Introduction to Electricity and Circuits – Torres + Liebman-Pelaez

Name of Unit

Intro to Electricity and Circuits


Daniela Torres and Mariana Liebman-Pelaez


Healey School


Mrs. Flores

Brief Description

This unit provides some background and supplementary material for an electricity unit that will be coverend as part of the school curriculum this spring. This curriculum will introduce students to static electricity, charge, conductors and insulators, and the basics of a circuit. We are looking to finalize the unit with a project that brings everything together.


4, 5


electricity, circuits, energy, conductors, magnets

Number of Weeks


Week 1

Intro to Static Electricity: Students will learn about why balloons having undergone friction can pick up objects.  They will be exposed to the concepts of charge, electrons, protons, and neutrons.  Additionally, they will explore the concepts of attraction and repulsion. The Activity can be found here.

Week 2

Acting out Circuit:  Classroom will work in a circle to act out a circuit.  Students will be assigned rolls throughout each play through of the circuit.  The activity can be found here.

Week 3

Squishy Circuits:  Using the previous two lessons and squishy circuits students will learn how to build their first circuit.  The activity can be found here.

Week 4

Squishy Circuits II: Using experience with squishy circuits and the symbols for elements in a circuit from the previous two weeks, students will now practice building and drawing circuits.

Week 5

An Introduction to Snap Circuits:  We Primarily switched over to Snap Circuits from Squishy circuits since some of our students were having trouble building circuits from circuit diagrams.  By introducing Snap Circuits we were able to give them something fun and new, as well as something blocky that resembled circuit diagrams. The activity can be found here.

Week 6

Snap Circuits and Conductivity: Using snap circuits and the idea of conductive and insulating materials, the students will design a circuit to test whether various household items are insulators or conductors. The activity can be found here.

Week 7

 Alternative Sources of Energy With Snap Circuits: In this Snap Circuit Activity we had our students explore series and parallel circuits that they have been practicing with a twist: no batteries.  The activity can be found here.

Week 8

Power Outage Final Project: This final project will include topics covered in the previous lessons (series, parallel, power, electric flow etc).  The students will be given a task:  there is a power outage and each group must build a helpful tool for navigating in the dark.  Our example: classrooms must go on!  Me and Mariana built a model for a white board with LED lights so Mrs.Flores could continue her lessons. The project activity can be found here (This final project is a twist on an existing activity.  The changes can be found in the comments section under Daniela Torres).

Week 9

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