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Lesson Plan: STEM Project - Solving a Problem

Subject:  Science

Grade: 3-5

Lesson Objective: To solve a real-world problem

Nex Gen Science Standard:  3-5-ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.

Preparation Needed:

  • Make up small groups of students to work together on the project

PART 1

Starter:

Say:

  • What do you think is the most important thing to remember when working together?  (Allow the students to answer.)

Main:

Say:

  • Today, you are going to be split into small groups of students to work on solving a problem that I will give you.
  • While solving the problem, you are going to need to use everything that you have learned about what different materials are good for.
  • Now, I am going to read a situation to you.  I need you to listen carefully because in this situation is the problem that you will need to solve.
  • There are two different situations.  Listen to each carefully and then you will decide with your group which problem you would like to solve.

Read the following situations to the students:

  • A musician who plays the trumpet has to practice for a concert that she has coming up.  She lives in a house with four other people.  The other people do not like to listen to her practice.  The musician needs a room that she can practice in that will not bother the other people.  She needs the room to be soundproof.
  • A chef has started a new business.  He cooks food for people and then takes it to them so that they do not have to cook.  He makes the food ahead of time and keeps it in a refrigerator.  He needs to take the food to the people’s homes and keep it cold.  He needs a way to safely transport the cold food.
  • Listen carefully to the students you will be working with (provide the students with their groups).  Then, take your notebook and something to write with, get up and find a space in the room to work with your group.  (Allow time to read the list of groups and have the students find their groups and a place to sit together).
  • The first thing that you will be doing is choosing whether you want to figure out how to sound proof a room or safely transport cold food.
  • Then, you will start by figuring how what questions to ask and what your hypothesis will be.

Ask: "Does anyone have any questions"?   (Allow about 15 minutes for the students to start working on the problem that they chose.)

Feedback:

Say:

  • What are you having a difficult time with as you start to work on solving your problem?  (Allow the students to answer.)

PART 2

Starter:

Say:

  • What do you think is the best way to share the solution that you came up with to your problem?  (Allow the students to answer.)

Main:

Say:

  • We are going to talk about how to present the solution to your problem to the rest of the class.
  • You will finish solving your problem as a group and then present what you found.
  • A good way to present information is by talking about it, but also by showing something.
  • You can draw a picture of what you came up with to show as you talk about your solution.
  • You have about 10 minutes to finish working and get ready to present your solution to the rest of the class. You are now going to present your solution to the class.  Please choose one person to tell the class which problem you chose and the solution you came up with.
  • Raise your hand if your group would like to first.  (Allow about 20 minutes for the students to present their solution to the rest of the class.)

Feedback:

Say:

  • Do you think any of the solutions that were presented would really work?  Why or why not? (Allow the students to answer.)

 

Written by Kimberly Greacen, Education World® Contributing Writer

Kimbery is an educator with extensive experience in curriculum writing and developing instructional materials to align with Common Core State Standards and Bloom's Taxonomy.

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