Day 106: Model Summaries, Collisions, & Gas Laws Review

AP Physics: Model Summaries

To help review for the final, students whiteboarded model summaries for the mechanics topics we’ve done so far. I just asked for key diagram types, along with relevant annotations, and key equations. For the first time, I saw a lot of groups including pieces of the force models, including free-body diagrams, system schema, and Newton’s 2nd Law, in summaries for other models. I’m excited that students are seeing and valuing the connections between different models.

Physics: Collisions

Students continued the cart collisions lab from the Modeling Instruction materials. A lot of groups struggled with interpreting the graphs produced by the photogates, which has been pretty common this year. The classic graph matching lab always seems to help students make sense of what the motion detectors are recording; I’m wondering if it would be worthwhile to have a lab that’s essentially play with photogates next year.


Chemistry Essentials: Vacuum Chamber

I got out the vacuum chamber and a few other demos, including balloons linked by a pipe, to revisit gas laws and pressure today. Sticking with pretty hands-on review seems to be helping a few students stay engaged as we approach the final exam.

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