teaching resource

How Do Circuits Work? - Worksheet

Teach Starter Publishing
Google Slide, PDF | 5 pages | Grades: 4 - 5

In this simple circuit activity, students will diagram complete and incomplete circuits and explain their function.

How Do Circuits Work?

There’s something magical about flipping a switch—the ability to witness power coming from your own fingertips to turn on a light, a car, or a computer. 

Really, we know that it’s not magic at all. It’s what happens when an electrical device is able to use a circuit to transfer energy

And even though it’s not Harry Potter, the magic of seeing the spark of electricity before our eyes is a marvel of the modern age, and one that children will find every bit as fascinating as a class at Hogwarts. 🔮

Through this electric circuit activity, students will identify the necessary parts of a circuit, and use the pieces to make one complete and one incomplete circuit. Then, they will explain whether the circuit works or not and why. 

How to Prepare This Resource for Your Students

This worksheet for explaining circuits can also be used as an interactive notebook activity. It may be used with your Electricity and Circuits Teaching Presentation.

Because this download includes the answer sheet, we recommend first printing one copy of the entire file. Then, make photocopies of the blank worksheets for students to fill out on their own. 

Students will also need glue and scissors to complete this worksheet. 

Questions For Deeper Discussion with Your Students

As your students are working through this science activity, get them thinking about all the different uses of electricity in their homes:

  • How do you turn on the lights in your home?
  • How does a vacuum cleaner get its power?
  • Do any of your toys use batteries?

Before You Download

Use the drop-down menu to choose between the PDF or Google Slides version. An answer key is included in the download.

This resource was created by Gaby Perez, a teacher in Texas and a Teach Starter Collaborator. 


Wait! Don’t go anywhere until you browse additional activities and resources to turn on bright minds:  

Image of It's Electric! Unit Plan

unit plan

It's Electric! Unit Plan

This Physical Sciences unit addresses the principles of electricity. It explores what electricity is, how it is transferred and how energy is transformed to create it.

Teach Starter Publishing48 pagesGrades: 5 - 6Has Starter Sheet
Image of Circuit Diagram Symbols Poster

teaching resource

Circuit Diagram Symbols Poster

A poster that shows a range of symbols used for drawing circuit diagrams.

Teach Starter Publishing1 pageGrades: 5 - 6
Image of Electricity Teaching Resource Pack

resource pack

Electricity Teaching Resource Pack

A collection of electricity posters, worksheets and activities.

Teach Starter Publishing1 pageGrades: 2 - 6


Write a review to help other teachers and parents like yourself. If you'd like to request a change to this resource, or report an error, select the corresponding tab above.

Login to comment