Electricity Lesson Plan: Exploring Currents, Circuits, and Electromagnetism

Submitted by: Angela Watson

In this lesson plan, which is adaptable for grades 4-12, students use BrainPOP resources to explore various aspects of electricity. Students will identify pertinent questions related to electrical currents, circuits, and electromagnetism and present the answers in a creative display of their choosing.

Students will:

1. Explore basic principles related to electricity.
2. Identify pertinent questions related to electricity, electromagnetism, and electric currents.
3. Answer student-generated questions using BrainPOP resources.
4. Share their research findings with the class.

Materials:

• Internet and projector to show BrainPOP
• Computers for students to use BrainPOP independently

Preparation:

Use this lesson to introduce or culminate a unit on electricity. Determine how students will compile their Q&A (see last step of the procedure.)

Lesson Procedure:

1. As a warm-up and to determine students' prior knowledge, have the class complete the Electricity Quiz. Discuss the answers as a class.
2. Show students the Electricity Movie or another movie on this topic (see the full list on this page). Instruct students to listen for different types of electricity and different uses for it.
3. Project the Q&A for students to see. Tell students they will be composing their own Q&A questions related to electricity. After showing a few examples, give students time to brainstorm independently or with a partner and determine which questions they'd like to answer.
4. Give students time to explore the electricity movies available on BrainPOP. Each student should watch the movie(s) related to his or her Q&A and compose the answers for the questions chosen.
5. Compile the class' electricity Q&A. These may be shared on a class blog, Voicethread, podcast, Glogster, or other web 2.0 tool. A low-tech alternative is to create an interactive bulletin board in which the questions are written on slips of paper which can be lifted up to reveal the answers underneath.

Extension Activity:

Take the Electricity POP Quiz together as a class. Then have students compose their own quiz questions. Hold a class competition and see how many questions teams of students can answer correctly!