Synopsis: In this unit, students start by observing a perplexing phenomena. When a sewing needle taped to a cone, is dragged over the surface of a plastic disc spun under it, voices and musical notes are heard coming from it. This leads students to start noticing and wondering about other sound related phenomena, which in turn leads to wealth of new questions about…..
- What causes different sounds?
- What is traveling from a sound source to my ear?
- Why does the same thing sound different for people in different places?
What students figure out: By the end of the unit, students develop powerful ideas about the nature of matter, energy, and waves to account for a variety of phenomena. These ideas include:
- The way that matter vibrates is related to the type of sound it produces (in terms of volume and pitch).
- Collisions & vibrations between the particles that make up matter can transfer energy through that matter.
- Sound is a pressure wave in air or any other material medium.
- Sound can make matter vibrate; different structures in our ear respond differently to different sounds.
- When a wave meets a surface between two different materials or conditions, part of the wave is reflected at that surface and another part continues on.