008 – CVPM Paradigm Lab

After reading their responses on yesterday’s form, I addressed the WHY of what we have been doing.  I explained that the first week is almost exclusively about collecting, organizing, graphing, and analyzing data.   While slightly interesting I don’t really care about the relationship between length and mass of dowel rods. (other than it is a linear relationship!).  I do care that they can organize their data and create a basic graph.  Most importantly we want to get in the habit of finding the equation of different lines.  (Side-note: We will not actually linearize data in the traditional modeling way this year but will use Desmos to create the mathematical relationships.)   After trying to tie up some of the loose ends of the first week we jumped into Constant Velocity.

I stole Kelly’s CVPM introduction.  We went down to the lab and got out our dune buggies.  We discussed what we could measure and then how we would measure it.  We talked about the difference between a measurement and a calculation.  We decided to find a graphical and mathematical relationship between position and time.  I gave each group two buggies and gave them the initial starting position (never at the origin) and the direction the buggy was supposed to drive.  I also gave them the Hansel and Gretal Method of collecting data using bread crumbs or paper pieces.  I gave them more direction than I wanted but I also want to start the year with more successes than last year.  Supports will be removed as we become more adapt at thinking and designing experiments.



(At least one group in the first class did not understand that we were going for Position VS time.  They created their own excellent test for finding the speed of the car, however, I had to let them know that wasn’t the relationship we were specifically looking for THIS day.)

Almost each group got the data recorded for the two different cars.  Tomorrow we will graph it in Desmos (I created a basic template for them to use) and then I hope to either Whiteboard as a class, or have them finish the Lab report in their CVPM Collaborative Portfolio.  (The portfolio will be a digital scrapbook of each unit.  I am thinking of them writing small big ideas out and uploading lots of whiteboard pictures from the phones and such.  We’ll see but I am pretty excited about the possibility!)

About sciencenuetzel

I am a husband, father of two sons, and physics teacher. My interests include physics, math, technology, food, board games, and following Christ.
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