Light- National Curriculum 2014

Pupils should be taught to:

  • recognise that light appears to travel in straight lines
  • use the idea that light travels in straight lines to explain that objects are seen because they give out or reflect light into the eye
  • explain that we see things because light travels from sources to our eyes or from sources to objects and then to our eyes
  • use the idea that light travels in straight lines to explain why shadows have the same shape as the objects that cast them

Notes and guidance (non-statutory)

Pupils should build on the work from year 3, exploring the way that light behaves, including  sources, reflection and shadows. They should talk about what happens and make predictions.

Pupils might work scientifically by: deciding where to place rear-view mirrors on cars; designing and making a periscope and using the idea that light appears to travel in straight lines to explain how it works. They might investigate the relationship between sources, objects and shadows by using shadow puppets. They could extend their experience of light by looking a range of phenomena including rainbows, colours on soap bubbles, objects looking bent in water, and coloured filters (they do not need to explain why these phenomena occur).