• Science
• 110 minutes
• Standards: 4-PS3-4
• no ratings yet
August 18, 2015

Mad scientists! In this lesson, your students will explore electrical circuits and engage in a hands-on activity to create them. They will identify the differences between parallel and series circuits.

### Learning Objectives

Students will be able to construct series and parallel circuits to create electricity, as well as analyze the advantages and disadvantages of both.

## Lesson

### Introduction (10 minutes)

• Give students three minutes to write all the ways that they have used electricity that day.

### Explicit Instruction/Teacher Modeling (20 minutes)

• Show students a photograph of a city during a blackout and a photograph of a city with electricity.
• Guide the whole group in completing a Venn diagram on the board comparing and contrasting the two photographs.
• Show students the diagrams of series and parallel circuits.

### Guided Practice/Interactive Modeling (30 minutes)

• Divide your class into groups.
• Give each group an electrical circuit kit to explore.
• Direct your students to create a series circuit and a parallel circuit.
• Instruct your students to take videos of their circuits in action. Have them record every trial they attempt.
• Have them show their progress in journals, writing and drawing what their circuits look like and do.

### Independent Working Time (25 minutes)

• On their own, have each student conduct research regarding the advantages and disadvantages of series and parallel circuits.
• Give your students access to computers or books that explain in more detail how circuits function.
• Going back to their groups, have your students discuss the role of each circuit in different settings.

## Extend

### Differentiation

• Enrichment: Ask your students to brainstorm a list of related topics. Have them conduct independent investigations and create a presentation to share with the class.
• Support: Provide written research materials in a variety of reading levels. Have them refer to these materials while they are creating circuits in groups.

### Technology Integration

• Have your students use video cameras to document their process.
• Encourage them to use online resources to find information about series and parallel circuits.

### Related Books and/or Media

• Switch On, Switch Off by Melvin Berger

## Review

### Assessment (15 minutes)

• Watch each of the students' videos, ensuring that by the end of the session, they have learned the differences between series and parallel circuits.

### Review and Closing (10 minutes)

• Select one group's video to demonstrate to the class.
• Show your students the correct way to make series and parallel circuits.
• Discuss real world examples of where these circuits might be found.