Lesson Plan Template: Learning Cycle (5E Model)
Learning Objectives: What will students know and be able to do as a result of this lesson?
- Students will correctly use tools to measure length, mass, volume and temperature.
- Students will calculate an estimated area of a shoe print.
- Students will use the process of elimination to determine the correct suspect.
Prior Knowledge: What prior knowledge should students have for this lesson?
Students should have experience using thermometers, triple-beam balances, graduated cylinders, rulers, and microscopes.
Guiding Questions: What are the guiding questions for this lesson?
- What are examples of tools that are used to solve a crime?
- How are these tools used in the process of solving a crime?
- What are the specific ways that investigators use these tools to investigate a crime?
- What are some of the challenges investigators must overcome when solving a crime?
- How can evidence be tampered with or become tainted during an investigation?
- How important is accuracy when using tools to solve a crime?
Engage: What object, event, or questions will the teacher use to trigger the students' curiosity and engage them in the concepts?
The teacher will assign students to activity groups at different station locations; 5 stations will be set-up prior to the class period. The teacher may decide to place more than one measuring tool at each station. In that is the case, students will use the scenario at each activity station to determine which tool they should use to gather data at that station. The teacher may also choose to place only the correct tool at each station.
The teacher will set up stations with measuring equipment (ruler, triple beam balance, graduated cylinder, microscope, thermometer; the teacher may also have other tools present that are used to solve crimes such as a camera, gel electrophoresis equipment, fingerprint dusting, etc.). The teacher can also have a picture of a 'crime scene' on the screen for the students to reference.
Stations will have, at minimum, the following materials (Scenarios and information for each station).
- Station 1: Scenario for shoe print information, shoe prints to measure, and ruler (when printing shoe prints, make sure not to "shrink-to-fit").
- Station 2: Scenario for the suspected weapon, triple beam balance, and multiple potential weapons.
- Station 3: Scenario for soil samples and microscopes with soil samples ready to view under each microscope.
- Station 4: Scenario for time of death formula for temperature of the body, 4 coffee cups with lids filled with room temperature water, one cup with several ice cubes in it to reduce temperature, thermometers in each cup, and alibi information.
- Station 5: Scenario for stomach contents which include empty water bottle (500 mL) with label showing contents, liquid in unlabeled (no measurements) container, graduated cylinder, and alibi information.
Further information for activity set up:
- The teacher will make sure that the shoe station has four of the six shoe prints in the range of the guilty suspect (the station only eliminates suspects 4 and 5).
- Weapons for suspects 2, 3, and 6 should be between 350g and 500g.
- Soil in the microscope station for suspects 1, 3, and 6 should match the crime scene sample.
The teacher will ask the students to look around the room and discuss within their groups some of the possible tools that can be used to solve crimes. Working with your group, make a short list on your whiteboard of possible equipment. the teacher will be prepared to explain how their choice of equipment can be used to collect data useful in solving crimes.
The teacher will circulate to encourage and assist students having difficulty by asking questions to spark engagement and recollection (see formative assessment section).
The teacher will lead a discussion asking each group to share one of their proposed items and its description/usefulness in crime scene investigations (see formative assessment section).
Based upon student responses and known abilities, The teacher will choose to model one of the stations or can model measuring correctly with a meter stick.
The teacher will tell the students that they will have five minutes (The teacher can modify time depending on the level of students) at each station to work with their team. Students will read the scenario and gather the appropriate information to complete their chart (slide 3 of crime scene presentation).
Explore: What will the students do to explore the concepts and skills being developed through the lesson?
Students will have 5 minutes at each station to read the scenario and use the tools at each station to gather and record the appropriate data on their data sheets ("Scenarios and information for each station"; attached).
The "Crime Scene PowerPoint" Crime Scene.ppt will have the student data chart/table(slide 1) and DNA material (slide 2 has all suspects' DNA, slide 3 has DNA found at the crime scene).
Students will use this information to eliminate potential suspect(s) at each station.
The teacher will circulate to ask questions to make sure students are on task and understanding what they are supposed to be doing at each station. The Stomach contents station may give students difficulty depending on the level of student. Biology honors students will not have any problem, but lower level students may need assistance. Higher level students will be able to follow the scenario and collect measurements. The teacher may model what should be done at each station depending upon the level of students.
The teacher will also make sure students are filling in the data table correctly by circulating the room to observe data collection.
