gathered the following parts:
- 9V battery and battery clip
- Pushbutton switch (great variety from Adafruit)
- Heat shrink
- Old computer/printer fan
- A sturdy box
I also used some alligator clip lead wires so that students could test their circuits before we wired them up permanently. After each student received the necessary materials, we tested our fan and battery first. Using the alligator clips, we connected the battery to the fan, making sure to connect red to red, and black to black. Unlike ordinary DC motors, which will run in either direction based on how you hook up the leads, fans can only work in one direction. This is expected, as fans are designed to push air in one direction.
Once all fans were tested, we inserted the switch (pushbutton) into the circuit. Having experienced simple circuits already in class, we reviewed why it was necessary to have a closed circuit in order for electricity to travel through the wires and the components. The switch allows us to cut off power, and turn it on when needed.
With our circuits tested and ready, students decided where they wanted to place their fans and pushbutton on the box. We used old iPhone boxes, donated by our faculty, which work very well for projects like this that require a sturdy frame. Using one student's project, I showed how the circuits would eventually be soldered (I am doing the soldering), and how heat shrink can be used to cover the exposed wires to avoid a short circuit.
Next week, we return to create some cool works of spin art!