Light Action! Amazing Experiments for Children

Josh Cobb

Light is still an enigma, although some of the best minds have tried to figure out exactly what it is. Thousands of years ago, the Greek engineer, Hero, thought that light was sent out of our eyes as a "feeler." Since then, we have tried to quantify it, measure it, and theorize about it. Although we still do not know exactly what it is, we do know what we can do with it. When great scientists are stumped they may resort to their playful imaginations. Playing allows their minds to become free and, although playing generates ideas that may appear foolish and absurd, occasionally, a "foolish" idea breaks a discovery wide open. It is not difficult to teach kids how to play with science, and optics is a great place to begin.

This article is only available as a PDF.

Download PDF

Publish Date:

Light Action! Amazing Experiments for Children

Josh Cobb

Light is still an enigma, although some of the best minds have tried to figure out exactly what it is. Thousands of years ago, the Greek engineer, Hero, thought that light was sent out of our eyes as a "feeler." Since then, we have tried to quantify it, measure it, and theorize about it. Although we still do not know exactly what it is, we do know what we can do with it. When great scientists are stumped they may resort to their playful imaginations. Playing allows their minds to become free and, although playing generates ideas that may appear foolish and absurd, occasionally, a "foolish" idea breaks a discovery wide open. It is not difficult to teach kids how to play with science, and optics is a great place to begin.

Log in or Become a member to view the full text of this article.

This article may be available for purchase via the search at Optica Publishing Group.

Optica Members get the full text of Optics & Photonics News, plus a variety of other member benefits.

Publish Date: 01 December 1993


Add a Comment

Share this Article

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Also in this Issue

The Optical Vortex Soliton

Phase Sensitive Amplifiers for Ultra-long Distance Soliton Propagation

A New Optical Model of the Human Eye

Afterimages and Multiplexing

The Telescopes of Galileo

Time-reversal Operator for the State of Polarization

Magnetorheological Finishing

Holographic Laser Radar

Free-space WDM Optical Mesh-connected Bus Interconnect

30 dB Contrast GaAlInAs Multiple Quantum Well Asymmetric Reflection Modulator at 1.3 ┬Ám

2-D WDM Optical Interconnections Using Multiple-wavelength VCSELs for Simultaneous and Reconfigurable Communication Among Many Planes

Acousto-optic Switch Matrices

High-Repetition Rate Broadly Tunable Femtosecond Sources

High-Order Harmonic Generation

Uncooled Lasers for Deployment of Fiber in the Loop

Single-mode Large-aperture Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Laser

Emission Linewidth in Semiconductor Microcavity Lasers

Noise Gratings Recorded in Silver Halide Volume Holograms

Resonance- domain Diffractive Optics

Momentum Gaps and Laser Stability

Optical Detection of Atoms Near Surfaces

Detection of Minority Species in Microdroplets: Enhancement of Stimulated Raman Scattering

Optical Detection of Magnetic Resonance of a Single Molecular Spin

Toward Ultrafast Movies of Moving Atoms

Intrinsic Thermal Phase Noise Limit in Optical Fiber Interferometers

Time-dependent Emission Spectra from Molecular Wave Packets

Number-phase Uncertainty Relations

Photorefractive Polymers Achieve Net Gain, High Diffraction Efficiency and Speed

Absorption of High Intensity Femtosecond Pulses in Semiconductor Amplifiers

Nonlinear Optics and Photonic Applications of Photorefractive Polymeric Composite Materials

Advanced Modeling and Simulation of Self-electro-optic Effect Devices

Optical Matrix Multiplier: Grating Degeneracy Recycled

Birefringent Bistability in Ferroelectric Waveguides

How Retroreflectors Really Work

Environmental Standards Revisited

Photorefractive Spatial Solitons