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Lesson 4: Predictions, Predictions

Lesson 4: Predictions, Predictions


Students will continue to read articles critically. They will anticipate visualizations about the data that will be collected from the class experiment and make predictions about the outcome.


  1. Article: PsyBlog’s 10 Ways Our Minds Warp Time found at:

  2. Experiment Predictions handout (LMR_3.1_Experiment Predictions)



Essential Concepts:

Essential Concepts:

Designing an experiment requires making many decisions, including what to measure and how to measure it.


  1. Students will read the article 10 Ways Our Minds Warp Time found at:

  2. They will read the article critically to answer the following questions (displayed or written on the board):

    1. Who was observed and what were the variables measured? People and their perceptions of time.

    2. What statistical questions were the researchers trying to answer? How is time perception affected by different stimuli?

    3. Who collected the data? Researchers such as cave expert Michel Siffre collected data.

    4. How were the data collected? Data were collected through various experiments/studies (13 were cited).

    5. What claim(s) did the article make? There were 10 claims made regarding time perception.

    6. What are some statistics that the article used to make the claim(s)? Answers may vary. Article has several percentage statistics.

  3. In their teams, ask students to share their responses from reading the 10 Ways Our Minds Warp Time article and agree on the responses as a team.

  4. Do a quick Whip Around of the responses (see step #2 for possible responses).

  5. Remind students that they designed a class experiment during the previous lesson but did not select an actual treatment. As a class, decide on a treatment to use for the experiment. Students can use the methods found in the article for inspiration, or come up with something novel on their own.

    Note: Stimuli examples include music (genres determined by the class), lights off, physical activity (e.g., holding arms out), relaxation/meditation techniques, heads down, eyes closed, etc. Ensure that the experiment can be completed in one 50-60 minute class period. Treatments requiring excessive preparation time (e.g., running a mile) are less than ideal.

  6. Before they conduct the experiment, students will test their theories by making predictions about the data and the outcomes. A theory is an idea used to explain a situation.

  7. Display the class experiment’s research question:

    How does our perception of time change when exposed to a stimulus?

  8. Take a poll of the students who believe that there will be differences in the estimate of the length of a minute between the treatment and control groups. The remaining students, then, do not believe that there will be differences.

  9. Then, ask those students who believe there are differences, how small or large they think the difference will be.

  10. Distribute the Experiment Predictions handout (LMR_3.1) and, in pairs, have students discuss and complete the answers for the handout.

    Note: What will the distribution of time perceptions look like? The distributions will likely have more points that are closer to 60 seconds, but will also have values that are shorter and longer than 60 seconds. Appropriate plots to use will include histograms, dotplots or boxplots.

  11. Using Anonymous Author, select student work to share with the whole class.

  12. Give student teams time (about 2 minutes) to discuss each product that is shared/presented.

  13. Teams will offer their thoughts using a modified Two Cents strategy where, instead of two cents, each team will receive one cent (or a token) and, in order to turn it in, the team will have to make comments or ask questions about the student work that is being shared. Call on teams until you have collected every cent. This ensures that all teams contribute to the discussion.

  14. Inform students that they will conduct the experiment in which they will estimate the length of time of one minute during the next lesson.

Class Scribes:

One team of students will give a brief talk to discuss what they think the 3 most important topics of the day were.