Activity 5 - Parallel and Series Connections

Activity 5 - Parallel and Series Connections

Registering the official members of the Himalayan Makers Guild, and using parallel and series electrical connections to control an LED and a buzzer.

On Saturday we explored parallel and series electrical connections by using them to control the brightness of an LED and the volume of a buzzer. The students had come across these types of connections before, but we hadn’t yet put a name to them. With everyone back from holidays we were able to register the students as members of the club, and give them their official Himalayan Makers Guild folders. We have 61 members in total, 25 boys and 36 girls (41%:59%)1.

Dawa Sherpa and his new HMG folder Dawa Phuntsok and his new HMG folder

I’ve met some great mentors here in the Kathmandu Maker community. Hasin is one of those mentors. He works at an innovative education company called Karkhana. This week, we put two of his suggestions into action. First, we did an exercise at the start of the class to highlight the importance of communicating the thought process taken to reach one’s conclusions, rather than focusing on finding the “correct” answer. We asked which one out of the three - crow, airplane, chicken - doesn’t fit with the others. The students split into groups to discuss and reach a conclusion. There are many suitable answers to the question, and this directs the discussion towards the reasoning behind the students’ answers. Second, we took 10 minutes at the end of each session to reflect on what the students discovered during the activity. They were encouraged to share their observations and review the topics in their own words. This also helped us understand how well they’d understood the material.

Activity 5 has been made as a Free Cultural Work and is available for use and adaption under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license. As per the constraints outlined in [Activity 1][], the activity does not require consistent access to electricity. The cost of one set of parts2 was $7.97 CAD, and 10 sets were shared across 60 students split into four sessions. This brought the parts-cost per student down to $1.33 CAD.

  1. SMD has a nearly equal gender distribution among boarding students, with 175 boys and 174 girls. 

  2. Part details and suppliers are given in the lesson plan.