62<br />

1. (a) irreversible<br />

2. (a)<br />

(b) reversible<br />

melting<br />

evaporating<br />

solid liquid gas<br />

freezing condensing<br />

(b) The two-headed arrows indicate that a<br />

reversible change can occur between two<br />

of the states of water. For example: A solid<br />

and a liquid or a liquid and a gas.<br />

3. Teacher check—Yes, the substances can<br />

be separated. The sand will not dissolve in<br />

water, so the saltwater can be poured into<br />

another container using a filter to catch the<br />

sand. The saltwater can then be separated by<br />

evaporating the liquid to leave the salt behind.<br />

The water vapour will need to be collected<br />

and condensed back into liquid form.<br />

4. Teacher check pictu<strong>res</strong>. The change is<br />

irreversible.<br />

5. Teacher check—No, the changes caused by a<br />

bushfire cannot be reversed as the fire causes<br />

a chemical change to each object it touches.<br />

The fire burns each object and leaves behind<br />

only the ash remains. The objects affected by<br />

the fire cannot return to their original state.<br />

6. (a) steel wool + oxygen + water = rust<br />

(b) Teacher check—The car will rust faster near<br />

the beach as the salt in the water vapour<br />

acts as a catalyst, which speeds up the<br />

rusting process. While the car in the garage<br />

will rust eventually, the lack of salt and<br />

water contacting the car is limited, which<br />

will s<strong>low</strong> the rusting process.<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Assessment<br />

1. Complete each sentence with ‘reversible’ or ‘irreversible’.<br />

(a) A change in which the chemical bonds in a substance are broken or changed through<br />

a reaction, is .<br />

(b) A change in which the physical featu<strong>res</strong> of a substance are changed without changing<br />

the chemical bonds, is .<br />

2. (a) Label the diagram to show the processes that are used to change the state of water.<br />

solid liquid gas<br />

(b) What do the two-headed arrows indicate?<br />

3. In a mixture of sand and saltwater, can the sand, salt and water be separated into three<br />

separate substances? Explain.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 61


Assessment<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

4. Draw a picture of popcorn<br />

before and after it is cooked.<br />

Is this change reversible or<br />

irreversible?<br />

Before<br />

After<br />

5. Consider the devastating effects of an out-of-control bushfire. Can firefighters reverse the<br />

changes caused by the fire? Explain your answer.<br />

6. (a) Complete the missing parts of the equation to show how rust is formed.<br />

steel wool<br />

+ + =<br />

(b) Will a car rust quicker if it is abandoned near a beach or parked in a garage? Justify<br />

your answer.<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project overview<br />

A crystal castle<br />

Students design and create a miniature model of a crystal castle for a movie set, that can<br />

withstand warm, dry environments without melting, while the movie is being filmed. Students<br />

then create and share a blog post giving visual, written and verbal step-by-step instructions of<br />

how to create a miniature crystal castle using only reversible changes.<br />

Concepts overview:<br />

<strong>Science</strong><br />

• Apply knowledge of reversible and irreversible changes, to create a crystal castle, using a<br />

saturated solution of sugar and water.<br />

• Use science inquiry skills to predict which temperature of water will dissolve the most sugar<br />

and to plan and conduct an experiment to test how much sugar needs to be dissolved in<br />

refrigerated water, tap water and hot water to create saturated solutions.<br />

• Record observations of the <strong>res</strong>ults of their experiment and evaluate their solution to form the<br />

best crystals.<br />

• Communicate science understanding of how to create a crystal castle by reversing a solution.<br />

Technology/Engineering<br />

• Apply the design process to plan, create and evaluate a miniature model of a crystal castle<br />

using pipe-cleaners to create the castle structure and sugar crystals to simulate ice crystals.<br />

• While working collaboratively, use project management processes to ensure accountability of<br />

all group members when planning, organising, controlling <strong>res</strong>ources, monitoring time lines<br />

and meeting design criteria.<br />

• Use an iPad ® application, such as ShowMe, to take digital photographs of each step in<br />

creating the crystal castle and to add audio instructions to each photograph.<br />

• Create and share a blog that includes visual, verbal and written instructions of how to create a<br />

miniature model of a crystal castle that won’t melt in a warm, dry environment, while a movie<br />

is being filmed.<br />

Mathematics<br />

• Multiply the amount of sugar used to create a saturated solution in 100 mL of water, to find<br />

how much sugar will need to be dissolved in a solute, to fill 3 4<br />

of a two-litre container.<br />

• Create skeletons of prisms and pyramids using pipe-cleaners.<br />

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Alternative project ideas:<br />

• Students design and create a model of a boat measuring exactly 0.15 met<strong>res</strong> long and 0.07<br />

met<strong>res</strong> wide, using only common metal objects found at home or in the classroom. The boat<br />

must be made from metal objects that won’t rust, while the boat is moored in saltwater canals.<br />

Students place the model boat in a saturated saltwater solution for one week, taking a before<br />

and after photograph of the boat, to ensure no rust has formed.<br />

• Students design, create and share an interactive quiz about reversible and irreversible<br />

changes to materials, using a quiz creator website or an iPad ® application, such as Kahoot. The<br />

quiz must include 10 questions, with 3 5<br />

of the questions focusing on reversible changes, and<br />

the remainder focusing on irreversible changes.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 63


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> curriculum links<br />

SCIENCE CURRICULUM<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Understanding<br />

• Changes to materials can be reversible or irreversible (ACSSU095)<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills<br />

Questioning and predicting<br />

• With guidance, pose clarifying questions and make predictions about scientific investigations (ACSIS232)<br />

Planning and conducting<br />

• Identify, plan and apply the elements of scientific investigations to answer questions and solve problems using equipment<br />

and materials safely and identifying potential risks (ACSIS103)<br />

• Decide variables to be changed and measured in fair tests, and observe measure and record data with accuracy using digital<br />

technologies as appropriate (ACSIS104)<br />

Processing and analysing data and information<br />

• Construct and use a range of rep<strong>res</strong>entations, including tables and graphs, to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and describe observations, patterns<br />

or relationships in data using digital technologies as appropriate (ACSIS107)<br />

• Compare data with predictions and use as evidence in developing explanations (ACSIS221)<br />

Evaluating<br />

• Reflect on and suggest improvements to scientific investigations (ACSIS108)<br />

Communicating<br />

• Communicate ideas, explanations and processes using scientific rep<strong>res</strong>entations in a variety of ways, including multi-modal<br />

texts (ACSIS110)<br />

TECHNOLOGIES CURRICULUM<br />

Design and Technologies Processes and Production Skills<br />

• Critique needs or opportunities for designing, and investigate materials, components, tools, equipment and processes to<br />

achieve intended designed solutions (ACTDEP024)<br />

• Generate, develop and communicate design ideas and processes for audiences using appropriate technical terms and<br />

graphical rep<strong>res</strong>entation techniques (ACTDEP025)<br />

• Select appropriate materials, components, tools, equipment and techniques and apply safe procedu<strong>res</strong> to make designed<br />

solutions (ACTDEP026)<br />

• Negotiate criteria for success that include sustainability to evaluate design ideas, processes and solutions (ACTDEP027)<br />

• Develop project plans that include consideration of <strong>res</strong>ources when making designed solutions individually and<br />

collaboratively (ACTDEP028)<br />

Digital Technologies Processes and Production Skills<br />

• Acquire, store and validate different types of data, and use a range of software to interpret and visualise data to create<br />

information (ACTDIP016)<br />

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• Plan, create and communicate ideas and information, including collaboratively online, applying agreed ethical, social and<br />

technical protocols (ACTDIP022)<br />

MATHEMATICS CURRICULUM<br />

Number and Algebra<br />

• Select and apply efficient mental and written strategies and appropriate digital technologies to solve problems involving all<br />

four operations with whole numbers (ACMNA123)<br />

• Find a simple fraction of a quantity where the <strong>res</strong>ult is a whole number, with and without digital technologies (ACMNA127)<br />

Measurement and Geometry<br />

• Construct simple prisms and pyramids (ACMMG140)<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project:<br />

Teacher notes<br />

Students design and create a miniature model of a crystal castle for a movie set, that can<br />

withstand warm, dry environments without melting, while the movie is being filmed. Students<br />

then create and share a blog post giving visual, written and verbal step-by-step instructions of<br />

how to create a miniature crystal castle using only reversible changes.<br />

Estimated duration: 4–6 weeks<br />

1. Introduce the project<br />

•<br />

• Divide the class into groups of three<br />

and give each a copy of page 66. Read<br />

through the problem, the task and the<br />

criteria, and clarify any queries students<br />

have.<br />

• As a class, watch the video Ice castle<br />

closes due to Utah’s warm weather at<br />

to see the<br />

problems associated with using ice to<br />

create castles.<br />

• Give each group a copy of page 67, so<br />

students can manage and assess their<br />

prog<strong>res</strong>s.<br />

2. Investigate<br />

• In their groups, students conduct an<br />

experiment to test how much sugar<br />

needs to be dissolved into 100 mL of<br />

refrigerated water, tap water and hot<br />

water to create saturated solutions, and<br />

which temperature of water creates the<br />

best crystals. The experiment template on<br />

page 68 may be used to guide students’<br />

experiments, or they may create their<br />

own plan. Note: To scaffold students’<br />

experiments, see how to create sugar<br />

crystals on a stick at .<br />

3. Design, plan and manage<br />

• Students draw a diagram of their threedimensional<br />

castle, labelling the prisms<br />

and pyramids they will use, and how they<br />

will connect them to create a castle.<br />

• Students multiply the amount of sugar<br />

used to create a saturated solution in<br />

100 mL of water, to find how much sugar<br />

will need to be dissolved in a solute, to<br />

fill 3 4<br />

of a two-litre container.<br />

Students collect or locate all the materials<br />

they will need to create their crystal castle,<br />

including a container with a two-litre<br />

capacity, and the correct amount of sugar<br />

and hot water to create their saturated<br />

solution.<br />

4. Create<br />

Note: Remind students to take<br />

photographs and record audio<br />

instructions during each step of the<br />

creation stage.<br />

• Students create the skeletons of each<br />

pyramid or prism, then attach the pipecleaner<br />

skeletons together to form their<br />

castle. Note: Students’ castles must be<br />

able to fit inside their two-litre container,<br />

without touching the sides. They attach<br />

strings to the top of the castle to suspend<br />

it in their saturated solution.<br />

• Students create the correct amount of<br />

solution to put in their container, based<br />

on their experiment <strong>res</strong>ults, and suspend<br />

their castle in the solution. Note: Students<br />

will need to leave their solution for<br />

approximately one week to see the sugar<br />

crystals growing on their castle.<br />

5. Evaluate and refine<br />

• Students evaluate their crystal castle to<br />

ensure it meets all the criteria listed on<br />

page 66 and make any changes necessary.<br />

6. Communicate<br />

• Students insert their digital photographs<br />

with audio recordings into a blog post<br />

and add written step-by-step instructions<br />

of how to create a crystal castle using a<br />

sugar solution.<br />

• Individually, students complete the selfassessment<br />

on page 69 to evaluate how<br />

well their group cooperated together to<br />

produce the crystal castle.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 65


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Project brief<br />

A CRYSTAL CASTLE<br />

The problem<br />

While creating a movie, production teams often use special<br />

effects to simulate large-scale objects and settings that are<br />

impractical to make.<br />

Some movie creators use small-scale models to create<br />

miniature sets in which to film their movie, but this<br />

can be problematic when creating snowy or icy<br />

settings.<br />

The invention of realistic-looking artificial snow<br />

has created a world of opportunities for movie<br />

creators; now they need a way of creating<br />

realistic-looking ice crystals, that won’t melt<br />

while a movie is being filmed.<br />

The task<br />

Design and create a miniature model of a crystal castle for a movie set, that can<br />

withstand warm, dry environments without melting, while the movie is being<br />

filmed. Create and share a blog post giving visual, written and verbal step-bystep<br />

instructions of how to create a miniature crystal castle using only reversible<br />

changes.<br />

Things to consider<br />

• You must work in groups of three.<br />

• The crystals on the castle must be made by dissolving sugar into water, to create a<br />

saturated solution. The solution must fill 3 4 of a two-litre container.<br />

• The miniature three-dimensional castle must have skeletons of each prism or<br />

pyramid made, and joined together, using pipe-cleaners. The castle must be able<br />

to be suspended in the solution, without touching the sides of the container.<br />

• The saturated solution must be reversed using an appropriate process, to<br />

remove the liquid from the solution so that solid crystals form on the pipe-cleaner<br />

skeletons.<br />

• Digital photographs must be taken of each step while creating your crystal castle,<br />

to provide visual instructions. Audio recordings explaining each photograph must<br />

be included to provide verbal step-by-step instructions. Written instructions that<br />

match the audio recordings must also be provided for each photograph.<br />

• The digital photographs with audio recordings, and the written instructions of each<br />

step, must be used to create a blog explaining how to create a miniature crystal<br />

castle that won't melt in a warm, dry environment, while a movie is being filmed.<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Investigate<br />

Project steps<br />

Scan the QR code or type the URL into a web<br />

browser to revise how solutes and solvents are used to create a solutions, and<br />

what is meant by a saturated solution.<br />

Conduct an experiment to test how much sugar needs to be dissolved into 100 mL of<br />

cold water, tap water and hot water to create saturated solutions, and which temperature<br />

of water creates the best crystals.<br />

Attach a paperclip to a piece of string and the string to a pencil, then balance the pencil<br />

on each jar. Use a reversible change to see which solution creates the best sugar crystals.<br />

Observe the crystal formation for each solution for approximately one week.<br />

Design, plan and manage<br />

Draw a diagram of your three-dimensional castle, labelling the prisms and pyramids you<br />

will use, and how you will connect them together to form a castle. Note: Keep your design<br />

simple to give the crystals the best chance to grow.<br />

Multiply the amount of sugar you used to create a saturated solution in 100 mL of water, to<br />

find how much sugar will need to be dissolved in a solute to fill 3 4<br />

of a two-litre container.<br />

Collect or locate all the materials you will need to create your crystal castle, including a<br />

container with a two-litre capacity and the correct amount of sugar and hot water to create<br />

your saturated solution.<br />

Create<br />

Create the skeletons of each pyramid or prism, then attach<br />

the pipe-cleaner skeletons together to form your castle.<br />

Note: Your castle must be able to fit inside your container<br />

without touching the sides.<br />

Attach strings to the top of your castle to suspend it in your<br />

saturated solution.<br />

Create the correct amount of solution to put in your<br />

container, based on your experiment <strong>res</strong>ults, and suspend<br />

your castle in the solution.<br />

Leave your solution for approximately one week to see the<br />

sugar crystals growing on your pipe-cleaner castle.<br />

Evaluate and refine<br />

Ensure the crystal castle meets all the criteria listed on page 66 and make any necessary<br />

changes.<br />

Communicate<br />

Reminder:<br />

Take digital photographs<br />

and record audio<br />

instructions of each<br />

step while creating your<br />

castle!<br />

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Create and share a blog post giving visual, written and verbal step-by-step instructions<br />

of how to create a crystal castle, using a saturated solution of sugar and water. Insert your<br />

step-by-step digital photographs with audio recordings into your blog post and add<br />

written instructions that match the audio instructions.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 67


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Growing crystals experiment<br />

Investigation question<br />

Which temperature of water dissolves the greatest amount of sugar to create saturated<br />

solutions—refrigerated water, tap water or hot water?<br />

Instructions<br />

• Collect three jars and label each with the temperature of water that will be placed in it.<br />

Allocate one jar to each group member to test.<br />

• Measure and pour 100 mL of the specified water into each jar.<br />

• Add one teaspoon of sugar at a time to your allocated jar and stir continuously, until no<br />

more sugar will dissolve into the water. Keep track of how many spoonfuls were used.<br />

• Record the number of teaspoons of sugar added to each jar of water to see which<br />

solution dissolves the greatest amount of sugar.<br />

Controlled variables<br />

1. How will you control the amount of water in each test so that you can replicate it?<br />

2. How will you control the amount of sugar in each teaspoon that is added to the solution?<br />

3. How will you control the speed at which you will stir the solution?<br />

Independent variables<br />

4. How will you measure the different temperatu<strong>res</strong> of the water, so that you can replicate<br />

it when making your crystal castle?<br />

Dependent variables<br />

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5. How will you measure how many teaspoons of sugar are added to each solution?<br />

Reversing the solution<br />

6. What process will you use to reverse the solution?<br />

7. Which solution do you think will produce the best crystals and why?<br />

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Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Self-assessment<br />

Student name:<br />

Date:<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project: A crystal castle<br />

