April 28, 2018 Filed in: Articles
Timothy Sibbald, OCT, associate professor, Schulich School of Education, Nipissing University, North Bay.
Tiberiu Veres, teacher candidate, Schulich School of Education, Nipissing University, North Bay.
Michael Anderson, teacher candidate, Schulich School of Education, Nipissing University, North Bay.
Newton’s cradle is a classic physics ‘toy’ that is interpreted as showing the conservation of energy and momentum. In some respects it is too good at what it does. Students see predictability in the action that takes place and may not be driven to consider it more deeply. In essence, the instructional problem is that the cognitive dissonance that it causes can be explained fairly readily as conservation of momentum. However, like so many elements of physics, if it is tackled in the right way the richness of Newton’s cradle can be revealed. Read More...
September 17, 2017 Filed in: Articles
Nassi Rafiee, teacher Toronto DSB
Many grade 12 physics students plan to pursuit engineering in their post-secondary studies. Surprisingly, many lack a clear idea about the required skillset and what to expect in their next 4 years of education.
Last year I came up with the idea of having students design a mechanical pinball machine that demonstrates the mechanics concepts in grade 12. It was originally intended to focus on team building, engineering design process, physics calculations and writing skills, however as soon as I shared the idea with students, they got so excited that they formed their groups immediately and insisted that they wanted to build it too. Read More...
June 10, 2017 Filed in: Articles
Roberta Tevlin, Editor, OAPT Newsletter
Edited by Tim Langford
Projectile motion often involves a lot of mathematical problem-solving that is overly simplified and highly contrived. Football players do not stop to calculate the range before making a pass. Invading armies might want to make calculations for siege weapons, but these tend to be too complicated (trebuchets) or involve too much energy loss (catapults). Guess and check, was probably the preferred technique. Fortunately there is a cheap and reliable projectile launcher that you can use to show that physics works. Your students will be able to use it to hit a target on their first shot by using calculations for conservation of energy and projectile motion. Read More...
December 18, 2015 Filed in: Articles
Roberta Tevlin, Teacher at Danforth CTI
One of the biggest problems facing the world right now is how to generate the electricity that we want without destroying the environment. This is a very complicated problem and we are supposed to help our students understand this issue in all four grades in high school: grade 9 Science (Electricity), grade 10 Science (Climate Change), grade 11 Physics (Energy and Society) and grade 12C Physics (Energy Transformations). This summer I found a great tool to help with this. Read More...
December 04, 2015 Filed in: PER Corner
Chris Meyer, OAPT VP teaching and learning, Assistant curriculum leader York Mills C. I.
Christopher.firstname.lastname@example.orgA model educator
In science, we create models to help us explain our universe and predict what might happen next. Science is a continuous process of creating, expanding, testing and revising models, which are judged by scientists according to their agreement with observations. As educators, we should choose models that have a reasonable agreement with observations, are conceptually clear, and do not create unnecessary hurdles to future, more sophisticated, models. This task is especially challenging with the topic of energy, a concept that is fundamental to physics and all branches of science. Research into the pedagogy of energy has shown that traditional treatments of energy leave much to be desired. Read More...
October 30, 2015 Filed in: Articles
Margaret Scora, Teacher at Monsignor Paul Dwyer CHS
It is very important to have our students engaged in the classroom in order for deep learning to occur. Your students need opportunities to use their creative spark and build on their 21st century learning skills. Peter Benson’s TED talk
does a great job of presenting how important this is.
Ideas for projects proliferate but many of these are time-consuming, expensive and beyond the skills of an average student and the tools of an average physics classroom. However, your students can build a catapult with K’Nex™ in just one class with virtually no prep and no trips to the wood shop. Read More...
July 01, 1999 Filed in: Demo Corner
Diana Hall, Bell High School, Nepean, Ontario
This is a very popular game I have played with my OAC physics class. It incorporates the concepts of conservation of energy and projectile motion. Read More...
March 01, 1999 Filed in: Demo Corner
John Childs, Grenville Christian College, Brockville
This is a good exercise to use after you’ve done kinematics, dynamics, and energy. We all talk about the kinetic and potential energy of roller coasters and their speeds, and the demonstration will let your students apply their critical thinking skills to this kind of situation. Be sure to have your students examine the setup and predict the outcome, before
you run the demo. The question is: “Which ball gets to the end of the ramp first?” Read More...
March 19, 2016 Filed in: Articles
Roberta Tevlin, OAPT Editor, Teacher Danforth CTI
Edited by Margaret Scora
Lasers are quantum light sources and they are everywhere. But what is quantum about them? The PhET simulation is a great tool to give students a feel for the quantum process called stimulated emission. Read More...
February 01, 1988 Filed in: Demo Corner
Peter Levan, Lockerby Composite School, Sudbury
At last year’s conference in Sudbury, Al Hirsch demonstrated his icemobile1
and I mentioned the action of a thermobile1
. Some people were interested in more explanation and information on these little toys and the physics behind them. Read More...