Tag Archives: Projects

Back to the Future 2016

ProjectsHere’s a copy of the rubric and plan for 2016. This has the complete schedule and due dates, although the presentation dates may change.

BTTF 2016 Guide

As you plan your final project, make sure that it will meet all the requirements listed in the project guide:

  1. Clearly relates what contributions your figure made.
  2. Clearly relates the dangers posed by the problem you want to solve.
  3. Clearly relates at least one current attempt to solve the problem.
  4. Clearly relates the unique skills your figure may use to solve the problem.

Rating Your Weather Forecast 2016

ProjectsThis 6 weeks, students are studying probability and statistics. How fortunate, then, that we can use the crazy weather of north Texas as the backdrop for this project.

Students will collect data in the form of forecasts each day for 14 consecutive days. They will then verify the actual conditions of the days they found forecasts for. As students learn how to analyze data, they will devise a method to score the forecast they chose.

The intro document for this project and rubrics for data analysis and the final presentation are all below.

Predicting The Weather Forecast

Data Analysis Guide and Rubric

Final presentation rubric

DateItem DueWhat you turn inWeight of grade
2/26/2016Select forecastA piece of paper with your name, your partner's name, the forecast source you will use, and the data points you will collect (at least 2)1x
2/26/2016Data collection formA piece of paper with your data collection form (see sample in packet). Your form should be created using Excel or Google Sheets or some other spreadsheet program1x
3/8/16Data check #1At least 1 week of forecast data should have been collected1x
3/22/16Data check #2At least 2 weeks of forecast data and *some* actual data1x
3/28/16Complete set of raw dataAll forecast data and ALL actual conditions recorded in a typed form. 2x
4/6/16Data AnalysisComplete typewritten data analysis including 3-400 word essay, typed dataset, and student-created rubric to score weather forecast. All work must be created individually.2x
4/14-15/16PresentationsProfessionally designed poster or infographic with all required elements and a prepared presentation for the class. Students must create their posters/infographics individually, but will prepare their presentation as a group.3x

Finding Volume

The project this six weeks involves finding the volume of a 3-D object both by modeling it as a composite figure made up of prisms, pyramids, cylinders, and hemispheres, as well as by using the displacement method.

Students should choose their object carefully as there will be a competition for the coolest object resulting in some bonus points.

If you’ve lost your project guide or simply need another copy, click here.

Finding Volume Project Guide

A couple of outstanding examples…

… from the Back to the Future project.

It’s really exciting when students stretch their minds and talents to produce highly communicative work. In addition to these samples, I’ve received a number of excellent skits, short stories, a song, and a movie trailer. The eighth grade team has a lot to look forward to next year.

Emilie du Chatelet provides instruction on obtaining safe drinking water
Emilie du Chatelet provides instruction on obtaining safe drinking water
An overview of the scenes in the Emilie du Chatelet Diorama
An overview of the scenes in the Emilie du Chatelet Diorama

A video featuring the retrieval of Stephanie Kwolek…

Back to the Future!

ProjectsSome mysterious but benevolent time travelers have come to visit our class. They have a mission for us! The first due date will be next Tuesday. Sign-up sheets to claim your historical figure will be posted outside Mr. Dunn’s room at 8:25 am.

Dear Students

A group of benevolent time travelers attempting to right some wrongs in the timeline have found themselves trapped here, in our time, with only enough resources left to make one final round-trip into the past.

Their original mission was to solve all the major problems on earth in their time. Among those problems are several that began to appear in recent earth history, including declining bee populations, lack of renewable energy sources, lack of clean water supply, and lack of unbreakable cryptography systems to protect commerce and banking.

Unfortunately, a mis-calibration of their device caused them to run dangerously low on resources, stranding them here in Dallas in 2015. Due to the mishap, they lost many of their notes from their mission. They also lack sufficient resources to travel far enough forward to return to their time to resupply. Thus, they need your help!

Your mission is to review the list of mathematicians, scientists, and engineers from the past that the travelers know how to locate. You will identify the contributions these mathematicians, scientists, and engineers made. Then, you will determine which of the four modern problems your targeted individual would be best suited to solve given their skill set and prior accomplishments. You will need to consider the shock the individual may encounter when being transported several hundred or even thousand years into the future. While you may be able to argue for alternative problems to solve, the list of scientists, mathematicians, and engineers is limited by the information the travelers were able to save following their mishap. They cannot make the calculations to retrieve any other historical figures than those found on the list.

Your task won’t be easy. You’ll need to develop a clear understanding of what your targeted individual accomplished and/or was studying. From this, you’ll need to decide which modern problem the individual is best suited to work on. You’ll need to argue that the person you have researched is the best one to complete the task. Your classmates will have the opportunity to vote to determine who the travelers go back in time to retrieve.

Please help the travelers complete at least a portion of their mission. They are counting on you!

Here’s a PDF with all the information:

Back to the Future Guide and Due Dates

Due dates will be:

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The Weather Project is Nearly Complete!

ProjectsThe final presentations for this project will be Thursday and Friday. Remember that whether or not you are chosen to present on Thursday, you must submit your paper and poster on Thursday.

You picked your forecast. You logged your data. You created a scoring system. With any luck, you scored your data, didn’t like the result, and re-wrote your scoring system! Then you wrote a paper, handed it in, got some feedback, and maybe made some changes.

You’ve all done a lot of fantastic work! Pat yourselves on the back. It’s time to create some artistic posters to hang on my walls and share your new knowledge with your peers.

Double check your final posters and essays against the rubrics below. I’ve included links to all three including the original project kick-off document in case you have any lingering questions.

Here’s hoping it doesn’t rain on your parade!

Predicting The Weather Forecast

Data Analysis Guide and Rubric

Final presentation rubric

Upcoming Due Dates

HomeworkSeveral important dates are rapidly approaching.

On Thursday, April 2nd, we take the 2nd exam of this 6 weeks covering scatter plots, samples, comparing populations, finding slopes and equations for lines, etc.

On Friday, April 3rd, you must turn in your completed data analysis for the weather project. I will be more than happy to answer questions before or after school. You may also submit questions via e-mail or twitter.

The following week on Thursday, April 9th, you must turn in the written portion of your final project and be ready to present. Not all groups will get to present on Thursday, but you must be ready. Luck of the draw will not save you if your written portion is not complete.

The 7th grade writing STAAR is now behind you, so breathe a great sigh of relief!

Weather Project Final Presentation

ProjectsThe final presentations for the weather project will be Thursday and Friday, April 9th and 10th. The poster and written component will be due for all students on April 9th. Some groups may not get to present until the 10th.

I’m really looking forward to seeing what our students discovered in this investigation into the accuracy of weather forecasts. I bet there will be plenty of surprises!

If you have any questions, don’t wait to ask! Tomorrow will be here too soon, and before you know it, there won’t be any time left to get those clarifications you know you want today.

Final presentation rubric

Weather Project Data Analysis

ProjectsThe data analysis for the weather project will be due on Friday, April 3, 2015. Since the handout said April 4, I will accept submissions by e-mail in PDF format only up to 5 pm on April 4th. Any submissions after that time will be considered late.

Don’t forget that you must show me your fourteen day data check today, and I must see all of your data including all actual data paired with forecasts by next Wednesday, April 1st. If you have everything on Friday, you’re ahead of the game and should breathe a sigh of relief!

Please review the attached rubric and instructions for completing your data analysis. Don’t wait until the last minute to ask me if you have questions. There’s no better time than the present!

Data Analysis Guide and Rubric