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David Moss

University of Scranton
Field Experience II
Spring 2017
Day 1 Lesson Plan from Three-Day Unit Plan

Title Equivalent Resistance of Series and Parallel

Subject Area Physics
Grade Level 12
Lesson Summary Students will begin their three-day
unit with an inquiry-based discovery
of series and parallel circuits, how to
differentiate them, and how to use
them. They will then go over how to
calculate the equivalent resistance
of any kind of circuit.
Standards 3.2.P.B4
Essential Questions How do you tell if a circuit is in
series or parallel?

How do you calculate the equivalent

resistance of a circuit in series or
Objectives Given circuit diagrams, distinguish between
series and parallel circuits.

Calculate the equivalent resistance of series

and parallel circuits.
Vocabulary Parallel Circuit

Series Circuit

Equivalent Resistance
Estimated Time 50 Minutes
Materials Required Wires, battery, and bulb for demo.
Circuit simulator on computers.
Worksheets. Lab Activities.
Procedure Begin with discrepant event: lights in parallel
being brighter than lights in series. Do not
explain why.

Explain objectives.

Administer Series and Parallel Circuits

Lab Activity.

Have students get into lab pairs and

experiment by changing the number of bulbs
on series and parallel circuits using circuit
simulators. Guide them until they conclude
that series circuits are less efficient than
parallel circuits. THEN explain why.

Model calculating the equivalent resistance of

a circuit.

Administer Equivalent Resistance Worksheet.

Work until the bell. Incomplete work is
Formative Assessment Series and Parallel Circuits Lab
Summative Assessment Equivalent Resistance Worksheet