Students play a game of cards to learn how scientists study nature. They learn the Nature OF Science as a result.
Scientists observe the natural world and ask questions about what they observe. They make hypotheses and then test their ideas through carefully designed studies. When a hypothesis is tested repeatedly and “nature” responds in the same way, a theory is formed.
- A scientific hypothesis is a statement based on prior knowledge and observation. It is often stated as an “If…then” sentence. It has to be a testable statement.
- A scientific theory summarizes a hypothesis or a group of hypotheses that have been supported by repeated testing.
- In science, a theory is often thought of differently than how many people think of it. The lay population often thinks of theory as a “hunch,” but in science the word theory is a way that facts are interpreted based on a large body of observable evidence. (i.e., gravity is a “theory” as is evolution)