Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Week Ending 3/1 and Week Ending 3/8

Hello again!  Thanks for stopping in.

Monday we explored what is happening on a molecular level with regards to energy, during a phase change of candle wax. 

Tuesday we are going to practice some thermal conduction problems and then get started with Modern Physics.  During our Light and Optics unit, we discussed how we know that light behaves like a wave (the results of Young's Double Slit Experiment).  Today we will discuss the concept of wave-particle duality, and also how we know that light behaves like a particle as well (Photoelectric Effect). 

Wednesday the students will explore the Photoelectric Effect while participating in a simulation activity. 

Thursday and Friday we will be covering nuclear physics.  This includes nuclear fission, fusion, and half lifes.

Monday 3/4 will be a webassign day for the students to practice the new Thermal and Modern Physics Material.  

Next week is an important week as the students will be taking two tests.  On Wednesday they will be taking their "Quest" on Thermal Physics and Modern Physics, and on Friday they will be taking the schoolwide midterm exam.

Upcoming due dates:
Wax Lab: Thursday 2/28

Upcoming Test dates:
Thermal Physics and Modern Physics: Wednesday 3/6
Schoolwide Midterm: Friday 3/8

Week Ending 2/22

This was a shortened week.  We reviewed for the test on Tuesday, and on Wednesday the students took the test over the Light and Optics Unit on webassign.  

Next up is a rather short unit combining Thermal Physics and Modern Physics.  Thursday we introduced temperature (with guided notes).  We practiced temperature conversions.  Finally we introduced linear thermal expansion.  This was accompanied by a couple of interesting demonstrations; one with a bimetallic strip and one with a ball and ring.  Both of these show examples of linear thermal expansion. Friday we defined heat, internal energy, and described the processes of heat transfer.

Thanks for following!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Weeks Ending 2/8 and 2/15

Overall, the students did well on the quiz over the first half of the unit, so I was comfortable to move forward to the next half.

In the week ending 2/8 we covered more on refraction.  We went over total internal reflection (which has many interesting applications in fiber optics and medical devices) and then we began to study mirrors.  The mirrors we studied included Plane, Concave, and Convex mirrors.  We practiced understanding the images formed by mirrors using two methods; 1) Ray diagrams, and 2) the mirror and magnification equations. Finally at the end of the week we were ready to start the study of lenses.

On the week ending 2/15 (a shortened week) the students had plenty of time to practice lens ray diagrams.  they participated in a Lens Lab, and then we briefly covered pigments, and discussed Young's Double Slit Experiment and its impacts on what we currently know.

The review for this Unit is posted on Mr. Heier's Website which is: http://gcps-philheier.onmycalendar.com/?PK=A7T74181S6517P&IK=A4S12875S5Q95K

If you understand everything covered in the review, you should be in good shape for the test.

Upcoming test dates:
2/12 Light and Optics Test

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Week Ending 2/1

This week the students were introduced to Light and Optics.  Monday the students completed an activity in which the students researched the Electromagnetic Spectrum.  Tuesday, with guided notes we went over some examples of problems that included time and distance calcuations with the speed of light in addition to going over the visible spectrum and a review of the Electromagnetic Spectrum from the previous day.  On Wednesday the students participated in four different stations in which they explored the nature of light. The students explored images of flames projected onto a screen, and also discovered why laser beams themselves aren't visible.  Finally they developed the Law of Reflection, and also explored polarized light.
Thursday the we developed the students understanding of the Law of Reflection, and introduced Snell's Law and Refraction.  On Friday we tried a new technology in the classroom.  It was an online quiz.  We had a couple hiccups (computer's not logging in quickly) but overall, the quizzing technology is one that I will implement again.  This tool helps me quickly assess where the students are at in their understanding, and what we may need to brush up on.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Week Ending 1/25

I hope you had a great long weekend celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. and his contribution to our nation.

This week, was a four day week and we were winding down waves and sound.  We went to the computer lab to work on webassign on Tuesday.  On Wednesday we played review bingo, and on Thursday the students took the test on SHM, Waves, and Sound! 

Kudos to Ming, Devon, Hannah L., Eshna, and An for recieving the top 5 scores on this test!

In the upcoming week we will be starting a Unit on Light and Optics.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Week ending 1/18

Students and Parents,

This week we continued our study of waves and sound.  Students listened to various frequencies of sound (frequency is synonymous with pitch), to determine what range of frequencies they could hear. Through demonstrations, and videos the students learned about the doppler effect and some of its applications to the real world.  I presented a demonstration on beats and beat frequencies.  Using a mechanical frequency generator, we created a standing wave on a string in class.  We were able to show the natural frequency all the way up to the 10th harmonic on the string.  The students also liked the strobe light demonstration.  The students were given one day to work on webassign in class, and on Friday the students completed the speed of sound lab, in which they determined the speed of sound using tuning forks and a closed pipe.  Below are a few pictures of the students working on the lab. 

Upcoming due dates:
Speed of Sound Lab: Wednesday 1/23 at the beginning of class
Webassign: Wednesday 1/23 at 11:59 pm

Upcoming Test Dates:
Simple Harmonic Motion, Waves, and Sound: 1/24

Monday, January 14, 2013

Slinky Lab

Hello! Thanks for checking in.  Last week we introduced waves with an exploration lab using slinkies and other springs.  Here are a few pictures of the students working on the lab. This week we will talk more about waves and how they relate to sound. 

Upcoming due dates:
Simple Harmonic Motion Practice Handout: Monday 1/14 at the beginning of class
Slinky Lab: Tuesday 1/15 at the beginning of class

Upcoming Test Dates:
Simple Harmonic Motion, Waves, and Sound: 1/24