Activity Number
318
Editable
Overview and Learning Objectives
Classroom Practice
Central Concepts
Benchmarks and Standards
Extensions and Connections
Macro Micro Link
Activity Credits
Requirements

Electric Current (SAM) (a 2-day, 10 pp activity)

Interactive, scaffolded model

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  • Java 1.5+ - Java 1.5+ is available for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X 10.4 and greater. If you are using Mac OS X 10.3, you can download MW Version 1.3 and explore within it instead.

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Overview and Learning Objectives

Students explore the role of electron voltage and density on electric current. They compare the movement of electrons in a conductor and an insulator. They derive Ohm’s Law from their observations. They apply their understanding to circuits, the working of an incandescent light, and a fuel cell.

Students will be able to:

• Explain how voltage is the driving force behind electron movement.

• Define electric current as the number of electrons flowing through a wire over a given period of time.

• Explain how conductivity and resistivity relate to electric current.

• Infer the relationships between current, voltage, and resistance as described in Ohm’s Law (I = V / R).

• Explain how electricity can be converted to other forms of energy.

Possible Student

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Classroom Practice

Teacher Guide:

http://sam.concord.org/publications/teacher-guides/electric_current.ver7.pdf

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Central Concepts

Key Concept:

Additional Related Concepts

Physics/Chemistry

  • Electron
  • Voltage

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Benchmarks and Standards

AAAS

  • THE PHYSICAL SETTING: FORCES OF NATURE - Different kinds of materials respond differently to electric forces (Full Text of Standard)

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Extensions and Connections

Fermi Lab's ARISE Project suggests the following enhancement to the SAM unit:

http://www.concord.org/~barbara/SAM/ARISE/ARISE_SAM_electric_current.pdf

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Macro Micro Link

fuel cell, electron

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Activity Credits

Created by CC Project: SAM using Molecular Workbench

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Requirements

  • Java 1.5+ - Java 1.5+ is available for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X 10.4 and greater. If you are using Mac OS X 10.3, you can download MW Version 1.3 and explore within it instead.

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NSF Logo
These materials are based upon work supported
by the National Science Foundation under grant numbers
9980620, ESI-0242701, EIA-0219345, DUE-0402553, and 0628181.

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this
material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect
the views of the National Science Foundation.