Reflection: Introduction to Linear Motion - Section 1: Setting the Stage


I value layering knowledge with tangible physical activities and robust math models that encourage self-reflection on the part of students. With this in mind, I ask students to move beyond learning skills simply to prove proficiency. For example, when students create position vs. time graphs, I may ask students to identify the independent and dependent variables or to add a mathematical expression for position vs time graph for each buggy car to go from competent to proficient. I encourage students to use tools from math and physics to gather evidence which they will use in their lab report. This is all based on the criteria I introduced earlier in the class. I encourage them to move towards building a strong set of habits of work and habits of mind that foster an enduring understandings and integration of knowledge from disparate areas of their educational experiences. I have students leverage their knowledge of scientific calculator applications to develop an understanding of the motion of a toy car with constant velocity. This is related to several standards, including MP5 and SP3, because students extend their understanding of graphing calculator applications to study the motion of toy car and predict the motion of a buggy car.

The work products students create will be different based on student choices and have written, visual and verbal domains to give students with different learning affinities a time to shine within the project.  I want to give students multiple points of view on the conceptualization of physics throughout the class. Some students will work in 4 member teams at their station and follow a guided inquiry lab, other students will work in teams of 2 or individually to analyze a video of buggy cars in motion. Other students work in teams of their choice will look at data of the motion of a buggy car and create position time graphs using Excel and fit linear graphs to them as a continuation from the lesson on graphing practice

Within my class there are few tasks where every student does the identical process. An observer may find my class to be chaotic in nature. However, I believe in meeting students where they are. With this in mind, I use multiple access points to help students leverage their aptitudes to access information in order to combine logical reason with their technical understanding of complex tasks. 


  Student Selected Work Products
  Student Selected Work Products
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Introduction to Linear Motion

Unit 2: Lessons from Galileo
Lesson 4 of 11

Objective: Students will utilize motion detectors to construct ideas about the motion of a buggy cars in terms of position and time.

Big Idea: Graphing the location of an object over time is essential for understanding its motion.

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Science, Physical Science, velocity (Physics), Motion, physics, Graphing, time, velocity, linear motion
  75 minutes
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