Lesson 3

Taking the Plunge: Designing Submersibles

A Sinking Feeling / Grade 5 / Lawrence, MA

The EIE Curriculum

EiE- Taking the Plunge: Designing Submersibles Lesson 3

Students explore how the mass and volume of an object affects whether it sinks or floats in water.

Reflection Questions

How does George reinforce the idea that his class is a community of learners who learn together?

George makes sure that students share their results and are in agreement about the outcomes of each test they conduct.

  • Before they start testing vials in the water basin, George explains that each group will collect their own data, but that they will reconvene at the board to compare results and see if everyone is in agreement or if they have “some outliers.” (2:26)
  • After two students indicate their results on the board, George makes sure that there is class consensus on the results before they move on. (3:49)
  • After Group C places the vials in order in terms of mass, George asks groups A and B what they discovered. When they all agree with the order, George explains that conclusions can be drawn from the data. (6:32)

What small changes to the lesson did George make to meet the needs of his students?

George made several small modifications to the way lesson materials were prepared and used by students.

  • Instead of providing a small tank of water to each group, George has individual students take turns testing the vials in the large central basin. (2:01)
  • Because George has access to a white board, he attached the vial picture cards with magnets instead of having kids tape them to chart paper. (3:32)
  • George has provided a pan balance for each group instead of having the class share a single one (5:20).