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Project Playbook: Educator Edition

Infinity Images

Make connections betwen vision, light, and our celestial world.

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL – LEVEL 3

Infinity mirrors are two parallel mirrors that create smaller and smaller images that appear to recede into infinity. The reflections appear to recede into the distance because the light travels the distance it appears to be traveling. Try placing different objects between your infinity mirrors to see the way they recede into the distance. Try objects with vastly different colors or patterns on either side.

MATERIALS NEEDED:
❏ Two pieces of square acrylic plastic mirror
❏ Tape

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Tape one of the mirrors to the wall against the floor.
  2. Sit on the floor opposite the mirror and hold the other mirror up facing it. You will see the regression of images immediately.
  3. Place an object between the mirrors and record the way that it looks as it falls into infinity.

OBJECTIVE: Kids will learn about the apparent brightness of stars including our sun by using observations from an infinity mirror.

ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS:

  • Why does our sun appear brighter than other stars in the sky?
  • What does one observe in an infinity mirror? Why are the lights “further” away smaller and dimmer?
  • How might the infinity mirror support a scientific explanation of the apparent brightness of stars in the sky?

Engage / Explore:

  1. Place the infinity mirror in front of your child.
    1. Allow them to observe and look in the mirror.
  2. Ask your child to make observations about the mirror.
    1. Child should see a repeated pattern.
    2. The pattern should get smaller as it fades into infinity.
  3. Ask your child:
    1. Does the pattern end?
      1. If so, why does it end?
      2. If not, why does it not end?
    2. The pattern continues, however, the light source is so far away it can no longer be seen.

Explain:

1. Conduct research on stars with your child:

a. They produce light

b. Locations in the universe

c. Our sun is a star.

2. Provide opportunities for child to explore a light source from varying distances.

a. This may include:

i. A flashlight from different distances in the room

ii. Video of a train approaching at night

iii. Video of a plane taking off.

b. Have child identify and discuss what they notice about the light and object as they move closer and further away.

c. Support the discussion with reflective questioning.

Elaborate:

1. Ask the question:

a. Is the apparent brightness of our sun and stars due to their relative distance from earth?

b. Ask child to provide evidence to support their answer.

2. Child should provide a method of explanation of their choice and use the infinity mirror, discussion, and research to support the claim.

a. Methods of explanation can include a presentation, poster, experimental observation/lab findings, drawings, 3D structure, etc.

Educational Standards

NGSS CONNECTION:

4-PS4-2. Develop a model to describe that light reflecting from objects and entering the eye allows objects to be seen.

5-ESS1-1. Support an argument that the apparent brightness of the sun and stars is due to their relative distances from the Earth.

COMMON CORE CONNECTION:

ELA/Literacy
RI.4.1 Write opinion pieces on topics or texts, supporting a point of view with reasons and information.

RI.4.9 Integrate information from two texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably.

SL.4.5 Add audio recordings and visual displays to presentations when appropriate to enhance the development of main ideas or themes.

4.G.A.1 Draw points, lines, line segments, rays, angles (right, acute, obtuse), and perpendicular and parallel lines. Identify these in two-dimensional figures.

SL.5.5 Include multimedia components (e.g., graphics, sound) and visual displays in presentations when appropriate to enhance the development of main ideas or themes.

Mathematics
MP.2 Reason abstractly and quantitatively.

MP.4 Model with mathematics.

5.G.A.2 Represent real-world and mathematical problems by graphing points in the first quadrant of the coordinate plane, and interpret coordinate values of points in the context of the situation.

DOK:
Level 1: Recall
Level 2: Concept
Level 3: Strategic Thinking
Level 4: Extended Thinking

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