Image Histogram Analysis

Note: This experiment is being postponed and will be re-visited after Spring Break.  Timelines and deadlines will be revised soon.  Thank you for your patience as we await guidance from our school district.  

Image Histogram Analysis

Background: You are excited for Spring and want to give your seeds a jump-start indoors to protect them from the cold.  You will transplant the seedlings into your garden when the weather warms up.  As a scientist, you are interested in keeping track of how fast the seedlings are growing so you can improve your process next year. One way to track plant growth is through image analysis.  Pictures can provide both qualitative data and quantitative data.  When pictures are subjected to histogram analysis, individual pixels are defined quantitatively and those data points can be plotted onto a graph to form a histogram.  New to histograms?  Learn more here.  New to histograms as they relate to photography?  Learn more here.

Materials: Paper pulp egg cartons, potting soil, and seeds.  Together, these will form the “incubator garden.”  Also, digital camera and image analysis software capable of generating image histograms.  I will be using the Image Histogram Creator available for free online by Sisek because it is simple to use and allows histogram data to be exported to a spreadsheet program like Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets.

Challenge: Evaluate and record the growth of seedlings by taking daily photographs of the incubator garden and tracking changes in luminosity and color.  Beginning on the day seeds are planted, take daily pictures and minimize as much picture variability as possible by keeping the lighting and camera distance consistent.  **Note: This is really important and will probably be the hardest part of the experiment!  The solution you engineer to minimizing variability in light and distance should be carefully documented in your lab report.

Deadline: Create a Google Doc titled “Egg Carton Garden – Your Name” and share it with Mr. Swart.  Write the Purpose and Procedure sections.  First drafts must be shared no later than Wednesday, April 1.  Students are encouraged to create their own gardens.  However, students are welcome to use the images posted to this page and conduct image analyses with those.  You will be responsible for completing the Results and Conclusion sections of your Google Doc.  When you are finished, your lab report grade for this document will replace your lowest lab report score from 2nd semester.  Lab reports will be due Friday, May 1.

Data Collection: Between April 3 and April 24, pictures will be taken and posted to this page.

Disclaimer: In the event school does not reopen on Monday, April 27, Mr. Swart reserves the right to extend deadlines and data collection so we can learn as much as possible from this experiment.

Experimental Design Challenge

Note: This experiment is being postponed and will be re-visited after Spring Break.  Timelines and deadlines will be revised soon.  Thank you for your patience as we await guidance from our school district.  

Experimental Design Challenge!

Background: You have a Red Tip Photinia tree in your yard that needs to be removed.  It’s growing too close to your house and you are concerned about foundation damage if it gets any bigger.  Inspired by Groot, you decide to propagate the plant by taking cuttings and planting them in a new location.  Now comes the hard part: what to do?

Observations: The plant is currently growing like crazy because Spring has arrived.  The part of each branch closes to the trunk has a woody stem, while the new branch growth stem is red in color.

Materials: You intend to plant the cuttings directly into the soil in your yard.  The best available section of your yard to conduct the experiment is along the western fence line.  You also bought rooting hormone powder and want to determine: 1) will it promote root growth as advertised and 2) will using it result in healthier new plants?

Challenge: Design an experiment to determine the best way to propagate the plant.

Deadline: Create a Google Doc titled “Will It Grow – Your Name” and share it with Mr. Swart.  Write the Purpose and Procedure sections.  First drafts must be shared no later than Wednesday, March 25.  The experiment will begin Friday, March 27 and will end Friday, April 24.  You will be responsible for completing the Results and Conclusion sections of your Google Doc.  When you are finished, your lab report grade for this document will replace your lowest lab report score from 2nd semester.  Lab reports will be due Friday, May 1.

Data Collection: Between March 27 and April 24, data will be collected and posted to this page.

Disclaimer: In the event school does not reopen on Monday, April 27, Mr. Swart reserves the right to extend deadlines and data collection so we can learn as much as possible from this experiment.