Activity Sample

Water drop in the air above some water
"Michael Melgar LiquidArt resize droplet" by Michael Melgar - English wikipedia.
 Licensed under 
CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Below is an example of a lab performed in my class addressing the objective "explain how the hydrogen bonds in water are critical for life supporting processes." It is a "do" and a "connect" activity since the students are performing the lab, and then answering questions that require them to think about what they observed - applying the information to real world situations outside the lab.  This lab is performed by every student in my class, and other classes using LabPaq kits, and they submit the lab using the same worksheet, so there is a concern about cheating. To help reduce this concern my students are required to complete the lab and take photographs of the lab as they perform it with their name and the date visible on a card somewhere in the picture.

Universal design and best practices are addressed in a few ways here. The lab is presented on a website that allows the use of screen readers to make the procedures audible. This will benefit students with visual impairments, as well as ease the ability for non-disabled students to perform the lab if they have the computer read the instructions to them. This lab is also a good example of a lab that can be broken down into smaller chunks if the student cannot perform it in one stretch because it has four parts. Many students have other obligations that reduce the time they can spend in a single stretch to work on an assignment. Other student may just reach the point of overload sooner. I also require that a lab safety person be available while students perform the lab. This person is there to make sure the student receives appropriate medical attention if an accident occurs. The safety person can also assist students in performing the lab if they need an extra hand. This is useful for students who have disabilities that prevent full use of the arms or hands and students who have visual impairments. It is also useful for students who may just need a little help holding items or finding the correct item in their kit.

Water Lab
By the end of this week you should have your lab kit so you can perform your first lab!  Yeah!  There are some fascinating properties of water that you will explore this week that are critical to sustaining life on Earth.  To access the lab login to the LabPaq Website.  Read through all the directions for the lab before starting.  You will need a camera available to take pictures while you perform the lab for your photo-verification.  As you proceed through the lab answer the questions in the Lab Report Assistant, which is found at the end of the lab, and as a separate editable document in the Water Lab folder on the website.  When you are done you will submit the Lab Report Assistant to the dropbox for grading.  Place all the pictures in a word document and upload them to the photo-verification dropbox.
The Activities Rubric will be used for grading, but the general idea is that if you complete and thoughtfully answer the questions you will get credit.  Each question that is not answered will cause you to lose points.  You will not lose points if the lab goes wrong, just do your best to answer the questions.
This lab will be the basis for your introduction to a full lab report.  Next week we will read about lab reports and practice writing hypotheses so you and your partner, whom I will choose for you, can start collaborating on a full lab report in a Blackboard Wiki.