Greenhouse The Greenhouse Investigation
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Students will analyze data collected by experimenting with the greenhouse effect and report their findings.
This investigation is designed to be completed over the course of several weeks.

Objectives:

Use mathematics to analyze aspects of the greenhouse effect and report your findings.
Mathematical Overview and NCTM Standards:
  • Understand patterns, relations, and functions
  • Understand meanings of operations and how they relate to one another
  • Apply appropriate techniques, tools, and formulas to determine measurements
  • Formulate questions that can be addressed with data and collect, organize, and display relevant data to answer them
  • Select and use appropriate statistical methods to analyze data
  • Build new mathematical knowledge through problem solving
  • Monitor and reflect on the process of mathematical problem solving
Materials Needed:
  • lamp with a 100-watt bulb
  • stopwatch
  • thermometer
  • plastic zipper-style sandwich bag
  • ruler
  • graph paper
  • folder or notebook
light
watch
thermo
Procedure:
In this Investigation, you will use mathematics to analyze aspects of the greenhouse effect and report your findings.  As a scientist commissioned to explore the greenhouse effect, you will conduct two experiments.  The first experiment is a control experiment that will be used to compare data with the second experiment, called the greenhouse experiment.  Both experiments will involve temperature as a function of distance.
  • Separate the class into groups of four.
    • Recorder collect data
    • Measurer sets and measure the distances between the lamp and the thermometer.
    • Timer times different aspects of the activity and turns the lamp on and off at the appropriate times.
    • Weather person reports temperature reading to the recorder and makes sure that them thermometer is adequately prepared for each aspect of the activity.
  • Conduct a control experiment and a greenhouse experiment.
  • Record data using a spreadsheet and use graphing tools to model the data.
  • Analyze and report this data.  Each member should turn in his or her respective equipment and their own folder.
CONTENTS:
Introduction:  Unit Overview
Begin:  Beginning the Investigation
Page 2:  Comparing Data
Page 3:  Working with Integers & Comparing Data
Page 4:  Charts and Graphs
Page 5:  Working with Formulas
End:  Closing the Investigation
Quiz:  Greenhouse Investigation Quiz

Original Investigation Found in Glencoe/McGrawAlgebra 1   Copyright © June 2000
used with permission
  adapted by Susan Boone  Saint Agnes Academy,  Houston, TX
GirlTECH '95 Participant,   Master Teacher, '96, '97, '99, & 2000


These pages were developed through GirlTECH , a teacher-training program sponsored by the Center for Excellence in Education (CEEE) with support from the National Science Foundation through EOT-PACI.