In my previous learning project posts, I have been focusing on the software side of coding and this week I thought I would change directions and learn more about the hardware side of coding. The software consists of the program and operating systems installed on a device, whereas the hardware consists of the physical and tangible part of the device. I wanted to start somewhere simple with tools I had lying around my apartment so I started my search! I found a simple circuit project which needed the following materials:
- Conductive copper tape (the path)
- An LED (the load)
- Lithium coin cell battery (the source)
Most of these material were easy to find and I got excited to make my very own paper circuit! I started off by learning what a circuit is and how the materials I gathered would work together. An electrical circuit includes a device that gives energy to the charged particles constituting the current, such as a battery or a generator; devices that use current, such as computers, which is crucial for coders to understand in order for the code to properly preform the required task. Essentially, in electronics, a circuit is a complete circular path that electricity flows through. A simple circuit consists of a current source, an electrical path and a load. The term circuit can be used in a general sense to refer to any fixed path that electricity, data or a signal can travel through.
My next step was to build the circuit, I drew out a path on paper where I wanted the conduct copper tape to be placed, leaving a spot for where to place the LED and the batteries.There is a positive and negative side to both and LED and battery so I made sure the positives were on the same sides of the circuit and same with the negative sides.
When I flip over the positive battery to touch the negative battery the LED turns on!
I learnt that a circuit transfers energy from the batteries to the circuit components such as the LED I used for this project. The moving charged particles are negatively charged electrons that are always present in the wires and other components of the circuit.
An electric circuit includes a device that gives energy to the charged particles constituting the current, such as a battery or a generator; devices that use current, such as computers, which is crucial for coders to understand in order for the code to properly preform the required task.
This circuit project I think is ideal to use in elementary classrooms for many reasons such as:
- Requires problem solving
- Demonstrates the basics of hardware devices
- Learn why things work the way they do
- Fun, easy and safe!