Analog Waves Activity: Use Amplitudes and Wavelengths as a Message Decoder


No prep!

Grades 7 and Up

Students decode 5 messages by looking at wave amplitudes and wavelengths, and then draw a wave to write a message of their own! This activity is a FUN way to reinforce the continuous nature of analog waves and the concepts of amplitude and wavelength!

Students are given a key that shows which wavelength and amplitude values correspond to which alphabetical letters. By analyzing the amplitudes and wavelengths within each given wave, students figure out what the message says.

This is a FUN way to reinforce the parts of a wave!

In this activity, students will:

  • Read background information about the parts of a wave and then complete a brief “Check for Understanding” section.
  • Decode 5 different “text-like” messages (including some emojis) in waveforms.
  • Write a message of their own in wave form.

Also included is a set of blank wave graphs that students can use to create their own message wave using the same key provided – great as homework or for fast finishers!

Check out our related waves resources:

Teacher Notes:

  • SAVE COPIES: Make just one class set of the Waveforms Key, as they can be reused from class-to-class.
  • Related standards: NGSS MS-PS4-1, MS-PS4-2, and MS-PS4-3
  • Please note that this resource is not editable.
  • Check out more resources in the waves, sound, and light section of our shop!


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