Varying loops(Activity)



What happens when bulbs are added?


What the activity is for

Through working with physical loops, the children establish that when an extra bulb is added to a simple electric circuit, the bulb gets dimmer.

When an extra battery is added to a simple electric circuit, the bulb gets brighter; or the buzzer/bell sounds louder; or the motor turns more quickly.

They are then encouraged to think about their observations.


What the activity is for

  • batteries
  • bulbs/buzzers/bells/motors
  • connecting leads

  • What happens during this activity

    The children work in small groups to observe what happens with one, two and possibly three bulbs in a loop.

    Then children are encouraged to talk and think about the electrical loop to describe what they have found with the various electric circuits.

    The children first of all work in pairs to talk through their ideas to explain why the bulbs are dimmer and the current smaller when a second bulb is added. Pairs then report back in during class discussion.

    What happens on adding a battery?


    What happens during this activity

    The children work in pairs to explore a circuit containing a bulb and then a circuit with a buzzer/bell/motor with one, two and possibly three batteries (you should check beforehand that the bulbs will survive three batteries) and observe what happens.





    This is a nugget in the TA thread – connect all three threads from any link

    Physics Narrative (PN) Teaching & Learning Issues(TL) Teaching Approaches(TA)

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