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Activity 4What kind of statement?

Students should read the news story on page 1 about the latest scientific research, and highlight phrases or sentences according to the following key (or any other way of indicating the different types of statement that can be done with the resources in their pockets or in your classroom):

Existing knowledge

Aims of the research

Technology and methods

New findings or developments

Hypothesis

Evidence

Issues and applications

Normally no more than one phrase or sentence should be highlighted in each paragraph, unless the reader decides that a particular paragraph contains several really important ideas.

Usually the decision will not be too difficult. But choosing between, say, hypotheses and new findings can sometimes be tricky. There isn’t always an obviously right or wrong answer, even to the scientists themselves.

Pupils should be encouraged not to agonise too long over their choice of statement type, but to be prepared to give reasons for their decisions.

Note: A hypothesis is a “tentative explanation that leads to predictions that can be tested by experiment or observation”.

Answer Key: (This is an illustrative set of choices. There are many others.)

New source of stem cells

Scientists have discovered a new source of stem cells. It is amniotic fluid – the fluid that surrounds an embryo.

The researchers from Wake Forest University School of Medicine have used these stem cells to make muscle, bone, fat, blood vessel, nerve and liver cells. Their report is published today in Nature Biotechnology.

real   science

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