Standard 10: Energy

A. Energy is involved in all physical and chemical processes. It is conserved, and can be transformed from one form to another and into work. At the atomic and nuclear levels energy is not continuous but exists in discrete amounts. Energy and mass are related through Einstein's equation E=mc2.

B. The properties of atomic nuclei are responsible for energy-related phenomena such as radioactivity, fission and fusion.

C. Changes in entropy and energy that accompany chemical reactions influence reaction paths. Chemical reactions result in the release or absorption of energy.

D. The theory of electromagnetism explains that electricity and magnetism are closely related. Electric charges are the source of electric fields. Moving charges generate magnetic fields.

E. Waves are the propagation of a disturbance. They transport energy and momentum but do not transport matter.

General Information
Number: SC.912.P.10
Title: Energy
Type: Standard
Subject: Science
Grade: 912
Body of Knowledge: Physical Science

Related Benchmarks

This cluster includes the following benchmarks.

Related Access Points

This cluster includes the following access points.

Independent

SC.912.P.10.In.1
Identify examples of energy being transformed from one form to another (conserved quantity).
SC.912.P.10.In.2
Identify power as work done in a certain amount of time using measurable terms, such as watts or horsepower.
SC.912.P.10.In.3
Relate the transfer of heat to the states of matter, including gases result from heating, liquids result from cooling a gas, and solids result from further cooling a liquid.
SC.912.P.10.In.4
Describe a process that gives off heat (exothermic), such as burning, and a process that absorbs heat (endothermic), such as water coming to a boil.
SC.912.P.10.In.6
Identify that atoms can be changed to release energy, such as in nuclear power plants, and recognize one related safety issue.
SC.912.P.10.In.5
Identify fundamental forces, including gravitational and electromagnetic.
SC.912.P.10.In.7
Identify common conductors and insulators of electricity.
SC.912.P.10.In.8
Identify that some electrical devices use different types of power sources and explain what might happen if incorrect electrical components are used.
SC.912.P.10.In.9
Identify common applications of electromagnetic waves moving through different media, such as radio waves, microwaves, x-rays, or infrared.

Supported

SC.912.P.10.Su.1
Recognize energy transformations that occur in everyday life, such as solar energy to electricity.
SC.912.P.10.Su.2
Recognize the relationship between work and power, such as power is how fast a person or machine does work.
SC.912.P.10.Su.3
Observe and recognize ways that heat travels, such as through space (radiation), through solids (conduction), and through liquids and gases (convection).
SC.912.P.10.Su.4
Recognize common processes that give off heat (exothermic), such as burning, and processes that absorb heat (endothermic), such as water coming to a boil.
SC.912.P.10.Su.5
Recognize that nuclear power plants generate electricity and can be dangerous.
SC.912.P.10.Su.6
Recognize fundamental forces, such as gravitational.
SC.912.P.10.Su.7
Recognize common objects that conduct electricity (conductors) and objects that do not conduct electricity (insulators).
SC.912.P.10.Su.8
Recognize that some electrical devices use different types of power sources.
SC.912.P.10.Su.9
Observe and identify the effects of magnetic attraction on iron.
SC.912.P.10.Su.10
Recognize examples of electromagnetic waves moving through different media, such as microwave ovens, radios, and x-rays.

Participatory

SC.912.P.10.Pa.1
Observe and recognize examples of the transformation of electrical energy to light and heat.
SC.912.P.10.Pa.2
Recognize that work requires energy.
SC.912.P.10.Pa.3
Recognize the source and recipient of heat transfer.
SC.912.P.10.Pa.4
Identify materials that provide protection (insulation) from heat.
SC.912.P.10.Pa.5
Recognize the universal symbols for radioactive and other hazardous materials.
SC.912.P.10.Pa.6
Recognize that an object falls unless stopped (gravity).
SC.912.P.10.Pa.7
Recognize safe and unsafe practices related to the use of electricity, such as keeping foreign objects out of electrical sockets and not using electrical devices around water.
SC.912.P.10.Pa.8
Demonstrate opening and closing an electrical circuit to turn an electrical device on and off.
SC.912.P.10.Pa.9
Recognize how magnets are used in real-world situations.
SC.912.P.10.Pa.10
Recognize primary and secondary colors in visible light.

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this topic.

Educational Game

Shoot an Electron:


This interesting game is to hit the target located opposite a electron gun. The electron gun will fire an electron. This electron must not hit any walls or obstacles during the attempt. The user may direct the electron along a path by placing stationary positive and negative charges at various locations. This game will help support learning about the concept of the electric field, which is created when electrons repel other electrons.

Type: Educational Game

Lesson Plans

Elasticity: Studying How Solids Change Shape and Size:

This lesson's primary focus is to introduce high school students to the concept of Elasticity, which is one of the fundamental concepts in the understanding of the physics of deformation in solids. The main learning objectives are: (1) To understand the essential concept of Elasticity and be able to distinguish simple solids objects based on degree and extent of their elastic properties; (2) To appreciate the utility of the elastic force vs. deformation curve through experiments; (3) To be aware of potential sources of error present in such experiments and identify corrective measures; and (4) To appreciate the relevance of Elasticity in practical applications.

Type: Lesson Plan

Slide, Slide Away :

In this Engineering Design Challenge, student teams will design, calculate, build and then test a tower structure that can successfully hold a slide made from a pool tube. The slide will be placed at three different heights to determine which height is safe yet still fun. Students will be given supply restraints and guidelines as they work in teams to solve the problem.  

Type: Lesson Plan

Modeling the Kinetic Theory:

Students will engage in a directed inquiry lab to model the kinetic theory of matter. In the end, students should have a firm grasp of how matter's behavior is changed when its structure is changed during phase transitions.

Type: Lesson Plan

Purple Haze:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text designed to support reading in the content area. An ancient coloring pigment is leading to new research in magnetic fields and superconductivity. Will this lead to new technologies involving quantum computers? The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. Options to extend the lesson are also included.

Type: Lesson Plan

Potential and Kinetic Energy with Ramps and Bicycles:

Students use an in-class investigation to explore the gravitational potential energy and kinetic energy of systems. They will also apply formulas in a real-world context involving bicycles.

Type: Lesson Plan

Hooke's Law and Simple Harmonic Motion:

Students will graphically determine the spring constant k using their knowledge of Newton's Laws of Motion and Hooke's Law and by determining the period of a weight on a spring undergoing simple harmonic motion.