The teacher will encourage students to eliminate suspects when possible. Students will gather information at each station, which will help them eliminate suspects. Shoe station eliminates suspects 1, 4 and 5. Weapon station eliminates suspects 1, 4, and 5. Soil station will eliminate suspects 2, 4, and 5. Temperature station will eliminate suspects 4 and 5. Stomach contents station will eliminate suspects 4 and 5.
The teacher will have a method of letting students know when it is time to rotate to the next station. The lesson creator used the sound effect from a popular TV crime show ("chung chung").
Explain: What will the students and teacher do so students have opportunities to clarify their ideas, reach a conclusion or generalization, and communicate what they know to others?
After every group has gathered data at each of the stations, the teacher will ask each group to submit a sticky note with the initials of the suspect they believe to be the guilty party and why. Once the teacher has all of the predicted suspects, the teacher will ask each group to give information that helped them eliminate each suspect. This will be done as a group discussion. The discussion will allow students to engage each other by supporting or challenging each other's conclusions.
The teacher may have each group write the guilty suspect's initials on their whiteboard along with their evidence supporting their conclusion. The teacher may have each group present their information orally to the class.
Elaborate: What will the students do to apply their conceptual understanding and skills to solve a problem, make a decision, perform a task, or make sense of new knowledge?
The data from the stations will only narrow down the list of suspects to two possibilities. The teacher will discuss with the students about one tool criminal investigators use to narrow their results from two possible suspects to one suspect. Students should suggest using DNA analysis, or the teacher may lead them to it. Use the DNA sample results from the attached PowerPoint, or find a website to get DNA sample results, and have the students identify the correct suspect, or simply tell them the correct suspect based on the DNA is... suspect 3.
- Students will correctly measure the maximum length and width of a shoe print.
- Students will correctly measure the volume found in a graduated cylinder.
- Students will correctly measure the mass of an object on a triple beam balance.
- Students will correctly measure the temperature of a liquid.
Optional - students will correctly adjust a microscope to identify an object under the microscope lens.
**Summative Assessment, Crime Scene Measurement Writing Prompt and Poster Prompt, Poster Rubric, and Writing Prompt Rubric attached
It is best if the teacher has already had students practice using the different tools for measurement and observation (balance, graduated cylinder, microscope, ruler, and thermometer). During the beginning of the lesson, the students are asked to look around the room and examine scientific equipment - including the measuring tools. Working with their group, they will identify different tools that could be used to solve a crime. The students can also identify tools that may be used but are not presently located in the classroom. Students will write down a list of equipment, including their functions, after their group discussion on a small whiteboard located at their station (the teacher may also use a large piece of paper with markers). The teacher will circulate and encourage any groups that are having trouble getting started by asking questions which will guide them (such as "Have you watched a TV crime show?"; "What did the investigators use on that show?"; "Have you ever seen police investigate a crime?"; "What actions did the police perform while investigating a crime?"; "I have had police at my house after a break-in, what do you think they looked for?").
After the time is called, or after each group has a list of possible tools, the teacher will randomly call on each group to get their examples and explanations of equipment needed. This will allow the students who have not had experience with forensics (i.e. mostly from T.V. crime shows) to be exposed to the different tools that may be used to solve a crime. The teacher will be sure to include the tools that will be used during the activity (balance, ruler, graduated cylinder, thermometer, and microscope) in the discussion.
Feedback to Students
During the activity, the teacher will be circulating among the various stations to assess whether students are using the measuring and observation tools properly. The teacher will encourage student-to-student assistance but may find that certain students have not mastered usage of particular tools. The teacher may choose not to assist the students. This will encourage students to employ problem-solving skills; the students will be forced to determine how to use the tools available in order to collect the relevant crime scene data at each station. In the latter scenario, the instructor will only give vague directional prompts such as: What are you trying to find out? What information do you need in order to find pertinent information? What information from this station do you need to record in your data table?
The teacher will circulate among the groups to make sure each group understands what measurement they need to be making. Students may need to be reminded to use centimeters instead of inches. The teacher will have to gauge how much information she/he needs to give in the guiding questions. For example, if the students have read the scenario for the stomach contents and are not sure what to do, the teacher can ask what information do they have (water bottle). Then what information do we know about the water bottle (it contained 500mL). How can we use that information? (subtract remaining contents from the total in the bottle, 500mL in order to determine how much liquid the stomach had processed). What is it you need to measure (the liquid in the container).