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Software Requirements


Android iOS Windows MacOS
with best with Chrome Chrome Chrome Chrome
support full-screen? Yes. Chrome/Opera No. Firefox/ Samsung Internet Not yet Yes Yes
cannot work on some mobile browser that don't understand JavaScript such as.....
cannot work on Internet Explorer 9 and below



This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; Francisco Esquembre; Felix J. Garcia Clemente; Siti; Coco

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Instructions on how to operate the computer simulation
What you want to do How to do it
start/ restart the simulation Click on the "Reset Setup" button.  Tick 'Enable Data Logger'
set the number of coils around the electromagnet Click the slider found beside the words "no. of coils = 3" in the dark grey cell on the top left corner of the simulation.  The number of coils in this simulation ranges from 3 to 9
set the number of batteries Click the slider found beside the words "no. of batteries = 2" in the bright green cell on the top right corner of the simulation.  The number of batteries in this simulation ranges from 1 to 5.  
start the electromagnet working
click the "Play" button or click on the "switch" in the circuit diagram to close the circuit.  
to find out how many paper clips the electromagnet can attract drag the electromagnet downwards into the tray of paper clips and drag it back up.  The number of paper clips attracted will be automatically recorded in the data/ results table. Ensure the 'Enable Data Logger' is ticked.
restart the electromagnet to change the variables
Click "Reset Setup" to open the circuit.  After you change the variables, click the "play" button again. 
 clear the data/results table and restart the collection of a new set of data. 
Click "Reset Table"

Sample Learning Goals

Pre-requisite Knowledge:
Students should already know:
  • the parts of an electromagnet
  • how to make an electromagnet
  • how to identify various variables in an experiment
Recommended Lesson Duration:
2 to 3 one-hour lessons excluding offline learning
(students may be still grasping the concept of variables so time is factored for teachers to address the gaps before students proceed.)
Learning Issue to be Addressed: Students have difficulty in appreciating the importance of variables in a fair experiment.  
Other considerations in the lesson design:
Student-student interaction - Though students carry out their investigations individually, this lesson provides opportunities for student-student interaction when students share their experimental results with their peers and engage in discussion on why the data they obtained might differ from each other despite having the same variables and if there are similarities or differences between the trend shown in the data sets. 
Ways of thinking and doing in Science : Students get to plan their experimental steps for the investigation, conduct the experiment, analyse and interpret data, construct explanations with evidence.  Opportunity is also given for students to reflect on the challenges they face while conducting the experiment as part of developing.  This helps students develop metacognition. 
Options can be given for students to investigate both factors or just one of the factors. 
LA7 - It is recommended that access to this learning activity be given to students only after students have completed upto LA6.  The simulation in this activity allows student to revisit the concepts learnt and demonstrate their learning using a different media mode
LA8 - Access to this learning activity should be available for students throughout the lesson as it provides students a video to recap how to set up an electromagnet. 

For Teachers

Initial Setup
Direct link

Enable data logger
Direct link
Change the number of coils and close the switch
Direct link


Drag the rod to attract steel paper clips and obtain data
Direct link
Plastic rod
Direct link


Increase the number of batteries
Direct link


Low battery level
Direct link


Small iron rod
Direct link


From Teacher: 20210801

I used the virtual electromagnet experiment you created for SLS. [The simulation is]very good. I got the students to do the 2 experiments for changing the number of coils and number of batteries. I realized that they changed 2 variables [and] anyhow did [it]. Today  get them to redo and snip it to submit it to me for monitoring.... so much better. I like this [this is] because [it is usually] very difficult to do a real experiment to see the trend. Thanks so much! Attached a sample of students' work.
direct link


Strength of an Electromagnet with paperclips virtual lab for primary school science



Other Resources


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