Our first investigation came from a wondering many students had:
Why do fidget spinners spin for so long? This led Room 2 to discuss what surfaces objects can spin on for the longest amount of time? We thought this was a scientific question worth investigating.
Step 1 was for students to build their own spinners.
Step 2, was to come up with a way of testing the spinners on surfaces. We decided to test our spinners on a range of surfaces and time how long they spun for. Before we started testing though, we had to make a hypothesis about what surface we thought might be the best and worst and discuss why. To do this, we ranked the surfaces we would test from 1-7 for the best surface to the worst.
I think it will spin longest on the wooden floor because it is smooth and hard. I think it will spin the shortest on the bark because it isn't smooth
I challenged students by asking them if they thought I could apply enough force to a stack of coins with a butter knife, to knock a coin out but keep the stack standing?
We discussed if this was even possible? This led us to our scientific question to investigate: What materials work the best when trying to force them out with a butter knife? The class tested a range of materials including dice, coins, one’s blocks and counters.