Observation & Measurement

Observation, properties, & change

Focus question: How are observations used?




What are some observable properties?







How do we observe change?




What properties can change?




What properties can stay the same?




Are there properties that are more stable than others? If so what and how.




How are different changes similar?




Under what situtations are results similar?




Under what situtations might results be different?







  • We observe objects and their properties.
  • We identify objects from their properties and lack of properties.
  • Measurement is an observation.
  • Some properties change.
  • When properties change there is an implied cause and effect.
  • Cause and effect are used to create explanations.


Properties include:


  • inch
  • foot
  • yard
  • cm
  • m
  • km


  • fl. oz.
  • pint
  • quart
  • gallon
  • ml
  • l

Mass / Weight:

  • oz.
  • pounds
  • g
  • kg.

State of Matter:

  • solid
  • liquid
  • gas
  • plasma


  • F
  • C





Measurement as an observation

Focus question: How is measurement used to make accurate observations to collect and record reliable data?


Procedure to measure.

Determine the property you want to observe in your experiment.



Decide a unit of measurement for the specific property.



Select an instrument to measure the specific property

Record your data: List, chart, pictograph, bar graphs, circle graphs, written, line graphs


Measure twice,

Ask, Can someone else understand it?

Is it clearly marked?

Does it accurately show my results?

Ask others to review your process.

Continue with investigation.



Dr. Robert Sweetland's notes
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