The Scientific Method is a Problem Solving Process
The scientific method is not a set of steps that must be followed in order with fidelity.
The scientific method includes Research, Questions, Hypotheses, Experimenting, Collecting Data, Making Conclusions. But, the order is not set in stone nor is there a rule that all the steps are needed to solve every problem.
Remember: Every science question does not need one to use all the parts of the scientific method to find a solution.
I. Research is the Foundation of the Scientific Method.
1. Fact Finding Research includes reading books and asking informed people.
Cornstarch Slime Facts: The mixture of cornstarch and water has unusual properties because of its viscosity. Viscosity is the measure of resistance a fluid (gas or liquid) has to flowing. The higher the viscosity the slower a fluid flows. The lower the viscosity, the faster a fluid flows.
A Newtonian fluid’s viscosity decreases with an increase in temperature and/or pressure. Since this is not true for cornstarch slime, it is classified as a non-Newtonian fluid. This means cornstarch slime’s becomes more viscous when under pressure. It’s viscosity makes it act much like a solid.
2. Exploratory Research is information you collect yourself. This includes simple simple fact-finding experiments with a procedure to follow. These types of experiments include “Just for Fun” investigations, such as making cornstarch slime. The children in the photo are making cornstarch slime. They are investigating the properties of the material. They are discovering how it feels–etc……….
In other words, Exploratory Discovery Investigations can be very simple, fun, bizarre, exciting and very educational.
Investigating Cornstarch Slime is a simple exploratory investigation.