learn: simple circuits


  • two (2) wires
  • batteries component
  • lightbulb component

Imagine a path. Imagine traveling along that path to get somewhere. Imagine traveling along a different path to return to where you started. We travel along paths in many different ways: people walk through a hallway or up the stairs; cars drive on roads; water travels down a river and through our plumbing.

Using two wires, make a pathway from the Batteries Component to your Lightbulb Component and back to the Batteries Component as in the drawing.
What happens?

Electricity is flowing from the positive side of the batteries, through the wire, through the light, and then through the other wire back to negative side of the batteries. Trace the pathway with your fingers. Draw the component blocks and wires. Look carefully and be precise in your drawing. When you are finished, trace the pathway electricity travels in your drawing. Notice it is the same as the pathway in your actual components.

Electrical energy can be stored in batteries. Electricity travels, when it has a closed pathway to move through. A closed pathway that electricity flows through is called a circuit. In these explorations, when you make a circuit, it will always have only one Batteries Component, and at least one happen Component, such as a Lightbulb, an LED or a Motor.

next: conductivity
previous: noticing and learning

back to learn menu