Type: Lesson Plan

Keep a Lid on It!:

An introduction to the Law of Conservation of Energy within the confines of open, closed, and isolated systems.

Type: Lesson Plan

Climb Your Way To The Top:

In this activity, you will find out if a person does more work walking up a flight of stairs or running up the same flight of stairs by having you or someone else actually do this. You will also learn what scientists mean by the words work and power. Students will take measurements, collect data and calculate work and power to determine the similarities and differences between the two concepts, as well as the factors that contribute to work and power.

Type: Lesson Plan

Conductivity:

Students work in small groups in a POE format to predict a materials conductivity, observe the conductivity, and explain their predictions accuracy.

Students are given a container of small objects and asked to predict and record whether the items are conductors or insulators. Through the use of an Ohm meter students will check each item to ascertain its conductivity. Students will evaluate their predictions and explain inconsistencies. Students will demonstrate mastery of concept by identifying objects in the room as conductors or insulators.

Type: Lesson Plan

I got the Power!:

In this lesson students observe the relationship between work and power. Students demonstrate how to calculate work and power, and determine the factors that can affect both. The activities are done with common materials or simple classroom materials. Students use the resources to measure the rate at which work is done. Students compare and contrast their observations and engage in class discussions.

Type: Lesson Plan

CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW? :

This resource will provide student with the basic knowledge of sound waves, their behaviors, and what factors affect the properties of sound.

The students will use technology (a simulation and a decibels app) to discover and explore how wave properties can be measured and factors affecting those properties.

Type: Lesson Plan

Calculating Work and Power:

In this lesson the teacher will use scaffolding (I do, We do, You do) technique so students will be able to calculate work and power using the work and power equations.

(Intro)
The students will create work and power concept maps. (The following link by the Penn State University Libraries website will provide examples of concept maps and will also help you create a concept map if you are not sure how to create one: https://www.libraries.psu.edu/psul/lls/students/research_resources/conceptmap.html)

(I Do)
The teacher will then model work and power example problems.

(We do)
The students will complete 5 word problems and review answers on board.

(You do together)
The students will complete Power Climb in No Time Activity in groups and answer questions/orally discuss with teacher.

(Formative Evaluation)
The student will create new work and power concept maps and share with the class.

(You Do Independently)
The students will complete a 10 question summative evaluation based on concepts learned in lab and work and power equations.

Type: Lesson Plan

Springing into Hooke's Law:

This lab exploration provides students with an opportunity to examine the relationship between the amount a linear spring is stretched and the restoring force that acts to return the spring to its rest length. This concept is central to an understanding of elastic potential energy in mechanical systems and has implications in the study of a large array of mechanical and electromagnetic simple harmonic oscillators.

Type: Lesson Plan

Whiz through the wave:

This lesson is on the difference between types of waves. This lesson is linked to SC.912.P.10.20. The lesson will focus on recognizing that the source of all waves is a vibration and waves carry energy from one place to another and the distinction between transverse and longitudinal waves in mechanical media, such as springs and ropes.

Type: Lesson Plan

Choose your path, series and parallel circuits.:

In this simple lab lesson, students will work in cooperative groups to construct simple series and parallel circuits. They will compare energy flow in circuits by observing lamp brightness as they change components in the various circuits.

Note: This lesson does not cover the "power" element of the standard chosen.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Entropy of It All:

Students will complete a laboratory activity that aids in understanding the concept of entropy. Students will witness an oscillating reaction and notice that they needed to increase the energy of the reaction by shaking the flask, which in turn increases the entropy and allows reactions to occur.

Type: Lesson Plan

Make Your Own Thermos:

In this lab, students will use the law of conservation of energy to design and test insulators made with various materials.

Type: Lesson Plan

Using Acid/Base Neutralization to Study Endothermic vs Exothermic Reactions and Stoichiometry:

In this lesson, students will experimentally determine whether an acid/base neutralization reaction is endothermic or exothermic. They will also use their results to identify the limiting reactant at various times in the process and calculate the concentration of one of the reactants.

Type: Lesson Plan

Strength of an Electromagnet:

In this guided-inquiry lesson for advanced students in high school physics or integrated science classes, students will have an opportunity to conduct an experiment to test how the strength of an electromagnet can be affected by different variables. Students will derive equations from their data.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Perfect Steak Oven:

The lesson integrates language arts and physical science standards through the use of a Model Eliciting Activity. Students collaborate to create a procedure to solve a particular problem (the best steak oven).

Type: Lesson Plan

Wine Glass Lab: Resonance and the Wave Equation:

This activity is designed to help students understand the concept of resonance through the application of the wave equation to sounds produced by a singing wine glass.

Type: Lesson Plan

Temperature, Volume, and Rate of Reaction:

This one-two day lab will allow students to collect data on temperature, volume, and rate for a reaction in a closed system. Heat speeds up the reaction, altering both volume and rate due to an increase in energy. Students will be able to graph their own lab group's data and compile class data if Google docs is available. They can then look at correlations between temperature, volume, and rate of reaction.

Type: Lesson Plan

BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - Thermal Energy:

This lesson is designed to be part of a sequence of lessons. It follows resource 52910 "BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - Mechanical Energy" and precedes resource 52705"BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - States of Matter." This lesson uses a predict, observe, and explain approach along with inquiry based activities to enhance student understanding of thermal energy and specific heat.

Type: Lesson Plan

BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - Solutions:

This lesson is designed to be part of a sequence of lessons. It follows CPALMS Resource #52705 "BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - States of Matter" and precedes CPALMS Resource #52961 "BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - Atomic Models." The lesson employs a predict, observe, explain approach along with inquiry-based activities to enhance student understanding of properties aqueous solutions in terms of the kinetic molecular theory and intermolecular forces.

Type: Lesson Plan

BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - Mechanical Energy:

This lesson is designed to be part of a sequence of lessons. It follows resource 52648 "BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - Forces" and precedes resource 52957 "BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - Thermal Energy." This lesson uses a predict, observe, and explain approach along with inquiry based activities to enhance student understanding of the conservation of energy.

Type: Lesson Plan

BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - States of Matter:

This lesson is designed to be part of a sequence of lessons. It follows CPALMS Resource #52957 "BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - Thermal Energy" and precedes CPALMS Resource #52961 "BIOSCOPES Summer Institute 2013 - Solutions." The lesson employs a predict, observe, explain approach along with inquiry-based activities to enhance student understanding of states of matter and phase changes in terms of the kinetic molecular theory.

