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Measuring Temperature

Measuring Temperature

TEKS Objective

The student is expected to collect, record, and analyze information using tools, including microscopes, cameras, computers, hand lenses, metric rulers, Celsius thermometers, wind vanes, rain gauges, pan balances, graduated cylinders, beakers, spring scales, hot plates, meter sticks, compasses, magnets, collecting nets, notebooks, sound recorders, and Sun, Earth, and Moon system models; timing devices, including clocks and stopwatches; and materials to support observation of habitats of organisms such as terrariums and aquariums.

Essential Understanding

The student knows how to use a variety of tools and methods to conduct science inquiry.

Science Background

Thermal Energy Physics: (website) - Explains the physical science of thermal energy and relates it to heat, absolute zero, temperature scale and more.

Thermal Energy Physics

Signature Lesson

How Much Heat Will It Hold? TeachEngineering (website) - Students relate thermal energy to heat capacity by collecting, recording and analyzing information to compare the heat capacities of different materials. Students graph the change in temperature over time for a specific material and learn why heat capacity is an important property of thermal energy.

How Much Heat Will It Hold?

Supporting Lessons

Temperature: Teacher Vision (PDF) - Download the printable sheet to guide students through an activity in which they compare different situations, such as freezing and boiling.

Teacher Vision,

Elaboration Lessons and Extensions

Physics in a Bottle, Expanding Thermometers: Physics Center (website) - Students build their own thermometers with a water bottle and a straw, then test the thermometer by placing it in cold and warm water.

Physics in a Bottle, Expanding Thermometers
Physics Central,

Assessment Ideas

Interactive Thermometer: (website) - Have students rank different items identified by the interactive thermometer, from coldest to hottest.

Interactive Thermometer

Literature Connections

Temperature: Heating Up and Cooling Down. Stille, D. (ISBN-13: 978-1404803459)

Related Science TEKS

(3.1A) Science Safety
The student is expected to demonstrate safe practices as described in the Texas Safety Standards during classroom and outdoor investigations, including observing a schoolyard habitat.

(3.1B) Recycling/Disposal of Science Materials
The student is expected to make informed choices in the use and conservation of natural resources by recycling or reusing materials such as paper, aluminum cans, and plastics.

(3.2A) Plan and Implement Descriptive Investigation
The student is expected to plan and implement descriptive investigations, including asking and answering questions, making inferences, and selecting and using equipment or technology needed, to solve a specific problem in the natural world.

(3.2B) Collect Data
The student is expected to collect data by observing and measuring using the metric system and recognize differences between observed and measured data.

(3.2C) Graphs, Tables, Charts
The student is expected to construct maps, graphic organizers, simple tables, charts, and bar graphs using tools and current technology to organize, examine, and evaluate measured data.

(3.2D) Analyze Evidence and Explain
The student is expected to analyze and interpret patterns in data to construct reasonable explanations based on evidence from investigations.

(3.2E) Value of Repeated Experiments
The student is expected to demonstrate that repeated investigations may increase the reliability of results.

(3.2F) Communicate Conclusions
The student is expected to communicate valid conclusions supported by data in writing, by drawing pictures, and through verbal discussion.

(3.4B) Safety Equipment
The student is expected to use safety equipment as appropriate, including safety goggles and gloves.

Related Math TEKS

3.13A    The student is expected to collect, organize, record, and display data in pictographs and bar graphs where each picture or cell might represent more than one piece of data.

3.13B    The student is expected to interpret information from pictographs and bar graphs.

Additional Resources

Temperature Game: NASA (website) - Students learn about the relative temperature of different locations and objects.

Temperature Game

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