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What makes plants grow best: using a data-based STEM approach to find out

Citation

Wright, S and Watson, J and Smith, C and Fitzallen, N, What makes plants grow best: using a data-based STEM approach to find out, Teaching Science, 67, (2) pp. 37-50. ISSN 1839-2946 (2021) [Professional, Refereed Article]

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Abstract

Life as we know it would not be possible without plants. Plants supply food to many organisms (including people), produce oxygen, absorb carbon dioxide from the air, provide products for human use, and homes for many other living things. It is not surprising, therefore, that plant growth is a familiar topic in the primary school science curriculum. This paper describes an extension of the topic of plant growth for Year 6 students to include elements from the mathematics, in particular, statistics, and technologies curricula. In doing so, the importance of carefully collecting and analysing data to make decisions illustrates the way in which the practice of statistics supports learning outcomes in science. In the activity described here, students decide on the details for their science inquiry about plant growth to answer the question "What makes plants grow best?", collect and analyse data over time using digital technology, and present a report of their findings to their class.

Item Details

Item Type:Professional, Refereed Article
Keywords:plant growth, graphing, data collection, analysis of data, grade 6
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Curriculum and pedagogy
Research Field:Mathematics and numeracy curriculum and pedagogy
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Learner and learning
Objective Field:Primary education
UTAS Author:Wright, S (Mrs Suzie Wright)
UTAS Author:Watson, J (Professor Jane Watson)
UTAS Author:Smith, C (Dr Caroline Smith)
ID Code:145309
Year Published:2021
Funding Support:Australian Research Council (DP150100120)
Deposited By:Office of the Faculty of Education
Deposited On:2021-07-14
Last Modified:2021-07-15
Downloads:0

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