Jelly Science: Exploring Light with Water Pearls Documents

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Main Document

Jelly Science: Exploring Light with Water Pearls 

written by Rebecca Vieyra
sub author: Caroline Hall

This AAPT lesson blends physics, geometric optics, and biology as students explore image formation by using "water pearls", a hydrating polymer product that expands in water and behaves as a convex lens. By observing objects through the water pearls, students will explore properties of light refraction and learn about focal length of a lens. The water pearls allow learners to visualize image inversion in a convex lens and relate this phenomenon to the vision process in the human lens. They will also observe that the water pearls are invisible when immersed in water because they have the same refractive index as water. The extension activity challenges students to ponder what would happen if our brains did not reorient inverted images so we see them "rightside up".

Published January 7, 2017
Last Modified January 11, 2017

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Primary Documents (2)

Teacher's Guide: Jelly Science-Exploring Light with Water Pearls 

by R. Vieyra and C. Hall

Word Version: Print and Customize Your Lesson

Released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 license.

Published January 7, 2017
Last Modified January 11, 2017

Student Worksheet: Exploring Light with Water Pearls 

by Rebecca Vieyra

Printable Student Guide for classroom distribution.

Released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 license.

Last Modified January 11, 2017