September 24, 2017 Filed in: Articles
Presented at the 2017 OAPT Conference, York University
Chris Meyer, teacher York Mills CI
The old me would have scoffed at the thought of my students’ emotional states while learning. “Suck it up and do your work” was my no-nonsense, starch-collared mantra. After all, I’m a physicist! But as I learned more about how the brain works, I was forced to confront my very emotional, educational prejudices. Let’s put our feelings as educators aside and simply ask ourselves the question: “what can I do to help my students learn better?”. Research into the workings of the brain reveal how deeply connected emotion is with learning; emotion is hard-wired into cognition. Teachers need to design lessons to account for students’ emotional response to learning and incorporate not just curriculum outcomes, but emotional outcomes. This article is a summary of the workshop I gave at the 2017 OAPT Conference. You can watch the video and download the PowerPoint slides to learn more. Read More...
May 21, 2017 Filed in: Articles
Roberta Tevlin, Editor OAPT Newsletter
Physics camp is back again this summer! It will take place just outside of Sudbury on the gorgeous campus of Laurentian University which has with miles of wooded hiking trails and a lovely lake and beach. It will be led by Chris Meyer, Roberta Tevlin and Greg Macdonald from August 9-11. It is paid for by the Ontario Teachers Federation and is completely free (materials, accommodations, breakfast, lunch, coffee breaks, transportation) as long as you are a member of this union. Registration details will be available soon, but in the meantime you should consider keeping those days available. Why would you want to go to physics camp? Read More...
March 01, 2017 Filed in: Articles
Stacey Joyce, Program Manager at Partners In Research Canada (PIR)
I’m sure that you employ a variety of tools and strategies in your classroom, including inquiry activities, independent or group projects, “assessments as, for and of” learning… the list goes on. But how do you and your students answer the questions they come up with during or after the initial inquiry activity? What types of resources do you teach students to use for their independent research? How do you introduce the students to career options that use Physics?
Here’s where video calls and webinars come in, and don’t think that you can’t afford these options — they’re free from Partners In Research Canada (PIR)! Read More...
December 17, 2016 Filed in: Articles
Steve Fotheringham, OAPT Exhibit Hall Coordinator, Teacher Oakville Trafalgar High School
Have you ever looked at your schools’ course offerings and noticed that some need is not being met? Perhaps the course selection for your applied-level learner is uninspired or there are no elective courses that encourage students to apply their imagination or creativity. Perhaps, what you are looking for does not exist on the list of courses in Ontario.
I’ve had this thought many times and have since had the privilege of introducing two new courses to my school — “Engineering Design” and “Leadership”. Both made use of the incredibly flexible IDC course code.
The purpose of this article is to share with you a few of the lessons (in no particular order) that I have learned along the way which in turn may help you introduce a new course in your school. Read More...
July 01, 2016 Filed in: Articles
Roberta Tevlin, OAPT Newsletter Editor, Teacher Danforth CTI
In the spring of 2015, Robert Prior brought the newsletter into its new responsive and accessible format and in August Roberta Tevlin signed on as editor. In the last ten months, there have been 37 articles from 18 different authors as well as many timely announcements. Thank you to all our wonderful authors. There is no Newsletter without you!
You probably missed a lot of these articles during the busy teaching year. It is easy to catch up on these as part of your summer reading. Read More...
June 28, 2016 Filed in: Articles
Richard Taylor, Merivale High School, Ottawa, CAP Representative
Physics is happening in Canada, and this year the place to see it all is Ottawa. I was at the annual Congress of the Canadian Association of Physicists. Recognizing the importance of inspiring young people, there was a special day for high school teachers on June 14. Next year the CAP Congress will be at Queen’s University in Kingston from May 29 to June 2. Don’t miss it! Read More...
March 25, 2016 Filed in: Review
Saara Naudts, OAPT Contest Editor, Physics Teacher North Park SS
Each December, teachers from across Canada have an opportunity to experience what goes on at one of Canada’s biggest research facilities. After an easy application process, including a generous amount of available funding and very helpful communication with Tracy Walker the CLS outreach coordinator; I and several other teachers flew out to Saskatoon to visit the synchrotron December 5-7, 2015. Read More...
February 26, 2016 Filed in: Articles
John Caranci, teacher Faculty of Education University of Toronto
Usually I brief teacher candidates on what to expect when they go out to practicum. During the discussion I found that the candidates have a different perspective than experienced teachers like us. This year’s candidates have already completed a four-month practicum in November. Their experiences very widely but there were a few threads that I will mention. Read More...
February 26, 2016 Filed in: Review
Richard Taylor, CAP Councillor for Affiliates, Teacher Merivale High School, Ottawa
The University of Ottawa’s Physics Department has initiated a lecture series they call “Eureka Talks”. The first of these talks was given Saturday January 30, 2016 by Sir John Pendry of Imperial College, London, on the topic of metamaterials and invisibility.
Sadly, I must inform you that Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak is still not available. Even worse, if Harry was invisible, he wouldn't be able to see anything — he’d be in total darkness, with all the light rays bent around him and none going into his eyes! Read More...
January 23, 2016 Filed in: Review
Shawn Brooks, Contest Manager, Teacher at University of Toronto Schools
I attended the Teaching Quantum Technology (TQT) workshop on Dec. 5th
and left with 12 activities that I could use right away in my classes. Now, the challenge for me is: how can I fit these activities into my grade 11 or grade 12 physics courses? Read More...
October 24, 2015 Filed in: Review
Ryan Thompson, OAPT Treasurer, Physics Teacher, Newmarket HS
On July 8 and 9th I attended a two day workshop at York University. The purpose of the workshop was to bring astronomy professors and graduate students together with teachers and showcase three modules that the organizers had developed for the teachers to discuss, play with and refine for use in the classroom. The organizers were from a variety of institutions, not just York but everyone was committed to increasing interest in astronomy in students and also their capability for understanding the science around this fascinating topic. Read More...
August 30, 2015 Filed in: Articles
Roberta Tevlin, Danforth Collegiate, Past President of OAPT, Editor of OAPT Newsletterroberta@tevlin.ca
One of the most valuable resources for Ontario physics teachers is now available on the OAPT website. It is a set of videos
showing the grade 11U and 12U physics courses as taught by Chris Meyer - our V.P. of Teaching and Learning. Each video is a single lesson (edited to 15-30 minutes) and is accompanied by a student worksheet and a short description of the pedagogy and physics presented. Read More...