If you’ve never played with pinholes, you’re in for a treat! They never cease to fascinate! These three different lab activities can be used alone or in tandem, depending on your equipment and needs. The accompanying videos show you how to do these. Students in my classroom decide the order of the experiments they investigate (some experiments are required and others are optional).
You can watch the video of the experiments here:
Pinholes & Pinhole Viewers
Videos are used both as introduction and explanation or review.
Use a light box to explore pinholes. You’ll need to fashion some type of light box or shroud to place a clear bulb inside and into which you can poke holes. We have fancy wooden boxes, but started with makeshift cardboard ones.
Build a pinhole viewer. I’ve built a TON of these and this is by far the simplest version I’ve found.
Investigate pinhole shapes—if you’re into inquiry, this is a great follow up lab which will help the students investigate what matters when exploring with pinholes—the screen distance, the pinhole shape, etc.
Lightbox (can be built from a cardboard box)
White wall (or cardboard screen)
White tissue paper/tracing paper
Thin cardboard frames
Black construction paper
Large pin (to poke holes with)
3 class periods
Not a key per se, but enough background materials and helps that you shouldn't have to go elsewhere to find information unless you want to.
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