Our group’s first task today was to come up with a few questions about our surroundings. These questions weren’t your typical questions, though! These were questions of a mysterious sort; questions even the all-knowing GOOGLE couldn’t immediately answer. Try, right now, to think of a few questions yourself.
It’s harder than you may think, isn’t it?
Well, the key to good science, we soon discovered, is to ask the right questions. In fact, it’s also great advice for life in general!
After spending roughly an hour looking for a question to investigate, our group decided to examine something that a few of the members had observed. This observation was a variation in the traits of some local cacti plants. Were these differences a mark of age and lack of sunlight? Or were there just two different species?
The members of our group split up to collect data on six different traits of the cacti that we encountered as we walked. We then drew graphs, created chi-squares, calculated averages, and….concluded that there were actually two different species of the prickly pear cactus in the area!