Model NGSS Lessons: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade

Document Type

Teacher Resource

Grade Level

Grade Level: 1st Grade

Publication Date


Background Information

Many organisms have the ability to communicate with sound. Sound allows organisms to learn more about their surroundings. Sirens, ringing of phones, musical instruments, animal sounds, and the human voice are a few examples of using sound to communicate. Sound is produced when an object vibrates. As demonstrated in the diagram below, the vibrations cause the medium’s particles, usually air, to move and allow the sound to travel in a singular direction. This longitudinal movement dictates the volume in which sound is heard; standing in the path of the longitudinal wave increases the probability, thus the volume, of hearing the emitted noise. This concept explains why it is difficult to hear sounds when positioned behind the source. A vibrating object makes sound, however sound also makes an object vibrate.

Performance Expectations

1-PS4-1 Waves and Their Applications in Technologies for Information Transfer

Plan and conduct investigations to provide evidence that vibrating materials can make sound and that sound can make materials vibrate.



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