1. Colour a face to rate how cooperatively your team worked.<br />

All group members contributed ideas to the team.<br />

All group members listened carefully to the ideas<br />

of others.<br />

All group members encouraged others to<br />

contribute their thoughts and opinions.<br />

All group members spoke <strong>res</strong>pectfully to other<br />

group members.<br />

All group members compromised (when needed)<br />

to create the best possible product.<br />

2. List three ways the team helped each other to create the product.<br />

3. List one difficulty the group encountered when working as a team.<br />

4. How could a similar issue be <strong>res</strong>olved in future projects?<br />

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5. What was the most enjoyable part of the project?<br />

6. What was the least enjoyable part of the project?<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 69


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Group assessment rubric<br />

Chemical sciences<br />

REVERSIBLE AND IRREVERSIBLE CHANGES<br />

Group members:<br />

Project task:<br />

Design and create a miniature model of a crystal castle for a movie set, that can withstand<br />

warm, dry environments without melting, while the movie is being filmed. Create and share<br />

a blog post giving visual, written and verbal step-by-step instructions of how to create a<br />

miniature crystal castle using only reversible changes.<br />

CRITERIA<br />

<strong>Science</strong> knowledge<br />

Applies knowledge of reversible changes to create a crystal castle, using a saturated<br />

solution of sugar and water.<br />

<strong>Science</strong> skills<br />

Plans and conducts an experiment to test how much sugar needs to be dissolved into<br />

100 mL of refrigerated water, tap water and hot water to form saturated solutions.<br />

Controls variables that may affect the accuracy of their experiment <strong>res</strong>ults and records<br />

and analyses <strong>res</strong>ults to determine which saturated solution forms the best crystals.<br />

Evaluates an experiment to make improvements to their solution.<br />

Communicates science understanding correctly, clearly and concisely, using scientific<br />

terminology.<br />

Technology/Engineering skills<br />

Plans, designs and creates a miniature model of a three-dimensional castle using pipecleaner<br />

skeletons of prisms and pyramids.<br />

Uses <strong>res</strong>ources safely and sustainably while conducting the growing crystals experiment<br />

and while building a miniature crystal castle.<br />

Evaluates designed products to ensure they meet the criteria and makes any necessary<br />

changes.<br />

Takes digital photographs using an iPad ® and records audio over each photograph.<br />

Inserts digital photographs with audio recordings, and adds written text to create and<br />

share a blog that gives visual, verbal and written instructions.<br />

Mathematics skills<br />

Multiplies the amount of sugar used to create a saturated solution in 100 mL of water, to<br />

find how much sugar will need to be dissolved in a solute, to fill 3 4<br />

of a two-litre container.<br />

Creates skeletons of prisms and pyramids using pipe-cleaners.<br />

Group skills<br />

All group members contributed fairly and appropriately.<br />

All group members collaborated and communicated effectively.<br />

Group members were able to <strong>res</strong>olve conflicts independently.<br />

1 = Be<strong>low</strong> expectations<br />

2 = Meeting expectations<br />

3 = Above expectations<br />

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Earth and space<br />

sciences<br />

sudden<br />

geological<br />

changes<br />

volcanic eruption<br />

landslide<br />

pyroclastic f<strong>low</strong><br />

lahar<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A<br />

NATURAL DISASTER<br />

tephra<br />

earthquake<br />

seismic waves<br />

magnitude<br />

Richter scale<br />

tsunami<br />

Keywords<br />

wave height<br />

run-up<br />

extreme weather<br />

events<br />

hurricane/<br />

cyclone/typhoon<br />

gale-force wind<br />

heavy rains<br />

flash flooding<br />

drought<br />

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compacted soil<br />

natural disasters<br />

eruption column<br />

wave length<br />

storm surge<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 71


Unit overview<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Sudden geological changes and extreme weather events can affect Earth’s surface<br />

(ACSSU096)<br />

Lesson 1<br />

What are extreme weather<br />

events and sudden geological<br />

changes? Are these the same as<br />

natural disasters?<br />

Lesson 2<br />

What are volcanoes and how do<br />

they change Earth’s surface? Is it<br />

important for people in Australia<br />

to be prepared for a volcanic<br />

eruption?<br />

Lesson 3<br />

What are earthquakes and how<br />

do they change Earth’s surface?<br />

Is it important for people in<br />

Australia to be prepared for an<br />

earthquake?<br />

Lesson 4<br />

What are tsunamis and how do<br />

they form? Does the magnitude<br />

of an earthquake affect the size<br />

of a <strong>res</strong>ulting tsunami?<br />

Lesson 5<br />

What are cyclones and how do<br />

they change Earth’s surface?<br />

How do scientists monitor<br />

cyclones to minimise the effects<br />

of this natural disaster?<br />

Lesson 6<br />

What is a drought and how does<br />

it affect the landscape? How<br />

does flash flooding occur after a<br />

drought?<br />

Assessment<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

The three little pigs sequel<br />

Students identify natural disasters caused by extreme<br />

weather events such as cyclones, floods and droughts,<br />

and those caused by sudden geological changes, such<br />

as volcanic eruptions, and why it is important for people<br />

to be prepared for these events.<br />

Students learn what a volcano is and how it is formed.<br />

They then conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch about a specific<br />

volcano to determine the effects it had on Earth’s<br />

surface and the living things in the area. Students also<br />

investigate how people can prepare for a volcanic<br />

eruption.<br />

Students conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch about what an<br />

earthquake is, how it occurs and how it affects Earth’s<br />

surface and the living things in the area. They also look<br />

at an interactive map to find where earthquakes have<br />

occured in Australia and why we should all be prepared<br />

for an earthquake.<br />

Students identify what a tsunami is, how they are formed<br />

from earthquakes on the ocean floor and the effects they<br />

can have on a coastal city. They also plan and conduct an<br />

experiment to test how the magnitude of an earthquake<br />

affects the size of the tsunami.<br />

Students learn what a tropical cyclone is and how it is<br />

formed. They then conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch about a<br />

specific tropical cyclone that has occured in Australia to<br />

determine the effects it had on Earth’s surface and the<br />

living things in the area. Students also investigate how<br />

meteorologists track these storms to warn people of<br />

their <strong>approach</strong>.<br />

Students conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch to learn about the<br />

effects of droughts and floods on Earth’s surface and the<br />

living things in the area. They also investigate how heavy<br />

storms can cause flash flooding in drought-stricken<br />

areas.<br />

Students apply their knowledge of sudden geological<br />

changes and extreme weather events to describe how<br />

these natural disasters affect Earth’s surface and the<br />

living things in the area.<br />

Students design and create a landscape scene with the<br />

three little pigs’ houses in three different natural-disaster<br />

zones, and an evacuation centre in a safe location.<br />

Create a movie sequel to the story of The three little pigs,<br />

that teaches the little pigs about the dangers of building<br />

a house in areas that are commonly affected by natural<br />

disasters.<br />

Pages<br />

74–76<br />

77–79<br />

80–82<br />

83–85<br />

86–87<br />

88–89<br />

90–92<br />

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93–100<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Unit overview<br />

Curriculum scope and sequence<br />

SCIENCE UNDERSTANDING<br />

Sudden geological changes and extreme weather events can<br />

affect Earth’s surface (ACSSU096)<br />

SCIENCE AS A HUMAN ENDEAVOUR<br />

<strong>Science</strong> involves testing predictions by gathering data and using<br />

evidence to develop explanations of events and phenomena and<br />

reflects historical and cultural contributions (ACSHE098)<br />

Scientific knowledge is used to solve problems and inform<br />

personal and community decisions (ACSHE100)<br />

SCIENCE INQUIRY SKILLS<br />

Questioning and predicting<br />

With guidance, pose clarifying questions and make predictions<br />

about scientific investigations (ACSIS232)<br />

Planning and conducting<br />

Identify, plan and apply the elements of scientific investigations<br />

to answer questions and solve problems using equipment and<br />

materials safely and identifying potential risks (ACSIS103)<br />

Decide variables to be changed and measured in fair tests, and<br />

observe measure and record data with accuracy using digital<br />

technologies as appropriate (ACSIS104)<br />

Processing and analysing data and information<br />

Construct and use a range of rep<strong>res</strong>entations, including tables<br />

and graphs, to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and describe observations, patterns or<br />

relationships in data using digital technologies as appropriate<br />

(ACSIS107)<br />

Compare data with predictions and use as evidence in<br />

developing explanations (ACSIS221)<br />

Evaluating<br />

Reflect on and suggest improvements to scientific investigations<br />

(ACSIS108)<br />

Communicating<br />

Communicate ideas, explanations and processes using scientific<br />

rep<strong>res</strong>entations in a variety of ways, including multi-modal texts<br />

(ACSIS110)<br />

Lesson<br />

1 2 3 4 5 6 Assessment <strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3<br />

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3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 73


Lesson 1<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What are extreme weather events and sudden geological<br />

changes? Are these the same as natural disasters?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students explore the importance of knowing about natural<br />

disasters, by examining the difference between extreme<br />

weather events and sudden geological changes.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Popplet to brainstorm<br />

types of natural disasters<br />

• using an iPad ® to scan QR codes or type URLs into a web<br />

browser to watch online videos<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Seesaw to create a<br />

digital p<strong>res</strong>entation<br />

Background information<br />

• Extreme weather is described as severe weather that<br />

is often unpredictable, such as tornadoes, blizzards,<br />

hurricanes, floods and droughts.<br />

• Sudden geological events are those which cause<br />

rapid changes to Earth’s surface, such as volcanoes,<br />

earthquakes, tsunamis, avalanches and landslides.<br />

• These naturally occuring events can change the surface<br />

of the land by creating new featu<strong>res</strong>, modifying existing<br />

landscapes or destroying landscapes altogether. For<br />

example: A volcanic eruption causes molten rock to<br />

be expelled, which f<strong>low</strong>s down the volcano and cools<br />

into new rocky surfaces. These lava f<strong>low</strong>s can also cause<br />

landslides, which change the shape of the land, and can<br />

damage infrastructure in built-up areas.<br />

• A natural disaster is an extreme weather event or<br />

sudden geological event that occurs in a populated<br />

area and causes wide-spread destruction, including the<br />

loss of lives. For this reason, it is important that we are<br />

aware of natural disasters and how to prepare for them.<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entations to assess<br />

their understanding of the<br />

importance of knowing about<br />

different types of natural<br />

disasters and how to prepare for<br />

them.<br />

Resources<br />

• An iPad ® for each student<br />

with a QR scanner and<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation applications,<br />

such as Popplet and Seesaw<br />

• Online video—Natural<br />

disasters: The destructive<br />

force of nature at <br />

(optional)<br />

• A copy of page 76 for each<br />

student<br />

• Online video—Don’t panic<br />

at <br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Lesson 1<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Individually, using an iPad ® application such as Popplet, students brainstorm as many types of<br />

natural disasters as they can think of. If required, the first 4:33 of the video at can be shown to provoke students' thoughts. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. Using an iPad ® , students scan the QR codes on page 76 or type the URLs into a web browser, to<br />

<strong>res</strong>earch the difference between extreme weather and regular weather, and the difference between<br />

gradual and rapid changes in Earth’s surface. Using page 76, students describe the five severe<br />

weather conditions mentioned in the video, including tornadoes, blizzards, hurricanes, floods and<br />

droughts and how these conditions can cause destructive changes to Earth’s surface. Students<br />

then describe the geological processes that cause gradual changes to Earth’s surface, such as<br />

weathering and erosion, and the geological events, such as volcanic eruptions. PC PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can work in pairs to discuss the information p<strong>res</strong>ented in each video and<br />

then use an audio recorder to record their answers.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to draw a ‘before’ and ‘after’ picture on the back of<br />

page 76 to show how weathering, erosion and volcanic eruptions, change Earth’s surface.<br />

3. Students review their examples of natural disasters from Step 1 and sort them into two columns in<br />

a table—‘Natural disasters caused by extreme weather’ and ‘Natural disasters caused by sudden<br />

geological changes’. In pairs, students compare their tables and add any additional examples to<br />

each column, or make any necessary changes. PA<br />

4. Reinforce that natural disasters are rapidly occurring events that cause excessive damage to the<br />

land’s surface, and also the loss of lives. Using a think-pair-share, students predict which natural<br />

disasters they think may occur in Australia and discuss if their families have procedu<strong>res</strong> in place to<br />

protect against natural disasters. QP<br />

5. As a class, watch the Behind the news video, Don’t panic at .<br />

This video shows two families who are testing their ability to survive a simulated natural disaster,<br />

including a bushfire and a cyclone. In pairs, students discuss if they think each family was prepared<br />

for a real natural disaster to occur and whether they would survive, if it wasn’t a simulation. C<br />

Reflection:<br />

6. Using an iPad ® application such as Seesaw, students use their knowledge of extreme weather and<br />

sudden geological changes to create a p<strong>res</strong>entation explaining the importance of understanding<br />

different types of natural disasters and why it is important to be prepared. Students may be<br />

encouraged to add images of different natural disasters, and can record information using audio or<br />

written text. C<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 75


Lesson 1<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Extreme weather and geological events<br />

Scan the QR code or go to to watch a video about<br />

extreme weather events.<br />

1. (a) Write a description of each extreme weather event.<br />

Extreme weather event<br />

Description<br />

(b) What destructive changes to Earth’s surface can these extreme weather events cause?<br />

Scan the QR code or go to to watch a video about<br />

geological changes.<br />

2. Explain whether you agree or disagree with the fol<strong>low</strong>ing statement, and why.<br />

‘Changes to Earth’s surface (either gradual or rapid) are caused by erosion and<br />

weathering.’<br />

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3. Does a volcanic eruption cause gradual or rapid changes to Earth’s surface? Explain.<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Lesson 2<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What are volcanoes and how do they change Earth’s<br />

surface? Is it important for people in Australia to be<br />

prepared for a volcanic eruption?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students explore how volcanologists use data from<br />

past eruptions to predict the intensity of a future<br />

eruption, and how this information can inform the<br />

community about how best to prepare.<br />

Background information<br />

• A volcano occurs when a crack in Earth’s crust<br />

al<strong>low</strong>s magma to rise up from the magma chamber<br />

to Earth’s surface, which cools to form new rock.<br />

The build up of rock creates different types of<br />

volcanoes, including shield volcanoes, composite or<br />

stratrovolcanoes, cinder cones and lava domes.<br />

• The size and type of a volcanic eruption, depends<br />

on the viscosity (thickness) of the magma and the<br />

amount of gas built up in the magma chamber.<br />

To explore this further, go to .<br />

• Volcanic eruptions can build up the land by creating<br />

new rock formations, but can also change the<br />

existing landscape by displacing rocks and soil and<br />

destroying natural vegetation and infrastructure.<br />

• Volcanic eruptions that occur in populated areas<br />

are classed as natural disasters. The hot lava and<br />

the force of the landslides, pyroclastic f<strong>low</strong>s and<br />

lahar can crush or burn people living in the danger<br />

zone. Scientists monitor seismic activity and make<br />

observations of the volcano, to inform people of a<br />

possible eruption.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as<br />

Popplet to record the effects of a<br />

volcanic eruption<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as<br />

ShowMe to p<strong>res</strong>ent information,<br />

using images, written text and audio<br />

recordings<br />

• conducting online <strong>res</strong>earch to find<br />

specific information about a famous<br />

stratovolcano<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital p<strong>res</strong>entations to<br />

assess their investigation skills and<br />

their understanding of how volcanic<br />

eruptions can build up and change the<br />

existing landscape, and how they affect<br />

the living things in surrounding areas.<br />

Resources<br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

ShowMe or Popplet<br />

• Online video—What is a<br />

volcano? at <br />

• Online image of the effects<br />

of a stratovolcano eruption at<br />

<br />

• A copy of page 79 for each<br />

student<br />

• Online video—How to prepare<br />

for a volcanic eruption at<br />

<br />

• Map of the world’s active<br />

volcanoes, such as the one at<br />

<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 77


Lesson 2<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Teacher notes<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Using an iPad ® application such as ShowMe, students draw a diagram of an erupting volcano and<br />

use this to predict the changes that occur to the landscape when a volcano erupts. Students add<br />

audio recordings or written text to their diagram to predict how the effects of a volcanic eruption<br />

can affect the living things in that environment. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. As a class, watch the video at . This video explains the internal<br />

structure of a volcano and how volcanic eruptions occur. It describes how lava f<strong>low</strong>s from the top<br />

of an erupting volcano to the bottom of the volcano, which can create new rocky surfaces, but can<br />

also change or destroy the existing surface.<br />

3. Display the online diagram of the effects of a stratovolcano eruption at . Explain that the volcano shown is a stratovolcano, which can cause the most devastating<br />

effects to surrounding areas. Students compare this image to their diagram and add any additional<br />

effects that occur as the <strong>res</strong>ult of a volcanic eruption. Using page 79, students label the diagram<br />

with the correct effects and then <strong>res</strong>earch and write a description of each effect listed in the table,<br />

to understand the potential hazards associated with volcanic eruptions. PC PA<br />

