Think again! – about electric circuits(Activity)

Questions to review current thinking, to provoke thought and discussion

What the activity is for

These diagnostic questions are used for two main reasons:

  • To encourage students to talk and think through their understandings of electric circuits.
  • To provide the teacher with formative assessment information about the students' understandings of electric circuits.

  • What the activity is for

  • printed copies of the questions, on the support sheets

  • Support sheet

    What happens during this activity

    These questions might be used right at the start of the first lesson. Who can get them all correct? It would be a good idea to get the students to work in pairs on the questions, encouraging each pair to talk through their ideas. Collect responses from all of the pairs and discuss in a whole-class plenary.

    Alternatively, the questions might be set for homework prior to the first electricity lesson, so that you have time to read through the responses.

    The questions review key points from the SPT: Electric circuits topic.

    Question 1

    Two bulbs: both bulbs lit with the same brightness because the electric current is the same everywhere in the circuit.

    Question 2

    Small and large resistance: the current gets less but not zero because the battery cannot push as big a current through a larger resistor.

    Question 3

    Resistors in parallel: the current is greater because the total resistance is now smaller (because the second resistor provides an extra path for current).

    Question 4

    Best word: electric current; electric charge; voltage; energy; power output.

    Prepare for teaching across the topic using these links

    topic kitset topic path core ideas (topic) decisions to make (topic) suggestions (for the topic) topic issues

    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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