STEM in the Sun Lesson: Here Comes the Sun

Required materials:

used or new basic calculator, eyeglass repair kit or mini screwdriver, scotch tape


The Here Comes the Sun activity explores the concept of how solar energy is gathered by solar panels and adapted to provide power to a variety of machines, from calculators to spacecraft. Students disassemble a solar powered calculator to explore the component parts and work in teams to suggest design enhancements to the calculator to improve performance.

NGSS alignment:

1. Asking questions (for science) and defining problems (for engineering)  2. Developing and using models 6. Constructing explanations (for science) and designing solutions (for engineering) 8. Obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information