Resource Image Will it Float?

by: Jeff Major
$0.00 - Member Price  
$0.99 - Nonmember Price


Type of Resource: Journal Article
Average Rating: Rating
 based on 1 review
Publication Title: Science Scope
Publication Date: 10/1/2006
Grade Level: Middle School


Student preconceptions are one of the greatest challenges we face as science teachers. This Predict, Explain, Observe, and Explain (PEOE) activity challenges students’ preconceived notions about why matter floats or sinks when placed in a liquid. The idea behind this model is to do a demonstration that first confirms students’ conceptions followed by a second, similar demonstration that provides discrepant information creating cognitive dissonance. Learning happens as students are forced to modify their conceptions so that their view of how things work is not in conflict with what they are seeing.

Ideas For Use


Additional Info

Science Discipline: (mouse over for full classification)
Scientific habits of mind
Intended User Role:Curriculum Supervisor, Middle-Level Educator, Teacher
Educational Issues:Classroom management, Curriculum, Inquiry learning, Instructional materials, Teacher content knowledge, Teacher preparation, Teaching strategies


Resource Format:
Size: KB
Installation Remarks:

National Standards Correlation

This resource has 8 correlations with the National Standards.  

This resource has 8 correlations with the National Standards.  

  • Physical Science
    • Properties of objects and materials
      • Materials can exist in different states--solid, liquid, and gas. (K-4)
    • Properties and changes of properties in matter
      • A substance has characteristic properties, such as density, a boiling point, and solubility. (5-8)
  • Science as Inquiry
    • Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
      • Use data to construct a reasonable explanation.
      • Think critically and logically to make the relationships between evidence and explanations.
    • Understandings about scientific inquiry
      • Scientists develop explanations using observations (evidence) and what they already know about the world (scientific knowledge). Good explanations are based on evidence from investigations. (K-4)
  • Teaching Standards
    • Teachers of science plan an inquiry-based science program for their students.
      • Select science content and adapt and design curricula to meet the interests, knowledge, understanding, abilities, and experiences of students.
    • Teachers of science develop communities of science learners that reflect the intellectual rigor of scientific inquiry.
      • Model and emphasize the skills, attitudes, and values of scientific inquiry.
      • Nurture collaboration among students.

State Standards Correlation

Use the form below to view which of your state standards this resource addresses.

User Reviews

Comparing density of solid to liquid water
  Tina Harris (Fairmount, IN) on July 2, 2012
  The author uses a discrepant event, the difference between the density of liquid and solid water, to help students to understand the nature of the particle theory of matter and density. It is a good introduction and can get the students to really think about why things have different densities. It is an interesting lesson, but the particle nature of matter is something that is currently middle level and high school topic.