Type: Lesson Plan

Alternative Fuel Systems:

The Alternative Fuel Systems MEA provides students with an engineering problem in which they must develop a procedure to decide the appropriate course for an automobile manufacturer to take given a set of constraints. The main focus of the MEA is to apply the concepts of work and energy to a business model.

Type: Lesson Plan

Life of the Party:

This activity teaches students how to determine the age of an atom using an onion, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts. Aliens from another planet left these items on our planet and need our assistance determining their age. Based on the number of layers or half lives of the "elements," the students will be able to determine their age. The students will also be able to differentiate between the three types of radioactive decay and understand why radioactive elements are harmful.

Type: Lesson Plan

Ramp It Up:

Using inquiry techniques, students, working in groups, are asked to design and conduct experiments to test the Law of Conservation of Energy and the Law of Conservation of Momentum. Upon being provided with textbooks, rulers, measuring tapes, stopwatches, mini-storage containers, golf balls, marbles, rubber balls, steel balls, and pennies, they work cooperatively to implement and revise their hypotheses. With limited guidance from the teacher, students are able to visualize the relationships between mass, velocity, height, gravitational potential energy, kinetic energy, and total energy as well as the relationships between mass, velocity, and momentum.

Type: Lesson Plan

Riding the Roller Coaster of Success:

Students compete with one another to design and build a roller coaster from insulation tubing and tape that will allow a marble to travel from start to finish with the lowest average velocity. In so doing, students learn about differences between distance and displacement, speed and velocity, and potential and kinetic energy. They also examine the Law of Conservation of Energy and concepts related to force and motion.

Type: Lesson Plan

Efficient Storage:

The topic of this MEA is work and power. Students will be assigned the task of hiring workers to complete a given task. In order to make a decision as to which workers to hire, the students initially must calculate the required work. The power each worker can exert, the days each worker is available to work each week, the number of sick days each worker has taken over the past 12 months, and the salary each worker commands will then be provided. Full- and/or part-time positions are available. Through data analysis, the students will need to evaluate which factors are most significant in the hiring process. For instance, some groups may select the most efficient workers; other groups may select the group of workers that will cost the company the least amount of money; still other groups may choose the workers that can complete the job in the shortest amount of time. Each group will also be required to provide the rationale that justifies the selection of which workers to hire.

Type: Lesson Plan

Conductors vs. Insulators: An Inquiry Lab:

This is a basic introduction to the difference between conductors and insulators when either is placed into a series circuit with a battery and a light bulb. This introductory activity is primarily used as a vehicle for students to better understand how to write a lab report with the appropriate sections and to integrate technology through Google Docs and a virtual lab simulation.

Type: Lesson Plan

Wave Machine:

Students will construct their own wave machine similar to the one described in the video from the National Stem Centre: http://www.nationalstemcentre.org.uk/elibrary/resource/2096/wave-machine.

Type: Lesson Plan

Virtually Possible:

This is a ray drawing activity to aid students in their understanding of how virtual images are formed by plane mirrors, and how the image size and distance from the mirror compare to those of the object.

Type: Lesson Plan

Rainbow Lab: Investigating the Visible Spectrum:

This activity will explore the connection between wavelength and frequency of colors in the visible light using web sites, hand-spectroscopes, spectral tubes and CSI type investigations.

Type: Lesson Plan

Finding your Focus:

Students practice drawing ray diagrams and then experimentally determine the focal lengths of a concave mirror and a convex lens.

Type: Lesson Plan

Magnetism:

Students investigate magnetism and which materials are attracted by magnets. Students describe the behavior of atoms in a magnet and explain why specific materials are or are not attracted to a magnet. The discussion questions explore several domains of science and relate them to magnetism.

Type: Lesson Plan

A Bright Idea:

Students will look for a correlation between pH and conductivity. They will also compare ionic, molecular, and solids for conductivity. The procedure provided above is a guided, step-by-step presentation. Remove steps to achieve the level of inquiry desired for your class.

Type: Lesson Plan

Amusement Park Physics:

Students will research various types of amusement park rides and use their findings to design a feasible ride of their own. They will summarize their findings and present their ride design to the class. Each student will then write a persuasive letter to a local amusement park describing the reasons their ride design is the best.

Type: Lesson Plan

Bouncy Energy:

Students use a "superball" to investigate energy transformations between gravitational potential, elastic potential and kinetic energies.

Type: Lesson Plan

Radioactive Decay: Is It Safe for Us to Stay?:

Students will collect data using inexpensive split peas and black beans in order to model how to calculate the amount of a radioactive element remaining after a specific number of half-lives have passed. Students will then use this data to outline and create a response to a scenario-based writing prompt.

Type: Lesson Plan

Shake it up:

Students will model molecular motion with everyday materials (shaker bottles) then associate their model/actions to the phase transitions of water while graphing its heat curve from data collected during a structured inquiry lab.

Type: Lesson Plan

SMALL: Shape Memory Alloy Lab:

Shape Memory Alloys are metals that can return to or 'remember' their original shape. They are a cutting edge application for Chemistry, Physics, and Integrated Science. The activities in this lesson work well for the study of forces, Newton's Laws, and electricity in physics. They also lend themselves well to crystalline structures, heat of reaction, and bonding in chemistry. In addition, students could study applications for the materials in the medical and space industries.

Type: Lesson Plan

Original Student Tutorials

States of Matter: Phase Transitions:

Explore how heat changes the temperature or the state of matter of a material in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Heat Transfer Processes:

Explore the three types of heat transfer that occur in our world as you complete this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Perspectives Video: Experts

Fire Energy and Intensity:

In this video, wildland fire scientist Kevin Hiers explains how technology can be used to aid fire behavior research in fire-dependent ecosystems.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Pendulums and Energy Transformations:

Explore how pendulums show the transformation of gravitational potential energy to kinetic energy and back with Dr. Simon Capstick in this engaging video. Don't miss his broken-nose defying test of the physics with a bowling ball pendulum.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Conservation and Conversion of Energy in a Military Weapons Testing Environment:

Dr. Betta Jerome, a senior mechanical engineer with the United States Air Force, explains energy conversion and conservation within the context of military weapons testing. 