4. Individually, students choose a famous stratovolcano such as Mount St Helens in the USA, Mount<br />

Vesuvias in Italy, or Krakatoa in Indonesia, and conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch about its location and<br />

eruption history. Using their science journals or an iPad ® application, such as Popplet or ShowMe,<br />

students record information about the changes the volcanic eruption made to the landscape and<br />

how it affected the living things around it. PC PA C<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can work in pairs to <strong>res</strong>earch Mount Vesuvias, which caused the<br />

destruction of a whole city, and can be provided with videos to watch such as A day in Pompeii<br />

at , or websites to visit, such as .<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to go to to explore<br />

how the viscosity of magma and the amount of gas p<strong>res</strong>sure in the chamber, can cause different<br />

types of eruptions and how these different eruptions cause different volcano formations over<br />

time.<br />

5. Watch the video at . Using their science journals or an iPad ®<br />

application of their choice, students take notes about how to prepare for a volcanic eruption. PA<br />

6. Display a map of the world’s active volcanoes, such as the one at .<br />

Using a think-pair-share, students discuss the question, Is it important that people in Australia know<br />

about the effects of volcanoes and how to prepare for a volcanic eruption? Encourage students to<br />

consider the number of Australians that visit our neighbouring countries, such as Indonesia and<br />

New Zealand. PA C<br />

Reflection:<br />

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7. Using an iPad ® application such as ShowMe, students create a p<strong>res</strong>entation to inform other<br />

Australians about volcanoes and the dangers associated with volcanic eruptions. Students should<br />

include maps of active volcanoes, diagrams showing the dangers associated with volcanic<br />

eruptions, such as lava f<strong>low</strong>s, and tips for how to prepare for a volcanic eruption. C<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Lesson 2<br />

1. Label the diagram.<br />

Extreme weather and geological events<br />

2. Research the meaning of each word, then write a description.<br />

Effect<br />

eruption column<br />

eruption cloud<br />

acid rain<br />

tephra<br />

lava dome<br />

pyroclastic f<strong>low</strong><br />

lahar<br />

Description<br />

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landslide<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 79


Lesson 3<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What are earthquakes and how do they change<br />

Earth’s surface? Is it important for people in<br />

Australia to be prepared for an earthquake?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students explore how seismologists use<br />

data from past earthquakes to predict the<br />

intensity of a future earthquake, and how<br />

this information can inform the community<br />

about how best to prepare.<br />

Background information<br />

• An earthquake can occur during volcanic<br />

activity or when tectonic plates collide,<br />

separate or slide past each other. Most<br />

earthquakes occur at the fault lines where<br />

plates meet, but can also affect countries that<br />

lie in the middle of a tectonic plate. Note: The<br />

theory of plate tectonics will be covered in the<br />

<strong>Year</strong> 9 <strong>Science</strong> curriculum.<br />

• It is believed that an earthquake occurs<br />

every day in Australia, but most do not cause<br />

significant damage. Go to to read more information.<br />

• The seismic waves created by an earthquake<br />

are monitored by seismologists, who use this<br />

information to predict where the earthquake<br />

occurred and how destructive it will be. They<br />

record the magnitude of the earthquake using<br />

the Richter scale and use these data sets to<br />

inform communities about potential threats.<br />

• Earthquakes can cause a number of changes<br />

to Earth’s surface. They can cause new valleys,<br />

change the paths of roads and rivers, and can<br />

crumble buildings. Go to to read more information.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Popplet to<br />

brainstorm information<br />

• using an iPad ® to scan QR codes or type URLs<br />

into a web browser to <strong>res</strong>earch information<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Microsoft ®<br />

PowerPoint or Keynote to p<strong>res</strong>ent information<br />

• filtering information on an interactive map to<br />

find where earthquakes with a 6+ magnitude<br />

have occured in Australia<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use student’s digital p<strong>res</strong>entations to assess<br />

their investigation skills and their understanding<br />

of how earthquakes can change the landscape,<br />

and how they affect living things.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online video—Introduction to<br />

earthquakes at <br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a QR<br />

scanner (optional), a brainstorm<br />

application such as Popplet, and<br />

a p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

Keynote<br />

• A copy of page 82 for each student<br />

• Online video—Deadly earthquakes hit<br />

New Zealand at <br />

• Website—Earthquake tracker at<br />

<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Lesson 3<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. As a class, watch the first two minutes and eight seconds of the video at to briefly see how earthquakes form. Using an iPad ® application such as Popplet,<br />

students brainstorm the possible effects of an earthquake on the land and on the people that live in<br />

the area. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. Give each student an iPad ® and a copy of page 82. Students use a QR scanner to scan the QR<br />

codes, or type the URLs into a web browser to conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch about earthquakes.<br />

Students use this information to explain what earthquakes are, how they release energy, how they<br />

are measured and how they can affect the landscape and the people that live in the area. Students<br />

then look at an online image of a line graph showing how the magnitude of an earthquake<br />

is measured on the Richter scale and the likely damage caused by earthquakes of different<br />

magnitudes. PC PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can watch the video at and use an audio<br />

recording application on an iPad ® to explain how earthquakes form, how they are measured and<br />

the effects of earthquakes, instead of completing page 82.<br />

• More capable students can watch the video at and write a<br />

paragraph explaining how scientists measure and record seismic waves to identify the exact<br />

location the earthquake occurred, and to measure it’s strength.<br />

3. As a class, watch the video at , which describes the devastation<br />

caused by the 6.3 magnitude earthquake that hit Christchurch in New Zealand in 2011. It also<br />

compa<strong>res</strong> why this earthquake caused greater damage than the 7.1 magnitude earthquake that hit<br />

the same city just six months earlier.<br />

4. Using a think-pair-share, students discuss the question, Is it important that people in Australia know<br />

about the effects of earthquakes and how to protect themselves during an earthquake? QP<br />

5. Write the URL on the whiteboard for students to type into a web<br />

browser. Al<strong>low</strong> approximately five minutes for students to explore the earthquakes that have<br />

occurred recently in Australia, including the location, depth and magnitude of each. Students<br />

filter the most recent earthquakes by magnitude to find the 6+ magnitude earthquakes that have<br />

occurred in Australia. PC<br />

Reflection<br />

6. Using an iPad ® application such as Keynote, students create a p<strong>res</strong>entation explaining what<br />

earthquakes are, how they vary in magnitude, the destruction they can cause, and why it is<br />

important for everyone in Australia to be informed about earthquakes and how to prepare for, and<br />

protect against them. Note: students may wish to conduct further <strong>res</strong>earch to clarify any information<br />

they are unsure of. PA C<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 81


Lesson 3<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Earthquake<br />

Scan the QR code or read the first three pages of the website at to learn about earthquakes.<br />

1. What is an earthquake?<br />

2. Label the diagram to show how earthquake energy is released, then write a description for<br />

each term.<br />

Focus<br />

3. How do scientists measure earthquakes?<br />

Epicentre<br />

Seismic waves<br />

4. What are the possible effects of an earthquake on the landscape and the people that live<br />

in the affected area?<br />

Landscape<br />

People<br />

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Scan the QR code or type to see how the<br />

magnitude of an earthquake can inform us about its likely effects.<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Lesson 4<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What are tsunamis and how do they form?<br />

Does the magnitude of an earthquake affect<br />

the size of a <strong>res</strong>ulting tsunami?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students plan and conduct an experiment<br />

to test how the amount of force produced<br />

by the movement of tectonic plates can<br />

cause tsunamis, and use this data to<br />

develop explanations of the relationship<br />

between earthquakes and tsunamis.<br />

Background information<br />

• A tsunami is a series of large sea waves<br />

caused by an earthquake or volcanic<br />

eruption in the ocean crust.<br />

• At the point where the event happens, the<br />

waves have a small wave height and a long<br />

wave length. As they move closer to the<br />

shore, they increase in height and decrease<br />

in length, <strong>res</strong>ulting in the gigantic waves that<br />

destroy coastal cities. Go to to see a diagram.<br />

• When tsunamis hit coastal cities, the<br />

initial wave acts as a brick wall, destroying<br />

infrastructure and personal belongings. This<br />

wall of water can also be <strong>res</strong>ponsible for the<br />

death of living things in its path. The waves<br />

fol<strong>low</strong>ing flood the city and move everything,<br />

including boats, several kilomet<strong>res</strong> inland.<br />

The movement of these heavy items causes<br />

further destruction.<br />

• During the experiment, students should<br />

discover that earthquakes with higher<br />

magnitudes (more force), create larger<br />

tsunami waves.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Microsoft ®<br />

PowerPoint to p<strong>res</strong>ent information<br />

• using materials and equipment safely when<br />

conducting an experiment<br />

• using an iPad ® to film each test in their experiment<br />

• uploading a digital p<strong>res</strong>entation to a class blog or<br />

sending it via email to the teacher<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital p<strong>res</strong>entations to assess<br />

their science inquiry skills, including their ability<br />

to formulate an investigation question, plan<br />

and conduct a fair experiment, record accurate<br />

and reliable data, use their recorded data and<br />

information to develop explanations, and reflect<br />

on their experiment to suggest improvements.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online image at <br />

• Online video —Introduction to<br />

earthquakes at <br />

• An iPad ® for each student with a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application such as<br />

Microsoft ® PowerPoint<br />

• For each group: a copy of the tsunami<br />

simulation experiment card on page 85;<br />

a long, shal<strong>low</strong> plastic container; a thin,<br />

plastic chopping board with a handle; a<br />

piece of rope (approximately twice the<br />

depth of the plastic container); access to<br />

sand and water<br />

• Online video—How earthquakes trigger<br />

tsunamis at <br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 83


Lesson 4<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Display the online image at to see some of the effects caused by<br />

the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan in 2011. Using a think-pair-share, students predict which<br />

natural disaster they think occured to cause the damage shown in the image. Encourage students<br />

to think about what might have caused the boat to be positioned on top of the building. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. As a class, revise the devastation that earthquakes cause by watching the online video Introduction<br />

to earthquakes at . Note: Students watched the opening 2:08 of the<br />

video in Lesson 3, but will need to watch the remainder of the video to see the connection between<br />

earthquakes and tsunamis.<br />

3. Using an iPad ® application such as Microsoft ® PowerPoint, students individually create a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation to show how the magnitude of an earthquake affects the size of the <strong>res</strong>ulting tsunami.<br />

Note: This p<strong>res</strong>entation will be added to throughout the lesson. Students create a heading for<br />

their p<strong>res</strong>entation using an investigation question such as, ‘Does an earthquake with a higher<br />

magnitude, form a taller tsunami?’ and then record their prediction on the second slide. QP<br />

4. Divide the class into groups of three and give each group a copy of the tsunami simulation<br />

experiment card on page 85. In their groups, students plan an experiment to test how the<br />

magnitude of an earthquake affects the size of the tsunami. Individually, students insert a<br />

photograph of the experiment card and describe how they will ensure a fair test is conducted, on<br />

the third slide of their p<strong>res</strong>entation. PC<br />

5. In their groups, students decide which group members will be <strong>res</strong>ponsible for each role and<br />

conduct their experiment according to their plan, filming each test and recording the heights of<br />

the waves. When they think they have collected enough data to make a reliable analysis, students<br />

review their videos of each test and discuss the <strong>res</strong>ults. They then email the videos to each group<br />

member. PC PA<br />

6. Individually, students create a new slide for each test conducted, inserting the video of each test<br />

into the appropriate slide and adding written text to explain each <strong>res</strong>ult. Students then add another<br />

slide entitled ‘Conclusion’ to answer their investigation question, using evidence from their group’s<br />

experiment. PC C<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can use an audio recorder to record information or can create less slides<br />

in their p<strong>res</strong>entation.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to <strong>res</strong>earch major earthquakes that have caused<br />

tsunamis, and the magnitude of each.<br />

Reflection:<br />

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7. As a class, watch the online video How earthquakes trigger tsunamis at . Students reflect on the effectiveness of their test to determine if it accurately answered<br />

their investigation question. Using their p<strong>res</strong>entation, students record audio or write text to explain<br />

how they could improve their experiment and suggest other experiments they could do to test<br />

the effects of a tsunami. Students then upload their p<strong>res</strong>entation to a class blog or email it to the<br />

teacher. E C<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Earthquakes and tsunamis<br />

Lesson 4<br />

Materials<br />

• 1 long, shal<strong>low</strong> plastic<br />

container<br />

• 1 thin, plastic chopping<br />

board (with a handle)<br />

• Rope<br />

• Sand<br />

• Water<br />

Student 1<br />

Stand at the edge of the<br />

plastic container and<br />

pull the rope towards<br />

you using different<br />

amounts of force.<br />

Materials<br />

• 1 long, shal<strong>low</strong> plastic<br />

container<br />

• 1 thin, plastic chopping<br />

board (with a handle)<br />

• Rope<br />

• Sand<br />

• Water<br />

Student 1<br />

Stand at the edge of the<br />

plastic container and<br />

pull the rope towards<br />

you using different<br />

amounts of force.<br />

Tsunami simulation experiment<br />

Preparation<br />

Hint: Tie a piece of rope to the handle of the chopping board.<br />

Tape the other side of the chopping board securely into the<br />

corner of the plastic container.<br />

Student 2<br />

Using a video camera, introduce<br />

the test being conducted by<br />

stating the independent and<br />

dependent variables, then record<br />

each test.<br />

Tsunami simulation experiment<br />

Preparation<br />

Student 3<br />

Using a marker,<br />

record the<br />

height of the<br />

waves in each<br />

test.<br />

Hint: Tie a piece of rope to the handle of the chopping board.<br />

Tape the other side of the chopping board securely into the<br />

corner of the plastic container.<br />

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Student 2<br />

Using a video camera, introduce<br />

the test being conducted by<br />

stating the independent and<br />

dependent variables, then record<br />

each test.<br />

Student 3<br />

Using a marker,<br />

record the<br />

height of the<br />

waves in each<br />

test.<br />

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Lesson 5<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What are cyclones and how do they change<br />

Earth’s surface? How do scientists monitor<br />

cyclones to minimise the effects of this natural<br />

disaster?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students explore how meteorologists track<br />

the wind speeds of a tropical cyclone and use<br />

category ratings to communicate the intensity<br />

of the cyclone, so people can better prepare<br />

for the effects of this natural disaster.<br />

Background information<br />

• Cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons, although named from<br />

different origins, all refer to the same type of severe storm.<br />

These storms are created by <strong>low</strong> p<strong>res</strong>sure systems that<br />

form over warm waters and have gale-force winds.<br />

• To be classified as a cyclone, a storm must have sustained<br />

winds of 63 km/h or greater, with gusts in excess of<br />

90 km/h near the centre.<br />

• Meteorologists measure the speed of these winds to rate<br />

the severity of the cyclone and predict its path. This al<strong>low</strong>s<br />

for preparation and/or evacuation of populated areas to<br />

minimise the number of lives lost. Go to to see the category rating system and<br />

how they track cyclones.<br />

• The countries that are most affected by tropical cyclones<br />

are those that lie near the equator, including the northern<br />

coastline of Australia.<br />

• Cyclone Yasi was recorded as a category 5 tropical<br />

cyclone. It was the worst cyclone to hit the Queensland<br />

coastline. Go to for more<br />

information.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Popplet to<br />

brainstorm the effects of a tropical cyclone<br />

• conducting online <strong>res</strong>earch to find specific<br />

information about Cyclone Yasi<br />

• choosing and using an application on an<br />

iPad ® to p<strong>res</strong>ent information, orally or in<br />

written form<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Picture<br />

Frames Maker to create a digital photograph<br />

collage<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ digital p<strong>res</strong>entations from<br />

Step 6 to assess their understanding of how<br />

cyclones change Earth’s surface and how they<br />

affect the lives of all living things.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online image—Tropical<br />

cyclone Yasi at <br />

• An iPad ® for each student<br />

with a brainstorm<br />

application such as Popplet,<br />

a collage application such as<br />

Picture Frames Maker, and<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation applications for<br />

students to choose from<br />

• Online video—<br />

Understanding tropical<br />

cyclone categories at<br />

<br />

• Online video—Storms<br />

explained at <br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Lesson 5<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction<br />

1. Display the online image showing some of the effects of tropical cyclone Yasi at . Using an iPad ® application such as Popplet, students predict which natural<br />

disaster they think caused the damage shown in the image and write it in the centre. They then<br />

create additional popples to record clues from the image that support their prediction. In pairs,<br />

students share their predictions and discuss any differences. Explain to students that the image is<br />

showing some of the damage caused by a tropical cyclone which hit the coast of Queensland. QP<br />

Development<br />

2. As a class, watch the video at to understand how the intensity and<br />

path of a cyclone is mapped, using category ratings and predicted paths. The video also explains<br />

how predicting the path and intensity early, can al<strong>low</strong> for better preparation in areas that are<br />

predicted to be hit.<br />

3. Individually, students conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch about Cyclone Yasi which hit Queensland in 2011<br />

and caused extensive damage, despite no lives being lost. They must include the location that<br />

