Day 109: Wire Loops & Nuclear Reactions

Physics: Wire Loops

My plan was for students to experiment with interactions between two wire loops with currents running through them, but we were not able to get much to happen with two loops. Instead, we ended up using some YouTube videos of the experiment to make observations. Students did get good results observing interactions between the wire loops and a magnet. This lab did provide a nice opportunity to revisit a common misconception from last week’s quiz, where a lot of students struggled to identify how a charge at rest would respond to a magnetic field. We were able to use how a wire with no current running through it responded to revisit the idea that charges must be moving.

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Chemistry: Nuclear Reactions

Students did some problems predicting the products of nuclear reactions. This year, I really emphasized applying a conceptual understanding of conservation of mass to balancing chemical reactions, and that provided a good foundation for nuclear reactions. Even though the elements involved were changing, students were nicely primed to think about these reactions in terms of conserving protons and neutrons instead of elements.

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