In the lesson plan “Tesla Vs. Edison: AC/DC More than Just a Band” students review Thomas Edison and direct current and learn about Nikola Tesla and alternating current. The activities included show students the difference between alternating and direct current and get students brainstorming which is the better invention. Students will research Tesla through watching video clips, listening to podcasts and online research. In the classroom, students will participate in hands-on demonstrations of direct current (Potato Power) and alternating current (Build a Mini Generator).
The lesson is conducted over 3 class periods and meets Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) for high school physical science. Further extensions of the lesson are provided and additional demonstrations and lab activities can be included to extend the lesson over multiple days. Students will participate in quick response questions at the beginning of the period to check for understanding of alternating and direct current. Blog posts, laboratories and group projects created will be graded based on the rubric provided.
Lesson plan includes all linked resources, extensions, videos, student lab worksheets, peer review rubrics and group project sheets.