Cyclone Yasi was first detected and the path it took as it hit Australia’s coastline, the intensity levels<br />

of the cyclone before, during and after hitting the coast of Queensland, and the damage caused to<br />

infrastructure, vegetation and personal belongings, including cars, boats and sheds. Students then<br />

record their <strong>res</strong>earch using an iPad ® application of their choice. PC PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can watch the Behind the news video at <br />

to learn about Cyclone Yasi and record their findings using an audio recorder.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to <strong>res</strong>earch and compare the effects of multiple<br />

cyclones that have hit Australia, including Cyclone Larry (2006), Cyclone Yasi (2011) and Cyclone<br />

Debbie (2017).<br />

4. Individually, students create a photograph collage using an iPad ® application such as Picture<br />

Frames Maker, to show the devastating effects of Cyclone Yasi on Mission beach and surrounding<br />

towns. Depending on the application used, students may also add text or audio to show where the<br />

image was taken. C<br />

5. As a class, watch the Behind the news video Storms explained at .<br />

This video explains what causes cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons and why they are all called<br />

different names, despite being exactly the same. PC PA<br />

Reflection<br />

6. Individually, students imagine they were asleep in their home near Mission beach when Cyclone<br />

Yasi hit. Using an appropriate iPad® application, students write or orally record a recount of their<br />

experience during the cyclone and describe what they found when they looked out the window in<br />

the morning. How did the landscape change? What happened to the infrastructure, the vegetation<br />

and people’s belongings? Did other natural disasters occur as a <strong>res</strong>ult of the cyclone? C<br />

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Lesson 6<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What is a drought and how does it affect the<br />

landscape? How does flash flooding occur after<br />

a drought?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students explore how droughts change<br />

the surface of the land and how this affects<br />

living things, including farmers, their crops<br />

and their livestock. They also discover how<br />

heavy storms after a drought can cause<br />

flash flooding, which can have further<br />

implications.<br />

Background information<br />

• A drought is difficult to define because it is determined by<br />

more than just <strong>low</strong> rainfall. For a drought to be declared,<br />

meteorologists and other scientists review historical climate<br />

records to determine if the dry conditions are unusual for<br />

the area.<br />

• Drought is an unusual, prolonged period of time where<br />

the amount of available water in an area is not sufficient to<br />

meet the needs of the living things in the area. As water is<br />

a basic need of all living things, droughts can have severe<br />

health-related, environmental and agricultural implications.<br />

• Droughts cause many changes to Earth’s surface including<br />

the reduction of water in water catchment areas, the drying<br />

out of groundwater and the compacting of soil.<br />

• Heavy storms after a drought can cause flash flooding to<br />

occur, as the compacted soil does not absorb the rainfall as<br />

easily. To see how, go to .<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Popplet to<br />

brainstorm information about droughts<br />

• conducting online <strong>res</strong>earch to find specific<br />

information about how heavy rains can<br />

produce flash flooding after a drought<br />

• using an iPad ® application such as Seesaw to<br />

record their predictions and online <strong>res</strong>earch<br />

• uploading digital p<strong>res</strong>entations to a class blog<br />

or sending it via email to the class teacher<br />

(optional)<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use students’ brainstorms from Steps 2 and 3<br />

to assess their understanding of the effects of<br />

drought on the land.<br />

• Use students’ completed digital p<strong>res</strong>entations<br />

from Step 6 to assess their understanding of<br />

how heavy rains can produce flash flooding<br />

after a drought.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online before and after<br />

image at <br />

• An iPad ® for each<br />

student with a<br />

brainstorm application<br />

such as Popplet and a<br />

p<strong>res</strong>entation application<br />

such as Seesaw<br />

• Online video—Drought<br />

help at <br />

• Online video—<strong>Science</strong><br />

behind drought at<br />

<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Lesson 6<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction<br />

1. Display the before and after photographs at and compare the two<br />

images. Using a think-pair-share, students answer the question, Which natural disaster occurred<br />

between the two images? Students justify their prediction using information from the images. QP<br />

2. Explain that the natural disaster shown in the image is a drought that occurred in Longreach,<br />

Queensland. Using an iPad ® application such as Popplet, students brainstorm the effects of a<br />

drought on the landscape and the living things affected by the dry conditions. QP<br />

Development<br />

3. As a class, watch the Behind the news video Drought help at ,<br />

which explains the difference between droughts and other natural disasters and why limited help<br />

is provided to those suffering from drought. It explains the effects of drought on the land and<br />

why farmers suffer during these extended periods without rain. Individually, students review their<br />

predictions about the effects of drought and add any additional information they have learnt, or<br />

make any necessary changes. PA<br />

4. Write the fol<strong>low</strong>ing investigation question on the whiteboard—Will heavy rains provide relief to<br />

those suffering in drought-stricken areas? Individually, using an iPad ® application such as Seesaw,<br />

students record their prediction and explain their thinking. QP<br />

5. Students conduct online <strong>res</strong>earch to find out how heavy rains can produce flash flooding after<br />

a long period of drought and what effects flash flooding can have on the living things in the<br />

environment. Students add images, written text and/or audio recordings to record and explain their<br />

findings, using the same iPad ® application used in Step 4. PC PA C<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can work with a partner to <strong>res</strong>earch how heavy rains can produce flash<br />

flooding in drought-affected areas.<br />

• More capable students may be encouraged to <strong>res</strong>earch the effects of flash flooding on the<br />

landscape and the living things in that area, in addition to the effects of droughts.<br />

Reflection<br />

6. As a class, watch the online video <strong>Science</strong> behind drought at to<br />

see how heavy rains are more likely to cause flash flooding in drought-stricken areas, than in areas<br />

that receive consistent rainfall. Students add any additional information to their digital p<strong>res</strong>entation<br />

from Step 5, and then compare their <strong>res</strong>earch to their predictions made in Step 4. Note: Students<br />

may be encouraged to email their p<strong>res</strong>entation to the teacher for assessment or upload it to a class<br />

blog. PA C<br />

7. In pairs, students reflect on their digital p<strong>res</strong>entation explaining how heavy rains can cause flash<br />

flooding after a drought, and discuss how they could improve their <strong>res</strong>earch and/or p<strong>res</strong>entation<br />

skills for future investigations. E<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 89


Assessment<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Teachers notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> knowledge<br />

Sudden geological changes and extreme weather events can affect Earth’s surface (ACSSU096)<br />

Indicators<br />

• Draws a diagram to show the effects of a volcanic eruption.<br />

• Describes how a volcanic eruption changes Earth’s surface.<br />

• Describes how earthquakes and tsunamis can affect coastal cities.<br />

• Identifies what is meant by an extreme weather event and lists three examples.<br />

• Describes how droughts and floods can affect Earth’s surface.<br />

• Explains why coastal cities are more likely to be affected by tropical cyclones.<br />

• Describes how tropical cyclones change Earth’s surface and the implications of these changes on<br />

living things in the area.<br />

Answers<br />

Pages 91 and 92<br />

1. (a) Teacher check<br />

(b) Volcanic eruptions can build up the land by creating new rock formations, but can also change<br />

the landscape by displacing rocks and soil and destroying natural vegetation and infrastructure.<br />

2. Teacher check<br />

3. An extreme weather event is an event caused by severe, unpredictable and often destructive<br />

weather, such as tornadoes, blizzards, hurricanes, floods and droughts.<br />

4. Teacher check<br />

5. (a) Coastal cities are more likely to be affected by tropical cyclones because they are the often the<br />

first piece of land that a cyclone meets. Tropical cyclones build in intensity over the water and<br />

hit coastlines with the greatest force, before weakening as they move inland.<br />

(b) Teacher check<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Assessment<br />

1. (a) Look at the image of the volcanic island. Draw what the island might look like after a<br />

volcanic eruption.<br />

Before<br />

After<br />

(b) Describe how a volcanic eruption can change Earth’s surface.<br />

Islands along the Pacific Ring of Rire are often affected by<br />

earthquakes and tsunamis, as they are situated along tectonic<br />

plate boundaries. In 2011, an earthquake with a magnitude of<br />

9.0 occured along the ocean floor, on the east coast of Japan.<br />

The ground could be felt shaking in many cities. Fol<strong>low</strong>ing the<br />

earthquake, a tsunami hit the same coastline and travelled more<br />

than five kilomet<strong>res</strong> inland.<br />

2. Describe how each sudden geological change may have affected<br />

the coastal cities in Japan.<br />

Landscape<br />

Living<br />

things in<br />

the area<br />

Earthquakes<br />

Tsunamis<br />

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Assessment<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

3. Describe what is meant by an extreme weather event and give three examples.<br />

4. Use the T-chart to list how a drought and a flood can change Earth’s surface.<br />

Drought<br />

Flood<br />

5. Tropical cyclones develop from strong spiralling winds which build in intensity over the<br />

warm ocean waters near the equator. These winds draw water vapour up into the air,<br />

creating large clouds and stronger winds.<br />

(a) Explain why coastal cities are more likely to be affected by tropical cyclones, than<br />

inland areas.<br />

(b) Describe how a tropical cyclone can change the landscape of a coastal city and the<br />

implications of these changes on the living things in the area.<br />

Changes to the landscape<br />

Implications on living things<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

The three little pigs sequel<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project overview<br />

Students design and create a landscape scene with the three little pigs houses’ in three<br />

different natural-disaster zones, and an evacuation centre in a safe location. They then create<br />

a movie sequel to the story The three little pigs, that teaches the pigs about the dangers of<br />

building a house in areas that are commonly affected by natural disasters.<br />

Concepts overview:<br />

<strong>Science</strong><br />

• Apply knowledge of sudden geological changes and extreme weather events that change<br />

Earth’s surface and how these natural disasters can affect the lives of plants and animals.<br />

• Use science inquiry skills to plan and conduct experiments to simulate three different natural<br />

disasters. For example: a volcanic eruption, a landslide, an earthquake, a cyclone, a drought<br />

or a flash flood.<br />

• Communicate ideas about sudden geological changes and extreme weather events in the<br />

form of a movie, including the effects of these natural disasters on living things in the area.<br />

Technology/Engineering<br />

• Apply the design process to plan, create and evaluate a natural landscape, three model<br />

houses for the three little pigs, and an evacuation centre. Create simulations of each natural<br />

disaster and show its effects on the landscape and the little pigs.<br />

• While working collaboratively, use project management processes to ensure accountability<br />

of all group members when planning, organising, controlling <strong>res</strong>ources, monitoring timelines<br />

and meeting design criteria.<br />

• Use a digital storyboard creator to plan each scene in the movie sequel.<br />

• Use a digital camera or an iPad ® to film the story and use a movie-editing application or<br />

program to make improvements to scenes in the movie.<br />

Mathematics<br />

• Use a cartesian plane to plan the positions of landscape featu<strong>res</strong>, each little pig’s house and<br />

the evacuation centre. Locate where the natural disaster will take place and the area that will<br />

be affected by the disaster.<br />

Alternative project ideas:<br />

• Students design and create a seismometer to record the seismic activity of a cardboard box<br />

simulated earthquake. Use a ruler to measure the height of the primary waves (P-waves) and<br />

the secondary waves (S-waves) on their seismograph. Note: Watch the video at for an explanation of how seismographs are used to determine the<br />

magnitude of an earthquake on the Richter scale. Students create an online news bulletin to<br />

warn nearby cities of a possible earthquake and explain the devastating effects it could have<br />

on the landscape and the living things in the area.<br />

• Students design and create a website informing people of the possible natural disasters<br />

that could occur in Australia, the effects each natural disaster could have on surrounding<br />

areas and how to prepare for each. Students include information about how to prepare an<br />

emergency survival kit and what to do in the event of an evacuation. They should also be<br />

encouraged to add appropriate navigational tools to their website.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 93


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> curriculum links<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Understanding<br />

SCIENCE CURRICULUM<br />

• Sudden geological changes and extreme weather events can affect Earth’s surface (ACSSU096)<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour<br />

• <strong>Science</strong> involves testing predictions by gathering data and using evidence to develop explanations of events and<br />

phenomena and reflects historical and cultural contributions (ACSHE098)<br />

• Scientific knowledge is used to solve problems and inform personal and community decisions (ACSHE100)<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills<br />

Questioning and predicting<br />

• With guidance, pose clarifying questions and make predictions about scientific investigations (ACSIS232)<br />

Planning and conducting<br />

• Identify, plan and apply the elements of scientific investigations to answer questions and solve problems using equipment<br />

and materials safely and identifying potential risks (ACSIS103)<br />

• Decide variables to be changed and measured in fair tests, and observe measure and record data with accuracy using digital<br />

technologies as appropriate (ACSIS104)<br />

Processing and analysing data and information<br />

• Construct and use a range of rep<strong>res</strong>entations, including tables and graphs, to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and describe observations, patterns<br />

or relationships in data using digital technologies as appropriate (ACSIS107)<br />

Evaluating<br />

• Reflect on and suggest improvements to scientific investigations (ACSIS108)<br />

Communicating<br />

• Communicate ideas, explanations and processes using scientific rep<strong>res</strong>entations in a variety of ways, including multi-modal<br />

texts (ACSIS110)<br />

TECHNOLOGIES CURRICULUM<br />

Design and Technologies Processes and Production Skills<br />

• Critique needs or opportunities for designing, and investigate materials, components, tools, equipment and processes to<br />

achieve intended designed solutions (ACTDEP024)<br />

• Generate, develop and communicate design ideas and processes for audiences using appropriate technical terms and<br />

graphical rep<strong>res</strong>entation techniques (ACTDEP025)<br />

• Select appropriate materials, components, tools, equipment and techniques and apply safe procedu<strong>res</strong> to make designed<br />

solutions (ACTDEP026)<br />

• Negotiate criteria for success that include sustainability to evaluate design ideas, processes and solutions (ACTDEP027)<br />

• Develop project plans that include consideration of <strong>res</strong>ources when making designed solutions individually and<br />

collaboratively (ACTDEP028)<br />

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Digital Technologies Processes and Production Skills<br />

• Acquire, store and validate different types of data, and use a range of software to interpret and visualise data to create<br />

information (ACTDIP016)<br />

• Plan, create and communicate ideas and information, including collaboratively online, applying agreed ethical, social and<br />

technical protocols (ACTDIP022)<br />

MATHEMATICS CURRICULUM<br />

Measurement and Geometry<br />

• Introduce the Cartesian coordinate system using all four quadrants (ACMMG143)<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project:<br />

Teacher notes<br />

Students design and create a landscape scene with the three little pigs houses’ in three<br />

different natural-disaster zones, and an evacuation centre in a safe location. They then create<br />

a movie sequel to the story The three little pigs, that teaches the pigs about the dangers of<br />

building a house in areas that are commonly affected by natural disasters.<br />

Estimated duration: 4–6 weeks<br />

1. Introduce the project<br />

• Divide the class into groups of three and<br />

give each group a copy of page 96. Read<br />

through the problem, the task and the<br />

criteria, and clarify any queries students<br />

have.<br />

• As a class, watch the video, Australia:<br />

Mother Nature’s playground at to see the four<br />

most common natural disasters to occur<br />

in Australia, including drought, bushfi<strong>res</strong>,<br />

floods and cyclones.<br />

• Give each group a copy of the project<br />

steps on page 97, so students can<br />

manage and assess their prog<strong>res</strong>s.<br />

2. Investigate<br />

• Students scan the QR code on page 97 or<br />

type the URL into a web browser to revise<br />

different types of natural disasters and<br />

how they affect the landscape and living<br />

things in the area.<br />

• In their groups, students plan and<br />

conduct experiments to simulate each<br />

natural disaster they choose for their<br />

movie. Note: The four experiment cards<br />

on page 98 may be used to see how to<br />

simulate a volcanic eruption, a landslide,<br />

an earthquake and a tsunami.<br />

3. Design, plan and manage<br />

• Students draw a cartesian plane on a<br />

piece of 2-cm grid paper and draw where<br />

each landscape feature will be positioned<br />

as well as each house and the evacuation<br />

centre. Students also record where each<br />

natural disaster will take place and where<br />

the affected area will be.<br />

• Students write a script for their movie,<br />

based on the storyline of the original<br />

Three little pigs story. They create a digital<br />

storyboard to plan each scene and label<br />

when each natural disaster will occur.<br />

They then describe how they will simulate<br />

each natural disaster.<br />

• Students collect or locate all the materials<br />

they will need to create their landscape,<br />

the pigs’ houses, the evauation centre,<br />

the natural disaster simulations and their<br />

movie.<br />

4. Create<br />

• Students create the landscape setting for<br />

their movie, including the pigs’ houses<br />

and the evacuation centre, and prepare<br />

their natural disaster simulations.<br />

• After a rehearsal, students film their movie<br />

as a sequel to The three little pigs.<br />

5. Evaluate and refine<br />

• Students evaluate their natural disaster<br />

simulations and their movie to ensure they<br />

meet all the criteria listed on page 96.<br />

• Using a movie-editing application or<br />

program, students make any necessary<br />

changes.<br />

6. Communicate<br />

• Students upload their movie to a digital<br />

library or save it in a shared folder on the<br />

network.<br />

• Students watch the movies created by<br />

each of the other groups and provide<br />

constructive feedback to each group.<br />

• Individually, students complete the selfassessment<br />

on page 99 to evaluate how<br />

well their group cooperated together to<br />

produce their movie.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 95


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Project brief<br />

THE THREE LITTLE PIGS SEQUEL<br />

The problem<br />

In the story The three little pigs, the pigs learnt a valuable lesson about choosing<br />

appropriate materials to build a house. After the big bad wolf blew down the<br />

houses made from straw and sticks, the first two pigs sought refuge in the third<br />

pig’s house, which he made from bricks.<br />

The two pigs who initially built their houses using straw and sticks, decided<br />

they would also build a brick house so they would be safe forever. But they had<br />

another very valuable lesson to learn about where to build a house.<br />

The task<br />

Design and create a landscape scene with the three little pigs’<br />

houses in three different natural-disaster zones, and an evacuation<br />

centre in a safe location. Create a movie sequel to the story<br />

The three little pigs, that teaches the little pigs about the dangers of<br />

building a house in areas that are commonly affected by natural disasters.<br />

The movie must entertain and educate the target audience about sudden<br />

geological changes and/or extreme weather events that change Earth’s surface<br />

and how these changes could affect the pigs and other living things in the<br />

environment.<br />

Things to consider<br />

• You must work in groups of three.<br />

• A cartesian plane must be used to show the positions of landscape featu<strong>res</strong>, the little<br />

pigs’ houses and the evacuation centre. Each house and the evacuation centre must<br />

be located in a different quadrant of the cartesian plane.<br />

• The location that the natural disaster will take place and the area that will be<br />

affected by the disaster must be recorded on the cartesian plane. The three<br />

quadrants containing the pigs’ houses, must experience a different natural disaster.<br />

