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Systems and Scale | Activity 2.2

(Optional) Activity 2.2: From Big to Small (30 min)

Students practice sorting pictures of items by their size on the macroscopic and atomic-molecular scales.

Accommodation: If you have a number of students with special needs in your class, it's recommended to do this optional Activity.

Resources Provided

Setup

Print one copy of the Powers of Ten 11 x 17 Poster or each group. Print one copy of  2.2 Powers of Ten Cards for each group. Either cut the cards apart before class, or have the students cut the cards in their groups.

Directions

1. Have students explore the Powers of Ten websites

This activity has introductory materials that make it optional at the high school level. Show students websites that illustrate the Powers of Ten (see links in the Extending the Learning section below).

Assessment

Notice students' successes and difficulties in placing images at the appropriate Powers of Ten benchmark scales.

Tips

  • Focus on the four benchmark scales (e.g., atomic-molecular) rather than the exact Power of Ten (e.g., 10-
    8m) for each picture.
  • The Powers of Ten with Pictures 11 x 17 Poster has images on the poster that are only to be referenced after this activity is completed, so make sure to wait until the end of the activity to post this version of the poster.

Modifications

  • Use this optional activity for students who are less experienced with systems at different scales.
  • Have students use the microscope to look at cells to get a better sense of scale.

Extending the Learning

Have students explore these websites about scale on their own: