Paper Towel Testing

Grades 5—8

Written by Cary I. Sneider and Jacqueline Barber

If we can't evade the flurry of advertising claims children are exposed to every day, can we help them decipher the hype and decide for themselves? Absolutely!

The activities in this unit use four brands of paper towel to get students started down the road of consumer awareness. As they test, assess, and rank the wet strength and absorbency of these brands, they learn and use math and science concepts to appraise a real consumer item. Based on their findings and the cost of each brand, students determine which is the "best buy."

These activities provide a stimulating introduction to consumer science and the concept of controlled experimentation. Students can go on to devise their own experiments, advertisements for paper towels based on their test results, or tests for other consumer items.
This can even become a regular class event, bringing developing math, science, and consumer skills to bear on a variety of products.

Time: Four 30- to 45-minute sessions plus follow-up sessions.

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ISBN: Grade Level Format Price



4 Sessions,
48 pages


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