• A simulation of each natural disaster must be included to show how the disaster<br />

changes the three-dimensional landscape and how it affects the living things in the<br />

area, including plants and the three little pigs. Experiments should be conducted to<br />

ensure simulations accurately demonstrate the natural disaster.<br />

• Use a digital storyboard creator to plan each scene in the movie. The movie must<br />

communicate factual information to its target audience about the effects of each<br />

natural disaster on the landscape and the lives of the pigs.<br />

• Use a digital camera or an iPad ® to record a three-minute video of your story. Use<br />

a movie-editing application or program to reflect on and make improvements to<br />

scenes. Upload your movie to a digital library or save it in a shared folder on the<br />

network.<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Investigate<br />

Project steps<br />

Scan the QR code or go to to<br />

revise different types of natural disasters and how they affect the<br />

landscape and the living things in the area.<br />

Plan and conduct experiments to test the most effective way to simulate each<br />

natural disaster in your story. Decide which variables you will control, change and<br />

monitor to ensure each test is fair.<br />

Design, plan and manage<br />

Draw a cartesian plane on a piece of two-centimetre grid paper and draw where each<br />

landscape feature will be positioned, as well as each of the little pigs’ houses and the<br />

evacuation centre. Record where each natural disaster will occur and where the affected<br />

area will be.<br />

Plan the materials you will use to create the landscape, the pigs’ houses and evacuation<br />

centre and record the dimensions of each landscape feature as planned on the cartesian<br />

plane.<br />

Write a script for your three-minute movie, using a similar storyline to the original story.<br />

Use a digital storyboard to plan each scene in the story. Label when each natural disaster<br />

will occur and who will be <strong>res</strong>ponsible for simulating it.<br />

Write or record audio of how you will simulate each natural disaster according to the<br />

<strong>res</strong>ults of your experiments.<br />

Collect or locate all the materials you will need to create your landscape setting and your<br />

movie, and to simulate each natural disaster.<br />

Create<br />

Create the landscape setting for your movie and prepare your natural disaster simulations.<br />

Rehearse your movie without the natural disaster and practise filming it.<br />

Film your sequel to The three little pigs with simulations of each natural disaster.<br />

Evaluate and refine<br />

Ensure your movie meets all the criteria listed on page 96.<br />

Use a movie-editing application or program to make any necessary changes.<br />

Communicate<br />

Upload your movie to a digital library or save it in a shared folder on the network.<br />

Watch the movies created by each of the other groups and provide constructive feedback<br />

to each group.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 97


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Natural disaster simulations<br />

Volcano simulation<br />

Scan the QR code or visit to see an<br />

example of a volcano experiment.<br />

Earthquake simulation<br />

Scan the QR code or visit to see an<br />

example of a shake table that can be<br />

used to simulate an earthquake.<br />

Volcano simulation<br />

Scan the QR code or visit to see an<br />

example of a volcano experiment.<br />

Earthquake simulation<br />

Scan the QR code or visit to see an<br />

example of a shake table that can be<br />

used to simulate an earthquake.<br />

Landslide simulation<br />

Scan the QR code or visit to see an<br />

example of a landslide experiment.<br />

Tsunami simulation<br />

Scan the QR code or visit to see an<br />

example of a tsunami experiment.<br />

Landslide simulation<br />

Scan the QR code or visit to see an<br />

example of a landslide experiment.<br />

Tsunami simulation<br />

Scan the QR code or visit to see an<br />

example of a tsunami experiment.<br />

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Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Self-assessment<br />

Student name:<br />

Date:<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project: The three little pigs sequel<br />

1. Colour a face to rate how cooperatively your team worked.<br />

All group members contributed ideas to the team.<br />

All group members listened carefully to the ideas<br />

of others.<br />

All group members encouraged others to<br />

contribute their thoughts and opinions.<br />

All group members spoke <strong>res</strong>pectfully to other<br />

group members.<br />

All group members compromised (when needed)<br />

to create the best possible product.<br />

2. List three ways the team helped each other to create the product.<br />

3. List one difficulty the group encountered when working as a team.<br />

4. How could a similar issue be <strong>res</strong>olved in future projects?<br />

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5. What was the most enjoyable part of the project?<br />

6. What was the least enjoyable part of the project?<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 99


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Earth and space sciences<br />

THE EFFECTS OF A NATURAL DISASTER<br />

Group assessment rubric<br />

Group members:<br />

Project task:<br />

Design and create a landscape scene with the three little pigs’ houses in three different naturaldisaster<br />

zones, and an evacuation centre in a safe location. Create a movie sequel to the story<br />

The three little pigs, that teaches the little pigs about the dangers of building a house in areas<br />

that are commonly affected by natural disasters.<br />

CRITERIA<br />

<strong>Science</strong> knowledge<br />

Applies knowledge of extreme weather events and sudden geological changes and why<br />

these <strong>res</strong>ult in natural disasters in populated areas.<br />

<strong>Science</strong> skills<br />

Plans and conducts experiments to create accurate simulations of three different natural<br />

disasters.<br />

Controls variables that may affect the accuracy of their experiment <strong>res</strong>ults and records<br />

methods and <strong>res</strong>ults so each simulation can be replicated during the movie.<br />

Communicates science understanding correctly, clearly and concisely, using scientific<br />

terminology.<br />

Technology/Engineering skills<br />

Plans, designs and creates a three-dimensional landscape with simulations of three<br />

different natural disasters.<br />

Uses <strong>res</strong>ources safely and sustainably while conducting the experiments and creating the<br />

three-dimensional landscape.<br />

Evaluates designed products to ensure they meet the criteria and makes any necessary<br />

changes.<br />

Uses a digital camera or an iPad ® to film the story and uses a movie-editing application or<br />

program to make improvements to scenes, as required.<br />

Uploads a movie to a digital library or saves it to a shared folder on the network.<br />

Mathematics skills<br />

Uses a cartesian plane to plan the positions of landscape featu<strong>res</strong>, each little pig’s house<br />

and the evacuation centre.<br />

Uses a cartesian plane to plan where the natural disaster will take place and the area that<br />

will be affected by the natural disaster.<br />

Group skills<br />

All group members contributed fairly and appropriately.<br />

All group members collaborated and communicated effectively.<br />

Group members were able to <strong>res</strong>olve conflicts independently.<br />

1 = Be<strong>low</strong> expectations<br />

2 = Meeting expectations<br />

3 = Above expectations<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

on<br />

off<br />

electricity<br />

fossil fuels<br />

renewable energy<br />

non-renewable energy<br />

turbine<br />

hydroelectricity<br />

solar energy<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

BATTERY<br />

Keywords<br />

generator<br />

electrical conductors<br />

electrical insulators<br />

electrons<br />

electrical circuit<br />

switch<br />

open circuit<br />

QUIZ<br />

power source<br />

LED<br />

wi<strong>res</strong><br />

alligator clips<br />

light globe<br />

filament<br />

tungsten<br />

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wind farm<br />

closed circuit<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 101


Unit overview<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Electrical energy can be transferred and transformed in electrical circuits and can be<br />

generated from a range of sources (ACSSU097))<br />

Lesson 1<br />

What non-renewable<br />

energy sources are used<br />

to generate electricity?<br />

How do fossil fuels<br />

generate electricity?<br />

Lesson 2<br />

What renewable energy<br />

sources are used to<br />

generate electricity?<br />

How do wind and water<br />

generate electricity?<br />

Lesson 3<br />

How does solar energy<br />

generate electricity?<br />

How can the f<strong>low</strong> of<br />

electricity be shown in a<br />

circuit diagram?<br />

Lesson 4<br />

What materials can<br />

be used to make an<br />

electrical circuit? What<br />

materials are conductors<br />

and insulators of<br />

electricity?<br />

Lesson 5<br />

What is a switch and<br />

how does it work? How<br />

is it shown in a circuit<br />

diagram?<br />

Lesson 6<br />

How does a light bulb<br />

work? What are the<br />

featu<strong>res</strong> of light globes?<br />

Summative assessment<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Buzz of electricity<br />

Students are introduced to various sources of energy used<br />

in the generation of electricity through an interactive game,<br />

and then focus on fossil fuels. Students create a f<strong>low</strong>chart to<br />

rep<strong>res</strong>ent the process.<br />

The focus of this lesson is non-renewable sources of energy<br />

by way of wind and water energy. Students create f<strong>low</strong>charts<br />

to rep<strong>res</strong>ent the processes of turning wind and water energy<br />

into electricity, before creating a working water turbine.<br />

Students investigate solar energy and solar thermal energy as<br />

generators of electricity. Students then work out how to light<br />

up an LED using a mini solar panel and a simple electrical<br />

circuit. Students are also introduced to a basic circuit<br />

diagram.<br />

Students predict and investigate different materials to<br />

determine if they are good electrical conductors or if they are<br />

electrical insulators. Students will create paper circuit designs<br />

and test five materials to see if they al<strong>low</strong> electricity to pass<br />

through and light up an LED.<br />

Students investigate how to create a switch using drawing<br />

pins and a paperclip, and how it works in an electrical circuit<br />

to turn a light on and off, by testing different connection<br />

combinations of the components. Students also learn how to<br />

draw a circuit diagram with a switch symbol.<br />

Students explore the incandescent light globe and label<br />

its featu<strong>res</strong>. Particular attention is paid to the design of the<br />

filament and the tungsten it is made from. Students create<br />

their own light globe to demonstrate the electrical circuit and<br />

test three materials as the filament.<br />

Students use their science knowledge to answer questions<br />

and draw f<strong>low</strong>charts and diagrams about the sources used to<br />

generate electricity, and about electrical circuits.<br />

Students apply their knowledge of circuits to design and<br />

create buzzers to be used in a quiz show, along with a set<br />

of quiz questions to be used digitally and displayed on the<br />

whiteboard.<br />

Pages<br />

104–106<br />

107–109<br />

110–113<br />

114–116<br />

117–120<br />

121–124<br />

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125–127<br />

128–134<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Unit overview<br />

Curriculum scope and sequence<br />

SCIENCE UNDERSTANDING<br />

Electrical energy can be transferred and transformed in electrical<br />

circuits and can be generated from a range of sources<br />

(ACSSU097)<br />

SCIENCE AS A HUMAN ENDEAVOUR<br />

<strong>Science</strong> involves testing predictions by gathering data and using<br />

evidence to develop explanations of events and phenomena and<br />

reflects historical and cultural contributions (ACSHE098)<br />

Scientific knowledge is used to solve problems and inform<br />

personal and community decisions (ACSHE100)<br />

SCIENCE INQUIRY SKILLS<br />

Questioning and predicting<br />

With guidance, pose clarifying questions and make predictions<br />

about scientific investigations (ACSIS232)<br />

Planning and conducting<br />

Identify, plan and apply the elements of scientific investigations<br />

to answer questions and solve problems using equipment and<br />

materials safely and identifying potential risks (ACSIS103)<br />

Decide variables to be changed and measured in fair tests, and<br />

observe measure and record data with accuracy using digital<br />

technologies as appropriate (ACSIS104)<br />

Processing and analysing data and information<br />

Construct and use a range of rep<strong>res</strong>entations, including tables<br />

and graphs, to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and describe observations, patterns or<br />

relationships in data using digital technologies as appropriate<br />

(ACSIS107)<br />

Compare data with predictions and use as evidence in<br />

developing explanations (ACSIS221)<br />

Evaluating<br />

Reflect on and suggest improvements to scientific investigations<br />

(ACSIS108)<br />

Communicating<br />

Communicate ideas, explanations and processes using scientific<br />

rep<strong>res</strong>entations in a variety of ways, including multi-modal texts<br />

(ACSIS110)<br />

Lesson<br />

1 2 3 4 5 6 Assessment<br />

<strong>STEM</strong><br />

project<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

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3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 103


Lesson 1<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What non-renewable energy sources are used to<br />

generate electricity? How do fossil fuels generate<br />

electricity?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students investigate the use of electricity and how<br />

electrical energy is generated in Australia and<br />

around the world.<br />

• Students discuss the conservation of non-renewable<br />

sources of electricity and consider the costs and<br />

benefits of the use of various sources of energy to a<br />

community and the environment.<br />

Background information<br />

• Electricity is simply defined as the f<strong>low</strong> of energy or<br />

electric charge.<br />

• Electricity can be generated from renewable and<br />

non-renewable sources. Non-renewable sources are<br />

fossil fuels such as coal, oil and gas, while renewable<br />

sources include solar, wind and water.<br />

• Fossil fuels are used to heat water, which becomes<br />

steam, which then turns a turbine. This turbine then<br />

creates mechanical energy which is converted into<br />

electrical energy by a generator. Electricity is then<br />

transformed to the right voltage and transmitted to<br />

wi<strong>res</strong> and towers for distribution to homes.<br />

• For more information on non-renewable energy<br />

see (also linked to<br />

the QR code on page 106 for students to use for<br />

<strong>res</strong>earch).<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics link:<br />

• deconstructing how electricity is<br />

generated through the burning of<br />

fossil fuels which creates steam to<br />

move a turbine<br />

• investigating processes to generate<br />

electricity<br />

• using a range of iPad ® applications to<br />

create and p<strong>res</strong>ent information<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use Step 1 as a diagnostic assessment<br />

of students’ prior knowledge about<br />

electricity.<br />

• Use page 106 and the digital f<strong>low</strong>chart<br />

as a formative assessment of students'<br />

understanding that fossil fuels are a<br />

source of energy used to generate<br />

electricity and that it is a nonrenewable<br />

<strong>res</strong>ource<br />

Resources<br />

• iPad ® with Notes, Pages, Popplet,<br />

Keynote, ShowMe or Book<br />

Creator and QR code reader<br />

• Online video—The energy<br />

challenge at <br />

• Online video—Fossil fuels at<br />

<br />

• Copies of page 106<br />

• URLs linked to QR codes on<br />

page 106: , <br />

• Kettle and pinwheel for steam<br />

demonstration<br />

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YEAR<br />

6<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 1<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Give each student a copy of page 106. Students imagine a new city is being developed. Discuss<br />

how they might create electricity to power the new city. How would you generate electricity for<br />

the people in the community? What sources would you use? What sources do we use in Australia?<br />

What is electricity? In pairs, students use an iPad ® and an application such as Popplet to brainstorm<br />

answers to these four questions, as listed on page 106. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. As a class, discuss the energy options and decisions that need to be made by a city p<strong>res</strong>ented<br />

in the video The energy challenge at . This video highlights<br />

the challenges faced by cities about how to generate electricity for a community, while also<br />

considering the economy and sustainability. PA<br />

3. Focus students' attention on electricity generated by fossil fuels— coal, oil and gas—and, as a class,<br />

watch the video at . Students take notes using the Notes or Pages<br />

application on an iPad ® . Using page 106, students complete the questions and conduct further<br />

<strong>res</strong>earch by scanning the QR codes to read information on two other websites. PC PA C<br />

