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In this lesson, students observe the surface of rotating potatoes to help them understand how astronomers can sometimes determine the shape of asteroids from variations in reflective brightness.

In this activity, learners will explore the properties of color filters and filter bandpass by observing light sources using diffraction grating and color filters and create a graph of percent transmission versus wavelength to characterize the... (View More)

This lesson provides a way for students to determine the relationship between the distance from a light source and its brightness. Once students discover the relationship, they can begin to understand how astronomers use this knowledge to determine... (View More)

In this activity about spectroscopy, learners build a spectroscope, learn about graphing spectra, and then identify elements in gas tubes using their spectra. The activity concludes as learners graph the spectra of different materials. Essential... (View More)

This is an activity about polarized light. Learners will use a polarizing filter to build and calibrate a simple polarimeter, use the constructed polarimeter to find sources of polarized light, and measure the angle of polarization of polarized... (View More)

This is an activity about spectroscopy. Learners will build a spectroscope with a scale for measuring wavelength and use it to observe various light sources. They will identify spectral lines in more than one light source and analyze the collected... (View More)

In this inquiry investigation, students will learn about how light travels by using mirrors, prisms, and shadow makers. Supplies for this investigation include mirrors, prisms, objects of differing transparency, garden hose or spray bottle,... (View More)

This is a lesson about light in the outer solar system. Learners will demonstrate the effect of the inverse square law of illumination with distance and connect this to the functioning of solar panels at Saturn. Requires a silicon solar cell... (View More)

Traditionally, spectral images are two dimensional, and related to text. This kinesthetic activity has groups of students position themselves along a printed spectrum to make spectral patterns and model various elements. Includes photos, teachers... (View More)

This is an activity about the concept of direct versus indirect sunlight. Learners construct and use a sun angle analyzer to investigate the effect of angle on area illuminated. The fraction of light on each square of the analyzer is then calculated... (View More)

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