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Through the use of prisms and glue sticks, this activity introduces students to a fundamental property of light: white light is made up of colors representing different wavelengths. Students use the results of the activity to explain the variation... (View More)

This article explains how Earth's atmosphere scatters the light from the sun, thereby creating the blue color we typically associate with our sky. Supplementing this article is an explanation of the importance of scattering sunlight. The article is... (View More)

Audience: Informal education
Materials Cost: Free

This comic addresses the question "What is color?" Using the Sun as an example, the comic discusses how visible light (white light) contains all the colors of the rainbow. It goes on to describe why our Sun is white, our sky is blue, and why sunsets... (View More)

This textbook chapter traces the historical development of the modern scientific understanding of light, and reviews the electromagnetic spectrum and the Earth's atmospheric shield. The resource includes links to current news articles, and a suite... (View More)

In this activity, students experience a demonstration of light scattering that explains the blue colors in the Intersetllar Medium (ISM) nebulae, and the reddening of stars viewed through the ISM. It also explains the blue appearance of the sky on... (View More)

Audience: High school, Higher education
Materials Cost: $1 - $5

In this kinesthetic activity, students take on roles of either photons or gas molecules. Photons signal a change from visible light to infrared with a piece of folded construction paper, simulating absorption by the Earth's surface and reradiation... (View More)

Two comic characters, Camilla Corona, a rubber chicken, and Colours O'IRIS, a peacock, explore questions relating to colors of light from the Sun. This comic is part of the series Tales from Stanford Solar.

The bending and scattering of sunlight to create blue skies and red sunsets is explained and illustrated in this article. SciJinks is a joint NASA/NOAA educational website targeting middle school-aged children and their educators. It explores... (View More)

Audience: Informal education
Materials Cost: Free

Using water to represent the atmosphere and milk droplets to represent aerosols, students make predictions and conduct investigations to discover how different aerosol concentrations affect atmospheric color and visibility. This lesson is one of... (View More)

Keywords: Aerosols

This series of infographics was created to supplement the Here, There, Everywhere (HTE) exhibit and connects cross-cutting science content (Earth and planetary sciences and astrophysics) with everyday phenomena, helping to demonstrate the... (View More)

Audience: Informal education
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