Thomas Haff, physics teacher at Issaquah High School in Issaquah, Washington, often gives his students inquiry based problems to solve. This year, he asked his students to determine the amount of force a tennis racket will exert on a tennis ball.
Brian Lamore is a physics teacher at the Chinquapin School in Highlands, Texas. While preparing to evacuate his school for Hurricane Rita, Brian recognized a unique opportunity to collect some data. Brian set up a LabPro with a Barometer to collect the changes in atmospheric pressure as the powerful storm went by. Fortunately, Brian made it through the storm safely and captured some great data.
Jack Randall, one of our resident chemistry gurus, just can’t leave things alone. Jack has taken a cute bath product called Bathtub Tints (made by Crayola(R)) and turned it into an opportunity to conduct chemistry experiments. As Jack puts it, “It may not be bath time, but it’s time to do some investigations with these little bundles of fun.” You might like to try some of these activities with your students.
Eric Koser and his 9th grade physical science students at Mankato West High School in Mankato, Minnesota had spent lots of time doing experiments with overflow cans exploring mass, volume and density. They also spent some time considering what the density of a person might be and decided to measure it. Fortunately, one of Eric’s colleagues is married to a welder and she had her husband build a human-sized overflow can. Eric used Force Plates to measure the density of a person.
On October 28th, 23 Vernier Software & Technology employees volunteered their time to plant trees in the wetlands near our office. This was a joint project with the non-profit group, The Friends of Trees. We planted 200 trees and spent a lot of effort to make sure the trees survive. The trees that were planted in the same spot five years ago were all destroyed by nutria from the nearby creek. We used tubes, stakes, and wire to keep the nutria away.
It was a physically exhausting job, but we had a good time and it will be very interesting to watch the trees grow over the next few years.