Education Technology

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  • Subject Area

    • Science: Middle Grades Science: Energy
    • Science: Physical Science: Energy

  • Author

    Texas Instruments

  • Level


  • Activity Time

    60 Minutes

  • Device
    • TI-73 Explorer™
  • Software

    TI Connect™

  • Applications
  • Accessories

    CBL™/CBL 2™
    Sensor - Voltage
    TI Connectivity Cable
    TI-GRAPH LINK™ Cable
    Unit-to-Unit link cables

  • Other Materials
      This is Activity 2 from the EXPLORATIONS Book:
      Activities for Middle Grades Science with the CBL 2™ and TI-73.

      You will need the following materials:
    • Fruits and vegetables
    • Zinc strip
    • Copper strip
    • Plastic knife to cut slits
    • Paper towels
    • Data Collection and Analysis pages (p.19-21)
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Energy from Foods - Part I

Activity Overview

In this activity, students' will use fruits and vegetables to make an electrochemical cell and develop an understanding of how an electrochemical cell works. They will use a voltage sensor to determine which fruits and vegetables produce the most electrical energy.

Before the Activity

  • Plug the Sensor Voltage in channel 1 on the CBL™
  • Download TI-GRAPH LINK™ or TI Connect™ to analyze data on the computer
  • Download DataMate™ program
  • See the attached PDF file for detailed instructions for this activity
  • Print pages 15 - 21 from the attached PDF file for your class
  • During the Activity

    Distribute the pages to your class.

    Follow the Activity procedure:

  • Collect four to six different fruits
  • Make two slits, one centimeter apart, in the fruit and insert a zinc strip in one slit and a copper strip into the other slit
  • Attach the positive lead to the copper strip and negative lead to the zinc strip
  • Measure the voltage across the fruit
  • Repeat this process for the remaining samples
  • Review the pH values on two different graphs - a bar graph and a circle graph
  • Determine which fruit will make the wet cell with the highest voltage
  • After the Activity

    Students' will complete Student Data Collection and Analysis Sheet.

    Review student results

  • As a class, discuss questions that appeared to be more challenging
  • Re-teach concepts as necessary