Develop a Model
The student is expected to draw or develop a model that represents how something works or looks that cannot be seen such as how a soap dispensing machine works.
The student uses critical thinking and scientific problem solving to make informed decisions.
A Closer Look, Scientific Models: Annenberg Learner (website) - Important information about scientific models, what they are, how they are developed, how and why they change over time, and what their limitations are.
Models are the Building Blocks of Science: The University of Texas (website) - Online article discusses different types of models, and explains their purpose and importance in the scientific world and other disciplines.
Models in Science: Genesis (PDF) - Most students like to work with models (cars, Tinker Toys, etc.), and most scientists interact with models as part of their professions. Learn about different types of scientific models and their importance to research.
Breathing Machine: BioEd Online (website) - Students develop a model that represents an internal human system they cannot see (lungs, chest and diaphragm) and demonstrates how that system works.
- Supporting Lessons
- Assessment Ideas
- Literature Connections
- Additional Resources
Make a Model Cell: Science NetLinks (website) - Students review and compare plant and animal cells, and then build a model of an animal cell.
The Drought Stopper: FOSS Models and Designs (website) - The “Drought Stopper” is a physical model set up by the teacher before class. The activity focuses on the concepts of water pressure and siphoning, but its primary objective is to teach students about scientific models. For instructions on how to make a drought stopper, click the link below. Then, under “Investigation 1 - Black Boxes,” click on Part 3. (If you do not have the kit box shown in the video, a simple box large enough to hold a one-liter container will be a suitable replacement.)
Elaboration Lessons and Extensions
Insect Models: Science NetLinks (website) - Students learn about insects and gain an understanding of the usefulness of scientific models by observing a variety of insects and building their own insect models.
Have students bring recycling materials from home and use the materials to build animal models (something other than insects).
Kids’ Paper Airplane Book. Blackburrn, Ken (ISBN-13: 978-0761104780)
The LEGO Ideas Book. Lipkowitz, Daniel (ISBN-13: 978-0756686062)
Dragonology: The Frost Dragon Book and Model Set. Drake, Ernest (ISBN-13: 978-0763634261)
Temperature: Heating Up and Cooling Down. Stille, Darlene (ISBN-13: 978-1404803459)
Earth Science Week: American Geosciences Institute. Find a variety of activities that model earth science processes and structures on this website.