# Making Waves Lab

```Anne Arundel County Public Schools | Department of Academics &amp; Strategic Initiatives
Science
Name: ___________________________ Date: _____________ Period: _____
Making Waves!
Question: How will a change in the energy affect the wavelength and amplitude of a
wave?
Hypothesis: __________________________________________________
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Materials:
1 spring coil (per group)
1 meter stick
1 pack of small post-it notes
Independent Variable: energy level applied (low, medium, and high)
Dependent Variable: changes in wave properties (wave length, amplitude)
Constants: Medium
Procedures:
1. Two students sit on the floor, and hold each end of the coil. The distance
should be great enough that the coil is taut, and laying on the floor.
2. One student should shake the coil from left to right at a constant speed, but
with slow motion (low energy).
3. Practice this motion, until students can create waves that are a consistent size.
4. Place a small post-it note on the floor to mark the top (crest) of the wave.
5. Using the meter stick, measure the amplitude of the wave from the mid-point,
or rest position.
6. Record on the data table.
Resource
Revised 8/3/2017
Anne Arundel County Public Schools | Department of Academics &amp; Strategic Initiatives
Science
7. Repeat steps 2-6 for two more trials.
8. Repeat steps 2-7, but determine the wavelength of the wave.
9. Repeat steps 2-7, using medium energy level, and high energy level.
Data Tables:
Energy Level
Low
Medium
High
Energy Level
Low
Medium
High
Table 1: A Change in Energy on Amplitude
Amplitude (cm)
Trial 1
Trial 2
Trial 3
Average
Table 2: A Change in Energy on Wavelength
Wavelength (cm)
Trial 1
Trial 2
Trial 3
Average
Resource
Revised 8/3/2017
Anne Arundel County Public Schools | Department of Academics &amp; Strategic Initiatives
Science
Explain how the properties of the wave, such as amplitude, wavelength and frequency,
were affected by increasing the amount of energy the wave was carrying. Provide
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Resource
Revised 8/3/2017
Anne Arundel County Public Schools | Department of Academics &amp; Strategic Initiatives
Science
Thinking Questions:
1. Explain how the size of the wavelength changed when you applied more energy
to your wave. What does this indicate about the change in the energy that is
carried by the wave?
2. Explain how the size of the amplitude changed when you applied more energy to
your wave. What does this indicate about the change in the energy that is
carried by the wave?
3. Using your knowledge that has been developed in this activity and through
other class activities, explain why ocean waves can vary in size.