Island 6 Snap Circuits Bric
Students will learn more about electricity and circuits. Experiment with different materials to see which conduct electricity. Then explore short circuits - a type of circuit students should never build except this once!
What is it?
Sensors Work Like Switches
Have you ever seen lights that turn on automatically when it gets dark, like street lights or the headlights on a car?
How do they work?
Lights, like a headlight and a night light, often rely on a sensor that can detect light. Sensors respond to changes in their environment.
The photoresistor is a sensor that responds to light. As the name suggests, it is a resistor that is sensitive to light. In the dark, it has enough resistance to block all flow of electricity. When a bright light shines on it, its resistance drops and electrical current can flow through the circuit.
The whistle chip is a sensor that responds to sound. It has two thin metal plates inside. In its normal state, the two plates do not touch, so the circuit is “open” and electricity cannot flow. The movement of air from a loud noise, like a clap, pushes the plates together, briefly “closing” the circuit and allowing electricity to flow across it.
The whistle chip can also be used to make sound. If the electrical flow across the whistle chip is turned on and off quickly, the metal plates will vibrate and make a whistling noise.