Echolocation & Interpreting Data

January 9, 2016 at 2:06 pm (Science) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Thanks to the good folks at the Center for Marine Sciences & Technology (@CMAST) and The Science House (@THS_CMAST) for loaning their Vernier technology, allowing our young minds to  . . . a.) explore how bats and dolphins use echolocation, detecting distances of objects based on reflecting sound.  & b.) interpreting data waves results.

b

The Go!Motion devices were very simple to use, just a USB plugin into the back of the chromebook, and operated smoothly by downloading a free app known as Logger Lite.  Our first day we became familiar with operation of Go!Motion by placing a book or hand in front of the screen and then raising it away and/or towards quickly and/or slowly, the data is tracked as the motions are made.  The device serves as a bat while the object moving is the insect.  They were able to distinguish when a bat would determine if another object were near or far away by the rise or decline in the graph.

For the next act students took turns operating and standing in place to find the distances (marking points) of half a meter and 2 meters in which the kids had to interpret where they were standing and adjust position to the correct measurement.  These marking points served for the experiments of walking away from and toward Go!Motion.  A neat-o feature is the zoom in on the graph, allowing the kids to see if they ruffled their pant leg or twitched a finger while standing still.  It was a real eye opener to see the bounces in the waves according to the slightest movements.  The jumping up and down activity was a hit.  According to the wave data we might have some high fliers by the time they are in their teens.  Just throwing that out their for any college basketball or high jump recruiters that stumbled upon our blog. Cough, hint coach Painter #boilermakers.

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