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Investigating Light

Investigating Light
Liane Angaran

After our inquiry walks, we sat down and brainstormed all kinds of questions about the things that interested us. As we shared our thinking, we noticed recurring questions about light, shadows, and color. Since the children were so fascinated by light, shadows, and color we decided to focus our next steps on investigating light because it was the common strand among all three. We found synthetic light sources (flashlights) and investigated how light works. As they went around the classroom they discovered there were 3 types of materials that affected the light path. Integrating their knowledge of art we found that the vocabulary for those were transparent, translucent, and opaque.

Here is what we spent some time investigating. Some students volunteered to share their descriptions of what the class discovered and they practiced their public speaking skills to present it to the elementary school during an assembly:

E.F.: Opaque is when something completely blocks the light. Light cannot go through it.

D.C.: Translucent is when only some of the light can pass through.

L.I: Transparent is when light can go all the way through (presented by E.A.)

K.M.: When you put something in front of a flashlight, it blocks the light and makes a shadow.

J.O.: If you have red light and blue light, you can combine them to make purple light just like paint and crayons.

C.H.: You can combine different colors if you shine them in the same direction. When you shine red, green, and blue together it makes white light.

L.M.: When I shined my light through a magnifying glass it made a flower on the ceiling!


Our next investigation involves the use of lasers to help us understand how light travels. Come back to our blogs to find out what we discover!

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