What can we see in our room with the lights turned off?
We could easily count the number of shapes on a piece of paper when the ceiling lights were turned on inside of our room. But after we turned the lights off, some spots in the room became really hard for us to accurately count the number of shapes on a paper. This led us to recall other experiences we've had when it was hard to see what was there in the dark. And this, in turn raised a question, "What could we see in our room if we no we let no light in it?"
What materials will block all the light coming through our windows?
We claimed that we need to block the light coming through the windows in our classroom to make our room as dark as possible. We wanted to test some different types of materials to see which would block the light best. While this led to some important discoveries about which materials block all the light, which block some of the light, and which block none, it will also raised a new design challenge related to the size of our windows and the limited amount of material we have for covering them.
What materials block all the light coming through a smaller window?
We built a smaller window on a smaller wall to continue testing our materials. We discovered some materials, like cardboard can block all the light coming through a window. We thought that if we had enough cardboard we could make a room that let no light into it from outside. This raised a new design challenge for us, "What materials could we use to make our small window on a wall more like a small room?"
What can we see when we block all the outside light from getting into a closed space?
We built a smaller room, out of cardboard with a smaller window and door in it in order to keep investigating some of the questions we still have. After building smaller rooms out of cardboard boxes, we explored what we can see inside of them. Some of us claimed that we couldn't see anything. Others weren't so sure. This led to another design challenge for us, "What technologies could we use to help all look into the same box at the same time?"
If you have a few minutes, we'd love for you to take a brief survey so we can find out about you and how you became interested in our NGSS unit(s)!