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Electromagnetic Robot Muscles:

Dr. Oates uses engineering practices to design artificial muscles that react to electrostatic fields.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Light Spectrum for Growing Plants:

Plants need visible light, just not all of it. Learn how space plants and their lights strive for efficiency.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Electromagnetism:

The director of the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory describes electromagnetic waves.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Tracking Floats with Sound:

Dolphins and whales aren't the only ones making noise underwater. Lots of oceanographers do, too.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Convection Currents:

Did you know the ocean ships heat energy all over the world? It's a major mover but next day service is not guaranteed.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiasts

Resistivity in Wires:

An engineer that has previously worked on the F-22 Raptor explains how resistivity in wires plays a role in the development of a large machine.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Skin Radiation Technologies for Medical Therapy:

Dr. George Cohen discusses a variety of skin treatments that utilize electromagnetic radiation, including lasers, UV light, and x-rays.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Sound Sculpting and Room Design for Professional Audio Recording:

Audio engineer Kris Kolp explains his studio design choices that affect the way sound waves move through the room. 

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Protection from Radiation during Glass Art Fabrication:

Glass artist Russel Scaturro explains protective measures taken to prevent damage from UV and IR radiation during glass art fabrication. 

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Color in Glass Art Fabrication:

Glass artist Russel Scaturro explains some of the chemistry, purpose, and methodology behind his use of color in glass art fabrication.  

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Practical Applications of Radar for Global Space Monitoring:

Second Lieutenant Caleb McComas, a crew commander with the 20th Space Control Squadron at Eglin Air Force Base, explains how radar technology is vital to missions and objectives of the United States Air Force. 

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Fighter Jets and Sonic Boom:

Major Tucker Hamilton, a test pilot for the United States Air Force, explains the phenomenon known as a sonic boom.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Fighter Jets and the Doppler Effect:

Major Tucker Hamilton, a test pilot for the United States Air Force, explains various aspects of the Doppler effect as it applies to moving objects such as fighter jets. 

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Shape Affects Sound:

Learn how the shape of a didgeridoo affects its sound in this totally tubular video.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Understanding Light and Color for Bird Photography:

Don't feel blue because you don't understand how light is used in bird photography! Watch this instead. Produced with funding from the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Forces and Power in Flint Knapping:

Sharpen your knowledge by understanding the forces used to make stone tools.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Seeing into Atoms with Electromagnetic Energy:

If you want to understand the atom, you'll need a lot of energy. Learn how physicists use high energy light and electrons to study atomic structure.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Current, Voltage, Resistance, and Superconductivity:

Physics is cool, especially if you want to make super-cold, super-efficient, superconductive materials.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Wave Frequency and Audio Engineering:

Want to watch a video on audio engineering and frequency? Sounds good to me.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Using X-rays in Archeology:

An archaeologist explains how he is using x-rays to reconstruct a nineteenth-century battle!

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Oceans and Energy Transfer:

Dive deep into science as an oceanographer describes conduction, convection, and radiation and their relationship to oceanic systems.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Blacksmithing and Heat Transfer:

Forge a new understanding of metallurgy and heat transfer by learning how this blacksmith and collier make nails.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Bring Frequencies to Life with Balinese Music:

It's okay if you're not on quite the same wavelength as this ethnomusicologist. In Balinese gamelan tuning, that's a good thing!

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Plan Your Archaeological Excavations with Radar Waves! :

Archaeologists can see underground trends before everyone else with ground penetrating radar (GPR).

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Physics of Bass Guitar:

If physics has you down, don't fret - this musician covers all the bases.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Frequencies and Communities in the Music of Bali:

Physical science and social science connect in this discussion of Balinese gamelan. Full STEAM ahead!

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Optical Spectroscopy: Using Electromagnetic Waves to Detect Fires:

Hydrogen is used to launch spacecraft, but accidental fires are difficult to see. Learn about the physics of these fires and how we detect them.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Art and Prototyping with Laser-cut Materials:

Blaze a trail when you utilize laser technology to make art.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: Energy Storage:

This video about energy storage has a lot of potential to help you learn about solar power and batteries.

Related Resources:
KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: GPS Data Set[.XLSX]
KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: Path Visualization for Google Earth[.KML]

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: Solar Power and Navigation:

See the light when this math teacher explains how he figured out energy system needs for a cross-Pacific kayak trip.

Related Resources:
KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: GPS Data Set[.XLSX]
KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: Path Visualization for Google Earth[.KML]

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Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: Energy and Nutrition:

Calorie-dense foods can power the human body across the ocean? Feel the burn.

Related Resources:
KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: GPS Data Set[.XLSX]
KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: Path Visualization for Google Earth[.KML]

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: Waves:

When your classroom is the open ocean, which is the longest period? The one from the tsunami.

Related Resources:
KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: GPS Data Set[.XLSX]
KROS Pacific Ocean Kayak Journey: Path Visualization for Google Earth[.KML]

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Perspectives Video: Teaching Ideas

Heat Transfer Demonstrations:

A physics teacher presents some quick teaching ideas for demonstrating energy transfer through convection, conduction, and radiation.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Teaching Idea

Which has More Energy, Red or Blue Light?:

This colorful light and energy lesson idea will make you glow!

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Type: Perspectives Video: Teaching Idea

Light Frequency and Energy:

Check out this idea for an illuminating demonstration of light energy.

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Type: Perspectives Video: Teaching Idea

Resource Collections

Exploring Magnetism Lesson Series:

"These seven NASA-funded magnetism guides contain activity- or math-based lessons on magnetic fields. The science and mathematics education standards these activities cover are in the beginning of the guides... These guides were developed as part of the Education and Public Outreach programs of the following NASA science missions: STEREO-IMPACT, RHESSI, THEMIS, and FAST."

These are modules, including student worksheets, about magnetism in general and especially about the Earth's magnetic field.

Type: Resource Collection

Conceptual Physics Conservation of Energy Units:

This topic is broken into units to help in formulating cohesive, effective lessons. Clicking on each unit title will display appropriate activities, lesson plans, or labs. Units are intended to help students understand the interconnectedness of the concepts of conservation of energy, momentum and angular momentum underpinning the basis for much of physics. Units are not listed in a prescribed order.

Type: Resource Collection

Teaching Ideas

Melt Away - Exploring the Heat of Fusion of Water:

The heat of fusion of water is the energy required to melt one gram of ice. In this lab, your students will use experimental evidence to approximate the heat of fusion of water. They'll also compare the energy needed to cause a change of state to the energy needed to change temperature with no change of state. This lab can be used at the middle or high school level, depending on your learning objectives and how you introduce and debrief the activity.

Type: Teaching Idea

Evaporation is Cool:

Differences in intermolecular forces are introduced using of rates of evaporation and measuring the resulting cooling effects of different liquids.

