Instruction Guide: What is Data Logging? - UNDER CONSTRUCTION

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(((The current version of this and all the other Instructor’s Guides are based on what I anticipate teaching as I move through this curriculum for the second time in the 2012-2013 school year. I anticipate doing heavy revisions to these documents during each of the first 3 years I present this course. If you have any suggestions regarding any of the ideas surrounding the presentation of this lesson or this course please submit them to the google forms feedback page at this link.)))

The objectives listed for the first lesson in the Data Logging Class include the following:

  • Review the steps of the Scientific Method
  • Describe what a sensor is and where it is useful in the scientific method.
  • Experience the difference between making and recording data manually versus using technology to collect more data and more accurate data.
  • Explore the differences between CTE classes and other academic classes.

This lesson should begin with a video and/or actual lego robot showing something that employs the use of sensors. It should give a few examples to kids: What are sensors and how do they work

The lesson then moves in to a whiteboard or group activity that reviews the steps in the scientific method using descriptive phrases, and has students simply put them in order.

Finally, the goal is to establish a context in students’ minds why these sensors are useful in society and how they can help students perform scientific inquiry and get more data and more accurate data with less effort.

From there, as soon as possible, demonstrate how each sensor has a role in society or science. For instance. 

Have a thermometer and a temperature probe together and show how they are similar and different. (for each sensor, ask for more instances where automated collection of this type of data would be useful or even imperitive.

Light sensor with a camera or solar panel

Sound sensor with a microphone.

Ultra sonic sensor with a security system or motion activated light (or video showing this)

Touch sensor with (?airbags?).

Again, this is to introduce these sensors by placing them into a real world context.   NEXT comes how to use the NXT and sensors to produce some readings.