Reflection: Developing a Conceptual Understanding Skate Park Energy Revisited - Section 4: Skate Park Debrief


One observation deals with the opening quesiton (pictured above). A number of groups incorrectly stated that the skater would not attain the original height that they started with. After questioning these groups, I discovered that they did not read the directions and perform the test, but had guessed the correct answer. In the future, I need to make that part of the demo or stress that they must build and test out this track. 

The second observation is seen in this piece of student work.  Though the shape of the ramp does not impact the final speed of  the skater, it does impact how fast the energy transfer happens. The question on the sheet is worded poorly when it asks, "Does the shape of the ramp impact the energy transfer?" It should break the question down into two parts: Does the shape of the ramp impact the rate of the energy transfer and does the shape of the ramp impact the final kinetic energy?

  Developing a Conceptual Understanding: Student Work
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Skate Park Energy Revisited

Unit 3: Energy
Lesson 3 of 16

Objective: Students determine how friction and the shape of the ramp impact the transformation of potential into kinetic energy.

Big Idea: The total energy of a system is conserved as the energy changes from one form to another.

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