Cell phones represent a type of technology that has been around for little over fifty years. However, it has only been recently that many people began to use cell phones as a major part of their everyday life. In the past, cell phones were used by business people to conduct their business. In today's society, one member of every residence of the United States owns a cell phone. Cell phones are interesting, useful and play a major role in our lives by bringing people closer together and keeping in constant touch with one another. However, most people do not understand the physics of a cell phone.
The purpose of this unit of "The Physics of Cell Phones" is designed to provide students in grades 5-8 the opportunity to explore and to solve problems about the physics of how cell phones work. This unit is divided into four sections. The first section of the unit establishes a definition of cell phones; the second section gives the history and some background information on how the cell phone evolved; the third section talks about how the cell phones work; the fourth section discusses turning speech into electrical impulses, and the fifth and final section of this unit talks about the pros and cons of cell phones.
Lesson plans are structured, so that students can become highly engaged in hands-on assignments to learn concepts taught. The use of technology by way of computer "How Stuff Works" www.howstuffworks.com is used to help explain and to assimilate concepts taught. The concepts are strongly linked to the scientific method and goals and objectives which are framed around standards in science. Curriculum standards are introduced in this unit with lesson plans. In addition, the unit consists of a teacher reading list, a student reading list and a bibliography.