KS3 Waves – Light and Sound

Light Y7/8 Key Terms




When light bounces off surfaces. (On a mirror the angle it shines on the mirror and the angle it reflects are the same.)


When light bends when it goes into a different material e.g. glass, water, air.


When white light separates into colours of the spectrum.


All the different colours. R, O, Y, G, B, I, V Three primary: green, red, blue. Secondary: green + red = yellow  OR green + blue = cyan OR red + blue = magenta


A shiny surface which reflects light.

Triangular Prism

This makes light refract inside the prims and disperse in the air into a spectrum of colours

Virtual Image

Not real – i.e your face that appears inside a mirror behind the wall


Light does not need a medium to travel through


Light can pass through a transparent sheet of glass


Light cannot travel through a wall

Ray diagram

A model which uses ruled lines to show the pathway of travel, with arrows, connected up


Light going towards a surface


Light going away from a surface (normally as the same angle it came it at)


Line at 90 degrees to a surface where you measure the angle from


A rough surface scatters light in all directions so no image is formed


Act to filter out all the colours except that one.


Allows some light to pass through but not enough to see detailed shapes

Eye Structure

Cornea, Pupil, Suspensory ligament, retina, focal point, iris, optic nerve, blind spot

EM Spectrum

Radio, Micro, IR, ROY-G-BIV, V, X-Ray, Gamma-Ray, (Cosmic)


Lens which is fat in the middle and gives a focal point. Common uses are magnifying glasses


Lens is skinny in the middle (or like a cave) makes the light spread out or disperse to form virtual images

Y7 Light Resources

Lesson 1 Transmission of Light

Lesson 2 Reflection “Theory”

Lesson 3 Reflection “Practical”

Lesson 4a How We See Colour

Lesson 4b Mixing Colours

Lesson 5 Colour Filters

Y8 Optics and Light Resources…

Lesson 1 Refraction in a Prism

Lesson 2a Dispersion

Lesson 2b Colour

Lesson 3 Lenses

Lesson 4 How We See

Lesson 5 Beyond Light “Hershel’s IR Exp

Interactive Quiz – Waves

Reflection and Refraction

This movie shows refraction, reflection, TIR with prisms.

Sound Resources…

This series of 4 lessons covers Y7 sound and how we hear.

Lesson 1: Vibrations and Waves

Lesson 2: Seeing Sound

Lesson 3: Speed of Sound

Lesson 4 How We Hear

Signal Generator and Oscilloscope

Oscilloscope and Signal Generator showing ideas of frequency and amplitude for Ks3-5 Pupils


University of Vienna Simulation (PC version) to look at lenses for the more advanced view) lenses simulation

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