OurStory: Life on the Water Lenses and Lighthouses
Directions, page 1 of 1
For adults and kids to follow togethe .
Together, explore the presentation How Things Work: The Fresnel Lens.
Talk about what you learned about the Fresnel lens from the National Museum of American History.
Look for a Fresnel lens near you.
If possible, find or buy a sheet magnifier or a “pocket Fresnel lens .” These come in several sizes, from the size of a business card to a whole sheet of paper. Experiment with using the magnifier on dierent objects at dierent distances. Turn it sideways and look closely to see the tiny plastic parts that make up the whole lens.
If you are outside, look at a parked car nearby. Examine the headlights to see if they include any Fresnel lenses.
If you are in a classroom with an overhead projector, take a look at the lenses to figure out if they are Fresnel lenses.
Now that you have learned how Fresnel lenses work and looked for one in real life,
think of a new way you could use a Fresnel lens. Fresnel lenses can magnify words or images that are close by, or send light very far into the distance. What invention could you make that would use a Fresnel lens?
Use the Thinkabout sheet to develop your new invention!
You can use the pictures from the presentation or the online exhibition
(http: /americanhistory.si.edu/onthewater/) to make your picture very accurate.