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The Popcorn Lab And Science Fair

General Experiment Outline Guide
I. Title
This should tell what the experiment is investigating. It is the name of the experiment and may be in the form of a question. Be specific.
II. Purpose
Identify the problem and state it carefully. Why are you doing the experiment? "To see if...."
III. Hypothesis
Before you do the experiment, what do you predict will happen? This should be based on Observations and Preliminary Research."If..., then..., because..."
IV. Experimental Variable
What is the one condition that you changed? What are you comparing or testing? You may want to include a test where you do nothing to your sample to see what would happen if it were "left alone." This is called the "Control."
V. Controlled Variables
List the things that you plan to keep the same during your experiment, so that they will not affect your results. These are the conditions that you do not want to test at this time to make your testing fair. (List at least 6.)
VI. Procedure
List in a step by step way how to do the experiment. If you do a good job, someone reading your procedure will be able to repeat it accurately. You should include at least TEN trials or samples. Try to do your tests in a random (changing) order. Analyze results and discard any that show a major error.
VII. Materials
List the equipment you need to do the experiment. Be specific; list the kinds and amounts.
VIII. Results (Observations)
Use charts and graphs to record your data. All calculations should be clearly labeled. Be sure to keep a journal of all information gathered while doing your investigation.
IX. Conclusion
A. What was proved? Analyze what your results meant. What were the differences between the factors or products you tested? Check the ingredients or makeup of your variable. (Be careful not to confuse close results with a major difference. Is it close enough to be considered of "no significant difference" due to possible experimental error?
B. What conditions may have affected your results causing an experimental error?
C. How would you change the design of the experiment to eliminate the problems and make it a better test?
D. What were some of the conditions that were impossible to control?
E. What did you learn from your experiment that you did not expect?
F. If your results are accurate, what recommendations would you make as a result of your experiment?

 Popcorn Experiment Sample:

For this classroom experiment, each group of students should pop a bag of microwave popcorn and count the popped and unpopped kernals.
I. Title
Which brand of microwave popcorn produces the most popped kernals.

II. Purpose

To see if the most expensive brands of microwave popcorn are really worth the extra money.

III. Hypothesis

If both expensive and inexpensive brands of microwave popcorn are popped I predict that a higher nunber of popped kernels will result in the more expensive brands.

IV. Experimental Variable

brand names of popcorn

V. Controlled Variables

A. all microwave popcorn brands
B. Same popping procedure
C. Same time popcorn popped
D. Same temperature at which popcorn is popped

VI. Procedure

A. Prepare the 16 samples microwave popcorn
B. Pop all bags of popcorn for 3min 40 sec witih the same microwave.
C. Count all popcorn pieces/ popped popcorn and unpopped kernals

VII. Materials

A. 16 + bags of different microwave popcorn
B. microwave

VIII. Results (Observations)

Develop a chart for recording the collected data. Also keep a record of everything observed as anecdotal information to help in making conclusions.

IX. Conclusion

A. What was proved? Analyze what your results meant. What were the differences between the factors or products you tested? Check the ingredients or makeup of your variable. (Be careful not to confuse close results with a major difference. Is it close enough to be considered of "no significant difference" due to possible experimental error?
B. What conditions may have affected your results causing an experimental error?
C. How would you change the design of the experiment to eliminate the problems and make it a better test?
D. What were some of the conditions that were impossible to control?
E. What did you learn from your experiment that you did not expect?
F. If your results are accurate, what recommendations would you make as a result of your experiment? Comparing the Number of Popped and Unpopped Microwave

Popcorns Brand
brand 1:__________
brand 2: __________
brand 3:__________
brand 4: __________
brand 5: __________
brand 6: __________
brand 7:__________
brand 8: __________
brand 9: __________
brand 10:_________
brand 11:_________
brand 12:_________

brand 13:_________
brand 14:_________
brand 15:_________
brand 16:_________
brand 17:_________

Popped kernals
brand 1: _________
brand 2: _________
brand 3: _________
brand 4: _________
brand 5: _________
brand 6: _________
brand 7: _________
brand 8: _________
brand 9: _________
brand 10:_________
brand 11:_________
brand 12: _________
brand 13: _________
brand 14: _________
brand 15: _________
brand 16: _________
brand 17: _________
Unpopped Kernals
brand 1: __________
brand 2: __________
brand 3: __________
brand 4: __________
brand 5: __________
brand 6: __________
brand 7: __________
brand 8: __________
brand 9: __________
brand 10:_________
brand 11: _________
brand 12: _________
brand 13: _________
brand 14: _________
brand 15: _________
brand 16: _________
brand 17: _________

from this data make a graph

Additional questions for consideration:
1.If there is a difference between the initial mass of the corn and the popped corn, what happened to account for this change?
2.How much variability is there in the samples of each kind of corn? Why do you think this is true?
3.What happens to the reliability of the results as the sample size is increased?
4.What practical problems are there in the unpopped kernels and the popped corn? How can you limit these?