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  • In this activity, students explore the concept of variable resistance by using a simple electrical circuit.

    By the end of this activity, students should be able to:

    • construct simple electrical circuits to explore variable resistance
    • show that the flow of electric charges can be controlled and modified by changing the length of wire or strip of carbon that conducts the current.

    Download the Word file (see below) for:

    • introduction/background notes
    • what you need and what to do
    • discussion questions
    • student worksheet.

    Related content

    The article Electricity and sensors explains the basics of electric currents, circuits, conductivity and switches. Discover more about the the role of resistors in controlling the flow of electrical currents.

    Activity ideas

    Try one or more of these activities:

    • Communicating with symbols teaches students how to draw a range of simple circuit diagrams using specific symbols for electrical components that can be understood worldwide.
    • Testing for conductivity involves the construction of simple electrical circuits to test a variety of materials for their conductive abilities.
    • Challenging switches involves the construction of electrical circuits to explore the role of switches.
    • Sensing moisture involves the construction of a simple, effective moisture sensor.
      Published 2 September 2010 Referencing Hub articles
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