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Refraction of Light Experiment
 
Bending Pencil
Materials you will need:

• Pencil
• Water
• Clear Glass or Jar

Can light play tricks on your eyes?

This is a very fast and easy experiment.

 
Steps

1.  Fill the glass or jar half way with water.

    
2.  Place the pencil in the water.

3.  Look at the pencil from the top.

    

4. Look at the pencil from the side.

          

Does the pencil look straight or bent?  

What happens when you look at the pencil through the side of the glass?  

Does light play tricks on your eyes? The pencil looks bent. 

This is because light travels slower through water than through air.

As the light enters the glass of water it slows down (changes direction) and as it leaves the glass it speeds up again – therefore making the pencil look as though it is bent!

 
 
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