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Lesson Plan: Exploring Electricity

Subject:  Science

Grade: 3

Lesson Objective: To explore how electricity is used in simple devices

Next Gen Science Standard:  3-PS2-3. Ask questions to determine cause and effect relationships of electric or magnetic interactions between two objects not in contact with each other.



  • How do you use electricity?  (Range of answers expected, but students should explain how they, personally, use electricity during their day.)



  • We have talked about the different ways that electricity is made.
  • Today, we are going to talk about how electricity is used.
  • Many different devices and things use electricity to make them work.
  • An electric circuit (cir-cut) is a pathway that is made of wires.  The pathway of wires lets electrons flow through it
  • Electricity is what makes electrons move.  The electrons then move through the wires and give it power to work.
  • When no electrons are moving, there is no power.
  • A circuit sends electrons to a device and it also takes them out of the device. 
  • The electrons need to be able to flow through the device, so circuits are circular.


Draw the following diagram on the board:


  • Look at the picture that I drew on the board.  The circle shows where the electricity comes from.  It pushes the electrons into the device, which is the rectangle. 
  • Then, the electrons leave the device and flow back toward to where the electricity came from.
  • Many circuits or devices have a switch so that they can be turned on and off. 
  • When a device is turned off, the electrons are not able to flow through it.  The device does not allow the electricity to push the electrons.
  • This is how simple devices use electricity.  Does anyone have any questions?
  • We just talked about how electricity works.
  • Now, you are going to think of as many different things that use electricity.
  • Please take out your notebooks.  You are going to make a list of everything that you can think of that uses electricity.

Allow about 10 minutes for the students to make a list of the things that use electricity.

Walk around the room and check to be sure that the students are on task and understand what to do.



  • Who would like to share their list of things that use electricity?  (Allow the students to answer.)


Written by Kimberly Greacen, Education World® Contributing Writer

Kimberly is an educator with extensive experience in curriculum writing and developing instructional materials to align with Common Core State Standards and Bloom's Taxonomy

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