4. Individually, students draw a f<strong>low</strong>chart of how fossil fuels generate electricity using an iPad ®<br />

application, such as Keynote, ShowMe or Book Creator and write or record information to describe<br />

the process. PA C<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can work in pairs to create the f<strong>low</strong>chart and record audio to describe the<br />

process of electricity generation, rather than writing a description.<br />

• More capable students can create a mini book using Book Creator on an iPad ® , to transfer their<br />

<strong>res</strong>earch about what a fossil fuel is, and create a f<strong>low</strong>chart showing how it is used to generate<br />

electricity.<br />

Reflection:<br />

5. Students email or upload their f<strong>low</strong>charts to the teacher. As a class, discuss whether they were<br />

aware that electricity was generated by fossil fuels and compare their <strong>res</strong>earch to their initial<br />

predictions. Did you know that the fossil fuels were used to heat water to turn a turbine which then<br />

created electricity? Did you think steam was that powerful? PA C<br />

6. Demonstrate to the class how steam can move a turbine, using a kettle and a pinwheel held over<br />

the top of the steam when the kettle is nearly finished boiling.<br />

7. After students consider all the information, take a class vote about whether they think fossil fuels<br />

are a good source to use to power a city. E C<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 105


Lesson 1<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Sources of electricity<br />

1. Brainstorm the fol<strong>low</strong>ing questions using an iPad ® application of your choice.<br />

• What is electricity?<br />

• How would you generate electricity for the people in a community?<br />

• What sources would you use?<br />

• What sources do we use in Australia?<br />

2. (a) Watch the video Fossil fuels as a class, and use the Notes or Pages application on an<br />

iPad ® to take down any important information.<br />

(b) What is a fossil fuel?<br />

(c) What are two problems associated with the use of fossil fuels?<br />

3. (a) Scan the QR code or go to to read more<br />

about fossil fuels or non-renewable sources of energy.<br />

(b) Write three pieces of key information about each.<br />

Coal Oil/Petroleum Gas<br />

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4. (a) Scan the QR code or go to and read the<br />

information under the heading Turning generators indirectly, to find out how<br />

fossil fuels become electricity.<br />

(b) Draw a f<strong>low</strong>chart of how fossil fuels are used to generate electricity, using a drawing<br />

application on an iPad ® , and describe the process.<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 2<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What renewable energy sources are used to generate<br />

electricity? How do wind and water generate electricity?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students discuss the use of wind energy and<br />

hydroelectricity to generate electricity and the<br />

sustainability of both sources.<br />

• Students investigate how electrical energy is<br />

generated in Australia and around the world<br />

and consider the costs and benefits of the use of<br />

various sources of energy to a community and the<br />

environment.<br />

Background information<br />

• The energy of f<strong>low</strong>ing water is harnessed<br />

by underwater turbines. The kinetic energy<br />

from the moving water is transferred to the<br />

blades of the turbine and causes them to<br />

turn, becoming mechanical energy. The<br />

turbine is connected to a generator and,<br />

as the turbine spins, energy is transferred<br />

to the generator. As the generator spins it<br />

converts the energy into electricity.<br />

• The energy from moving wind is harnessed<br />

by wind farms made up of many tall turbines<br />

with long blades. The blades have an air<br />

foil design—one surface is rounded while<br />

the other is flat. As the wind pushes against<br />

the blades, they absorb some of the kinetic<br />

energy and begin to turn. This makes the<br />

central rotor hub spin with rotational energy.<br />

As the rotor spins it transfers energy to the<br />

shaft, which in turn transfers energy to a<br />

generator, which then converts the energy<br />

into electricity.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• exploring how sustainability is<br />

considered when designing products<br />

to generate electricity<br />

• using a range of software and iPad ®<br />

applications to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and transmit<br />

information<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use the f<strong>low</strong>charts from Step 3 and the<br />

submitted videos of the working water<br />

turbine as a formative assessment of<br />

students’ understanding of how a water<br />

turbine works to generate mechanical<br />

energy, which in turn generates<br />

electrical energy.<br />

• Use the written <strong>res</strong>ponse from Step 6 to<br />

assess the student’s ability to suggest<br />

improvements to their experiment.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online video—Energy report at <br />

• iPad ® application with drawing<br />

application and video recorder<br />

• Copies of page 109<br />

• Renewable energies website linked to<br />

QR code on page 109 at <br />

• Creating energy from solar, wind, and<br />

water sources video linked to QR code<br />

on page 109 at . Note: The video will end if not<br />

a subscriber but nothing further needs to<br />

be viewed<br />

• Experiment materials (per group):<br />

2-L plastic bottle, scissors, cork, art knife,<br />

skewer, string, washer weight, jug of<br />

water<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 107


Lesson 2<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Revise sources of energy that are used to create electricity as discussed in the previous lesson,<br />

and list the cleaner alternatives—wind, solar, water (hydroelectricity) and geothermal. Which ones<br />

does Australia use? What do you think would be the most appropriate for Australia, considering<br />

our climate and location? Discuss the questions as a class and watch the video Energy report at<br />

to learn about Australia’s energy future. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. Recall the f<strong>low</strong>chart from the previous lesson about the process of how fossil fuels generate<br />

electricity. In pairs, students draw a f<strong>low</strong>chart of how they think the power of moving wind and<br />

water is used to generate electricity. Students use an iPad ® application to draw their predicted<br />

f<strong>low</strong>chart and save the file. QP<br />

3. Give students a copy of page 109. Individually, students conduct <strong>res</strong>earch into how the energy of<br />

wind and water is harnessed, by watching a video and referring to a website linked to the QR codes<br />

on page 109. Based on their <strong>res</strong>earch, students draw two f<strong>low</strong>charts of how electricity is generated<br />

by the power of wind and water, using the same iPad ® application as in Step 2. Alternatively,<br />

students may simply draw the f<strong>low</strong>charts on paper or in their science journals. Students compare<br />

the <strong>res</strong>earch-based f<strong>low</strong>charts to their predicted f<strong>low</strong>charts from Step 2. PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can draw just one f<strong>low</strong>chart based on either the process of turning wind<br />

or water energy into electricity.<br />

• More capable students may construct a more detailed f<strong>low</strong>chart for the process of turning wind<br />

and water power into electricity.<br />

4. In small groups, students fol<strong>low</strong> the procedure on page 109 to create a model of a water turbine,<br />

to demonstrate how the power of water can be used as mechanical energy to lift a washer attached<br />

to a turbine. Note: This is best done in an outside area as water may spill. Students will also need to<br />

film the turbine in action. PC<br />

Reflection:<br />

5. Students upload or email their video of the water turbine. As a class, discuss whether the water<br />

turbine was effective and whether the experiment showed it to be a viable option to generate<br />

electricity. C<br />

6. Were there any problems with the creation? What else could you test, or change about the<br />

experiment to show how much power water could generate? Students discuss with a partner and<br />

write two improvements in their science journal or on the back of their worksheet. E<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 2<br />

Water turbine investigation<br />

1. Scan the QR code or go to to read about<br />

wind- and water-based renewable energy.<br />

2. Scan the QR code or go to to watch a video<br />

about wind and hydroelectric power. View until the video stops.<br />

3. Using an iPad ® , draw f<strong>low</strong>charts of how wind and water can be used to generate electricity.<br />

4. Conduct the fol<strong>low</strong>ing water turbine investigation.<br />

Materials:<br />

• 2-L plastic bottle<br />

• Scissors<br />

• Cork<br />

• Art knife<br />

• Barbecue skewer<br />

• String<br />

• Washer weight<br />

• Jug<br />

Procedure:<br />

1. Cut out the middle section of the bottle and use it to cut eight blades to be used for<br />

the turbine.<br />

2. Insert one end of the blades into the cork by slicing eight evenly spaced openings on<br />

the cork to insert the blades into.<br />

3. Use the bottom part of the bottle as the base of the turbine. Cut a hole in the bottom<br />

where the excess water can escape.<br />

4. Pierce two holes on either side of the base. This is where the turbine will eventually be<br />

inserted.<br />

5. Insert a skewer into the cork with the blades, so that it makes a hole all the way<br />

through, and then remove it.<br />

6. Insert the skewer into one hole in the base, thread through the cork with blades and<br />

then thread the skewer through to the other hole opposite.<br />

7. Tie a piece of string to the protruding part of the skewer and tie a washer to the<br />

bottom of the length of string.<br />

8. Pour water from a jug onto the<br />

blades, and watch the turbine<br />

turn the string.<br />

© R.I.C. Publications<br />

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9. Create a video of the water<br />

turbine in action, explaining<br />

what is happening and why.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 109


Lesson 3<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

How does solar energy generate electricity?<br />

How can the f<strong>low</strong> of electricity be shown in a<br />

circuit diagram?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students discuss the use of solar energy<br />

for electricity and its sustainability.<br />

• Students investigate how electrical<br />

energy is generated in the world.<br />

Background information<br />

• Light energy from the sun is collected in solar panels.<br />

Each panel contains a number of special cells called<br />

photovoltaic (PV) cells. As sunlight strikes a solar<br />

panel, some of its energy is transferred to each PV cell.<br />

The construction of the cells al<strong>low</strong>s them to instantly<br />

convert the light energy into electricity. An inverter then<br />

transforms the direct current (DC) electricity to the type<br />

required for households, which is alternating current<br />

(AC).<br />

• Solar thermal energy uses the light of the sun and a<br />

series of mirrors to reflect the sunlight onto one central<br />

point on a tower. This tower contains salt which retains<br />

heat well, even after the sun is no longer shining, and<br />

then creates steam to power a turbine.<br />

• When connecting a mini solar panel to light up an LED,<br />

the cor<strong>res</strong>ponding positive parts are connected as are<br />

the cor<strong>res</strong>ponding negative parts.<br />

• For more information on connecting solar panels to an<br />

LED light, see .<br />

• A circuit diagram shows the f<strong>low</strong> of electrons on a circuit<br />

path and how components are connected. It denotes<br />

lights, power sources and switches with the use of<br />

standard symbols. More information can be found at<br />

or .<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• exploring how sustainability is considered when<br />

designing products to generate electricity<br />

• using a range of software and iPad ® applications to<br />

p<strong>res</strong>ent and transmit information<br />

• rep<strong>res</strong>enting electrical circuits with technical<br />

diagrams and symbols<br />

• investigating processes to connect a light to a<br />

power source<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use the experiment worksheet on page 112<br />

and the labelled photographs from Step 7 as a<br />

formative assessment of students’ understanding<br />

of how solar energy can be used to create<br />

electricity to light a globe, and how to rep<strong>res</strong>ent<br />

this circuit with a diagram.<br />

Resources<br />

• Renewable energy website<br />

at <br />

• Online video—Solar energy<br />

at <br />

• Online video—Supercritical<br />

steam at <br />

• iPad ® with applications such<br />

as Chatterbox and digital<br />

photograph editor<br />

• Copies of page 112<br />

• Experiment materials:<br />

mini solar panels, LED or DC<br />

motor, wi<strong>res</strong> with alligator<br />

clips<br />

• Digital copy of page 113<br />

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YEAR<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 3<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Display the information and diagram about solar energy, from the website used in the previous<br />

lesson to <strong>res</strong>earch wind and water energy. In pairs, students use an iPad ® application, such as<br />

Keynote, to describe how this diagram is different to the other sources of electricity diagrams<br />

from previous lessons. (There are no turbines used; the solar batteries absorb energy directly, and<br />

convert it into electricity, ready to use.) QP<br />

Development<br />

2. As a class, watch a video explaining solar energy and how it works at ,<br />

and then watch a video about a newer form of solar power called solar thermal energy at .<br />

3. In pairs, students discuss and compare the differences between solar energy and solar thermal<br />

energy and record a short explanation of how this new form of harnessing solar energy is similar to<br />

the processes from previous lessons, using an iPad ® application such as Chatterbox. PA<br />

4. Pass around some mini solar power panels for students to inspect. Students hypothesise and<br />

then investigate how to connect the solar panel with alligator-clip wi<strong>res</strong>, to light a small LED when<br />

placed in the sun. Note: Depending on classroom <strong>res</strong>ources available, students can use simple<br />

wi<strong>res</strong> or a DC motor. Students fol<strong>low</strong> the investigation on page 112 and methodically record their<br />

attempts on the page. QP PC PA<br />

5. Students take a photograph of how they arranged the wi<strong>res</strong> to get the light or motor to work,<br />

noticing if there are any + or - connections. Students add labels to the photograph using the edit<br />

feature in the Photos application or another similar application. PA<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students record an oral description of how they got their light or motor to work,<br />

and what they noticed about the connections and wi<strong>res</strong>.<br />

• More capable students can add extra components, such as making a propeller to add to the DC<br />

motor, or adding another LED and working out how to connect it to the existing circuit.<br />

6. Display a digital copy of page 113, and introduce the term circuit. In pairs, students discuss the<br />

wiring they used and compare the diagram on page 113 to their photograph. Why do you think it’s<br />

called a circuit? Reinforce the circular nature of the circuit diagram and how it must be a complete<br />

circle for electricity to f<strong>low</strong>. Discuss the symbols used for the technical circuit diagram, where:<br />

rep<strong>res</strong>ents light; and<br />

rep<strong>res</strong>ents the battery with positive shown by the longer line and negative shown by the shorter,<br />

thicker line. PA<br />

Reflection<br />

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7. Students add any extra information they learnt from Step 6 to their photographs and labels of their<br />

solar-powered circuit from Step 5 and upload or email them to the teacher. C<br />

8. Take a class vote on whether the use of solar power seems like a better choice to generate<br />

electricity and whether it should be used more in Australia. PA C<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 111


Lesson 3<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Solar-powered circuit investigation<br />

Hypothesis:<br />

How should the wi<strong>res</strong> on a solar panel be connected to an LED to make it work?<br />

Materials:<br />

• Mini solar panel<br />

• LED<br />

• Red and black wi<strong>res</strong>/<br />

alligator clips<br />

• 6-V DC motor (optional)<br />

Investigation procedure:<br />

Connection<br />

combinations<br />

Attempt 1<br />

Attempt 2<br />

Attempt 3<br />

Variables:<br />

Controlled:<br />

Independent:<br />

How are the wi<strong>res</strong> connected?<br />

(red, black, positive, negative)<br />

Did the<br />

light work?<br />

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Attempt 4<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 3<br />

Solar-powered circuit diagram<br />

BATTERY<br />

The longer leg on an LED is positive.<br />

The shorter leg on an LED is negative.<br />

Red wire<br />

Black wire<br />

Connect the red wire from the solar panel (positive) to the positive leg of the LED.<br />

Connect the black wire from the solar panel (negative) to the negative leg of the LED.<br />

Instead of drawing the circuit diagram like the picture, it is drawn like this:<br />

LED<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 113


Lesson 4<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What materials can be used to make an electrical<br />

circuit? What materials are conductors and insulators<br />

of electricity?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and information<br />

PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students predict and investigate the effects of<br />

using different materials for an electrical circuit.<br />

Background information<br />

• Electrical conductors are materials that have<br />

a <strong>low</strong> <strong>res</strong>istance to electricity and will al<strong>low</strong> it<br />

to easily pass through. Many metals are good<br />

conductors, such as silver and copper, and<br />

other metallic materials such as aluminium<br />

foil. Playdough is a conductor due to the salt<br />

content, and a simple pencil line shaded in will<br />

also act as a conductor due to the graphite in<br />

the lead.<br />

• Electrical insulators are materials that have a<br />

high <strong>res</strong>istance to electricity and won’t al<strong>low</strong> it<br />

to f<strong>low</strong> through them. Materials such as plastic,<br />

twine, rubber and wood are insulators.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• investigating characteristics of materials<br />

used to create circuit paths for electricity<br />

• generating a design to create a circuit<br />

path that <strong>res</strong>embles an object with a light<br />

• using a range of software and iPad ®<br />

applications to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and transmit<br />

information<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use page 116 and the submitted<br />

digital files from Step 4 as a formative<br />

assessment of students’ understanding<br />

of which materials make good electrical<br />

conductors and that the most practical<br />

materials are metals as opposed to<br />

playdough, even though it is a conductor.<br />

• Use the created drawings as a<br />

formative assessment of the student's<br />

understanding of and ability to make a<br />

complete circuit.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online video—Introduction to simple<br />

circuits at <br />

• iPad ® with applications such as<br />

Popplet, ShowMe or Seesaw<br />

• Copies of page 116<br />

• Materials for experiment: 9-V battery,<br />

LEDs, tape/glue, lead pencils,<br />

aluminium foil, plastic wrapper,<br />

playdough, twine.<br />

• Online video—Simple circuits for kids<br />

at <br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 4<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Revise simple circuits by watching the video at . Stop it at 2:20,<br />

before it goes on to discuss switches (this is covered in the next lesson). Which materials are best to<br />

use for the path of a circuit? Which ones al<strong>low</strong> the f<strong>low</strong> of electrons? In pairs, students make a list of<br />

materials they think would be best suited to make a circuit path. QP<br />

Development:<br />

2. Students share their lists of predicted suitable materials. Revise the terms insulator and conductor<br />

and refer to the suggested suitable materials as possible conductors of electricity. In pairs, students<br />

discuss the question Why do you think the materials you listed as suitable, would make good<br />

electrical conductors? QP<br />

3. State the five materials listed on the experiment page on page 116—lead pencil (shading),<br />

aluminium foil, plastic wrapper, playdough and twine. Students use page 116 to complete their<br />

hypothesis individually, by sorting the materials as either conductors or insulators. QP<br />

