Will it conduct?
This online resource provides a lesson plan for a hands-on activity where students build a conductivity tester to explore the difference between electrical conductors and insulators.
The resource provides details on how to build the conductivity tester from a battery, light bulb and wires. It also lists a number of solid and liquid substances that can be tested to determine if they are conductors or insulators. Worksheets are available on the site for students to record their results and answer questions.
Plenty of background information is provided for teachers to make this a very thorough lesson. Answers to questions posed to students are given throughout the lesson plan in brackets. Ideas for assessment and extension are also included.
The site is American and gives ‘pennies’ as a good example for copper. Old Australian 1 or 2 cent coins could be substituted or even old Aussie ‘pennies’, if you have them.
The vocabulary is very sophisticated for Year 6 students and includes terms like: electrons, electric current, charge, ions, electrolyte etc. Use of these terms is optional of course.
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