San Diego Convention Center
San Diego, California, United States
19 - 23 August 2018
Course (WS1201)
I SEE THE LIGHT! An introduction to basic properties of light
  • Instructor:
  • Mike W. McKee, CREOL, The College of Optics and Photonics, Univ. of Central Florida (United States);
Tuesday 21 August 2018
1:30 PM - 5:30 PM

Member Price $10.00
Non-Member Price $15.00
Student Member Price $10.00
  • Course Level:
  • Introductory
  • CEU:
  • 0.4
Take this opportunity to learn how light enables so much of the technology in today’s modern world. This workshop is intended to introduce attendees to hands-on activities which can be used to teach elementary and middle school students about two of the basic properties of light, diffraction and magnification. By using diffraction lenses and simple magnifying glasses in a few basic lessons, students will learn about the laws of diffraction and magnification, and discuss ways in which these principles are put to work for us. This workshop has been developed to align with the Next Generation Science Standards and is appropriate for use at the Elementary Level 4-PS4-2: Waves: Waves and Information (4-PS4-2) or can also be used for Middle School students MS-PS4-2: Waves and Electromagnetic Radiation. In addition to free magnifiers, diffraction glasses, and a color-changing LED light bulb, optics and photonics posters and outreach DVDs will be available for attendees, demonstrating how light-based technology is used by everyone, every day.
Learning Outcomes
  • Explain how energy can be carried from one place to another by waves, such as water waves and sound waves, by electric current, and by moving objects.
  • Explain how light is reflected from mirrors and other surfaces.
  • Explain how the color of light striking an object affects the way the object is seen.
  • Explain how an object is seen when light traveling from the object enters the eye.
  • Explain how telescopes magnify the appearance of some distant objects in the sky, including the Moon and the planets. The number of stars that can be seen through telescopes is dramatically greater than the number that can be seen by the unaided eye.
  • Explain how visible light is a small band within a very broad electromagnetic spectrum.
  • Explain light travels in straight lines if the medium it travels through does not change.
  • Explain how simple lenses are used in a magnifying glass, the eye, a camera, a telescope, and a microscope.
  • Explain how light can be reflected, refracted, transmitted, and absorbed by matter.
  • Explain how the angle of reflection of a light beam is equal to the angle of incidence.
Elementary and middle school teachers who want to learn hands-on activities to use in teaching their students about the basic properties of light that includes the nature of light, light on the electromagnetic spectrum and how light travels as rays. Scientists, engineers and college students interested in learning some basic outreach activities to take into their local schools and communities. All lessons are developed using an inquiry based approach to learning, and includes ready-to-go worksheets for students.
About the
Mike W. McKee is the Associate Director for the B.S. in Photonic Science and Engineering program in the College of Optics and Photonics at the University of Central Florida. He was a physics teacher in Orange County Public Schools, where he also became a district lead science instructional coach. He was also an instructional coach for a charter school system in California. He has published K-5 lab manuals that are inquiry based with over 100 lessons. Since 1998, he has been the Florida Science Olympiad state director and was the director for the Science Olympiad National Tournament at UCF in 2012 and 2014.
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