Simulate, Test, Analyze: A Framework For Rigor

“Have Fun Storming The Castle!” At the end of this fall semester, the second year students in the Academy rolled and carried their medieval mechanisms of mayhem to the SRHS track and we spent the afternoon watching the devices hurl lacrosse balls across the athletic field.This project was the final performance assessment of the semesterContinue reading “Simulate, Test, Analyze: A Framework For Rigor”

Building the Electrical Current Model with The Amazing $25 Programmable Power Supply

Not Just For Teaching Robotics Thanks to the generous donations of supporters of the Physics Academy, we were able to purchase a new set of Arduino Uno micro-controllers for use in this year’s robotics competition. As I was planning out the unit on teaching DC circuits, I realized that some of our DC power suppliesContinue reading “Building the Electrical Current Model with The Amazing $25 Programmable Power Supply”

Investigating The Projectile Particle Model

The Class Designs The Deployment Experiment The video above shows the recent deployment activity where students predicted the vertical position of a projectile (a Hot Wheels car) as it traversed a known horizontal distance. The student predictions are identified by green sticky notes on the the left hand side. The students first had to workContinue reading “Investigating The Projectile Particle Model”

A Modernized Bridge Design Contest

Modernizing An Old Classic We have just completed the second project in the Academy for the 2014-15 school year. It was a huge success! This project takes a classic physics project and “upgrades” it by incorporating modern engineering design technology and fabrication techniques. We started with a great project that is now available online throughContinue reading “A Modernized Bridge Design Contest”

Simulating Planetary Motion (Using Code!)

Simulating Newton’s Law of Universal Law of Gravity Interactive simulations (like those created by the University of Colorado – PhET) can be really nice for impressing students, and giving them a way to explore the dynamics of a simulation. If incorporated into a lesson well, they can add to the active learning process. The questionContinue reading “Simulating Planetary Motion (Using Code!)”