in-school field trips - light & shadows icon

Reflect, refract, and bend!

It’s not yoga; it’s an examination of the properties of light with Professor Light & Shadow. Build a periscope, spin the colour spectrum, examine lenses and more in this illuminating interactive experience!

 Take-Home: Periscope, Colour Spectrum Spinner


  • Activities: Build a periscope, experiment with mirrors and lasers, perform a shadow puppet show, predict and test materials for transparency/translucency/opaqueness, use a ray box to experiment with bending light, build a color spectrum spinner, discuss sun safety using pinhole camera and welders glass.
  • Cross-curricular connections
  • Take-Home: Periscope and color spectrum spinner.

It was so well organized. The presenter was excellent (very knowledgeable and was great with the students. I really liked the hands-on activities for the students. Lastly, I really liked how the field trip was so closely linked to the curriculum and student outcomes.

C.L., Grade 4 TeacherSt. Andrew School

The centres were fun and educational. The students made a couple of take-home projects which would have been too difficult and time-consuming for me to have made with them (i.e.getting little mirrors cut for periscopes).

O.Z., Grade 4 TeacherSt. Matthew School

The experiments, they were very hands-on and students were also able to take home 2 items which they loved. I thought our professor was very enthusiastic which the students responded well too. I also liked how it didn't matter where we were in the unit, students were getting a review of what they already learned and were still learning new material.

K.B., Grade 4 TeacherFort Saskatchewan School

Identify sources of light, describe the interaction of light with different materials, and infer the pathway of a light beam.


  • Recognize that eyes can be damaged by bright lights and that one should not look at the sun-either directly or with binoculars or telescopes.
  • Identify a wide variety of sources of light, including the sun, various forms of electric, flames, and materials that low (luminescent materials).
  • Distinguish between objects that emit their own light from those that require an external source of light in order to be seen.
  • Demonstrate that light travels outward from a source and continues unless blocked by an opaque material.
  • Recognize that opaque materials cast shadows, and predict changes in the size and location of shadows resulting from the movement of a light source or from the movement of a shade-casting object.
  • Distinguish transparent materials from opaque materials by determining if light passes through them and by examining their shadows.
  • Classify materials as transparent, partly transparent (translucent), or opaque.
  • Recognize that light can be reflected and that shiny surfaces, such as polished metals and mirrors, are good reflectors.
  • Recognize that light can be bent (refracted) and that such objects as aquaria, prisms, and lenses can be used to show that light beams can be bent.
  • Recognize that light can be broken into colors and that different colors of light can be combined to form a new color.
  • Demonstrate the ability to use a variety of optical devices, describe how they are used, and describe their general structure.