Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Science in Focus: Shedding Light: Workshop 3

highlights | camera | support materials

Pigments, Paints, and Printing

The colors that surround us provide a rich visual experience. In this workshop we will create rainbows and learn how and why these magnificent phenomena occur in the sky.

After looking at the Sun's electromagnetic spectrum we will explore the reflection and refraction of photons of light. We will also examine color televisions and look closely at the pixels which form images, and investigate the primary colors of light and pigments.

Learning Objectives

Participants will be able to:

  • Define color as a characteristic of visible light that depends upon its energy and human perception.
  • Explain that the only thing we see is light that enters the eye.
  • Define what is meant by primary colors.


National Science Education Standards

K-4 standards: http://bob.nap.edu/html/nses/html/6c.html#ps

  • Light travels in a straight line until it strikes an object. Light can be reflected by a mirror, refracted by a lens, or absorbed by the object.

    Content Standards: K-4: Physical Science: Light, Heat, Electricity, and Magnetism

5-8 Standards: http://bob.nap.edu/html/nses/html/6d.html#ps

  • Light interacts with matter by transmission (including refraction), absorption, or scattering (including reflection). To see an object, light from that object — emitted by or scattered from it — must enter the eye.

    Content Standards: 5-8: Physical Science: Transfer of Energy

American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Project 2061 Benchmarks

By the end of the 2nd grade, students should:

  • Raise questions about the world around them and be willing to seek answers to some of them by making careful observations and trying things out.

    Habits of the Mind: 12A Values and Attitudes: K-2

By the end of the 2nd grade, students should:

  • Tools such as thermometers, magnifiers, rulers or balances often give more information about things than can be obtained by just observing things without their help.

    Nature of Science: 1B Scientific Inquiry: K-2

By the end of the 5th grade, students should:

  • Offer reasons for their findings and consider reasons suggested by others.

    Habits of the Mind: 12A Values and Attitudes: 3-5

By the end of the 8th grade, students should know that:

  • Something can be "seen" when light waves emitted or reflected by it enter the eye — just as something can be "heard" when sound waves from it enter the ear.

    The Physical Setting: 4F Motion: 6-8

  • Human eyes respond to only a narrow range of wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation — visible light. Differences of wavelength within that range are perceived as different colors.

    The Physical Setting: 4F Motion: 6-8


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