Friday, December 29, 2017

Edgerton Center at MIT: Laser Mazes

This is a link I was sent last year which I've just now checked out.  The Edgerton Center offers a number of different workshops.  Teachers bring their students there.  This workshop comes under the heading of Optics and Photography.  It's called "Laser Mazes."

Laser Mazes
11 years and up.
Teams of students are challenged to direct a laser beam through a wooden maze using mirrors. Students begin by experimenting with using mirrors to hit a bull’s-eye with laser light. 
They review concepts of angles and hypothesize about how light reflects from a surface. They determine that the angle of incidence is equal to the angle of reflection
Using this knowledge, they first model and then implement the path of the laser light through the different mazes.

NOTE:    This workshop teaches kids about light and the angle of incidence and angle of reflection, an aspect of geometry/physics that I first learned about in a wonderful video on hockey.  Learning about math and science principles through their applications in motion, light and sound is a path to really getting the big picture. IMHO.  I couldn't put that video here, but here's a link to it.  You'll find what I'm talking about around 4 minutes 30 seconds:

Science of NHL Hockey:  Hockey Geometry 

All these sports videos are terrific, put together by the National Science Foundation, in partnership with NBC Learn and NBC Sports.


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