Nice Shades! How Light and Color Affect Sight

What You Need:

  • Pair of sunglasses
  • 4 sheets of card stock
  • 4 sheets of cellophane, in 4 different colors
  • Pen or pencil
  • Scissors
  • Scotch tape
  • Notebook

What You Do:

  1. Place down a piece of card stock horizontally, and then put a pair of sunglasses face down on the middle of the card stock. Use a pen or pencil to trace around the two eyepieces and nose bridge of the frames.
  2. Turn the frames onto their left side and trace the earpiece, making sure to connect it to the eyepiece part of the frame on the appropriate side, and then turn it over and trace the earpiece on the right side. You should end up with a template that resembles 3-D paper glasses laid flat.
  3. Cut out the sunglasses template, and then cut a hole in each eyepiece for the lenses. Fold the earpieces back, making sure the glasses are a good fit. Do this four times until you end up with four separate frames, one for each color of cellophane.
  4. Place the frames facedown on a sheet of cellophane, and trace the holes you cut for lenses onto the cellophane. Put the frames aside and cut the cellophane slightly larger than the traced shapes. Repeat this process on each sheet of cellophane.
  5. Attach the lenses to the glasses by taping them onto the inside of the frames, covering the lens-holes.
  6. Put your glasses on, and you're ready to go! Go outside and help your child choose a spot that has lots of different objects to observe. Hand her the notebook so she can keep track of her observations.
  7. Pick a few objects to observe and describe. Start by having your child describe what the objects look like without any glasses on.
  8. Then use each pair of glasses to examine and take notes of the same object, and make a special note of which color lenses your child was wearing as she observed it.
  9. Compare the notes and see how color changed your perception throughout the activity! This scientific project is perfect for helping your child practice her science skills in a fun, relaxed way.

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