Friday, October 30, 2009

Oct 30th--Halloween Horrors

Today, a 'C' day for science, we completed the following seven activities:

Haunted rock--we witnessed what a 'rattleback' did. It's modeled after a river rock that spins in one direction only. Spin it the way it doesn't want to spin it will stop and then spin in the opposite direction.

Lasers O' Death--we set up a fog machine and several lasers. We created the normal to a plane (a line perpendicular to a mirror) then bounced a second laser off of the mirror. We saw that the angle between the normal and the incident beam (the beam going into the mirror) was the same as the angle between the normal and the reflected beam. We also witnessed light scattering in the fog.

Have some Plasma---we worked with a plasma ball, discussed the states of matter (solid, liquid, gas, plasma and a new one, the Bose-Einstein Condensate. We saw how a fluorescent bulb could be lit by touching it to the plasma ball.

Electric chair--we used the Van de Graff generator to create electrical fields and then sparks. Some classes also saw how the fluorescent bulb would light when touched to the generator.

Celebrity Peep Cage Match--we placed a cat peep and a ghost peep under the vacuum jar and had them experience the low pressure of a partial vacuum.

Pumpkin Peril--We reacted Calcium Carbide with water inside a pumpkin, then added a spark to see what happened.

Death to Gummy Bears--we melted a small sample of Sodium Chlorate and deposited one gummy bear into the liquid--the results were spectacular.

Extra credit opportunity--take one of the above--write what we did and witnessed in class, then research the scientific principles behind the activity. Create a one page (single spaced, 12 font) explanation and be prepared to teach it to the class when we return from fall break.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Wed and Thursday October 21st and 22nd

Yesterday was the orientation trip to the high schools. All classes met yesterday for varied amounts of time so we met our new class creatures and then watched a video from the planet earth series.

Wed and Thur we completed the Tuneful Tubes lab activity on resonance and then signed up for Gizmos--an interactive website that we will be incorporating into our lessons and HW.

Gizmos are online interactive simulations. To access them at home you will need to have full installations of both shockwave and java applications. Both are free. If you don't have them the gizmos home page will provide a link to get them.

Note: you will need to turn off your pop-up blocker in order to use gizmos.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

October 13th and 14th

On these days we will determine the speed of sound via an experiment. We will go outside with cymbals and stopwatches and measure how long it takes sound to reach us from varied distances. We will then graph the data in a scatterplot, do some trend analysis and then calculate the speed of sound using the equation velocity equals distance divided by time. As part of this exercise we will also need to convert feet into meters.

Students will need to turn in the scatter plot, the math work used to determine the speed of sound and a two paragraph analysis of the calculated speed of sound in comparison to the published speed of sound of 343 meters per second in air at 20 degrees C

October 12th and 15th

It is an odd week as the classes are off schedule. On the 12th and 13th we will do an activity using the mosquito ring tone. We will see who can hear the different ring tones. We will also do a lab that shows how different frequencies travel through the air.

Friday, October 9, 2009

October 9th

Today we had a C day and worked on both Units Conversion and the relationship between frequency and pitch.

We started off with this question. If speedy the turtle can 'run' two feet every five seconds, how many feet per minute can he travel? How many miles per hour is that?

We then took a short quiz and then did the quicklab on page 39.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

October 7th and 8th--starting sound

Today in class we started chapter two in our sound and light book. We first built shoebox guitars and observed how the thickness of the string affected the sound.

We then put a bell inside a vacuum chamber and listened to the change in sound of the bell as we removed some of the air from the chamber. We also put balloons and marshmallows in the vacuum chamber and saw what happened to them.

We then bounced a laser off of a model of an ear drum and saw how different sounds created different laser patterns.

After these demonstrations we completed the good vibrations quick lab on page 30. We experimented with a tuning fork and saw how sound was vibration.

At the close of class we reviewed our recent test.

Note: new homework is available on the resource table.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Oct 1-2

Today in class we finished up collecting data for the international boiling point project. We reviewed our procedure which we will use when we write our lab report.

After that we worked on wave interactions (interference and diffraction, refraction and reflection.

Remember--our chapter one test is Monday for A days, Tuesday for B days.