Quest: 5th Grade, Nature of Science

Here are some science questions to help you test your knowledge of the Next Generation Sunshine State Standards.

The questions are chosen randomly, so this quest will be different each time you reload the page.

Back to the Grade 5 standards.



Which of the following statements is scientifically testable?

  1. These alligators are scary.

    No. Being scary is not a physical property. Instead, it is an opinion. Some people might think they are scary, while other people might think they are not.
  2. These alligators have sharp teeth.

    Yes! Careful observation would show that all three of these alligators have very sharp teeth. Anyone who put their hand into the mouth of these alligators would find out quickly that sharp teeth are a measurable, physical property that is scientifically testable.

    Remember that scientifically testable properties are going to be the same, no matter who tests them. For example, these alligators each have four legs, scaly skin, and lungs for breathing air. They are carnivorous, which means that they eat other animals. They are reptiles, and they lay eggs.

    All of that information is based on physical evidence that can be checked and verified. You could count their legs, examine their skin, etc. These things are scientifically testable.

    On the other hand, opinions are a property of the observer, not the object. I may think alligators are interesting. Someone else may thing they are scary, or ugly, or boring. You could test different people, to see if they think alligators are scary, but you can't test the alligator to see if it is scary. Opinions are not scientific evidence about the object.

  3. These alligators have ugly eyes.

    No. Again, this is an opinion, not a measurable, physical property. I happen to think that alligators have pretty eyes.
  4. These alligators are lazy.

    No. Lazy is not a measurable property. I might call them lazy, but you might think that they are just waiting for something tasty to walk by. Lazy is an opinion, and is not scientifically testable.



Click to see which state standards this question tests, and which of my videos, experiments, and other resources support that topic.

Florida


SC.5.N.2.1 Recognize and explain that science is grounded in empirical observations that are testable; explanation must always be linked with evidence.

SC.8.N.2.1 Distinguish between scientific and pseudoscientific ideas.

Utah

NGSS

Which of the following observations is NOT scientifically testable?

  1. Butterflies have pretty wings.

    Yes! Pretty is an opinion, and can vary from person to person, so it is NOT scientifically testable.
  2. Butterflies have six legs.

    No. This could be tested by counting the legs of a variety of butterflies.
  3. Butterflies can sting like bees.

    No. A claim does not have to be true to be testable. Examination of a variety of butterflies would show that they do not have stingers.
  4. Most butterflies drink nectar from flowers.

    No. This could be tested by observing the feeding habits of butterflies.

Explain more about it.

If I said that butterflies did not have six legs, you could show me physical evidence by counting their legs. After counting the legs, the physical evidence would show that butterflies have six legs.

If I said that I don't think butterfly wings are pretty, you could show me wings that you think are pretty, but I might not agree with your opinion. "Pretty" is not something that we can measure. What is pretty to one person might not be pretty to another, so it is not a testable property.



Click to see which state standards this question tests, and which of my videos, experiments, and other resources support that topic.

Florida


SC.5.N.2.1 Recognize and explain that science is grounded in empirical observations that are testable; explanation must always be linked with evidence.

SC.8.N.2.1 Distinguish between scientific and pseudoscientific ideas.

Utah

NGSS

I want to test a new fertilizer, to find the best concentration for my garden. To do this, I plan to divide my garden into four sections.

Section A. I will use 5 grams of fertilizer per gallon each time I fertilize.

Section B. I will use 10 grams of fertilizer per gallon each time I fertilize.

Section C. I will use 15 grams of fertilizer per gallon each time I fertilize.

For section D, how much fertilizer per gallon should I use?

  1. 20 grams of fertilizer per gallon.

    No. This would be a good thing to test, but for this to be a proper science experiment, it is not the correct answer.
  2. 30 grams of fertilizer per gallon.

    No. This would be a good thing to test, but for this to be a proper science experiment, it is not the correct answer.
  3. 1 gram of fertilizer per gallon.

    No. This would be a good thing to test, but for this to be a proper science experiment, it is not the correct answer.
  4. No fertilizer at all.

    Yes. For this type of experiment, you need to have a control group. That is a group of test subjects that you do not do anything to. If the control group with no fertilizer grows just as well as the other groups, then I would know that the fertilizer was not working.



Click to see which state standards this question tests, and which of my videos, experiments, and other resources support that topic.

Florida


SC.5.N.1.4 Identify a control group and explain its importance in an experiment.

SC.7.N.1.4 Identify test variables (independent variables) and outcome variables (dependent variables) in an experiment.

Utah

NGSS


3-5-ETS1-3 Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.

Which of the following observations is scientifically testable?

  1. Honeybees are good insects.

    No. "Good" is a generic term that could mean many different things in different situations. It is an opinion, not a testable property. This statement is NOT scientifically testable.
  2. Honeybees are important insects.

    No. "Important" is a generic term that could mean many different things to different people. It is an opinion, not a testable property. This statement is NOT scientifically testable.
  3. Honeybees are pretty insects.

    No. Some people might think that a honeybee is pretty, and some people might not. It is an opinion, not a testable property. This statement is NOT scientifically testable.
  4. Honeybees are not insects.

    Yes! While this statement is not correct, it is scientifically testable. You could examine the bee to see that it does fit the definition of an insect. This statement is IS scientifically testable.



Click to see which state standards this question tests, and which of my videos, experiments, and other resources support that topic.

Florida


SC.5.N.2.1 Recognize and explain that science is grounded in empirical observations that are testable; explanation must always be linked with evidence.

SC.8.N.2.1 Distinguish between scientific and pseudoscientific ideas.

Utah

NGSS

What do you have to do to replicate an experiment?

  1. You do the same experiment several times.

    No. Doing the same experiment several times is repetition, not replication.
  2. You do the same experiment that someone else did.

    Yes. By replicating an experiment exactly, you should get the same results as the original experiment.
  3. You do an improved version of someone's experiment.

    For replication, you do the experiment exactly as the original scientist did, without making any changes.
  4. You look for errors in someone's experiment.

    The purpose of replication is to verify, not to look for errors.



Click to see which state standards this question tests, and which of my videos, experiments, and other resources support that topic.

Florida


SC.2.N.1.4 Explain how particular scientific investigations should yield similar conclusions when repeated.

SC.5.N.2.2 Recognize and explain that when scientific investigations are carried out, the evidence produced by those investigations should be replicable by others.

>>> Teacher Page: Nature of Science and Dissolving


SC.6.N.1.2 Explain why scientific investigations should be replicable.

SC.7.N.1.2 Differentiate replication (by others) from repetition (multiple trials).

SC.8.N.1.2 Design and conduct a study using repeated trials and replication.

Utah

NGSS


The questions are chosen randomly, so this quest will be different each time you reload the page.

Back to the Grade 5 standards.