This animation gives a schematic picture of charges in materials. The user can create a separation of charge by rubbing insulators. The interactions between different combinations of charged and uncharged objects are illustrated, including the polarization of insulators. There are different options for displaying the charge on objects. Example lesson plans and translations of the simulation are available.
This item is part of a larger collection of simulations developed by the Physics Education Technology project (PhET). The simulations are animated, interactive, and game-like environments.
9-12: 4D/H1. Atoms are made of a positively charged nucleus surrounded by negatively charged electrons. The nucleus is a tiny fraction of the volume of an atom but makes up almost all of its mass. The nucleus is composed of protons and neutrons which have roughly the same mass but differ in that protons are positively charged while neutrons have no electric charge.
9-12: 4D/H2. The number of protons in the nucleus determines what an atom's electron configuration can be and so defines the element. An atom's electron configuration, particularly the outermost electrons, determines how the atom can interact with other atoms. Atoms form bonds to other atoms by transferring or sharing electrons.
4G. Forces of Nature
6-8: 4G/M5. A charged object can be charged in one of two ways, which we call either positively charged or negatively charged. Two objects that are charged in the same manner exert a force of repulsion on each other, while oppositely charged objects exert a force of attraction on each other.
9-12: 4G/H3. Most materials have equal numbers of protons and electrons and are therefore electrically neutral. In most cases, a material acquires a negative charge by gaining electrons and acquires a positive charge by losing electrons. Even a tiny imbalance in the number of protons and electrons in an object can produce noticeable electric forces on other objects.
11. Common Themes
6-8: 11B/M1. Models are often used to think about processes that happen too slowly, too quickly, or on too small a scale to observe directly. They are also used for processes that are too vast, too complex, or too dangerous to study.
%0 Electronic Source %D March 3, 2006 %T PhET Simulation: Balloons and Static Electricity %I PhET %V 2023 %N 31 January 2023 %8 March 3, 2006 %9 application/java %U https://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/balloons-and-static-electricity
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An inquiry-based student guide developed specifically for use with the Balloons and Static Electricity simulation. It gives explicit help in simulation set-up with guided inquiry for students as they explore interactively. Appropriate for middle school and 9th grade physical science.