We have never really done “official” electric circuit learning as such, instead we have two different circuit sets and the kids have both just played with them and I must admit that by just simply playing around with the sets they have learnt a LOT. However as my daughter is moving up into secondary school from September (we are still home educating her) I have been doing some quick checks to see if there have been any sections we have missed. And I realized that the kids have never tried to draw their own circuit (part of the National Curriculum), so last week we had a go.
To start with I did print out two circuit sheets which showed the kids how they would depict certain items in an electric circuit (these are useful for the first few drawings but they quickly picked up the symbols and then no longer needed them). The one below is free to download from the Teachit Primary website – electric circuit mat.
And this one can be downloaded from Twinkl Resources website (part of their paid for Classic sub) – Twinkl’s electric circuit mat
We first built a circuit with one of our sets.
And then the kids would draw that circuit.
And where possible the kids would find ways to change the existing circuit that they had built and then draw the changes as well – so lots of series verses parallel circuits.
And we also tried a few circuits where we changed the lights – so added more lights or took some lights away resulting in a change in the brightness of the lights (also using a combination of lights and motors).
And I must admit I am really glad we did this because it showed me how much they really do understand about circuits and the way they work. It is nice to be able to put a mental tick against that topic and know they have covered everything expected and actually managed to already cover some of the Secondary side of circuits. It also reminded me that they are a few extra bits and bobs that I need to buy for some more advance circuit making for next year (I am slowly building up a list of resources that I want to buy for my daughter for next year).