#modphys 22/180: Constant Acceleration

After two weeks of picking up skills — proportional reasoning, LoggerPro — we spent today’s class in board meeting (with a couple recesses to work up things) assembling the Constant Acceleration Particle Model. Unfortunately, for a variety of reasons, we didn’t get really convincing values for 0.5a, a, and 2a on the x/t, v/t, and v/x graphs. We used video of a plastic orange being dropped from a height of 3 m. I had hoped for a digression about terminal velocity (the last 3 frames, generally) but there was too much else to chat about.

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Afterward, we started worksheet 1, from the modeling materials. It is, in many ways, a re-hash of the same process. I think this is valuable because I think some of the meaning was obscured with new technology (LoggerPro) this time around. By the end of class, most students were about halfway done. Since the task wasn’t new ideas, the students didn’t need much support, and it wouldn’t take more than 30 minutes of honest work to finish, I assigned the rest of the worksheet for homework. We switched to Managebac this year and, judging by students reactions, it seems to do a great job of listing their tasks and homework.

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I am looking forward to deploying the model next week as we solve problems. Highlights will include misconception hunting, trying
king forward to deploying the model next week as we solve problems. Highlights will include misconception hunting, trying out goalless problems
out goalless problems, and getting the students to take more risks and initiative in board meetings.

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