Using UV beads, students will observe and draw energy.
Main Curriculum Tie:
Science - 6th Grade
Standard 6 Objective 2
Describe how light can be produced, reflected, refracted, and separated into visible light of various colors.
For each student:
- Two UV beads
- Pipe cleaner
- Energy Song (pdf)
- The Wonder of Light, by Jan Adkins (Ranger Rick Series, Newbridge
Educational Publishing); ISBN 1567844758
- The Usborne Internet-Linked Library of Science Light, Sound & Electricty, Kirsteen Rogers et al. (Scholastic);
- Electromagnetic Energy, (Schlessinger Media, 1-800-843-3620,
- Eureka!, section on Electromagnetic Spectrum (offered by Utah
Education Network several years ago, created by TV Ontario,
may still be available from district office)
- TheTech - A Light Menu
Great color photos introduce students to the electromagnetic spectrum
and visible light.
- The Electromagnetic Spectrum
If you have a color projector, this Web site is perfect for teaching the
electromagnetic spectrum with color photos, etc.
- Optics for Kids
Basic facts about light and online activities for students.
Background For Teachers:
Energy is defined as the ability to do work. Heat, light, and sound are
all forms of energy. Some of the things they have in common are that
they all travel in waves and can all be reflected (angle of incidence
equals the angle of reflection).
Light is everywhere. It is really the only thing we can see, because
when you look around you, you are looking either at a light source or
something that is reflecting light. Every living thing depends on light
energy in some form or another.
Light can be thought of as traveling in rays, which move in straight
lines until they hit something. Light also travels in a series of waves. It is
only part of a group of waves called electromagnetic waves. Radio
waves, microwaves, and other types of radiation are constantly
surrounding us, along with infrared rays, ultraviolet radiation, X-rays and
gamma rays. Scientists have grouped these together and labeled them the electromagnetic spectrum.
The sun is our greatest source of light and energy. Other natural light
sources include stars, fire, lightning, fireflies, and some bioluminescent
animals. Invented light sources include: light bulbs, lamps, lasers,
fireworks, flares and glow sticks, etc. Moonlight is not considered a light
source because it actually reflects sunlight.
Intended Learning Outcomes:
4. Communicate Effectively Using Science Language and Reasoning
Invitation to Learn
Introduce the concept of energy to students by writing what they
know about energy on a chart. Ask for specific examples of energy, and
encourage students to specify how they will know when energy is
- Tell students you are going outside on an energy hunt, but first
they must put on some energy detectors.
- Hand out two UV beads and a pipe cleaner per student. Instruct
them to place beads on the pipe cleaner and attach it to their wrist.
- Students will take a pencil and paper (clipboard if available), and
go outside for a few minutes to observe and draw the energy they
see. Encourage them watch for as many forms of energy as they
can see. They should notice that their UV beads have changed
- After a few minutes of students drawing and observing, have
them come back in and discuss their observations.
- Classify their findings and chart them as a class, such as natural
and invented light sources or sources of light and reflectors of
light (anything that is not a light source is a reflector of light).
- Sing the first two verses of Energy Song.
Strategies For Diverse Learners:
Have students work with a group or buddy learner who can help with work. Choose several key words or terms for students to learn, instead of expecting mastery of everything.
- Study of the electromagnetic spectrum is reserved for upper
grades, however, a short introduction will help students better
understand how visible light fits into everything. One way to
teach it is to divide students into groups and have each group
choose a part of the electromagnetic spectrum to research, then
draw a poster of. Their findings should include ways we use this
energy in everyday life. Posters can then be displayed on a
- Make a compare/contrast chart comparing natural and invented
light sources. Students draw or write at least ten examples of
each. Provide books with unusual light sources such as
bioluminescent animals or chemicals that produce light.
Assign students a home project about light and color. This is
something they should do at home, and share with the class at the end of
the unit. In the instructions that are sent home, include Web site resources
and project ideas.
This month we will be studying energy in the form of light. For
their at-home project, students may choose to do a poster, bring a
model, or demonstrate something for the class about light or
color. The written report of their project and what they learned
must be at least two paragraphs and can be typed or hand-written.
This project is worth 50 points.
5 points - Turned in on time.
25 points - Drawing, model, or demonstration.
20 points - Written description of research, in paragraph form.
Ideas for the Project:
- Model of the eye and how we see.
- Demonstration of colors of light, including homemade prisms.
- Model, poster, or demonstration of reflection or refraction of
light (this might include a homemade kaleidoscope).
- Making a solar oven or solar cooker of some sort.
- Report or demonstration of how light is bent through lenses.
- List of 20 ways mirrors are used in everyday life.
- Make a light book out of 12” x 18” art paper with examples of
light sources, and one page of misconceptions of non-light
sources, such as moonlight.
- Have students draw or list ten examples each of natural and
invented light sources.
Created Date :
Nov 16 2004 13:06 PM