Education Technology

Bending Light

Published on 07/06/2010

Activity Overview

In this activity, students explore the refraction of a single light ray. They begin by exploring light traveling from a less dense medium into a denser medium. They use a numerical approach to establish a relationship between the angle of incidence and the angle of refraction. Then, students explore refraction when the light ray travels from the denser medium to the less dense medium. Students check to see if their relationship still holds and determine the critical angle.

Key Steps

  • Image

    Students should open the TNS file and read the first two pages. Page 1.3 is a simulation of an incident light ray and the resulting refracted ray. Students should drag the incident light ray around the Air medium and observe what happens to the light ray as it passes through to the Dense medium. Then, students should answer question 1 on page 1.4.