Students used their prior knowledge from previous experiments about energy transfer and insulators to engineer an efficient insulated hot beverage. Students tested their cups with warm water and monitored heat loss for a twenty-minute span and collected temperature data.
Our students were quite engaged with our Insulated Cup Project. After learning about conductors and insulators, student groups planned and designed insulated cups. Ice water was poured in each cup, and Vernier temperature probes were used to measure the liquid’s temperature for 20 minutes. The goal was to have the smallest difference between the beginning and ending temperatures as possible. Students then manipulated one variable and retested to see if there was any improvement in their designs.