What could be more important than light? It makes plants grow; gives us food; lets us see bright, beautiful colors; and provides warmth. But to grasp the nature of light--and vision--we must understand optics. These delightful hands-on experiments vividly demonstrate the workings of absorption, reflection, refraction, and more. Toast marshmallows by the sun's intense heat. Create a "ray box," and view the entire spectrum through a water prism, and a rainbow in soap bubbles. Or try filters to really see the world through rose-colored glasses! Along with a materials list, the book includes safety instructions, explanations of the scientific principles underlying each experiment, a note on color blindness, and a glossary. The authors both live in Vancouver, British Columbia. 80 pages (all in color), 8 1/2 x 10. NEW IN PAPERBACK
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Grade 5-8-Thirty-seven activities, organized into categories: "Light Rays & Reflection," "The Speed of Light & Refraction," "Light & Color," "Polarization," "Eyes & Vision," and "Optical Instruments." Each section opens with a two-page orientation followed by experiments, each of which has an interest-catching introduction, a list of materials, step-by-step procedures, and a "What Happened" summation. Captioned diagrams and color photographs show procedural details and help to clarify concepts. General safety tips are included in the preface. Occasional sidebars explore related topics such as "What Causes Rainbows?" and "Binocular Vision." Most of the experiments require readily available materials; a few call for special items, such as polarizing filters and concave and convex lenses. Directions for many of the projects, such as making rainbow bubbles or a pinhole camera, can be found elsewhere, but the extensive background information and inviting format of this book make it a useful source of science activities for individuals and classes exploring optics.
Carolyn Angus, The Claremont Graduate School, CA
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
A clever and informative book for budding scientists interested in the field of optics, the science that studies light, vision, and optical instruments. This manual of ``fun'' experiments begins with a note to parents and teachers, then moves on to safety tips, then a list of materials needed for the experiments that explore the properties of light and color: light rays and reflection, the speed of light and refraction, polarization, and more. More valuable than the activities are the diagrams and explanations, including follow-up sections called ``What Happened.'' Levine and Johnstone also aptly present an analysis of various optical instruments, including the radiometer, periscopes, telescopes, microscopes, cameras, etc. (glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 8-12) -- Copyright ©1999, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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