This exercise utilizes nightcrawler decomposition to guide students through the methods of science, including forming hypotheses, conducting an experiment, statistically analyzing data, and writing a lab report in the style of a scientific journal article. Additionally, students gain experience with dissection, anatomical terminology, and the biological process of animal decomposition. Students interested in forensic science will enjoy exploring the topic of decomposition. The materials for this experiment are inexpensive and easy to obtain, and several extension activities make this a versatile activity that can be used at many different educational levels.

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