# Activity 2

Refraction and Prisms

Now that you have figured out how the electromagnetic spectrum works using waves and how light affects what we see, your next assignment is to figure out one of the reasons why this object in the sky has appeared.  The word refraction may be somewhat unfamiliar to you, but it actually just means "bending."  When you hear that light is refracting, it essentially means that the light is bending.  Have you ever seen a prism before?  What did it look like?  Something like this?

A prism is a geometric shape, and when placed in the correct position where sunlight can strike the prism, refraction occurs.  You believe that refraction plays some kind of role in the object found in the sky.  Your responsibility is to be able to find evidence to support this refraction happening, so there is solid proof as to what exactly is happening.  To do this, you need to visit a website that gives you some idea of how to begin.  Click Here

After you have visited the site above, turn to your teacher and explain exactly how refraction occurs using the shopping cart diagram found on the website.  After you have finished your explanation, click on this link to read information about raindrops and refraction.  Click Here  How does it compare to the shopping cart example? How do angles play a part in the overall shopping cart diagram?

Now for some fun!! Your teacher is now putting out a glass that you can see through, and placing a pencil beside the glass.  It is your responsibility as a sky-tologist, to use the pencil and glass activity as a visual representation as to what is happening in the sky.  Make sure you adjust your eye-line to different positions so you see the pencil from a variety of angles.  Record in a notebook, what you see from the different angles.  Once you have completed this experiment, fill the glass half-way with water, and once again place the pencil in the glass.  Is this different than the first experiment?  How so?  Once again, record your findings in your scientific journal.

Explain to your teacher, or a partner what you believe is happening in the sky, and how refraction plays a part in that object, and then record your findings so that when you sit down and talk with the mayor of Planet Bright, you have solid evidence and reasonings for your findings.