Sandifer, Cody. “Shoe Box Circuits.” Science and Children (2016): 20-23. NSTA, December 2009. Web.
In the article “Shoe Box Circuits,” 4th and 5th grade students explore concepts as they attach wires to batteries, use electrical switches, and explain how circuits work. In order to make these concepts inquiry-based, the students design and wire a shoebox “room” that meets circuit requirements. The article states, that in order for students to reach their highest potential, they should complete a hands-on electricity unit right before they begin the activity in order to develop basic concepts related to conductivity, circuits, light bulbs, and switches. The article describes the five-phases of the project: 1. choosing a room to model and create a circuit blueprint for the room, 2. testing their circuit blueprint, 3. installing the final version of the circuit, 4. decorating the room, and 5. engaging in a class discussion and writing a summative report. By doing this project, students deeper their understanding of electricity and recognize how the electricity concepts they learn about in class are related to the electrical circuits in their homes.