One new change to my intro physics class this past school year was to replace the set of FBD practice problems with a card sort that would be done in groups. The card sort gives students a chance to practice FBDs with some scaffolding (especially choosing between options rather than creating everything from scratch), and… Read More Force Diagrams — A Card Sort
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)
After the success of my balanced forces problem-set-replacing mini lab practicum stations, I wanted to design a similar activity for my unbalanced forces unit. One might think that this would be more challenging (or even impossible) to do since these stations need to involve objects with changing velocities (so the handy flip-up index cards wouldn’t… Read More Problem Solving Lab Stations for Unbalanced Forces
In refreshing the design of my 10th grade Physics course, one thing I have been attempting to do is find new ways to replace worksheets or problem sets with different sorts of activities, especially ones that promote more group work and discourse within groups. (See kinematics card sort, momentum card sort.) For my Balanced Forces… Read More Problem Solving Lab Stations for Balanced Forces
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
This fall, I will be starting my 2nd year at a really cool progressive day school in NYC. The science curriculum is in the process of evolving, but the current program has 9th and 10th graders rotating twice through physics, chemistry, and biology (in any order) on a trimester system. This past year, I taught… Read More Circuits and Charges: A Physics Active Exam
My Physics 10 (a trimester-long class exploring E&M topics for 10th graders who haven’t yet studied mechanics) was wrapping up some extensions to an electrophorus activity. They were already pros at explaining and predicting electrostatic phenomena, but this activity gave them yet another way to test out their thinking, practice their charge diagrams, and add depth and subtlety… Read More What if we didn’t finish all of the questions?