Building the Constant Acceleration Particle Model (New Paradigm Investigation)

In my Physics 10 update/upgrades, I built a new paradigm investigation for the Constant Acceleration Particle Model. The activity described here gets at the same things as my older activity, but it allows groups to do the investigation rather than the entire class together, and it gives more structure and space to the discussion. The… Read More Building the Constant Acceleration Particle Model (New Paradigm Investigation)

Multiple Representations of Momentum Transfer — The Card Sort

After my first card sort activity, I was eager to design more. Quick heads up—this card sort is VERY different from the kinematics one that I designed. Some Inspiration I had this tweet from Brian Frank in mind as I started to work on my revised packet for the Momentum Transfer Model. Leaning toward trying… Read More Multiple Representations of Momentum Transfer — The Card Sort

Stacks of Kinematics Curves as a Card Sort

I’ve been making major updates and changes to my materials in the intro physics course this year. It is the first year we are teaching a yearlong physics class to everyone (10th graders) in my school as the result of a big curriculum redesign in science, and the first time back to teaching a course… Read More Stacks of Kinematics Curves as a Card Sort

Building the Constant Velocity Model

Here’s a binder. And the handshake. [As they walk in, I’m handing out their binders (with materials, labeled dividers, spare graph paper, their names on the sides) and shaking their hands as we make the transaction. I’ve seen some discussion in various places online about the appropriateness of shaking students’ hands on the first day of school.… Read More Building the Constant Velocity Model

Empirical Force Laws: Spring Force Experiment

In the middle of our Balanced Forces unit, we do a couple of experiments to come up with equations for some of the types of forces we’ve been talking about while drawing qualitative free body diagrams. We tend to do them at the same time and to post-lab them together. I covered the gravitational force last… Read More Empirical Force Laws: Spring Force Experiment

Empirical Force Laws: Gravitational Force Experiment

In the middle of our Balanced Forces unit, we do a couple of experiments to come up with equations for some of the types of forces we’ve been talking about while drawing qualitative free body diagrams. We tend to do them at the same time and to post-lab them together. I’ll split them over two… Read More Empirical Force Laws: Gravitational Force Experiment

Energy Pie Charts

The stage is set. We started building the energy transfer model (ETM), and we’ve talked about the flavors of energy. We are ready for a new representation to help us start thinking about energy storage in a system. In a day or two, we’ll be using energy bar charts, but first, we’ll get used to… Read More Energy Pie Charts

Physics Objectives 2013

Here are my updated lists of objectives for the year (subject to change/grow as the year unfolds depending on how the pace goes). As always, feel free to borrow and modify these objectives for your own classes. The Model Building page on this blog collects my posts about my paradigm experiments, the graphical representations we use,… Read More Physics Objectives 2013

All-year Goal-less Problems for Physics Class

So. Josh* took my Honors Physics exam review activity and expanded it into something bigger and better. As I was reading his post, though, I started thinking about my regular physics classes. They would really like something like that. Of course, I also had to make it my own. I am curating a set of… Read More All-year Goal-less Problems for Physics Class

Balanced Forces before Constant Acceleration

I know you’ve been there. Stuck in the doldrums of kinematics. “It’s against the law to think in the doldrums!” So there you are. Stuck in description-land. The juicy parts of physics (explain and predict) are far away and out of reach. You can easily spend ages and ages there. The students start to think… Read More Balanced Forces before Constant Acceleration