How to Give A Simple Explanation of the Scientific Method To Your Kids

Parents need to have an understanding of science so this explanation of the scientific method should come in handy.

What we are talking about when trying to give an explanation of the scientific method is the steps or the process any scientist from the very youngest kids to the pros in their labs use to make their results valid.  Everyone  uses the  same steps, the difference is as you get older you will spend more time at each step and the science gets more exact and detailed. Anyone who follows these steps in the process, should end up with logical conclusions.

Explanation of the Scientific Method For Parents

Observation

Questions

Hypotheses

Experimentation

Results.

In school they will drill these terms, what you need to do is help them make sense.

(if you are unsure yourself, you can get our FREE parent guide that goes into more detail about  this and lots more  here. )

Here is What I do to Explain complicated vocabulary:

I found that helps  to turn it into a story and just use common everyday life as the plot.  It is one of the best ways to make things click- hook the familiar to the unfamiliar. Believe it or not one key step to comprehension is hooking whatever you are trying to remember to something out of the box.  Think about it  people use all sorts of odd systems to remember names and directions.  A story  does the same kind of thing.  For most kids remembering a story is easier than rote memorizing vocabulary. The you remember the story,  the story triggers  words.

Here is a sample idea of a story and the scientific method: car pool!

Tell a story about a mother who wanted to find the quickest way or the fewest red lights.  So you start off with the mom observing some days it goes faster than others and then come up with some questions she would ask and then have her come up with a prediction (hypothesis) about If she does this one plan  say the time you leave the house, will it make a difference. So you experiment and keep track to the times for a week or so and your results will tell you.  The story is all the conversation the mom and the kids have, who gets to use the stop watch, who writes down the times and of course throw in some silliness as you go  and then they will remember the story, the also describes the steps.

Once you get the hang of this, you will realize that everyday people use these same steps in every day problem solving. When the iPod doesn’t work, you experiment with batteries, recipes try different  tricks for tasting better (my husband swears pizza crust needs honey ), trying eco friendly laundry detergents to see if it is just as good, or what you do to grow the biggest tomatoes, all will basically use  the same steps to come up with a conclusion.

It is important that you don’t wait to the last minute to teach the vocabulary as the chances are the your great science project for kids will end up being a last minute hing, or at least in a time crunch.

Once you get the explanation of the scientific method down,  Click here for 5 fast, easy, and winning experiments!

Comments

  1. Great article. So many times the scientific method is only introduced in science classes, and that can make students think that it only applies to really complex scientific issues. In reality it is just a systematic way of answering questions and solving problems. Now I just want to introduce myself since this is my first post. My name is Jeffrey and I am a college biology student. As a biology student I know that there are a lot of resources out there that are useful to parents, teachers, and other biology students. I just recently started a website that I hope will provide you with almost all of the biology resources you need. The site is very new (just about 10 days old right now), but I am in the process of gathering links to biology lab supplies, school supplies, textbooks, more fun experiments like the ones you see here, and lots of other fun stuff. Check it out at http://biologysuppliesandtextbooks.com/ and make sure you come back frequently as I add more stuff.

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