Middle School Resource
In this experiment, you’ll learn that compass needles are little magnets that are free to rotate. Compasses allow us to observe the direction of a magnetic field. Normally, they respond to the earth’s magnetic field, orienting themselves parallel to magnetic field lines. If we create a magnetic field that is stronger than the field of the earth – for example, by using electric currents – a compass needle will orient itself parallel to the new field.
Related NY State Academic Standards: S.MS.PS.2.2, S.MS.LS.2.3, MST4.I.PS4.4, and more!
Be sure to check out our Educational Resources, featuring thousands of activities, lesson plans, constructed-response questions, rubrics, teacher resources, multimedia, and more!