Lesson Plan

It's Electric

Interact with the concept of electricity in engaging ways
Catherine B.
Classroom teacher
Copper Mesa Elementary (Highlands Ranch, CO)
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My Grades 4
My Subjects English Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies
EdTech Mentor

Students will be able to...

Understand how electricity works

Understand cause and effect

Understand open and closed circuits

Demonstrate an understanding of system thinking


Grades 4
All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Building Background Knowledge

This Brainpop movie is free. No account is needed.  

It is linked here:


Following the movie, take the quiz. Encourage students to use the Mind Map feature to map out their thinking.  They do not need to be signed in--a pdf of the map can be printed. It will only save if you have an account, however. 

Extensions:  If you have a Brainpop account, there are many other great Brainpop videos related to energy and electricity found here:


2 Interact and Explore

3 Is it Conductive?

Encourage students to try different combinations and virtual representation of materials.

Some questions to consider:

Of those things that are conductive, what characteristics do they share?

Which materials surprised you as being conductive? 

In teams of up to five, students can also explore the interactive website which includes information, a game and a quiz. 

4 Try it Virtually

This app is $2.99, but can save money if you don't have access to actual wires, bulbs and batteries.  Kids can still experiment with building circuits of all kinds. 

Print the cards available at http://arcircuits.com/

Students then use the app and a device with a camera to create augmented reality circuits 

Student Instructions

Ask your teacher for the printed cards.  

Open the app, and point the camera towards the cards.  How can you change and move the cards to create a circuit?