EELB 532 Science Lesson Plan

Your names: Brittanie Priest and Heidi Miedecke
Grade level: 3
Lesson: May the Force be with You

Part 1
1) Context of this lesson:
Students will have a basic understanding of force and movement before the lesson takes place.
Before this lesson, they will have done an experiment with a ping pong ball and golf ball where
one partner drops them at the same height at the same time, and the other partner judges to
see which ball hits the ground first. They will have learned that they hit the ground at the same
After the lesson, students will do an experiment after creating a pendulum. Each pair will create
a pendulum using a string (yarn), tape, and a golf ball. After constructing the pendulum, the
pairs will observe what happens when they blow on the ball, tap the ball with their hands, and
tap it with a pencil. Lastly, they will observe what happens when no force is applied at all.

2) Standards:
 3.PS2.1: Plan and conduct an investigation to provide evidence of the effects of
balanced and unbalanced forces on the motion of an object.
 3.OA.1: Interpret products of whole numbers, e.g., interpret 5 × 7 as the total number of
objects in 5 groups of 7 objects each. For example, describe a context in which a total
number of objects can be expressed as 5 × 7.
 3.MD.4: Generate measurement data by measuring lengths using rulers marked with
halves and fourths of an inch. Show the data by making a line plot, where the horizontal
scale is marked off in appropriate units—whole numbers, halves, or quarters.
 SL.3.1.a: Come to discussions prepared, having read or studied required material;
explicitly draw on that preparation and other information known about the topic to
explore ideas under discussion.
 SL.3.1.c: Ask questions to check understanding of information presented, stay on topic,
and link their comments to the remarks of others.
 SL.3.1.d: Explain their own ideas and understanding in light of the discussion.
 SL.3.6: Speak in complete sentences when appropriate to task and situation in order to
provide requested detail or clarification.

3) Content Knowledge:
Students will predict and observe what happens when a force is applied to a golf ball and ping
pong ball. They will measure (with a ruler) the distance the balls go after soft and hard flicks on
multiple surfaces. The students will compare the distances the balls go based on the differences
in weight, the force applied, and the surface the balls were on.
4) Learning objectives:
After completing the lesson, students will be able to plan and conduct an investigation to explore
forces on the motion of an object. Students will also be able to make predictions on the effect of
different forces on a moving object.
5) Common Preconceptions:
A possible preconception is the harder you hit an object the farther it goes.

Part 2
Note: You may insert Part I here to provide context for Part II
1) Cultural Relevance considerations and planning for conceptual change

Many students, especially in Southern California, are used to seeing golf courses in their
city and in surrounding cities. Ping pong might be less familiar, but knowing the game of
ping pong is not necessary for the students in this experiment. The game of golf is also
not necessary for the student to know in order to participate in this experiment. Math and
the laws of science are the same in every country. In planning for conceptual change,
the students will first be asked a few questions about what they think and believe about
the force applied to an object. Rather than correct their preconceptions, the students will
put it to the test. They will find out the truth by exploring, experimenting, and observing.
2) Materials

Each pair will need:
 One golf ball
 One ping pong ball
 One ruler
Each student will need:
 Two (or more if students desire) worksheets to record findings.
 One pen or pencil

3) Description of your lesson

a) Engage

· Description of the activities

Access Prior Learning: Have students discuss different sports that are played with balls and a
striking force and what they know about force and the motion and direction of the ball. e.g.
baseball, basketball, soccer ball, tennis ball, ping pong ball, golf ball. Also discuss the weight
differences of these different balls. The discussion will be student led.
· Embedded formative assessment

The teacher will ask questions about the different balls used in sports. Some possible questions:
What is the difference between a golf ball and a ping pong ball?
Which will go farther with a soft/hard flick? A golf ball or a ping pong ball?
Does the surface matter?
How can we figure this out?
The teacher will listen to the answers and opinions of the students, while trying to engage all
students and encourage students to participate and voice their beliefs and opinions.

a) Explore

· Description of the activities

Each pair of students will receive the materials and led outside by the teacher. The area should
have at least two different surfaces (long grass, short grass, dirt, gravel, cement, etc.). Students
will be instructed to try at least two different surfaces of their choice. Students will spend time
flicking the golf balls and ping pong balls with soft and hard flicks. They will measure the
distance the balls go with rulers and record their findings on their worksheets.
· Embedded formative assessment
The teacher will spend a little time with each pair, asking questions about the distance
differences between the two different balls and flicks.

b) Explain

· Description of the activities

Using the information recorded on their charts, the students will compare data and draw
conclusions about force applied to objects and its outcome in distance and direction the object
traveled. Students will discuss what they have discovered.

Embedded formative assessment

The teacher will ask these questions to guide the discussion and observe what the students
learned during the experiment.
 What did you discover about the ping pong ball as a force in motion?
 What did you discover about the golf ball as a force in motion?
 Which ball produced the greater direction/distance and why?
 What can you conclude about amount of force and the weight of the object? Use your
data to draw conclusions.
 How would the speed of the object and distance change if the force had increased or
decreased in strength? Use your data to draw conclusions.
 What does weight have to do with force?
c) Elaboration

· Description of the activities

The teacher will guide students in making a list of forces they see every day and how those
forces affect the motion of the objects (examples could include batting or kicking a ball, strong
winds and breezes blowing, flowing water).
· Embedded formative assessment

The teacher will listen and evaluate the answers of students.

d) Evaluate

· Description of the activities

The teacher will observe the students as they apply new concepts and skills. The teacher will
also look for evidence that the students have changed their thinking or behaviors.
· Embedded formative assessment

The teacher will ask students what they think about the force placed on an object now that they
have completed the experiment.

4) Accommodations for ELL’s
Since an English learner can come from almost any country in the world, before anything, the
teacher should find out the traditions and customs of the country the student is from. The
teacher should try to use these bits of information to try to incorporate them into the lesson. For
example, many South American countries enjoy soccer above other sports. The teacher should
use this information and integrate soccer into some of the lessons.
For English learners, the teacher will use pictures to show what force is. Since soccer is a
popular sport in many countries, a picture is incorporated in the visual adaptation. Here are a
few pictures that English learners may find helpful:

In this lesson, the teacher needs to ask the students a lot of questions to make them think
critically about what they know, and do not know. If a student does not speak English, then that
student will not get as much out of the lesson as the other students. To help with this, after
showing the English learners the pictures of what force is, the teacher will ask the same question
in the students’ first language(s). Google translate is a great tool to use for that since it can
translate whole sentences and paragraphs, rather than just one word at a time. The teacher should
also use other resources for translation that the school offers, such as bilingual staff. Students can
also be a big help when translating.
During the pair exploration phase, English learners should be paired with someone they like and
trust, and if possible, someone who knows their language.

5) Gearing up/ Gearing down

Gearing Up: Students who work quickly and/or student who need more of a challenge will be
required to try the experiment on more than two surfaces (and given more recording worksheets
as needed)

Gearing Down: For students who work at a steady pace or are having a hard time may only
try the experiment on one surface and/or one type of flick (soft or hard).

6) References

The inspiration for our lesson starts on page 8. The worksheet is on page 11.

Forces and Interactions. (n.d.). Retrieved April 26, 2017, from

7) Handouts/ journals
Though it is hard to make out the details of this picture of the handout, you can find a better
quality picture of it on page 11 of this PDF.