4. Students create simple paper circuits made from the five materials to be tested. A space needs<br />

to be left in the path for the battery and a space for the LED to be attached. When placed in the<br />

drawing the battery and LED will complete the circuit. Students should glue or draw their path onto<br />

card. Students can create a design of any shape as long as there is a f<strong>low</strong>ing path with spaces for<br />

the battery and LED, such as the one shown on page 116 or these examples be<strong>low</strong> of a torch and a<br />

miner’s helmet: PC<br />

5. Students create a table using a spreadsheet program or an iPad ® application to record their<br />

<strong>res</strong>ults. They then record an oral conclusion using an iPad ® application such as ShowMe or Seesaw.<br />

Students submit their <strong>res</strong>ults by either emailing or uploading the files. PA C<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can work together in pairs to create their circuit paths and conduct the<br />

experiments. They may also use simple rectangular circuit paths rather than creating pictu<strong>res</strong>.<br />

• More capable students can test one or two other materials of their choosing in addition to the<br />

materials listed on page 116, or select any six materials of their choice—three they predict to be<br />

insulators and three they predict to be conductors.<br />

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Reflection<br />

6. As a class, watch the video of a child testing various materials at .<br />

Students discuss and compare the information in the video to the experiment they conducted.<br />

Would this be a better way to test the conductivity of materials? E<br />

7. What would you prefer to make a circuit out of? In their science journals, students list practical<br />

materials to use for electrical circuits and other materials they may want to test. C QP<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 115


Lesson 4<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Solar-powered circuit investigation<br />

Hypothesis:<br />

Which materials will act as conductors of electricity and which will be insulators?<br />

Materials:<br />

• 9-V battery<br />

• LEDs<br />

• Tape/Glue<br />

• Lead pencil (use as shading)<br />

List the variables:<br />

Controlled:<br />

Independent:<br />

• Aluminium foil<br />

• Plastic wrapper<br />

• Playdough<br />

• Twine<br />

Dependent (what will change as a <strong>res</strong>ult of the independent variable? How will it be<br />

measured?):<br />

Procedure:<br />

1. Create a drawing or simple shape—you can be creative by<br />

drawing something that has a light that you can bring to life,<br />

like a torch or car. Make sure the path is a circuit and leave a<br />

space for the battery and a space for the LED light.<br />

2. Make five copies of the design to use as a template.<br />

Cover the path on each template using one of the materials in<br />

your list of independent variables to test the f<strong>low</strong> of electricity.<br />

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3. Tape each leg of an LED light to each end of the path, labelling the positive and<br />

negative leg of the LED.<br />

4. Place the battery to connect the other gap, making sure the positive part of battery is<br />

connected to the path that leads to the positive leg of the LED.<br />

5. Record your dependent variable <strong>res</strong>ults in a table or graphic organiser of your choice<br />

using a computer or iPad ® .<br />

6. Record an oral conclusion about what the <strong>res</strong>ults showed and whether your hypothesis<br />

was supported. What materials are good electrical conductors?<br />

BATTERY<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 5<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

What is a switch and how does it work? How is it<br />

shown in a circuit diagram?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students predict and investigate the effects<br />

of changes to circuits with the use of a<br />

switch.<br />

Background information<br />

• A switch in a circuit acts as a break in the<br />

f<strong>low</strong> of electrons. When the switch is on, the<br />

circuit is closed and when the switch is off<br />

the circuit is open.<br />

• Different batteries can be used with<br />

different voltage globes. A D-size battery<br />

will power a small 1.2-V light. The battery<br />

listed in this experiment is a 9-V battery, so a<br />

cor<strong>res</strong>ponding light should be used.<br />

• Store-bought science switches can also<br />

be used in this lesson to create more<br />

authentic looking circuits that can be<br />

threaded through a shoebox, such as<br />

the demonstration shown in the video at<br />

.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• investigating how electricity is affected by<br />

components like a switch<br />

• rep<strong>res</strong>enting electrical circuits with technical<br />

diagrams and symbols<br />

• using a range of software and iPad ®<br />

applications to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and transmit<br />

information<br />

• investigating processes involved in<br />

constructing an open and closed circuit<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use page 120 and submitted files from<br />

Steps 4 and 6 as formative assessments of<br />

students' understanding of how to connect a<br />

switch to a circuit.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online video—The power of circuits at<br />

<br />

• Digital copy of circuit diagram from<br />

Lesson 3 on page 113<br />

• iPad ® with drawing application and<br />

audio recording application<br />

• Digital copy of page 119<br />

• Copies of page 120<br />

• Online video—Electric circuits on paper:<br />

The basics at <br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 117


Lesson 5<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Watch the video about electrical circuits and switches at .<br />

2. Display the circuit diagram from Lesson 3 on page 113, and recall the symbols used to rep<strong>res</strong>ent<br />

a battery and a light. How do you think a switch might be added to this diagram? In pairs, students<br />

predict how a switch may be indicated in a circuit diagram using an iPad ® drawing application. QP<br />

Development:<br />

3. Display page 119 for students to compare their predicted diagram to. Note: The switch is shown by<br />

the part that <strong>res</strong>embles a gate. This diagram shows a switch that is off. How would the diagram look<br />

if the switch was on? (The gate symbol would be closed and the circuit would be intact and shown<br />

as ). PA<br />

4. In pairs, students fol<strong>low</strong> the experiment plan on page 120 to make a circuit and a switch using<br />

drawing pins and a paperclip, while testing different connection combinations. Students then draw<br />

the circuit diagram that rep<strong>res</strong>ents the best physical layout, using an computer or iPad ® application,<br />

and record an oral explanation of why they think the other circuit combinations did or did not work.<br />

QP PC PA<br />

5. As a class, watch the video about paper circuits with a switch created from 3-V coin batteries at<br />

(if time is limited, you can skip through the 3–4 minute period).<br />

Discuss how this switch is similar and/or different to the switch in the circuit the students created,<br />

by drawing a Venn diagram on the whiteboard to complete as a class. Discuss the benefits/<br />

disadvantages of both types. Which switch do you think works better? How could your switch have<br />

been improved? PA E<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students should work in a small group together with teacher assistance to<br />

systematically attempt different connections, to establish a working circuit.<br />

• More capable students can add a second switch to their circuit and test if it works, or make a<br />

switch from different materials.<br />

Reflection:<br />

6. Students individually describe the required featu<strong>res</strong> for a switch to work effectively in a circuit, by<br />

writing in their science journals or making an oral recording and emailing the file to the teacher.<br />

C<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 5<br />

Physical layout from video<br />

Circuit diagrams<br />

Equivalent circuit diagram<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 119


Lesson 5<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Hypothesis:<br />

Make a switch experiment<br />

To incorporate a switch into a circuit, how should it be<br />

connected?<br />

Procedure:<br />

Materials:<br />

• Piece of cardboard<br />

• Two metal drawing pins<br />

• Large metal paperclip<br />

• Wire<br />

• Bulb of 5 W or less<br />

• 9-V battery<br />

1. Make a switch using the drawing pins and paperclip, by p<strong>res</strong>sing the drawing pins into<br />

the cardboard with the paperclip hooked under one drawing pin.<br />

2. Create the <strong>res</strong>t of your circuit using the wire, battery and bulb.<br />

3. Take a photograph of the connection that makes the light work when the switch is on.<br />

4. Test the effect of applying the fol<strong>low</strong>ing actions to your working circuit. Remember to<br />

return the circuit to its original position, before doing the next action.<br />

Action:<br />

Swap the position of the battery<br />

and the switch.<br />

Swap the position of the battery<br />

and the light.<br />

Swap the position of the switch<br />

and the light.<br />

Connect the light the other way<br />

around.<br />

Connect the battery the other<br />

way around.<br />

Conclusion:<br />

Effect:<br />

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Using an iPad ® application or a computer, draw a circuit diagram showing how a switch<br />

should be connected. Create an audio recording over your diagram explaining why some<br />

of the tests did not make the light work.<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 6<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> inquiry focus:<br />

How does a light bulb work? What are the<br />

featu<strong>res</strong> of light globes?<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills:<br />

• Questioning and predicting QP<br />

• Planning and conducting PC<br />

• Processing and analysing data and<br />

information PA<br />

• Evaluating E<br />

• Communicating C<br />

Background information<br />

• Thomas Edison is credited as being the<br />

inventor of the first practical incandescent<br />

light globe, which is still used today,<br />

although s<strong>low</strong>ly being replaced by more<br />

efficient LED globes.<br />

• Tungsten wire is used as the filament<br />

due to its ability to withstand very high<br />

temperatu<strong>res</strong>. The filament is made by<br />

coiling a two-metre tungsten wire, which<br />

then gets coiled again to make the small<br />

2.5-cm length of the filament. Using<br />

a long coiled wire al<strong>low</strong>s for greater<br />

<strong>res</strong>istance, which s<strong>low</strong>s the f<strong>low</strong> of<br />

electrons and al<strong>low</strong>s for a greater buildup<br />

of energy. Eventually, 10% of the<br />

energy is visible white light energy, while<br />

the <strong>res</strong>t is heat energy.<br />

• The filament is supported by two wi<strong>res</strong><br />

connected to a glass mount, and two stiff<br />

contact wi<strong>res</strong> that form part of the circuit.<br />

• The globe is connected to the circuit by<br />

two metal contacts, one at the foot of the<br />

globe and the other at the side. Current<br />

f<strong>low</strong>s from the circuit through one<br />

contact, up the stiff wire to the filament,<br />

then down the other stiff wire to the other<br />

contact and back into the circuit.<br />

• All light globes are sealed and the air<br />

replaced with argon, an inert gas that<br />

does not react with any elements. In<br />

the p<strong>res</strong>ence of oxygen, the filament in<br />

an incandescent globe would burn out<br />

before reaching the temperature required<br />

for releasing visible light energy.<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour:<br />

• Students investigate the use of electricity and<br />

predict how light globes work, including which<br />

materials are best to use for the filament.<br />

• Students explore how Thomas Edison and<br />

Joseph Swan changed the way people lived.<br />

Technology/Engineering/Mathematics links:<br />

• investigating the processes involved in light<br />

globes using electrical energy to generate light<br />

• investigating the featu<strong>res</strong> of a light globe<br />

• observing properties of materials used to<br />

construct a light globe<br />

• using a range of software to create visual and<br />

audio rep<strong>res</strong>entations of information<br />

Assessment focus:<br />

• Use pages 123-124 and the conclusions from<br />

Step 7 as a formative assessment of the student’s<br />

understanding of how a light globe works and<br />

their ability to evaluate the effectiveness of<br />

methods used in their experiment.<br />

Resources<br />

• Online video—Edison’s light bulb at <br />

• Light globe diagram at <br />

• iPad ® with Popplet, video recorder and audio<br />

recorder applications<br />

• Light globe diagram with labels at <br />

• Online video—How a light bulb works at<br />

<br />

• Copies of pages 123 and 124<br />

• Experiment materials per group: 0.5-mm<br />

piece of pencil lead (used in mechanical<br />

pencils), copper wire, picture hanging/hobby<br />

wire, 6 × D-size batteries, electrical tape,<br />

mason jar and lid, red and black wi<strong>res</strong> with<br />

alligator clips on both ends, timer/stopwatch<br />

• Video about engineering behind the<br />

filament in a light globe, linked to QR<br />

code on page 123, at <br />

• Online video—Build a light bulb at <br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 121


Lesson 6<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson plan<br />

Introduction:<br />

1. Watch the video Edison’s light bulb at , as an introduction to the<br />

inventor of the incandescent light globe, Thomas Edison.<br />

2. Display the diagram of a light globe (at full-screen size) at . In pairs,<br />

using an iPad ® application such as Popplet, students answer the fol<strong>low</strong>ing questions and attempt<br />

to label the numbered parts on the diagram. Thinking about electrical circuits and the f<strong>low</strong> of<br />

electrons, how do you think the original light globe Edison invented to light up New York worked?<br />

Can you guess what the numbered parts are? QP<br />

Development:<br />

3. Students share their ideas of how they think a light globe works. Reveal what the numbered parts<br />

on the light globe are, as listed next to the image under the heading Construction at . Students may reattempt to explain how a light globe works based on the<br />

revealed parts. QP PA<br />

4. Watch a light globe light up in s<strong>low</strong> motion at in order to see the<br />

simple electrical circuit at work. Students then conduct their own experiment in small groups, to<br />

establish the role and importance of the filament in a light globe. This relates to the properties of<br />

the material used as, in a real light globe, tungsten is used due to its ability to be heated to high<br />

temperatu<strong>res</strong>. Using page 123, students watch a video about the engineering behind the filament<br />

by scanning the QR code or typing the URL into a web browser. They predict which material will<br />

work best from the options being tested —copper wire, pencil lead and picture hanging/hobby wire<br />

and then conduct the experiment fol<strong>low</strong>ing the procedure. QP PA<br />

5. Students record their time data in a table, and record a video of the three tests. PA<br />

6. Using page 124, students scan the QR code or go to to watch<br />

a variation of the experiment. Students answer the questions on page 124 to determine if they<br />

should have changed anything to improve their experiment. E<br />

Differentiation<br />

• Less capable students can work together in a small group with a teacher to guide setting up the<br />

experiment and to assist with the observations.<br />

• More capable students can select two other materials to test as the filament and predict whether<br />

they think they will perform better than either the copper, pencil lead or hobby wire just tested.<br />

Reflection:<br />

7. Individually, students either write a conclusion by answering the questions on page 124, or create<br />

a voice over on the video of the best-performing filament, to explain how a light globe works and<br />

what properties make this filament the best. Based on the test observations, students answer the<br />

question Why is tungsten the superior material for a filament? PA C<br />

8. If time al<strong>low</strong>s, discuss other light globes, such as fluo<strong>res</strong>cent and LED, and how they are different<br />

to the original incandescent globes. Watch a video as a brief introduction to this concept of new<br />

forms of light globes at .<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Lesson 6<br />

Homemade light globe experiment – 1<br />

Scan the QR code or go to to watch a video<br />

about the design of the filament in a light globe.<br />

What kind of filament will work best for a homemade light globe? Why?<br />

Materials:<br />

• 0.5-mm piece of pencil lead<br />

• Copper wire<br />

• Picture hanging/hobby wire<br />

• 6 × D-size batteries<br />

• Electrical tape<br />

• Mason jar<br />

• Red and black wi<strong>res</strong> with<br />

alligator clips on both ends<br />

• Timer/Stopwatch<br />

• Safety glasses<br />

Procedure:<br />

List the variables:<br />

1. Create the wire structure to act as the contact<br />

wi<strong>res</strong>, with the alligator clips to be used to hold<br />

the test material in place as the filament.<br />

2. Use the electrical tape to attach the ‘contact<br />

wi<strong>res</strong>’ to the surface if needed.<br />

3. Place the jar over the top of the upright wi<strong>res</strong>.<br />

• Controlled—What will stay the same?<br />

• Independent—What will be changed?<br />

• Dependent—How will it be measured?<br />

4. Connect the D batteries together with electrical tape, ensuring the positive and<br />

negative ends are placed together.<br />

5. Attempt to light your globe by connecting the alligator clips to the ends of the joined<br />

batteries.<br />

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6. Create a video of the <strong>res</strong>ults for each test material and use a stopwatch to time how<br />

long the ‘filament’ burns for. Record the <strong>res</strong>ults in a table.<br />

Was your hypothesis supported?<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 123


Lesson 6<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Homemade light globe experiment – 2<br />

Evaluation:<br />

1. Watch a variation of the experiment by scanning the QR code or<br />

going to .<br />

2. What elements of the experiment in the video do you like? Explain why.<br />

3. What would you change about the experiment you conducted?<br />

4. How would these changes improve your experiment?<br />

Conclusion:<br />

1. How does a light globe work? Use your knowledge of circuits to explain.<br />

2. Based on the <strong>res</strong>ults, what is the best material<br />

for a filament in a homemade light globe?<br />

3. What properties are required for a filament?<br />

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4. Why is tungsten the superior material for a filament?<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Assessment<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>Science</strong> knowledge<br />

Electrical energy can be transferred and transformed in electrical circuits and can be generated from<br />

a range of sources (ACSSU097)<br />

Indicators<br />

• Identifies non-renewable fossil fuels used to generate electricity.<br />

• Uses a diagram to rep<strong>res</strong>ent the process used to turn fossil fuels into electricity.<br />

