The obvious physics: Forces, F=ma, reaction time, 3rd Class Levers (Arms)
Less obvious physics: Inertia
After my boyfriend and I had just finished watching an excellent, Matrix-style MMA fight between two lightweights named Bensen Henderson and Anthony Pettis, my boyfriend started browsing through previews of other fights. He landed on a preview for a heavyweight fight and both of us just went, "Whoa!"
Me: "Those fights must be epic! They're so strong!"
Boyfriend: "They are slower."
More inertia, eh? I guess I will be brushing up on my MMA fights this school year to find some examples of slower-moving heavyweights and quicker-moving lightweights.
Image posted to Flickr: Oiled Bird-Black Sea Oil Spill by Marine Photobank
I've always wondered about a way to bring up the topic of oil spills into my physics classroom. Usually I talk about it when I discuss the cost vs the benefit of using a one energy source over another.
Now I can use this article to really talk about the physics of cleaning up an oil spill. I'm pretty excited to use this fall.
Article: Cactus Needles Inspired a Super-Efficient New Way to Clean Up Oil Spills
This is a great student resource for learning about bridges. Bridges are definitely an easy way to include the diversity of your students since they have all had to cross one bridge or another in their lifetime. Bridges can be vastly personal as they can be a memento from something small like a daily trip on a footbridge that they had to cross on the way to school in their home country or a memento from something huge like crossing a scary rope bridge across a roaring river. Bridges can even be metaphorical.
The materials can range from the very simple to the very complex. Bridges are awe-inspiring and with increases in technology, we keep creating amazing feats of engineering.
This website starts with the basic types of bridges and offers a little bit of information about each type.
You can even find data on the following real-life bridges: Akashi Kaikyo Bridge, Brooklyn Bridge Charles River Bridge Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, Firth of Forth Bridge Garabit Viaduct, George P. Coleman Bridge Golden Gate Bridge Iron Bridge, New River Gorge Bridge, Sunshine Skyway Bridge, Tacoma Narrows Bridge, and the Tower Bridge.
Here is a sample of what the fact sheet looks like for the Akashi Kaikyo Bridge:
Then it has a section that it calls the "Forces Lab" where it creates a visual representation of different bridge vocabulary. The visuals are interactive:
It even includes a link under each vocabulary word to "see it in real life":
Kelly Garcia teaches physics in New York City to Latino students using a humourous and hands-on approach. She manages to circumvent the boredom of test-prep with thoughtful and creative projects.