Type: Teaching Idea

Metal Mania:

Students will determine the specific heat of a metal using the law of conservation of energy.

Type: Teaching Idea

Atmospheric Processes - Radiation :

After a brief discussion of heat transfer processes in general, this activity will focus on radiation. Students will investigate how different surfaces absorb heat and apply their experience with the surfaces to interpret real-world situations.

Type: Teaching Idea

Atmospheric Processes - Convection:

Students explore how convection currents occurs in the atmosphere through the transfer of heat energy.

Type: Teaching Idea

Solar fuels and artificial photosythesis:

This resource centers around the pathways, reactants, and products of photosynthesis, as well as how the natural process can be manipulated to produce energy for human use. The webpage contains a variety of infographs explaining photosynthesis, artificial photosynthesis, splitting of water molecules into the component atoms, and the production and use of solar fuels. The resource also includes two text articles related to the topic.

Type: Teaching Idea

The Color of Ice:

This resource lets students look at double refraction, also known as birefringence. Birefringence is a process in which light moving in different directions, or polarizations, travels at different speeds within a material. Students will build a "sculpture" of wire and cellophane tape placed in different directions and will observe the effects of light and refraction.

Type: Teaching Idea

Magnet Lab:

This resource includes various programs, resources, and activities on electricity and magnetism developed by the FSU Mag Lab for teachers to better serve their students.

Type: Teaching Idea

Island of Stability:

A video and supporting activities about the Periodic Table. The context is man's quest to create elements. The focus is atomic structure and atomic theory.

Type: Teaching Idea

Zip-lock Bag Reactions:

Students conduct and observe a chemical reaction in a sealable plastic bag. Students then devise and conduct their own experiments to determine the identity of two unknown substances used in the reaction.

Type: Teaching Idea

Text Resources

Text Resource - Purple Haze: Ancient Pigment Reveals Secrets about Unusual State of Matter:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The text explains how extreme cooling of an ancient pigment comprised of metallic compounds, as well as exposure to strong magnetic fields, converts the matter into a state called a Bose-Einstein condensate. In this state, the behavior of electrons within the pigment's atoms shifts and they form a single magnetic threedimensional structure. When the condensate is cooled even further in this case, the magnetic structure loses a dimension.

Type: Text Resource

World record for compact particle accelerator: Researchers ramp up energy of laser-plasma 'tabletop' accelerator:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Using one of the most powerful lasers in the world, researchers have accelerated subatomic particles to the highest energies ever recorded from a compact accelerator. The team used a specialized petawatt laser and a charged-particle gas called plasma to get the particles up to speed. The setup is known as a laser-plasma accelerator, an emerging class of particle accelerators that physicists believe can shrink traditional, miles-long accelerators to machines that can fit on a table.

Type: Text Resource

Where Do Chemical Elements Come From? :

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. What is that extremely bright light in the sky? It's a supernova: the result of a massive star collapsing in on itself. This explosion is more than just a pretty sight; it is the main source of the elements that make up our planets and all the other objects in the night sky.

Type: Text Resource

Ultracold Atoms:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Most students are familiar with the four most common states of matter, but what about the 5th state of matter, the Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC for short)? This article explains what a BEC is and how researchers are exploring this unique state of matter.

Type: Text Resource

How Nuclear Power Works:

This informational text is intended to support reading in the content area. Nuclear power has become a suggested solution to the issue of energy dependence, but what exactly is nuclear power? This article focuses on the many aspects of nuclear power including how it's created through fission and harnessed for electricity. Discussion of the pros and cons of nuclear energy and storage methods is also covered.

Type: Text Resource

Sound, Light, and Water Waves and How Scientists Worked Out the Mathematics :

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This text describes in a historical context how the wave equation quantifies scientific experimentation performed over a hundred years ago to explain how light behaves from the perspective of math and physics. The wave equation has also proved useful in understanding quantum mechanics.

Type: Text Resource

Wave Power:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. New Jersey-based company Ocean Power Technologies has gained a permit to launch PowerBuoys, which will convert ocean wave energy into power for human consumption. The benefits and concerns of harnessing the ocean's energy by this method are discussed in the article.

Type: Text Resource

A Fuel Cell for Home: Tested in Private Households:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute in Dresden have developed an energy-efficient fuel cell superior to combustion engines and other traditional ways of heating homes. The stacked fuel cells convert natural gas directly into electrical energy without resulting in energy loss. The fuel cell prototypes are being tried in homes and signal promise for the future.

Type: Text Resource

Will Seafloor Carpets Be the Key to Harvesting Wave Energy?:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes how scientists have discovered a method of transferring wave energy into electrical energy by the use of manmade seafloor "carpets." After the article explains how the process works, it lists the potential benefits of utilizing this method on a large scale.

Type: Text Resource

How Tumbleweeds Spread Radiation from Old Nuclear Sites:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes how radioactive materials can be spread by biological vectors, such as tumbleweeds and rabbits, from decommissioned nuclear sites and nuclear waste storage facilities.

Type: Text Resource

How the Ingenious Mushroom Creates Its Own Microclimate:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article explains the mushroom's ability to make its own microclimate. Through convection caused by the release of water vapor, mushrooms can efficiently disperse spores.

Type: Text Resource

Fireworks!:

This informational text is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes the composition and workings of fireworks. Details are also given as to how the colors, lights, sounds and propulsion are produced by fireworks' components.

Type: Text Resource

Explainer: The Difference Between Radioactivity and Radiation:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This text explains the difference between radioactivity (including radioactive decay, half-life, etc.) and radiation, and the connection between the two.

Type: Text Resource

Thermometers:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This text classifies the different types of thermometers, the history of each, and the advantages and disadvantages of each type.

Type: Text Resource

Oslo-Experiment May Explain Massive Star Explosions:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Some new findings about atomic nuclei may help astrophysicists create more realistic simulations of supernovae thus allowing us to see how heavier elements are formed in stars.

Type: Text Resource

The Electromagnetic Spectrum:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The text explains the source of electromagnetic waves and surveys the types, including examples of each.

Type: Text Resource

Noble Gas Molecule Discovered in Space:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article discusses how the noble gas compound was discovered along with suggestions on how it might have formed and some of its properties.

Type: Text Resource

Are There Mysterious Forces Lurking in Our Atoms and Galaxies?:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This article discusses a physicist's search for a new universal force, along with details regarding the four fundamental/universal forces (gravity, electromagnetism, strong nuclear force and weak nuclear force).

