Understanding the Pupil and the Iris

Everyone has a black dot in the middle of their eye. Do you know what the black dot is called? It is called the pupil and it is actually a hole right in the middle of our eye! We have a clear layer over our eyes called the cornea so we can’t actually put our finger through the pupil. There is also a colored part to our eyes that surrounds the black dot. It is called the iris. The iris is made out of muscle and it helps to make the pupil bigger or smaller to let the right amount of light into our eyes so that we can see. If it is bright, the iris closes around the pupil, so it gets smaller. When we are in a dark room the iris stretches open so that the pupil gets bigger to let in more light. This change occurs all throughout our day without us even noticing.


Download our activity and ask your kids to observe how the pupil changes size with differing amounts of light!


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