Grade Level: 6th - 9th; Type: Materials Science
In this experiment, we will see whether one can tell between colored contacts and natural eyes at a normal distance.
Eye color is the color of the iris. In humans, the typical colors are blue, green, brown, and hazel. Eye color is genetic and is passed down from parent to offspring. Most people of Asian and African descent have brown/black eyes while people of Caucasian descent tend to have lighter eye colors.
Colored contacts are manufactured just like regular clear gel contacts except that a dot or burst pattern is printed on the lens to imitate the pattern of the iris or other special effects. These contacts have the ability to turn dark eyes light if they are opaque lenses.
- Colored contacts
- Volunteers of different eye colors
- Test subjects (the more the better)
- Have some of your volunteers put on colored contacts to hide their natural eye color.
- Have each volunteer sit in front of a test subject at a conversational distance.
- Ask the test subject whether he/she thinks that it is the volunteer's real eye color or contacts. Jot this down.
- Repeat the above for all your test subjects.
- Remember to intermix volunteers who wore contacts and volunteers who do not for more accurate, randomized results.
Terms/Concepts: Colored contact lenses (for natural looks and not theatrical or special effects!); Eye color; Eye color genetics; Melanin
- Autrum, H. "Introduction". In H. Autrum (editor).Comparative Physiology and Evolution of Vision in Invertebrates- A: Invertebrate Photoreceptors. Handbook of Sensory Physiology.VII/6A. New York: Springer-Verlag. pp.4, 8–9.ISBN3540088377