Type: Text Resource

Tiles May Help Shrink Carbon Footprint by Harnessing Pedestrian Power:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The text describes the development of floor tiles that provide a green, alternative energy source. These tiles work on the principle that pressure (footsteps) generates an electric current from certain crystals in an application of the piezoelectric effect.

Type: Text Resource

The Surprisingly Scientific Flash Behind the Fireworks:

This resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Chemists create pyrotechnics to give viewers the most spectacular fireworks show that they can by using basic chemistry concepts and physics. Readers of this article might be surprised to learn that conserving energy, preventing explosions, and cooling-down reactions are part of this process.

Type: Text Resource

Introduction to energy:

This document examines and introduces the learner to energy. The reading will define energy and discuss topics such as (1) Potential energy, (2) Kinetic energy, (3) Conservation of Energy, (4) Energy Efficiency, (5) Sources of Energy, (6) Measuring Energy, (7) Energy use, (8) Who uses energy?, and (9) Energy use and prices. The document also depicts illustrations of energy transformations, efficiency of power plants, U.S. energy consumption by source, and percentage of energy use by industrial, commercial, residential, and transportation sectors. This resource is structured as an informational handout to supplement energy activities or to generate discussion questions. A copy of the document can be found in the attachments section.

Type: Text Resource

What is Chemiluminescence?:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The text defines chemiluminescence as an exothermic chemical process. It contrasts endothermic and exothermic reactions. To better understand chemiluminescence, the author compares the process to incandescence and gives examples of chemiluminescence in everyday life and in nature.

Type: Text Resource

How Phase Change Materials Can Keep Your Coffee Hot:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article discusses the concept of phase change materials (PCM) and how they can be used to maintain constant temperatures through application of the Law of Conservation of Energy and energy transfer.

Type: Text Resource

Spider Webs More Effective at Snaring Electrically Charged Insects:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area.

The text describes how negatively charged spider webs attract positively charged insects. The article includes a link to an optional video and two good pictures of insects interacting with spider webs. This resource also includes text-dependent questions.

Type: Text Resource

X-ray 'Eyes':

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Scientists have discovered that X-rays can be used to photograph the movement of atoms and molecules in chemical reactions (i.e., photosynthesis).

Type: Text Resource

Tidal Energy:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The text proposes the advantages and disadvantages of three methods of converting tidal energy into electricity. The text includes links to outside information and key vocabulary words are highlighted with blue print.

Type: Text Resource

The New Alchemy:

This informational text is intended to support reading in the content area. This article, from the American Chemical Society, reviews the basics of radioactivity and transmutation as well as the history of discovering elements.

Type: Text Resource

"Biofuels form Switchgrass: Greener Energy Pastures":

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This brochure from the U.S. Department of Energy details switchgrass's promise as a source of biofuel.

Type: Text Resource

Magnetism:

This site presents the basic ideas of magnetism and applies these ideas to the earth's magnetic field. There are several useful diagrams and pictures interspersed throughout this lesson, as well as links to more detailed subjects. This is an introduction to a larger collection on exploring the Earth's magnetosphere. A Spanish translation is available.

Type: Text Resource

Tutorials

Sparks Fly: Discovering Central Ideas:

Click "View Site" to open a full-screen version. This tutorial is designed to help secondary science teachers learn how to integrate literacy skills within their science curriculum. The focus on literacy across content areas is designed to help students independently build knowledge in different disciplines through reading and writing. This tutorial will demonstrate a series of steps that teachers can use with students to help them determine the central ideas of a science text. It will also demonstrate how students can trace a text's explanation or depiction of a complex process. Finally, it will explain what an effective summary contains.

Type: Tutorial

Characteristics of Waves:

This tutorial contains information about the characteristics of longitudinal, transverse, and surface waves. This tutorial will also provide information about the amplitude, frequency, wavelength, speed, refraction, reflection, diffraction, and constructive and destructive interference of the waves.

Type: Tutorial

Sound:

This tutorial provides information about the sound and how it travels. It also includes information on the anatomy and physiology of the human ear for the learners to understand how sound passes through the ear.

Type: Tutorial

Speed of Light in Transparent Materials:

  • Study the relation between the speed of light and the refractive index of the medium it passes through.
  • Choose from a collection of materials with known refractive indices and obtain the speed of light as it passes through.
  • Learn why light-years are used as an astronomical measurement of distance.

Type: Tutorial

Refraction of Light:

This resource explores the electromagnetic spectrum and waves by allowing the learner to observe the refraction of light as it passes from one medium to another, study the relation between refraction of light and the refractive index of the medium, select from a list of materials with different refractive indicecs, and change the light beam from white to monochromatic and observe the difference.

Type: Tutorial

Human Eye Accommodation:

  • Observe how the eye's muscles change the shape of the lens in accordance with the distance to the object being viewed
  • Indicate the parts of the eye that are responsible for vision
  • View how images are formed in the eye

Type: Tutorial

Concave Spherical Mirrors:

  • Learn how a concave spherical mirror generates an image
  • Observe how the size and position of the image changes with the object distance from the mirror
  • Learn the difference between a real image and a virtual image
  • Learn some applications of concave mirrors

Type: Tutorial

Convex Spherical Mirrors:

  • Learn how a convex mirror forms the image of an object
  • Understand why convex mirrors form small virtual images
  • Observe the change in size and position of the image with the change in object's distance from the mirror
  • Learn some practical applications of convex mirrors

Type: Tutorial

Color Temperature in a Virtual Radiator:

  • Observe the change of color of a black body radiator upon changes in temperature
  • Understand that at 0 Kelvin or Absolute Zero there is no molecular motion

Type: Tutorial

Solar Cell Operation:

This resource explains how a solar cell converts light energy into electrical energy. The user will also learn about the different components of the solar cell and observe the relationship between photon intensity and the amount of electrical energy produced.

