Stanford SOLAR Center

Build a Spectroscope - Activity

Have your students build a working spectroscope to the study the nature of light. Recommended for students grade 5 and over. Half of the poster is cut out, folded, and taped to build the spectroscope. Instructions for constructing the spectroscope are on the flip side of the poster. Curriculum and classroom activities are available in the document at bottom.

NOTE: Requires 1 diffraction grating per spectroscope available from the following supplier:
Diffraction Gratings:
Edmund Scientific (609) 573-6250
Catalog # F39502 $23.60 (pkg of 25)
Catalog # F50183 $58.00 (pkg of 80)

For many years the Stanford Solar Center distributed spectrosope kits produced by Stanford and Lockheed. Unfortunately, these are no longer available from Stanford. But they can be obtained from the non-profit Astronomers Without Borders.

To order spectroscopes from Astronomers Without Borders

Here is an extensive classroom activity designed for grades 5-8 and developed by NASA curriculum Specialist Susanne Ashby and Amerlee Chausee: The nature of light and spectroscope activity