This Webnode is aimed at students in grades 10-12. It is your choice as to how long you would like this activity to last. Two to three class periods, along with possible outside work, is recommended. The aim of this lesson is for students to explore and learn about the physics involved in Newton's Laws, motion, energy, and force. They should then develop an understanding of how these concepts relate to roller coasters. Once this base of knowledge is gained, the students should be able to apply their knowledge by designing their very own roller coaster, as detailed on the task page. Ultimately, this will provide students with a fun way to learn about these fundamental physics principles and put their knowledge and creativity to the test.
Allow students to read the introduction, watch the YouTube video, and explore the site a bit before beginning the work. This would also a good time to ask the students what they already know about the physics of roller coasters. Promote discussion between classmates before launching into the lesson. This will allow students to begin thinking about the topic and become interested in learning more. Explain to students that they should follow and complete the activities on the tabs on the left-hand side of the page in order. Also, promote the Wikispaces Discussion Board, so that students are aware that they can use this while working through all aspects of the website.
Allow the students to read through the material on the page individually. You may want to discuss with the class the key aspects of the material. Perhaps, the class could complete the first activity together. Encourage students to look through the extra activities and YouTube videos on the page to ensure they fully understand the concepts. The students should also complete the concept problems about Newton's Laws before moving on to the motion section.
Allow the students to read through the material on the page individually. You may want to discuss with the class the key aspects of the material such as the formulas included and how the motion graphs work. As students work at their own pace, circle the room to offer assistance where needed. Perhaps, the class could complete the first activity together. Encourage students to look through the extra activities and YouTube videos on the page to ensure they fully understand the concepts. The students should complete the concept problems provided to test their skills.
This page covers the concept of the conservation of energy. Allow students to work through problems in order to quantitatively apply their conceptual knowledge to a range of situations. Videos on this page are listed as additional resourses, but may be found exceptionally useful for engaging the students interest. This page also covers the concepts of potential and kinetic energy, but in a way that focuses on the conversion between the two in order to re-inforce the concept of conservation of energy. Assist students if necessary in the problems provided, but allow students to attempt them first in order to test their skills.
Allow students to work through this page individually, watching the videos in their own time and answering any questions that the students may have, as well as asking probing questions in order to enable students to fully understand the concepts presented. The videos will hopefully help the students to understand the implications and 'real world' applications of these fundamental forces, thereby engaging the students interest and enhancing learning as well as educated discussion between the students.
Roller Coaster Physics:
Students may be working at different paces, so when most students are nearing this page, you should draw their attention to the explanations and links provided on this page. Explain that they do not have to view all the links at one time, and that after starting the task, they will be able to come back to this page and make use of the resources. However, it is important that they do take the time needed for them to understand how the concepts explored relate and combine to structure a roller coaster. Promote discussion among classmates regarding this topic as well as the use of the discussion board.
Prompt the students to read the task and ask any question they have regarding the task. Then allow the students to create their project teams. Once all students are in teams of 3 people, they are ready to start the design process. Encourage students to look at the assessment rubric and explore the resources on the Roller Coaster Physics page before getting too carried away with their designs. Students must get their method of advertisement approved by you once they reach that step.
Note: You also have the option to make this assignment competitive or not. In a competitive situation, the best roller coaster design (as decided by you) would win the contest to be introduced at the new Brisbane Amusement Park. This competition is optional. If you choose not to make it competitive, the students will simply turn in their projects at the end of this activity. Class presentations of each team's design are also a possibility.
Wiki Discussion Board:
The WIkispaces Discussion Board is included to promote discussion and collaborate learning, by giving students the opportunity to communicate more easliy with each other from any location. This tab can and should be accessed throughout the students' entire quest. As the teacher, you may also post on the discussion board and answer students' questions. However, it is important that you promote student use of this page so that the students have the opportunity to reinforce their knowledge by discussing what they are learning with others.
As advertised on the task page, this rubric will provide guidelines for the students' task. If students have any questions regarding the rubric, it is your job to make sure the expectations are clear.
A short video is provided offering a general overview of what is explored on this website. Once students complete their designs, they will turn them into you for a grade. You may also wish to have students present their designs to the class at this time. If you chose to make this assignment competitive, this would be a good time explain that after you grade the assignments, you will announce which group created the winning design that will be a part of the new Brisbane Amusement Park.