Lesson 2

An Alarming Idea: Designing Alarm Circuits

It's Electric / Grade 5 / American Canyon, CA

The EIE Curriculum

EiE - An Alarming Idea: Designing Alarm Circuits - Lesson 2

Students think like electrical engineers as they engage in an electricity scavenger hunt and think about the energy transformations that occur within electrical appliances they see daily.

Reflection Questions

What does Cerissa do to introduce the idea that electricity can be transformed into light, sound, heat, or movement?

Cerissa builds student knowledge step by step, from thinking about what technologies do to organizing their functions based on energy transformation.

  • First, Cerissa introduces the idea of energy being transformed when she has students use the handout to describe how various everyday technologies use electricity. (1:53)
  • As students share the technologies they came up with, Cerissa posts each one on an index card and lists what types of energy the object produces. (3:02)
  • Cerissa then asks students to help her sort the technologies into groups based on how they transform electricity. (4:57)
  • Finally, Cerissa creates a large chart that highlights the different forms of energy transformation. (5:49)

In what ways does Lesson 2 prepare students for the challenge to come?

Lesson 2 provides important background knowledge that deepens students understanding and appreciation of electricity.

  • By thinking about how their lives might be different without electricity, students consider its role in their own lives as well as in Emily’s. (0:57)
  • The activity about the transformation of electricity helps students preview how electricity will be used to ring a buzzer and turn on a light in their circuits. (6:07)