The purpose of this activity is to engage students in posing a question for investigation and designing an investigation that could be used by the class.
The background knowledge and skills that should be established before and/or during this activity are outlined in the diagram below:
- Posing a question for investigation
A student wants to find out how many people in her class drink at least one glass of milk per day. Write this as a question for investigation.
- Samples and populations
For the following pairs of groups, one is a sample and one is a population. Suggest which is which.
- The girls in a class, the students in a class
- Year 6 students in NZ, Children in NZ
- Year 6 students in NZ, a year 6 class
- Carrying out a survey
A student wants to find out what people in her school drink in a typical day. Suggest a suitable sample she could survey for her investigation.
- Types of survey questions
Change the following survey question so that it is closed ended. (eg multi-choice or yes/no answers). What do you drink at breakfast time?
- Designing a survey questionnaire
A student wants to find out what people in her school drink in a typical day. Design a suitable survey questionnaire for this investigation.
- Designing an investigation
A student wants to find out what people in her school drink in a typical day. Plan a suitable investigation for the student, including the sample to be surveyed, the questions to pose and how this will be carried out.
This activity may be carried out with step by step guidance, or by allowing the student to follow their own method of solution. The approach should be chosen in sympathy with students' skills and depth of understanding.
The procedural approach (show more)
- The student is able to design an investigation, using the enquiry cycle.
Prompts from the teacher could be:
- Pose a question for investigation.
- Consider the whole school community as the population and choose a suitable sample to survey.
- Design a questionnaire to survey the sample.
The conceptual approach (show more)
- The student is able to design an investigation that would lead to reliable results, using the enquiry cycle.