Type: Tutorial

Electromagnetic Wave Propagation:

  • Observe that light is composed of oscillating electric and magnetic waves
  • Explore the propagation of an electromagnetic wave through its electric and magnetic field vectors
  • Observe the difference in propagation of light of different wavelengths

Type: Tutorial

Basic Electromagnetic Wave Properties:

  • Explore the relationship between wavelength, frequency, amplitude and energy of an electromagnetic wave
  • Compare the characteristics of waves of different wavelengths

Type: Tutorial

Geometrical Construction of Ray Diagrams:

  • Learn to trace the path of propagating light waves using geometrical optics
  • Observe the effect of changing parameters such as focal length, object dimensions and position on image properties
  • Learn the equations used in determining the size and locations of images formed by thin lenses

Type: Tutorial

Video/Audio/Animations

Photosynthesis:

  • Observe the photosynthesis mechanism in the plant
  • Learn about the main chemical reactions that takes place during photosynthesis
  • Learn how solar energy is converted into chemical energy

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Paramagnetism:

Observe what happens when liquid nitrogen and liquid oxygen are exposed to a high magnetic field
Learn the difference between diamagnetic and paramagnetic molecules

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Superconductors:

Observe what happens when a magnet is placed on a superconductor

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Science Crossword Puzzles:

A collection of crossword puzzles that test the knowledge of students about some of the terms, processes, and classifications covered in science topics

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Circuit Construction Kit (AC + DC):

Learn how to build a circuit
Show the difference between AC and DC
Describe the effect of an inductor on a circuit
Describe the effect of a capacitor on a circuit
Learn how to use an ammeter and a voltmeter in a circuit

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

The Shrinking Quarter Machine:

Magnetic and electric forces are used for shrinking a quarter to the size of a dime in a very short amount of time

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Light is a Particle:

This video contains a demo that can be performed to show that light consists of particles
It also uses Lasers with different wavelengths

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Conductivity:

  • Identify the driving force in a circuit using a battery model
  • Explain the difference between conductive (metals and photoconductors) and non-conductive (plastics) materials

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Electric Field of Dreams:

  • Explain the effect of adding a charged particle to an electric field
  • Explain the interactions that take place between two neighboring charged particles
  • Explain the relationship between the sign and magnitude of the charge on a charged particle and an electric field
  • Show the effect of adding an external electric field

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Fourier: Making Waves:

  • Describe sound in terms of sinusoidal waves
  • Explain what the symbols lambda, T, k, omega, and n represent on the graph of a wave
  • Explain the relationship between the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle and the properties of waves

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

LASERS:

  • Explain the processes of absorption and emission
  • Describe how a laser works
  • Determine the factors affecting lasing

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

How to make a simple wave machine:

This is a link to the National STEM Centre (UK) that shows a short video describing how to make a simple wave machine for your class with kebab sticks, duct tape, and jelly babies! Students love it and it can be made as qualitative or quantitative as you like.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Solar Wind's Effect on Earth:

The Sun produces a solar wind — a continuous flow of charged particles — that can affect us on Earth. It can, for example, disrupt communications, navigation systems, and satellites. Solar activity can also cause power outages, such as the extensive Canadian blackout in 1989. In this video segment adapted from NASA, learn about solar storms and their effects on Earth.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

MIT BLOSSOMS - What’s in an Eye? The Eye’s Components and the Diseases that Affect Them:

The major purpose of this lesson is to promote the learning of eye function by associating eye problems and diseases to parts of the eye that are affected. Included in this module are discussions and activities that teach about eye components and their functions. The main activity is dissecting a cow eye, which in many high schools is part of the anatomy curriculum. This lesson extends the curriculum by discussing eye diseases that students might be familiar with. An added fun part of the lesson is discussion of what various animals see. The most difficult item to obtain for this lesson is the cow eye. Cow eyes from companies cost between $2 – 4 per eye. Some slaughterhouses/butchers will give you cow eyes for free, or charge a minimal fee. If you use cow eyes from these sources, you should store the eyes in a refrigerated area. Other supplies include: scalpel or razor blade, scissors (optional), dissecting pan or cutting board and wax paper, trash bags. This lesson will not fit into a 50-minute period if students are dissecting. If there is no dissection, 50 minutes should be enough time.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Virtual Manipulatives

Black body Spectrum:

In this simulation, learn about the black body spectrum of the sun, a light bulb, an oven and the earth. Adjust the temperature to see how the wavelength and intensity of the spectrum are affected.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Atomic Orbital Energies:


This simulation explores the trends observed in orbital energies for the main group elements. The energies of the highest energy atomic orbitals in a series of atoms increase with increasing principal quantum number. The energies of orbital subshells also change when moving across the periodic table from element to element.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Coulomb's Law:


This virtual manipulative will help the learners understand Coulomb's law which is the fundamental principle of electrostatics. It is the force of attraction or repulsion between two charged particles which is directly proportional to the product of the charges and inversely proportional to the distance between them.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

PhysClips:

Vast collection of multimedia resources in mechanics, waves and relativity.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Ripple Tank Applet:

Demonstrate two or three dimensional wave patterns. Great for showing interference, diffraction and refraction.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Reversing Velocity of a charged particle with magnetic field:

This virtual manipulative will allow the user to see how a magnetic field will effect the motion of a charged particle. The charge of the particle and the size of the magnetic field can be changed.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Normal Modes:

Play with a 1D or 2D system of coupled mass-spring oscillators. Vary the number of masses, set the initial conditions, and watch the system evolve. See the spectrum of normal modes for arbitrary motion. Compare longitudinal and transverse modes.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Interaction Between a Charged Balloon and a Wall:


This virtual manipulative demonstrates the electrostatic interaction between a charged balloon and a wall. Students may play with the slider of "Charges on the balloon" to change the type and amount of the charges on the balloon. The simulation also has the option of seeing a microscopic model which helps in understanding the phenomenon. After adjusting the charge press PLAY to observe the interaction.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Electromagnetic Radiation:

  • Explain the nature of light in terms of electromagnetic waves
  • Observe the electromagnetic waves in three dimensions
  • Explain light in terms of its electric and magnetic field components

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Lorentz Force:


This visual interactive simulation will help the student watch how a charged particle moves in a magnetic field. This force is defined as the Lorentz force which is the force on a point charge due to electromagnetic fields. There is a relationship between the movement of the particle through the magnetic field, the strength of that magnetic field and the force on the particle. The following equation described the force: F=qvB
Where:

  • F is the force in Newtons
  • q is the electric charge in coulombs
  • v is the velocity of the charge in meters/sound
  • B is the strength of the magnetic field.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Photoelectric Effect:


This virtual manipulative will help the students to understand how the light shines on a metal surface. Students will recognize a process called as photoelectric effect wherein light can be used to push electrons from the surface of a solid.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Visualize and describe the photoelectric effect experiment.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the intensity of light is changed and its effects on the current and energy of the electrons.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the wavelength of the light is changed and its effects on the current and the energy of the electrons.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the voltage of the light is changed and its effects on the current and energy of electrons.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Virtual Construction Kit (DC only):

