Tag Archives: Pbl

Rocket Barbie

“Should my physics course be called Physics?” -Further thoughts on student-designed courses

I’ll share a “wondering” of mine that I’ve been chewing on for a while and see what you can throw my way in the comments. It revolves around the title of a course, in this case “Physics.” What does the course title Physics mean? Does it matter? Who notices and who cares? Some background: I’m mostly a biologist by training and a chemistry teacher of Read More →

Documenting Black Widow Behavior

Inquiry in AP Biology: Live It. Love It. Assess It?

In my last post I described how I might try to conduct my AP Biology class a lot like I conducted the (in)famous Phunsics Class of 2011-2012. (Phunsics side note: I saw one of the graduated seniors from that class recently. He told me the story of how over the summer he and another member of the phunsics class were at the local grocery store Read More →

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A shift in focus: “about us” becomes “about them” in a student-designed physics class

What do you do with a physics class full of bright, independent, high school kids? Well of course you march through the physics textbook so they can learn how to plug and chug all the right equations turn the class over to them so they can do the experiments that they want to do. At least that’s the way I thought we’d try it this Read More →

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A triumph of math

After much scribbling on whiteboards, iPads, calculators, restaurant napkins, and most anything else you can think of scribbling on, the math was done. Theory. Numbers on a screen or slip of paper. Are they the right numbers? How will we know? Build it. Cut the lumber according to the calculations. And they did. The math was right. To be continued….

Hovercraft trials1

Student-designed physics class: barely controlled chaos for the win

The experimental experiential student-designed entity that is my physics class is up and running for the year. We’re about three weeks in now (one of which was homecoming week, thank you very much) and we have some sort of structure to the class, but not much, or at least not as much as I’m used to (yes, I used to lecture a lot not too Read More →