First Circuits

Eli Whitney Museum

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for ages 7-9

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2024 Summer Program

Humans have always recognized electricity in lightning bolts and fur that crackles when stroked. But the practical uses of electricity - circuits - have been discovered mostly from Eli Whitney's time to the present in simple experiments and creative accidents.

Welcome to our battery-powered future! We will spend this week powering our future vehicles and homes with batteries. The week begins with a voltaic cell, the first battery. Visualize the transfer of electrons by stacking copper and zinc plates. Illuminate an LED. Take what you have learned and power a drag-racer. Make a physical connection with the circuits you create with a Morse Code device. Call the operator's switchboard to connect your call — via a circuit — to a friend. Power a home with a solar cell.

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