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When white light passes through things such as water and prisms, the light rays are refracted or bent into the various colors of the spectrum. These colors always appear in the same order. Do you know the order of these colors? A great way to remember the colors of the spectrum is to remember ROY G. BIV - do you think you know what it stands for. Drag your mouse over the box at the right to check your answer!

Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, and Violet
 
Not only can light be refracted, or bent, into the colors of the rainbow, but refracting light changes the appearance of objects. Look at the two pictures below and observe the differences in the appearance of the pen in each glass.
Pen in cup filled with air.
Pen in cup filled with water.
 
If you are lucky, you might see this refracting light making a polar bear look different at the zoo! Look closely and notice how large the part of the body underwater appears!
 
Journal Entry - Take out your science journal and answer the following question(s) (use drawings as appropriate):

How did the appearance of each pen seem to change based on the different fluids it was placed in? Make sure you include illustrations.

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Get the plug-ins: Get Adobe Acrobat Reader , and Get Quicktime Player. (The QuickTime plug-in is needed to play sounds and movies correctly.)

Want to share photos of you or your friends doing this activity? Send it in an e-mail with the following information:

  1. The title of the activity
  2. The URL (Internet address)
  3. Your name.

Remember that no pictures can be used that show student faces or student names on it. 

Teachers should view the Teacher Site Map to relate Sci-ber text and the USOE 6th grade science core.


Updated October 24, 2008 by: Glen Westbroek

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