Teaching ideas for K-6 teachers!!


Science:  Sound

Teachers may wish to print this form to use along with experiments:  Scientific Method Sheet

Lesson 1:  What is a sound?
All sounds are made by something moving.  
Sound is energy produced created by vibrations.

~Have students place their hand on their throats and talk. Students will feel their throat vibrating.  Vocal cords that move as you speak and make the air in your throat and mouth vibrate.  Vibrating air makes sounds.  As your vocal cords vibrate, they cause the molecules in the air to vibrate and as the vibrations reach your ear, you hear the sound.  Did you know that in space, because there is no air, it is silent?

~Experiment:  Make a paper popper!
    1.  Fold a square sheet of paper in half diagonally.
    2.  Fold the top right hand corner down.
    3.  Fold the large triangle in half again to form a smaller trianble (the folded corner needs to be on the inside).
    4.  Fold again to make a crease but do not leave folded.
    5.  From the open end of the triangle fold the top layer of the paper over along the crease.  Flip the triangle and repeat.   
    6.  Hold the three pointed ends together and flick  your wrist downward to make a popping sound.

**As the paper pushes against the air, the pushed air reaches your ear as a popping sound.

Lesson 2:  What are vibrations?
Vibrations are caused by something moving.
 You cannot see the vibrations as they move through the air.

~Experiment:  Build a drumhead and view vibrations with salt!
    1.  Cover a plastic cup with plastic wrap.  Secure it tightly with a rubber band.
    2.  Put a pinch of salt on the plastic wrap.
    3.  Hit a tuning fork, making it vibrate.  Then hold the tuning fork next to the salt and the salt wll vibrate off the plastic wrap.
    **  Also try to place the tuning fork into a bowl of water and watch the water splash out!!**

Lesson 3:  What is pitch?
Sounds differ in pitch.  Pitch measures how high or low a note is.

~Experiment: Make a water glass xylophone
    1.  Fill five glasses with different amounts of water.  
    2.  Tap the glasses to hear the differing pitches.
   **Hitting the glasses makes the air vibrate.  Longer tubes of air or the emptier glasses, vibrate more slowly.  Slower vibrations make     deeper or lower pitched sounds..**  
~Experiement:  Create various pitches with rubber bands.
    1.  Pass out various sizes of boxes and rubber bands.
    2.  Have students experiment by wrapping the rubber bands around the boxes and plucking the string.

Lesson 4:  Students view a PowerPoint on sound, gather information, and write a paragraph

This ppt will loop automatically, so you could have it playing as students fill in the graphic organizer, or students could each take a turn at a computer to complete the graphic organizer.
    1.  Click here to print student graphic organizer.
    2.  Click here to view Sound PowerPoint (from jc-schools.net)

Click a movie from the list below to view Discovery United Streaming Videos (You do need a subscription to their site to view)
The Magic School Bus and The Haunted House  
(29 minutes)
The Wonder of Sound (13 minutes)
Real World Science:  Sound (13 minutes)
Sound:  A First Look (17 minutes)

Technology Extensions:
Sound Sketch Tool
How You Hear
Morse Code Translation Tool
How Musical Instruments Work
How Sound is Made
Changing Sounds
Graphics by thistlegirldesigns.com