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K-1: The Senses

Author(s): Barbara Tharp, MS, Michael Vu, MS, Delinda Mock, BA, Christopher Burnett, BA, and Nancy Moreno, PhD.

Let's Make Kaleidoscopes!

Procedure: Part 1 (cont.)

Instruct students to use their kaleidoscopes to explore the classroom. Ask, What is happening? Hopefully they will notice that they are seeing reflections of objects in the room on the inside panels of the kaleidoscopes. This may be a good time to talk about the word, “reflection.” 

Ask, What happens when you place your hand over the opening? Can you still see the reflections? Why or why not? Students should notice that they need light to be able to see.

Distribute the 3-in. x 5-in. cards. Instruct students to create colorful art on one side of the card. Have them position their kaleidoscopes over the decorated cards. Prompt students to look through the open end. Ask, What do you see? What is happening? [No light]

Next, have students hold the decorated cards to the end of their kaleidoscopes. Ask them to lift the kaleidoscopes up and look through the open end. Light should filter through the card, making colorful patterns on the inside panels.

Lead students to understand that eyes are light detectors that take in the light reflected from every surface. When students cover one end of the kaleidoscope with their hands (or the desk), light is blocked, and they cannot see.

Have students tape the decorated cards into their notebooks.

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