Artifact 2 TPE 1: Inquiry-Based Lesson
Inquiry lessons are essential when instructing scientific concepts and practices. They are based on questions that arise from observations in nature. It leads to the investigation of the cause for the observed phenomena. In this lesson students develop a conceptual understanding of wave form by observing the graphical representation of sound using an oscilloscope. TPE 1 states that class activities should serve to illustrate science concepts, scientific investigations and principles (CTC, 2013). This lesson serves to focus instruction on the scientific concepts while providing active investigation opportunities. This type of learning increases understanding of concepts as well as promotes technical skills (Bulba, 2014).
Oscilloscope Lab: 8th Grade Waves Lesson
MS-PS4-1 Use mathematical representation to describe a simple model for waves that includes how the amplitude of a wave is related to the energy in a wave.
3c. Students curate information from digital resources using a variety of tools and methods to create collections of artifacts that demonstrate meaningful connections or conclusions.
Overview of Lesson
This inquiry-based activity is part of a larger unit on waves. Students will be using digital tools to explore characteristics of sound waves. Sound waves are great to use for an inquiry activity because it connects real student experiences to content. Using technology in sound wave exploration enhances learning through engagement, technical skill building and the creation of a memorable learning experience. The inquiry investigation will answer the question: Why are loud and high-pitched sounds uncomfortable to listen to?
By the end of this lesson, students should be able to (content/capabilities):
- Connect high pitch (frequency) and loudness (amplitude) to greater wave energy that can be read on a graph.
- Use technical tools in an investigation to answer the question: Why are loud or high-pitched sounds uncomfortable to listen to?
- Produce a summary in a CER (Claim-Evidence-Reasoning) format.
- Compare and analyze mathematical representation of waves.
Culminating Partner Project: Video or Written CER:
Students will create a claim answering the question: Why are loud and high-pitched sounds uncomfortable to listen to? Students will use evidence from the graphs created using a virtual oscilloscope. Students will use reasoning to make connections between graph characteristics and the amount of energy in a sound wave.
Culminating Individual Assessment:
Students will compare and analyze mathematical representation of amplitude, wavelength, and frequency to describe the amount of energy carried in a wave.
Culminating Individual Assessment
Students need to know basic wave vocabulary including amplitude, frequency, crest and trough. They also need basic knowledge of online tool use, such as, how to freeze a frame of live feed, and how to use the “snipping” tool on the computer to snip, copy, and paste their graphs onto OneNote. Students need to be able to work cooperatively with a partner to plan and execute the creation of various graphs and CER summary.
Anticipatory Set & Inquiry
First, I play The Human Audio Spectrum for the students. I ask them to raise their hand when they begin to hear a sound. I tell them to put their hand down and raise it again when the stop hearing a sound. Students listen intently because they don’t want to miss it.
Either have your screen frozen or have students put their heads down. You want them to discover the relationship between frequency and sound for themselves
This is meaningful for the students because the high frequencies/high pitch sounds get uncomfortable to listen to (which we connect to meaning by the end of the activity). When it is over, I ask them to explain why the sounds got uncomfortable for us to listen to. Most students will say, “because the noise is high” or “because it is loud”. I tell them that I want them to explain why high or loud sounds are uncomfortable to listen to. They generally do not have an answer. Next, I tell them that they will be creating graphs using on online oscilloscope and various noises they create, to be able to answer that question.
Students are generally really engaged in this lab activity because, finally, the teacher is telling them to make lots of weird noises in class with their mouths and instruments, instead of being quiet. Students also get to use interesting visual and auditory digital tools.
Lesson and Procedures:
I tell the students that different sounds have different characteristics and that I want them to work in pairs to explore what types of sounds have high vs. low frequency, short vs. long wavelength, and high vs. low amplitude. I tell them they will use voices, mouth sounds, and musical notes to explore sound waves and their characteristics.
Students go on their laptop computers and go to their OneNote programs. In OneNote, they use the following directions to complete their learning activity:
Use the following to experiment with sounds:
· Sing or make noises with your own voices
· Music from your phone
· Virtual instrument: http://www.virtualmusicalinstruments.com (use a second device/phone)
Use a computer to open a window with this link -
https://academo.org/demos/virtual-oscilloscope/ and follow the directions below to set it up:
a) When it asks you if you want the oscilloscope to use your built-in microphone. Click “Allow”
b) Go to “input” and select “live input”
c) make sure microphone on your computer is on
d) Try making a sound with your instrument
e) You should now see the oscilloscope is graphing the sound waves you create
f) Try clicking the ‘freeze live input’ box
g) Try the other options to see how they affect the wave
h) unclick "freeze live input"
Guiding Questions for students:
What kind of sounds do you need to make with your voice or instrument to create a graph with: high or low frequency, high or low amplitude, long or short wavelength. To answer these questions, experiment with your voice or instrument and the oscilloscope. Freeze the live input so you can see your graph and take notes.
SAMPLE OF STUDENT PRODUCT: