Explore The Pepper's Ghost Illusion to make your own ghosts for LockWood & Company to chase

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The Pepper's Ghost Illusion
In Jonathan Stround's The Screaming Staircase (Lockwood & Co. #1), our fearless ghostbuster trio take on a lot more than ghosts.  This series is popular with students and makes a great connection to optical illusions.  The Pepper's ghost illusion was made famous in 1862 by John Pepper when he used it during a demonstration.  The illusion is still used today in haunted houses, theaters, concerts and now ....learning spaces!  This would be a great library Makerspace heading into Halloween.

Resources: 
  • Briana Costa provides a nice history of Pepper's Ghost along with a how-to create your own illusion using a plastic CD case and a cell phone.  
  • For younger students, check out this technique from Instructables.
Vocabulary:
  • light
  • optical illusion
  • angle
  • video
  • holographic effect
  • reflection
  • material
  • image
Learning objectives:
  • make predictions using scientific knowledge and understanding
  • interpret observations and data, including identifying patterns and using observations, measurements and data to draw conclusions
  • the transmission of light through materials: absorption, diffuse scattering and specular reflection at a surface
  • colors and the different frequencies of light, white light and prisms (qualitative only); differential color effects in absorption and diffuse reflection
  • generate, develop, model and communicate ideas through discussion, annotated sketches, cross-sectional and exploded diagrams, prototypes, pattern pieces and computer-aided design
  • understand and use the properties of materials and the performance of structural elements to achieve functioning solutions

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