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ERIC Number: EJ1173276
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018-Apr
Pages: 4
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
A Classroom Activity for Teaching Electric Polarization of Insulators and Conductors
Deligkaris, Christos
Physics Teacher, v56 n4 p226-229 Apr 2018
The phenomenon of electric polarization is crucial to student understanding of forces exerted between charged objects and insulators or conductors, the process of charging by induction, and the behavior of electroscopes near charged objects. In addition, polarization allows for microscopic-level models of everyday-life macroscopic-level phenomena. Textbooks may adequately discuss polarization, but there is little material in active learning labs and tutorials on this topic. Since polarization of materials is a microscopic phenomenon, instructors often use diagrams and figures on the classroom board to explain the process in a lecture setting. In this paper I will describe a classroom activity where the students play the role of electrons as an alternative option.
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A