Where does this lesson fit in with your curriculum (if the lesson is not a fit for the class you teach, how could the lesson be modified so that it is applicable to your curriculum)?
I do not teach optics or lasers, but it’s an interesting exercise and could be used to introduce types of lasers the what they are used for. It could be science or engineering.
The basic programming is similar to the previous activity. The difference was interpreting code, modifying code, and introducing the mirrors. The mirrors and determining the angles were and would be the most frustrating part of this activity.
The angles and understanding why light travels like this would probably be one the biggest issues with this activity.
Due to some of the issues, I am not sure about using this activity with all students. Maybe as an enrichment for specific students.
Which part or parts of the lesson would your students need extra support in order to be successful?
Determining the angles would be the biggest issue with the activity. Even for me, it was difficult to get the laser and two mirrors focused on the detector. I also had to adjust the threshold value because the farther away the laser it from the detector, the number of mirrors, it starts to lose focus and brightness. I would assume this is due to the quality of the mirrors and laser.
I also had issues with reading some of the pins (old eyes), so a magnifier should be available to students.
If you were to teach this lesson to your class, describe your role during the class. What does a successful teacher actively do during this lesson?
I definitely would have to do some direct instruction with this activity. I think I would also have to do some research to understand laser and mirrors…I am not a science teacher. I would have to monitor/remind students to keep mirrors and laser properly orientated/aligned. This would definitely take team of 2-3 to complete.
If you were to teach this lesson to your class, describe your student’s role during the class. What does “student success” look like?
My courses are mostly project-based learning (PBL), so students are in charge of their own learning. Success would be a student being able to complete activity, understand basic laser theory, angles with mirrors, explain/define any issues with project, and be able to apply what was learned to future lessons.