Physics & Physical Science Demos, Labs, & Projects for High School Teachers

Archive for August 23rd, 2008

This is an interesting video I found somehow.  I seem to be surfing a bit too much lately.  Actually, I don’t surf, I Stumble!  Yeah, you know what I’m talking about.

Anyway, this video uses animation of magnetic field lines to enhance live video.  The result is so realistic I’m worried my students will think this is something we can see with the right kind of filter.

Take a look for yourself and give me some feedback.

A friend of mine who teaches Middle School Technology gave me this catalog a couple of years ago.  There is actually a series of catalogs for different areas.  Their web site is a bit confusing, it seems they are a series of companies, all with the goal of improving technology and science education.

The “PITSCO Ideas and Solutions” catalog is a perfect fit for this web site.  The catalog is organized into activities such as Robotics, Sustainable Energy, Physical Science, etc.  Under each subheading is one or more activities.  Under Physical Science, they have kits and materials for Mouse Trap Vehicles, Catapults, Trebuchet, and Egg Drop Vehicles.

I really like their ideas, and there are a lot of them, but they seem totally focused on Middle School.  The materials are very expensive and can often be easily found for much less money.  For instance, you may have read my post about building Hot-Air Balloons.  They have a material kit that has enough tissue paper, glue sticks, etc to make 25 balloons for $99.  I’m pretty sure you can do that for less than $20 with no difficulty.  They have a propane burner launch station designed with safety in mind for $345.  Don’t get me wrong, great stuff, just pricey.

You can find them on the web at  I suggest you start by ordering a catalog.

What’s New in 2013/2014?

Every year brings a change, this one is no exception.

I will be picking up the sophomore honors Algebra II class to keep them separate from the juniors. This should help accelerate them and put them on a stronger track towards Calculus. Looks like there will be only one section each of Physics and Calculus, but still two of Robotics & Engineering.

Hot topics this year are going to be the Common-Core Standards, Standards-Based Grading (SBG), improving AP Calculus scores, and somehow adding Python, maybe as a club.

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August 2008
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