I love culminating a study of light and optics with a study of how the human eye works. Once kids understand convex lenses and how they make images on screens, they can understand how the lens in our eye casts an image on our retina. Ideally this lab uses an eye model but you could substitute diagrams if needed. This is a quick and simple lab that requires no setup and could even be set up as a center or station
Use this to learn and reinforce answers to questions such as:
- What structures can you identify in a friend’s eyes?
- What is the purpose of a pupil?
- What structure(s) in your eye focus light?
Once students try this activity, they can capture their observations using the included Lab Notes or probing questions included in the instructions.
- Your pupil is formed by your iris. It contracts and expands to let in light.
- The sclera encases and protects your eye.
- The optic nerve exits from the back of the eye and connects to the brain.
Answer Keys and Teacher Notes address most questions and issues that might arise in this study—you shouldn’t have to do any outside research unless you want to.
Materials Needed Eye model (preferred); eye diagrams (alternative)
Prep Needed Gather supplies
Teaching Time 20-30 min
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