This Physical Sciences unit addresses the properties of light. It explores the phenomena of reflection, refraction, shadow and more.
It consists of 8 lessons of approximately 60 minutes duration.
The sequence of lessons and suggested time frames should be regarded as a guide only; teachers should pace lessons in accordance with the individual learning needs of their class.
An assessment task for monitoring student understanding of the unit objectives is included and will require an additional lesson.
Teachers are encouraged to collect samples of students’ work throughout the unit to add to a learning portfolio. These can also be used to assess students’ understanding of the unit objectives.
This unit plan includes the following resources:
- Light Word Wall Vocabulary
- Light Fantastic PowerPoint
- Science Experiment – Lights Line Up!
- What is a Fair Test? – Upper Years PowerPoint
- See Light Through Me Worksheet
- In the Shadows Worksheet
- Science Experiment – Angles of Reflection
- Refracting Light Task Cards
- In Living Color Worksheet
- Science Experiment – True Colors
- Light and Shadow – Design an Experiment Worksheet
- To research the concept of light and generate a list of statements that can be tested.
- To draw simple ray diagrams to show the paths of light from a source to the eyes.
- To explore opaque, translucent, and transparent materials.
- To compare shadows from point and extended light sources.
- To use mirrors to investigate some of the properties of reflected light.
- To observe the refraction of light at the surfaces of different transparent materials.
- To investigate how the color of an object depends on the properties of the object.
- To investigate how the color of an object depends on the properties of the object and the color of the light source.
Preparing for Learning
This Science unit provides excellent opportunities for cross-curricular integration. Look for ways to meaningfully integrate the content of the unit with other learning areas e.g. Literacy and Numeracy.
Prior to commencing the unit, develop a classroom display which focuses on light. Display posters, word wall vocabulary and learning goals that the students will engage with throughout the unit to stimulate their learning. For examples of additional teaching resources to display in your classroom, browse the Light and Sound collection on the Teach Starter website.
The lessons and science experiments within this unit are structured in accordance with the scientific method. Ensure that the students are familiar with this process before commencing the unit. A comprehensive lesson plan addressing the concepts of fair testing in Science can be downloaded here.
Some of the resources which accompany this unit plan will need to be prepared prior to teaching. For this reason, it is advised that teachers browse through all lessons before commencing the unit.
National Curriculum Curriculum alignment
- Key Stage 2 (KS2) – Upper
Key Stage 2 (KS2) - Upper covers students in Year 5 and Year 6.
The principal focus of science teaching in upper key stage 2 is to enable pupils to develop a deeper understanding of a wide range of scientific ideas. They should do this through exploring and talking about their ideas; asking their own questions ab...
- Working scientifically