What would your students say if they could make a science project that could fit right inside of their notebooks? They would be very amazed.
Affordable Science Project
This fun science project can be made for just a few dollars from objects that you can find in your local hardware store or online.
This blog post will provide step-by-step instructions about how to make this cool science project for kids.
STEM is designed to foster a love as well as knowledge about mathematics and science. This project brings circuits directly to students’ notebooks.
One of my newest loves and discoveries is aluminum tape. Where has this been all of my life? I purchased it for a little under $8 from my local hardware store. It is found in the plumbing and/or tubing section of the store. One roll of aluminum tape is enough to last for an entire school year. I also purchased the round batteries I used for the project at the hardware store.
The LED lights can be purchased at an electronics store.
Background About This Project
What Is A Circuit?
A circuit is a path along which an electrical current can be carried. The energy comes from a source. In this instance, it comes from a battery. Electrons are carried along the path. These electrons cause the tiny bulb at the end of the path to illuminate.
Circuits in Daily Life
Circuits power our lights, they enable a car motor to work. They enable a computer (or anything else for that matter) that is plugged into a wall outlet to work.
I love this project because it gets to the heart of STEM. Students are able to actively engage in STEM with a physical science activity that relates to their daily lives. It requires just a few parts, and it is not intimidating.
How to Create the Notebook Circuit
STEP 1: To create a paper circuit, have students draw a pattern on paper. On one side I drew the picture of a battery. On the other side, I drew a picture of an LED light.
STEP 2: Cut a 24 inch piece of tape from the roll. Next, you will make the piece thinner by cutting the aluminum tape into thirds. I used only a third of the width of tape. If you are unable to find aluminum tape, aluminum foil from the grocery store will work just fine. Make sure to make the strip thin. (A larger width decreases the flow of energy in the circuit.)
STEP 3: Place the aluminum on top of your circuit lines in the notebook. Tape or glue will help it stay secure.
Special Notes During This Step:
1.Do not let both sides of the aluminum strips connect. This can cause a short in the battery. The edges on my example come close, but they do not touch.
2.When you are attaching the aluminum foil to the paper, do not cut it. Instead, fold the corner and continue to apply the aluminum strip. Cutting the strips reduces the flow of energy.
STEP 4 Continued…
Stack the batteries. Place the batteries over the battery drawing, and place the LED light over the LED drawing.
STEP 5: You are all finished! I had fold extra pieces of aluminum tape to connect each side of the battery to the circuit. The sticky tape interfered with the conduction. (I made sure that when I attached this extra aluminum, both sides of the circuit DID NOT connect as I was attaching the aluminum to the top of the batteries.
You might have to press the batteries down to hold it in place.
|STEM in the classroom|
Remove the batteries and LED light when you are finished so that they can be used in another project.
I love this because students learn about circuits and conductivity from doing and not just reading about it in a book.
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