Constructing Explanations Activity #2: Balloons & Skewers
To be completed AFTER the Asking Questions Activity #1: Balloons & Skewers
General Objective: To provide an opportunity for students to construct explanations in science based on observing a phenomenon and asking questions.
The facilitator does the following:
- Once students have seen the Balloon & Skewer phenomenon, asked questions, and successfully done the phenomenon themselves, have them construct an explanation of the phenomenon.
- Students should be able to construct their explanation both in written and verbal form.
- Finding an explanation for this phenomenon may require outside research, since this is a RESEARCHABLE explanation. Explanations should include, but not be limited to: properties of polymers; chemical bonds; elasticity; application to wounds caused by impaled objects; nails in tires; etc.
- Resources can include, but are not limited to, science textbooks, encyclopedias, and the internet.
Many sources demonstrate this phenomenon in different ways. Some suggest using knitting needles; oil or water on the needle/skewer; or twisting the skewer in a particular fashion. Students should discover these techniques on their own rather than being told.