National STEM/STEAM Day is November 8

November 1, 2022
By Alpec
National STEM/STEAM Day can mean teaching about the visible light spectrum, as illustrated in this graphic

National STEM/STEAM Day is one of those made-up holidays like Valentine’s Day or National Take Your Dog to Work Day – but don’t diss it until you try it! it is hard to know why consumer brands company, MGA Entertainment (you know them for their Little Tikes and Bratz line of toys), created the “holiday” in 2015.

Figuring out why it took off with educators and the business community, however, is a no-brainer: Getting more youth at all levels of their education journey excited about and engaging with science, technology, engineering and math helps put them on a path to financial success and creates a needed educational pathway for the future success of the business community.

Choosing A Classroom Laser Pointer

We have a feeling that you will soon be setting up experiments to explore light, wavelengths, and forms of matter, just to name a few ideas for National STEM/STEAM Day classroom projects. We understand classroom laser pointers and really, pointers of all kinds. Think of laser pointers as the 21st century’s pointer stick or teacher pointer, but one that’s got a cool laser light instead of a finger at the end. But which one should you choose?

As we discussed in our Basics of Laser Pointers article, a laser does not need a lot of power to function optimally in most classroom or lecture settings. In fact, low power works to make the laser invisible until it strikes an opaque surface, like a wall or white board.

No matter what STEM subject you are teaching, red and green are our most popular laser pointer colors in classroom settings. Well-suited to indoor teaching and demonstrating, red lasers include the Slimline Red Presenter. Set at 650 nm and with a range of 1,500 feet, it is comfortably bright and pinpoint accurate whether the classroom lights are on or off.

Teachers sometimes go green, though, because green laser pointers are very bright, 30 times brighter than red. The human eye is drawn to it, a neat trick for teachers who need to capture the attention of easily distracted young humans. The Emerald Green Laser Pointer is popular for the rich green color emitted from the pen-sized tool and 6,000 foot range.

Perhaps Violet Is Your Jam?

Violet, at the far end of the visible spectrum (405 nm), emits a shorter, higher energy beam than red or green laser pointers. Yet violet is energetic enough with a range of 15 to 20 feet that it is a fun choice for teaching and demonstrating in a typical classroom setting. We like this one.

Are Laser Pointers Safe in the Classroom?

Educators already know that lasers are not toys and should be used only for their intended purpose. We feel the same way. All of Alpec’s lasers are premium laser pointers, built with 100% IR filtration.  IR filtration along with sealed, tamper-proof laser housing ensures a safe laser experience. 

We Can Help You Choose Your 21st Century Teacher Pointer

Reach out if we can answer any questions about which laser pointers are right for your classroom.