• Identifies wind, water and solar power as renewable sources of energy used to generate electricity.<br />

• Uses a diagram to rep<strong>res</strong>ent the process used to turn the energy from f<strong>low</strong>ing water into electricity.<br />

• Describes and identifies examples of electrical conductors.<br />

• Identifies symbols in an electrical circuit diagram.<br />

• Translates a physical layout into a circuit diagram.<br />

• Identifies the components required to make a simple circuit work, including a light, switch and<br />

power source.<br />

• Draws the electrical circuit in an incandescent light globe.<br />

Answers<br />

Pages 126 and 127<br />

1. coal, oil, gas<br />

2.<br />

• Fossil fuels are burnt and heat water to create steam.<br />

• The steam turns a turbine.<br />

• The turbine turns the generator which produces<br />

electricity.<br />

• The electricity goes to a transformer to turn it into<br />

the right voltage for homes. (This step is optional. It is<br />

sufficient for students to state the first three steps only.)<br />

3. solar power, wind, water (geothermal energy is also acceptable)<br />

4.<br />

• Water f<strong>low</strong>s onto the blades of a turbine.<br />

• The turbine spins.<br />

• This turns a generator which produces electricity.<br />

5. An electrical conductor al<strong>low</strong>s the f<strong>low</strong> of electricity to pass through. Examples include most metals<br />

like copper, aluminium, iron, steel as well as playdough and lead pencil.<br />

6. In order of the listed symbols: light, switch on, switch off, power source/battery, wire<br />

7.<br />

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8. (a) Reason: There is no power source.<br />

(c) Reason: The switch is off. Filament<br />

9. A simple diagram of the internal<br />

Filament<br />

structure will suffice, showing the contact wire up<br />

Filament<br />

to the filament and then the contact wire going down out of the filament into the<br />

base. This is the circuit the electricity f<strong>low</strong>s.<br />

Filament<br />

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Assessment<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

1. Name three non-renewable fossil fuels used to generate electricity.<br />

2. Draw and label a f<strong>low</strong>chart of how fossil fuels generate electricity.<br />

3. Name three renewable sources of energy used to generate electricity.<br />

4. Draw and label a diagram of how energy from water is turned into electricity.<br />

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5. Describe what it means if a material is a good electrical conductor. Give three examples.<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Assessment<br />

6. Match each symbol to the correct component of an electrical circuit.<br />

• • wire<br />

• • light<br />

• • switch off<br />

• • power source/battery<br />

• • switch on<br />

7. Draw a circuit diagram of the fol<strong>low</strong>ing setup:<br />

on<br />

off<br />

BATTERY<br />

8. Circle the circuit diagrams that will not make a light turn on. Explain why.<br />

(a) (b) (c)<br />

9. Draw the circuit that makes an incandescent light bulb work and label which part is the<br />

filament.<br />

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6 A <strong>STEM</strong> APPROACH 127


<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Buzz of electricity<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project overview<br />

Students design and create a set of buzzers to be used for a quiz show. The quiz show will<br />

be based on concepts about electricity, so a series of questions will need to be prepared in<br />

digital format to display as slides on a whiteboard. Answers should also be provided.<br />

Concepts overview:<br />

<strong>Science</strong><br />

• Apply knowledge of how electrical circuits work, including a switch and a motor.<br />

• Apply knowledge of how turbines and rotors can be used to create mechanical energy to<br />

power something else.<br />

• Plan and conduct an investigation to work out how to make a buzzer sound and evaluate the<br />

investigation.<br />

• Construct a circuit diagram to rep<strong>res</strong>ent the buzzer components and connections.<br />

• Communicate knowledge of electricity concepts through the creation of quiz questions and<br />

answers.<br />

Technology/Engineering<br />

• Investigate how a switch and an electrical circuit can be used to create sound in the form of a<br />

buzzer.<br />

• Apply the design process to plan, create and evaluate a buzzer.<br />

• Plan a series of quiz cards.<br />

• While working collaboratively, use project management processes to ensure accountability of<br />

both group members when planning, organising, controlling <strong>res</strong>ources, monitoring time lines<br />

and meeting design criteria.<br />

• Use a computer program or application to write a series of questions as a slide show for a<br />

quiz.<br />

Mathematics<br />

• Calculate fractions of a whole number to determine the number of quiz cards that need to be<br />

created based on the criteria given.<br />

Alternative project ideas:<br />

• Students design and create an intruder alarm that goes off when someone touches a door<br />

handle. The video at provides some insight into how this can<br />

be accomplished. It is based on the use of a simple switch that closes a circuit upon p<strong>res</strong>sure<br />

from contact.<br />

• Students design and create a set of party decorations for end-of-term celebrations, by lighting<br />

up balloons using LEDs and a circuit. Go to and<br />

look for the Light up balloons video to get further information on how this can be done.<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> curriculum links<br />

SCIENCE CURRICULUM<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Understanding<br />

• Electrical energy can be transferred and transformed in electrical circuits and can be generated from a range of sources<br />

(ACSSU097)<br />

<strong>Science</strong> as a Human Endeavour<br />

• Scientific knowledge is used to solve problems and inform personal and community decisions (ACSHE100)<br />

<strong>Science</strong> Inquiry Skills<br />

Planning and conducting<br />

• Identify, plan and apply the elements of scientific investigations to answer questions and solve problems using equipment<br />

and materials safely and identifying potential risks (ACSIS103)<br />

Processing and analysing data and information<br />

• Construct and use a range of rep<strong>res</strong>entations, including tables and graphs, to rep<strong>res</strong>ent and describe observations, patterns<br />

or relationships in data using digital technologies as appropriate (ACSIS107)<br />

Evaluating<br />

• Reflect on and suggest improvements to scientific investigations (ACSIS108)<br />

Communicating<br />

• Communicate ideas, explanations and processes using scientific rep<strong>res</strong>entations in a variety of ways, including multi-modal<br />

texts (ACSIS110)<br />

TECHNOLOGIES CURRICULUM<br />

Design and Technologies Knowledge and Understanding<br />

• Investigate how electrical energy can control movement, sound or light in a designed product or system (ACTDEK020)<br />

• Investigate characteristics and properties of a range of materials, systems, components, tools and equipment and evaluate<br />

the impact of their use (ACTDEK023)<br />

Design and Technologies Processes and Production Skills<br />

• Critique needs or opportunities for designing, and investigate materials, components, tools, equipment and processes to<br />

achieve intended designed solutions (ACTDEP024)<br />

• Generate, develop and communicate design ideas and processes for audiences using appropriate technical terms and<br />

graphical rep<strong>res</strong>entation techniques (ACTDEP025)<br />

• Select appropriate materials, components, tools, equipment and techniques and apply safe procedu<strong>res</strong> to make designed<br />

solutions (ACTDEP026)<br />

• Negotiate criteria for success that include sustainability to evaluate design ideas, processes and solutions (ACTDEP027)<br />

• Develop project plans that include consideration of <strong>res</strong>ources when making designed solutions individually and<br />

collaboratively (ACTDEP028)<br />

Digital Technologies Processes and Production Skills<br />

• Acquire, store and validate different types of data, and use a range of software to interpret and visualise data to create<br />

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information (ACTDIP016)<br />

MATHEMATICS CURRICULUM<br />

Number and Algebra<br />

• Find a simple fraction of a quantity where the <strong>res</strong>ult is a whole number, with and without digital technologies<br />

(ACMNA127)<br />

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<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Teacher notes<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project:<br />

Students design and create a set of buzzers with an electrical circuit. The buzzers should include<br />

a DC motor that turns an object to strike another object which will generate noise like a buzzer,<br />

when a switch is p<strong>res</strong>sed on. A set of quiz questions and answers will also need to be prepared<br />

for use in a quiz play-off.<br />

Estimated duration: 4–6 weeks<br />

1. Introduce the project<br />

• Display page 131 and read through the<br />

problem, the task and the criteria, and clarify<br />

any queries students have. Watch a video of<br />

a game to introduce the idea of an online/<br />

TV quiz, at .<br />

Note: You only need to watch the first three<br />

minutes.<br />

• Divide the class into groups of four and<br />

give each group a copy of the project steps<br />

on page 132, so students can manage and<br />

assess their prog<strong>res</strong>s.<br />

2. Investigate<br />

• Students revise circuit diagrams, including<br />

wi<strong>res</strong>, power sources, switches and lights.<br />

Students explore or revise how swapping<br />

out a light for a DC motor changes the wire<br />

connections, if at all.<br />

• Students <strong>res</strong>earch how a DC motor can be<br />

used to move an attachment that strikes<br />

another object to create a sound. The video<br />

at provides<br />

inspiration about how to do this, but you<br />

can decide whether students need to view<br />

this, or if it is more suitable just for those less<br />

capable students. Otherwise, al<strong>low</strong> students<br />

to work out what will cause a sound from a<br />

striking action and how they can make the<br />

items strike against each other. Note: In the<br />

video, a drill and soldering iron are used but<br />

this is not necessary as it can be adapted to<br />

suit the supplies and equipment available in<br />

the classroom.<br />

• Depending on supplies, students use a<br />

button switch as shown in the video, or<br />

create their own switch based on their<br />

knowledge from previous lessons and<br />

by conducting some further <strong>res</strong>earch. A<br />

different kind of switch is shown at .<br />

• Provide time for students to familiarise<br />

themselves with how to use a program<br />

such as PowerPoint or Keynote to create<br />

and edit a p<strong>res</strong>entation that includes<br />

images, sounds and so on. Students may<br />

use another program in order to add other<br />

featu<strong>res</strong>, such as voice overs.<br />

3. Design, plan and manage<br />

• Students plan their wiring and connections<br />

by drawing a circuit diagram, and plan how<br />

to make their switch, if not using a storebought<br />

one.<br />

• Students plan their quiz by calculating how<br />

many of each type of question is required,<br />

and then writing the questions and<br />

answers. The number of cards of each type<br />

are: 7 electrical circuits, 2 solar energy, 4<br />

fossil fuels, 2 hydroelectricity, 3 conductivity<br />

and 3 light globes.<br />

• Students collect or locate all the materials<br />

they will need to create the buzzer.<br />

4. Create<br />

• Students create the circuit and buzzer, and<br />

the quiz slides.<br />

5. Evaluate and refine<br />

• Students evaluate the buzzers and quiz<br />

to ensure they meet all the criteria listed<br />

on page 131 and make any changes<br />

necessary.<br />

6. Communicate<br />

• Students share their quiz and buzzers<br />

with the class by playing against another<br />

team. They may also wish to email<br />

other classmates their quiz to test their<br />

knowledge.<br />

• Individually, students complete the selfassessment<br />

on page 133 to evaluate how<br />

well their team cooperated together to<br />

produce the buzzers and quiz slides.<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Project brief<br />

BUZZ OF ELECTRICITY<br />

The problem<br />

You've been tasked with creating an end-of-term science quiz for your class.<br />

Buzzers are not part of the classroom budget so you need to make do with your<br />

classroom supplies and make your own buzzers for the quiz.<br />

The task<br />

Design and create a set of four buzzers to be used in a quiz. You will also need<br />

to write and create a set of questions to display on the whiteboard as slides,<br />

fol<strong>low</strong>ed by the answers. The quiz must be about electricity!<br />

Things to consider<br />

QUIZ<br />

• You must work in groups of four.<br />

• One prototype buzzer should be designed, produced and tested first and then<br />

three more should be made.<br />

• A circuit diagram must be drawn to show how the buzzer will work as a switch.<br />

• You must include a rotor mechanism powered by a DC motor, that will use<br />

mechanical energy to turn an attachment that creates a sound.<br />

• There must be 21 quiz questions: 1 3<br />

of which must be about electrical circuits;<br />

1<br />

7 of the remaining questions about solar energy; 1 3<br />

of the remaining questions<br />

about how fossil fuels create electricity; 1 4<br />

of the remaining questions about<br />

hydroelectricity; 1 2<br />

of the remaining questions about conductivity; and the <strong>res</strong>t<br />

about light globes.<br />

• The quiz questions must be written in digital format using a program or application<br />

such as PowerPoint or Keynote, so they can be displayed on a whiteboard during<br />

the quiz. The answer slide should fol<strong>low</strong>. You may add images and sounds to the<br />

slides to make it like a real quiz show.<br />

• You will then play-off against another team, using each others’ quiz questions.<br />

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<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Investigate<br />

Project steps<br />

Identify the components of a circuit and recall how to draw a circuit diagram.<br />

Research which kind of switch you will use, that will turn the buzzer on when p<strong>res</strong>sed.<br />

Do you have access to a ready-made push switch or will you make one like in the video at<br />

? Is there a better way?<br />

Research what a DC motor can be used for and what things can be attached to it to spin.<br />

How can the spinning DC motor attachment make a sound? What kind of attachment<br />

would make a good buzzer sound? Could the attachment make a sound by striking another<br />

object? What kind of sound do you want your buzzer to make?<br />

Learn how to use an iPad ® application or computer software to create a slide and add<br />

images or sound.<br />

Design, plan and manage<br />

Decide which materials will be used to create a sound for the buzzer.<br />

Decide which kind of switch will be used to activate the buzzer sound when pushed<br />

during the quiz. Sketch a design if creating a new switch.<br />

Plan the circuit and draw a circuit diagram to show the connections.<br />

Plan the quiz questions by calculating how many cards of each type are required<br />

according to the criteria, then writing the questions and answers in your science journal.<br />

Collect or locate all the materials you will need to create the circuit, rotor and buzzer.<br />

Create<br />

Create the buzzer and build the circuit.<br />

Use an iPad ® application such as PowerPoint or Keynote, or similar computer software to<br />

create the question and answer slides.<br />

Add images, sound effects or voice overs to the slides to make it like a real quiz show.<br />

Evaluate and refine<br />

Ensure the buzzer works and is loud enough to hear during a quiz, and make any changes<br />

necessary.<br />

Ensure the slides contain the correct number of electricity-related questions, and make<br />

any changes necessary.<br />

Communicate<br />

Share your quiz and buzzers with the class by playing against an opposing team, using<br />

each others' quiz questions and buzzers. You can also email the quiz to other people for<br />

them to test their knowledge.<br />

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Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Self-assessment<br />

Student name:<br />

Date:<br />

<strong>STEM</strong> project: Buzz of electricity<br />

1. Colour a face to rate how cooperatively your team worked.<br />

All group members contributed ideas to the team.<br />

All group members listened carefully to the ideas<br />

of others.<br />

All group members encouraged others to<br />

contribute their thoughts and opinions.<br />

All group members spoke <strong>res</strong>pectfully to other<br />

group members.<br />

All group members compromised (when needed)<br />

to create the best possible product.<br />

2. List three ways the team helped each other to create the product.<br />

3. List one difficulty the group encountered when working as a team.<br />

4. How could a similar issue be <strong>res</strong>olved in future projects?<br />

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5. What was the most enjoyable part of the project?<br />

6. What was the least enjoyable part of the project?<br />

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<strong>STEM</strong> project<br />

Physical sciences<br />

MAKE IT SPARK<br />

Group assessment rubric<br />

Group members:<br />

Project task:<br />

Design and create a set of buzzers with an electrical circuit. The buzzer sound should be created<br />

from a DC motor that turns an object to strike another object which will generate noise like a<br />

buzzer, when a switch is p<strong>res</strong>sed on. A set of quiz questions and answers will also need to be<br />

prepared for use in a quiz play off.<br />

CRITERIA<br />

<strong>Science</strong> knowledge<br />

Applies knowledge of how circuits are constructed including a rotor component, and how<br />

switches work.<br />

<strong>Science</strong> skills<br />

Plans and conducts online <strong>res</strong>earch about different switches, DC motors and mechanisms<br />

to create sound.<br />

Creates a circuit diagram to show the connections and components of the buzzer circuit.<br />

Evaluates the success of the connections and components of the circuit.<br />

Communicates science understanding correctly, clearly and concisely, using scientific<br />

terminology in the form of quiz questions and answers about electricity.<br />

Technology/Engineering skills<br />

Plans, designs and creates a working buzzer.<br />

Selects appropriate materials to create the circuit and to make an audible buzzer sound.<br />

Evaluates designed products to ensure they meet the criteria and makes any necessary<br />

changes.<br />

Uses an iPad ® application or computer software to create a series of slides, that incorporate<br />

images, text, and sound effects or voice overs, like a real quiz show.<br />

Uses a whiteboard to display the slides, and email to send the file to other classmates.<br />

Mathematics skills<br />

Calculates fractions of whole numbers to establish the number of required quiz questions<br />

for each concept.<br />

Group skills<br />

All group members contributed fairly and appropriately.<br />

All group members collaborated and communicated effectively.<br />

Group members were able to <strong>res</strong>olve conflicts independently.<br />

1 = Be<strong>low</strong> expectations<br />

2 = Meeting expectations<br />

3 = Above expectations<br />

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