Reflection: Diverse Entry Points Radioactive Decay - Section 5: Application


There are a number of reasons that I am glad I dusted off an old strategy that I used to use a lot in middle school—the idea of kinesthetic learning, which is a way of learning in which students learn by carrying out physical activities rather than by reading or listening to a lecture. Perhaps first and foremost, kinesthetic learning is fun. In watching these videos I found myself smiling, and I remember having fun being the director of these short skits. Students who are having fun with a learning activity make for better learners.

In addition to fun, here are some other advantages. Students pay a lot of attention to one another, so turning them into nucleons makes a lot of sense from my perspective because nuclear decay is all about the nucleons. This strategy also makes sense because students who are up and moving around are better learners. Students often complain about how they just go form one class to the next and they sit through each class. I hate a day when I have to sit all day, but worse, research has shown that sedentary behavior is bad for learning. Physiologically, we need to be moving around.

So, while this is one of the few times I have employed the strategy of kinesthetic learning, this year, I am sure it won’t be the last.

  Kinesthetic learning is fun
  Diverse Entry Points: Kinesthetic learning is fun
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Radioactive Decay

Unit 9: Nuclear Chemistry
Lesson 6 of 13

Objective: Students will be able to model different types of nuclear decay.

Big Idea: Nuclear decay results from unstable nuclei; to stabilize, atoms emit energy, particles, or both.

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students modeling nuclear
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