AP Physics: Whiteboarding
Most of my students were on a field trip today, so classes were pretty small. We whiteboarded some problems from earlier in the week on balanced forces in 2D. While the problems had a lot of calculations, I just had students whiteboard their diagrams and set-up, including some intentional mistakes. Later, I’ll post correct answers to the class website so students can check their calculations.
Physical Science: Electromagnets
Students built electromagnets, then made some observations about the magnetic field and strength of the magnet.To visualize the field, most groups opted for the compass over the filings, which reinforces my thinking earlier this week that I should start students with the compasses to see the bar magnet’s field.
This week, I’ve been thinking a lot about the fact that I’m really struggling to engage students the way I’d like, especially in post-lab discussions. The last couple of years, I’ve been able to get almost immediate buy-in from my 9th graders, but I think that’s because I only taught them during 1st trimester, when I got to set their expectations for high school science. Most of my students right now had a different teacher 1st tri, so I’m upending their expectations just when they were starting to get comfortable with high school and need to be much more intentional about helping students adjust. On Monday, I want to start with some conversation with the class about my observations and why I do things differently than their other science teachers. I’m also going to start thinking about how I can smooth the transition 3rd trimester, when about 2/3 of the class will be new to me again.