March 30, 2018

We continued to explore the human senses by studying hearing and seeing. Students looked at diagrams of the structure of our ears, discussed the physics of sound, played drums and piano with varying volume (amplitude of the sound wave), determined the pitch (frequency of the sound wave) of a plucked rubber band, talked through a string telephone, and wrote down their favorite songs.

Students learned about light refraction by 1) looking at a drawing through a glass of water and 2) by blowing bubbles to see the rainbow on the bubble’s surface. We looked at Pantone color books and discussed the difference between the color of light and the color we see in the pigments, as well as the rods and cones in our retina which help us perceive colors. To further explore how our brain perceives visual information—sometimes erroneously—we brought books on optical illusions.

Students helped test their friends’ vision with mock eye exams, pretending to be opticians.

The highlight was a visit from a real optician who talked about the importance of sunglasses, explained the structure of our eyes and answered any questions. Thank you so much for coming to Science Fridays!

Play: Make your own string telephone.

Visit: Visit Exploratorium’s Seeing and Listening gallery.

What do you think? Can you hear a sound in space? See the answer from an astronomer.

Learn: Learn more about optics from Optics4Kids.

 

Photo credit: Anya Bosina

Science Fridays: Seeing and Hearing