Day 95: More Energy & Sledding Problem

AP Physics: More Energy

I split the class in half with some groups doing a lab for elastic energy and others doing a lab for kinetic energy. The groups looking at elastic energy looked for a relationship between how much a spring launcher is compressed and the maximum height above the table the launched cart reaches. The groups doing kinetic energy looked for a relationship between the starting height of a cart above the table and the speed at the bottom of the track.

phys lab.jpg

Physical Science: Sledding Problem

I gave students two position vs. time graphs that I said describe two people sledding, and had them do some interpretation. Students started by describing the motion of each sledder, then identifying where they collided. Finally, each group prepared a CER for who’s fault the collision is, which we then used for a short philosophical chairs where students made their case to the rest of the class. This lead nicely into a brief discussion of assumptions and they role they play in generating an explanation or a claim in science.

The sledding story made the coordinate system tricky for students. I wish I’d spent time discussing the descriptions of the motion so we could make sense of them moving in opposite directions.


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