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Main Curriculum Tie:
Background For Teachers:
Heat is the random motion of molecules. A hot object is one whose atoms and molecules are excited and show rapid movement. A cooler object’s molecules and atoms will be less excited and show less movement. When these molecules are in an excited state, they take up more space because they are moving around so fast. When molecules settle down, or cool down, they take up less space. If hot, high-energy atoms come into contact with cool, low-energy atoms, the excited atoms will loose some of their energy to the cool atoms. The two atoms will settle into an energy level that is between where they each started out. That level is called Thermal Equilibrium.
It is important for students to understand
that situations that produce
heat involve motion—either observable, such as activity-based (human
mechanical), or electrical. Simple, stationary objects do not produce heat.
Intended Learning Outcomes:
4 correct, complete, detailed
Adaptation—Student explains what they did and what they
Kesidou, S. & Roseman, J.E., (2002), How Well Do Middle School Science Programs Measure Up? Findings from Project 2061’s Curriculum Review.
Programs rarely provided students with a sense of purpose for the units of study. This program took account of student’s beliefs that interfere with learning. It modeled the use of scientific knowledge so that students could apply what they learned in everyday situations.
American Association for the Advancement of Science. (2001). Science for All Americans online. Chapter 4: The physical Setting
Heat energy is the random motion of molecules. Whenever the amount of energy in one place or form diminishes, the amount in another place or form increases. Heat always tends to diffuse from warmer places to cooler places.
Sillman, K. & Dana, T. (1999). Metaphor: A Tool for Monitoring Prospective
Teachers’ Developing Metacognitive Awareness of Learning and Teaching Science,
Providing students with meaningful, hands-on activities is valuable. However, this is not enough; connections have to be made.
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