Hobos In the Garden: Reading Temperature Graphs

 Data recorders come in all sizes and shapes iScienceProject

Having a new tool to carry out experiments is like playing with a new toy. During the tulip experiment some Journey North classrooms signed up with iScience to use a new tool, the Hobo Data Recorder in their gardens. Maybe these battery-powered temperature recorders can help us learn about the physiology of tulip bulbs.
Who knows, we may even learn what temperatures are necessary for tulips to emerge and bloom!

Use Data to Solve Garden Location Puzzle
Analyzing experimental data is difficult and often takes extra time and effort before a level of understanding is reached. Scientists study data for clues to answer questions. What questions do you have when you look at the 2 graphs? What statements can you make about this data from one of our Garden Sites? Let’s begin by practicing using mathematical terms to describe what we see.

 Temperatures above the snow Temperatures below the snow

Can You Communicate in Math-ese?
The process of translating graphic pictures of the data encourages us to learn and use mathematical vocabulary. Understanding terms like axis, horizontal, vertical, range, outlier, etc. are essential for communicating about the data. Try answering these questions as you practice using mathematical terms.

1. Find the x axis on each graph. What is represented along this horizontal line?
2. How many times is each date represented along the x axis?
3. Find the y axis. What is represented along this vertical line?
4. What is the lowest temperature on the y axis on each graph?
5. What is the high and low temperature on each graph? Find it and calculate the temperature range.
6. Which graph has the largest range in temperatures?

How to Conclude
After answering the questions write a paragraph about each of the graphs. The data for each was recorded in the same garden. Do you want to know more? Include any questions you have.

Maybe temperature recorders can help us learn more about the physiology of tulip bulbs. Who knows, we may even learn about what happens to make tulips emerge and bloom!

National Science Education Standards

Science as Inquiry
Use data to conduct a reasonable explanation. (K-4)

Use math in all aspects of scientific inquiry. (5-8)

Simple instruments, such as magnifiers, thermometers, and rulers, provide more information than scientists obtain using only their senses. (K-4)

Physical Science
Objects have observable properties, including size, weight, shape, color, temperature, and the ability to react with other substances. Those properties can be measured using tools, such as rulers, balances, and thermometers. (K-4)

National Math Standards

Data Analysis and Probability
Develop and evaluate inferences and predictions that are based on data.