Newton's 2nd Law Review Day

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Students will be able use Newton's second law to solve various problems.

Big Idea

An inner outer circle activity gives students lots of review about Newton's 2nd Law.

Newton's 2nd Law: Inner/Outer Circle

70 minutes

The goal of this lesson is for students to have additional practice with all types of Newton's second law problems (HS-PS2-1) so they feel prepared for the test in the next lesson. Students will be using mainly their computational thinking skills (SP5), but if they must explain the problem to their partner they will be constructing explanations (SP6) and communicating information (SP8). 

I start class out by asking students to remember back to the first time we did this review activity and explain what they will do in this activity. They tell me that each student will get a card with a problem on it with the answer on the back, that I have written there before class. Since the answers are on the back they know I expect them to show all of their work on their papers.

Before I pass out the problem cards, I pass out a blank sheet of paper to each student. I ask them to fold it in half, the "hot dog" way. Then I ask them to unfold it and fold it twice the "hamburger" way so that when unfolded there are 8 boxes, as shown below:

Then I ask them to put their name in 1 box. After their papers are folded, I pass out a problem to each student. The Inner Outer Circle Review Force and Acceleration problems are labeled as numbers and letters that help to organize students later in the activity. There are easy, medium and hard questions randomly throughout the lettered and numbered problem cards. I make sure to give each student a problem that is the appropriate level of difficulty based on how they have been doing in class. Students do not know that they are getting problems based on level I just pass the problems out and tell them they must keep their problem because I want everyone to feel success with and an expert for at least one problem.

Once each student has a problem I tell the students where they will be sitting. I have A and 1 sit at the same table across from each other, B and 2, C and 3, etc. When they are sitting across from their partner, I tell them that each pair has a similar problem where they use the same equation. Each student needs to complete their own problem, but if they need help or get the wrong answer at first they can ask their partner to help them because they have a similar problem. If they still cannot figure out the problem, I ask them to raise their hand and I help them. I give them 3 minutes to complete their problem. They show all of their work and circle their answer on their paper, just as they would on the test. Afterwards, I remind them that they are now experts on their problem and will be carrying their problem with them throughout the activity.  

After the 3 minutes, I ask the lettered card holders to stay sitting and the numbers to get up and take their materials rotating to the next table in a circle. When they get to their new partner, I ask them to switch cards with their partner and do their partner's problem. If they need help, they can ask the person sitting across from them because they are an expert on that problem. I give them 3 minutes to complete the new problem. When they are done, they switch problems so they are holding their original problem and say thank you to their partner. Then the numbers take their materials and rotate to the next table. They continue to rotate every 3 minutes until the end of the period. 

I use this activity because it holds students accountable for explaining their thought process to other students as well as completing the problems using various equations. I like this activity because students rely on each other and get a lot of practice with problems for an entire period as shown on both sides of this student's work (Inner Outer Circle (N2L)Inner Outer Circle 2 (N2L)). Since this takes almost the entire class, I end class by asking them to tell them to use the review guide to continue studying for the test during the next day's class.