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Database Provider

Author

Exploratorium

Grades

3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th

Subjects

Science, Physics

Resource Types

  • Projects
  • Videos, 6 minutes, 19 seconds
  • Videos, 1 minutes, 35 seconds

Regional Focus

Global

Simple Wind Generator

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Synopsis
  • In this activity, students build a small wind generator to light up an LED. 
Teaching Tips

Positives

  • Written and video instructions are very clear.
  • There is an accompanying video with teaching tips.

Additional Prerequisites

  • You will need to collect all appropriate materials before the students arrive to class.
  • If you do not have one or more fans in your classroom, you may have to wait for a windy day to conduct this experiment.
  • It may be best to show the instructions video to your students at the beginning of class.
  • Make sure to leave time at the end of class to clean up or set aside the wind generators.

Differentiation

  • Students can work in groups.
  • If students complete the activity and their LED lights up, challenge them to iterate on their design to create a brighter LED.
  • Students who have great interpersonal skills can rotate around to other groups to help them create their wind generators.
  • If your students are interested in how wind energy can change a community, they can hear the story of William Kamkwamba
Scientist Notes
This resource provides instructions for the building of an at-home craft version of an electrical wind generator using craft materials, a hobby motor, and an LED. The instructions are clear and provided in both video form and written out, and the resource provides tips and tricks for troubleshooting. This resource is recommended for teaching.
Standards
  • Science
    • ETS1: Engineering Design
      • 3.ETS1.3 Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.
      • 5.ETS1.3 Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.
      • MS.ETS1.4 Develop a model to generate data for iterative testing and modification of a proposed object, tool, or process such that an optimal design can be achieved.
    • PS3: Energy
      • 4.PS3.4 Apply scientific ideas to design, test, and refine a device that converts energy from one form to another.
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