Friday, July 13, 2012

Learning to Be a Scientist: Week 5, Day 3

Continuing Learning to Be a Scientist : the fifth concept is "Scientists use tools and equipment;" the third activity is "Reflections."

The kids had a lot of fun with this one. Builder Boy, George, and George's little sister participated. I originally planed to do this lesson in the boys' bedroom, but it has an east facing window and by the time we did the lesson in the afternoon there was no direct sunlight. Downstairs wasn't going to work, but the light and shadows were just right for doing it in the back patio. We started with using mirrors to reflect sunlight to different places. The kids had a lot of fun with that and the played for about 10 minutes before they were ready to move on. We made the reflected lights dance around; we tried to get our lights to touch and we "tagged" each other with our reflections. Builder Boy got out the old baby mirror and "bent" the light by bending the flexible mirror. It looked really cool!

Then we bounced balls against the wall to demonstration the light bouncing off the mirror.

Then we reflected the light through a light "Diffraction Grating" that came with the science kit that I got at the thrift store with the thermometer.

I made sure that they understood that the mirror was not the source of the light, it was merely reflecting it. Then we went into the under-stairs bathroom and we played with reflecting light from a flashlight. After that the kids drew the light reflecting off the mirror on the worksheet page. The kids identified the mirrors, flashlights, and balls as "tools" for learning about light.

When they were done I let them play the Sid the Science Kid I Want to Be a Scientists Game which teaches kids about the different kinds of scientists and the different tools they use.

This is a baby mirror that is similar to the one we used.


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