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Hooked on Science - The Reversing Arrow

hooked science 300KENTUCKY (2/1/14) - Did you know you can change the direction of an arrow just by using water?

INGREDIENTS

  • Transparent Glass
  • Black Permanent Marker
  • Piece of Paper
  • Water

INSTRUCTION

STEP 1: Fill the transparent glass with water.  
STEP 2: Using the black permanent marker, draw a horizontal arrow on the piece of paper.   
STEP 3: Place the piece of paper with the horizontal arrow behind the transparent glass of water. Make sure the paper is touching the transparent glass of water and ob-serve the horizontal arrow.   
STEP 4: Move the piece of paper with the horizontal arrow away from the transparent glass of water and observe the horizontal arrow. 

EXPLANATION

As you moved the piece of paper with the horizontal arrow away from the transparent glass of water the arrow appears to reverse. Light travels in a straight line until it hits an object. Then, the light may reflect or bounce off the object, refract or pass through the object, or absorb or get caught by the object. The light is refracted as it passes through the transparent glass, the water, then through the back of the transparent glass, and finally through the air to the paper with the horizontal arrow. This refraction causes the horizontal arrow to appear as if it is reversed.

Go to www.hookedonscience.org  for more experiments that might get you and your family “Hooked on Science.”

Jason Lindsey
Hooked on Science

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