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.
- 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.