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Lesson Plan

Day: Wednesday
Year: 8

Date: 11-Feb-15 Time: 0940-1000

Learning Area: Science Topic: Scientific

Title of Lesson: What can we observe when a candle
Curriculum content description: (from ACARA)
Science inquiry skills planning and conducting.
In fair tests, measure and control variables, and select equipment to collect data
with accuracy appropriate to the task (ACSIS141).

Students prior knowledge and experience:

(Outline what the students already know about this topic)

Students have prior experience in the general concept of the scientific

Students have been working on describing the aspects of simple
experimentation controlled, dependent and independent variables

Learning purpose:

(May refer to the Elaborations of the curriculum content

description here)

To provide students with the knowledge to value both quantitative and

qualitative measurements when conducting laboratory experiments or field

Learning objectives:

On completion of this lesson,

students will be able to:
(What will students know and be able to do
at the completion of the lesson specific,
concise and attainable objectives)
Understand the difference

(Explain how you will know that lesson
objective have been achieved / monitor
student learning)

between quantitative and

qualitative observations in
Recognise that numerous
observations can be made from
relatively simple phenomena.

(a) Could students differentiate

between qualitative and
quantitative observations?
o To be assessed by
questioning in the
introduction of the lesson
and by the tabulation of
small group observations at
the conclusion of the
(b) Did students take sufficient
o To be evaluated by collating
total observations from
each group and comparing
to the research (100+

Preparation and Resources:

(Detail what resources will be used and what other preparation of the learning environment
will be required)
Collect ca. 6 standard candles and holders (paper cups) to be used amongst

a class of ~ 28. 4 students per group

Brief students on the importance of lab safety when conducting even simple
Quick check of fire extinguisher

Catering for diversity

(detail any adjustments considerations for

educational/resource adjustments)


This simple experiment requires no adjustment considerations for diversity

Prior to the conduct of the lesson, I will consult with the mentor teacher to
determine if there are any children with behavior management issues that
may need to be considered.

Learning Experiences:
1. Introduction:

(How will I engage the learners?)

0940 0945 (5 mins).

Engage the students briefly introduce myself again and
then say very little while silently pulling out a candle and
carefully examining it like it is the most interesting object on
the planet.
Question the students on quantitative vs. qualitative
observations and ask them what they think they could
observe about a candle burning. Ask the students about how
we observe. What did they do this morning? Observe
anything interesting.
2. Sequence of learning experiences: (What will you do to help the
students achieve the learning objectives? What tasks and activities will
the students be involved in to help achieve the learning objectives?)

0945-0955 (10 mins).

Have students observe the candles without them being lit.
Quantitative and qualitative measurements to be taken and
written down.
At the end of the time (5mins), ask students how many they
have and ask if they have anything interesting to report!
Students instructed to light the candles (ensuring they are in
their holders). Ask students as they make observations for ~
3mins to focus on any points that they may be missing.
3. Lesson conclusion: (How will you summarise the learning and relate it
to the lesson objectives?)

0955 1000 (5 mins)

Ensure that all students have extinguished their candles.
Ask each group to tally up the results of quantitative and
quantitative discussion

Go around the room and ask students who has made the
most observations (potential reward for best result).
Link back to quantitative vs. qualitative with targeted
questioning to ensure students understand the difference.
Finish by mentioning that a scientist dedicated their life to
examining burning candles and made over 100 observations!
Link to next lessons/experiments on the importance of being
vigilant in making observations as their investigations
progress through the term.

Lesson Evaluation:
(Reflect on the lesson. What worked? What did not work? What would you change? Why?)

What went well:

At the end of the simple experiment, students were engaged and were keen
(and able) to answer questions about the number of observations made and
who had found the most unique observations.
Students behaved well with the candle and matches, exhibiting maturity and
trust with handling the equipment.
End-of-lesson questioning revealed that students had grasped the concept,
importance and difference of qualitative vs. qualitative observations
What could be improved:
There was some confusion with the students at the start as to what the
difference between quantitative and qualitative observations were. In future,
I would provide additional examples so that there is no confusion as to the
types of observations that can be made.
Students were unclear within their groups that they needed to record, in
separate columns, the different observations (qualitative vs quantitative).
Next time I run the lesson I would put an example on the board or prepare
sheets for the students to write their observations on.

I underestimated the time that students took to do simple preparation tasks

like ruling lines in their books for the different columns in which observations
should be recorded. I would allow additional time for this in the future.