Learn how to build a circuit

Learn how to measure voltage in a circuit using a voltmeter

Determine the resistance of certain objects that can be used as part of an electric circuit

Explain the difference between parallel and series circuits

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Geometric Optics:


This virtual manipulative will allow the students to understand how does a lens form an image. Students can see how light rays are refracted by a lens. Students can recognize that the image changes when they adjust the focal length of the lens, move the object, move the lens, or move the screen.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Explain how an image is formed by a converging lens using ray diagrams.
  • How changing the lens (radius, index, and diameter) effects where the image appears and ho it looks it terms of magnification, brightness and inversion.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Charges and Fields:


This virtual manipulative will allow the students to understand that the electric field is the region where the force on one charge is caused by the presence of another charge. The students will recognize the equipotential lines that exist between the charged regions.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Determine the variables that affect how charged bodies interact.
  • Predict how charged bodies will interact.
  • Describe the strength and direction of the electric field around a charged body.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Battery Voltage:

This simulation will allow you to look inside a battery to see how it works. You will be able to select the battery voltage and see the movement of the charges from one end of the battery to the other. A voltmeter will tell the resulting battery voltage.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Do the small blue spheres represent positive or negative charges?
  • Which side of the battery is labeled positive, and which side is negative?
  • How can you determine which side of the battery is positive and negative just by the location of the blue charges?

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Magnets and Electromagnets:


This virtual manipulative will allow the students to explore the interactions between a compass and bar magnet. Students can discover that magnetic fields are produced when all the electrons in a metal object are spinning in the same direction, either as a natural phenomenon, in an artificially created magnet, or when they are induced to do so by an electromagnetic field.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Predict the direction of the magnet field for different locations around a bar magnet and electromagnet.
  • Compare and contrast bar magnets and electromagnets.
  • Identify the characteristics of electromagnets that are variable and what effects each variable has on the magnetic field's strength and direction.
  • Relate magnetic field strength to distance quantitatively and qualitatively.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Ohm's Law:


This virtual manipulative will allow the user to see how the equation form of ohm's law relates to a simple circuit. Learners can adjust the voltage and resistance, and see the current change according to Ohm's law. The size of the symbols in the equation change to match the circuit diagram.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Neon Lights and Other Discharge Lamps:

This virtual manipulative will allow you to produce light by bombarding atoms with electrons. You can also visualize how the characteristic spectra of different elements are produced, and configure your own element's energy states to produce light of different colors.

Other areas to investigate:

  • Provide a basic design for a discharge lamp and explain the function of the different components.
  • Explain the basic structure of an atom and relate it to the color of light produced by discharge lamps.
  • Explain why discharge lamps emit only certain colors.
  • Design a discharge lamp to emit any desired spectrum of colors.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Generator:


This virtual manipulative will help the students generate electricity with a bar magnet. Students can discover the physics behind the phenomena by exploring magnets and how they can be used to make a bulb light. They will recognize that any change in the magnetic environment of a coil of wire will cause a voltage to be induced in the coil.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Identify equipment and conditions that produce induction.
  • Compare and contrast how both a light bulb and voltmeter can be used to show characteristics of the induced current.
  • Predict how the current will change when the conditions are varied.
  • Explain practical applications of Faraday's Law.
  • Explain what is the cause of the induction.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Capacitor Lab:

Explore how a capacitor works in this simulation. Change the plates and add a dielectric to see how it affects capacitance. Change the voltage and see charges built up on the plates. You can observe the electric field in the capacitor, measure voltage and the electric field.

Other investigations can include:

  • Determine the relationship between charge and voltage for a capacitor.
  • Determine the energy stored in a capacitor or a set of capacitors in a circuit.
  • Explore the effect of space and dielectric materials inserted between the conductors of the capacitor in a circuit.
  • Determine the equivalent capacitance of a set of capacitors in series and in parallel in a circuit.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Beta Decay:

This is a virtual manipulative to understand beta decay. In the Beta decay process, a neutron decays into a proton and an electron (beta radiation). The process also requires the emission of a neutrino to maintain momentum and energy balance. Beta decay allows the atom to obtain the optimal ratio of protons and neutrons.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Alpha decay:

This virtual manipulative will help you to understand the process of alpha decay. Watch alpha particles escape from a polonium nucleus, causing radioactive alpha decay. See how random decay times relate to the half life.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Resistance in a Wire:


This manipulative will help the students to learn about the physics of resistance in a wire. The electrical resistance of a wire would be expected to be greater for a longer wire, less for a wire of larger cross sectional area, and would be expected to depend upon the material out of which the wire is made, to understand this, students can change the resistivity, length, and area to see how they affect the wire's resistance. The sizes of the symbols in the equation change along with the diagram of a wire.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • What characteristics of a resistor are variable in this model?
  • How does each affect the resistance (will increasing or decreasing each make the resistance correspondingly increase or decrease?)
  • Explain your ideas about why they change the resistance.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Simplified MRI:

Whether it is a tumor or not, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) can tell. Your head is full of tiny radio transmitters (the nuclear spins of the hydrogen nuclei of your water molecules). In an MRI unit, these little radios can be made to broadcast their positions, giving a detailed picture of the inside of your head.

In this simulation you can:

  • Recognize that light can flip spins if the energy of the photons matches the difference between the energies of spin up and spin down.
  • Recognize that the difference between the energies of spin up and spin down is proportional to the strength of the applied magnetic field.
  • Describe how to put these two ideas together to detect where there is a higher density of spins.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Molecules and Light:

This activity will help to investigate how a greenhouse gas affects the climate, or why the ozone layer is important. Using this simulation, explore how light interacts with molecules in our atmosphere.

Areas to explore:

  • How light interacts with molecules in our atmosphere.
  • Identify that absorption of light depends on the molecule and the type of light.
  • Relate the energy of the light to the resulting motion.
  • Identify that energy increases from microwave to ultraviolet.
  • Predict the motion of a molecule based on the type of light it absorbs.
  • Identify how the structure of a molecule affects how it interacts with light.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Pendulum Lab:


Play with one or two pendulums and discover how the period of a simple pendulum depends on the length of the string, the mass of the pendulum bob, and the amplitude of the swing. It's easy to measure the period using the photogate timer. Students can vary friction and the strength of gravity.

  • Design experiments to describe how variables affect the motion of a pendulum
  • Use a photogate timer to determine quantitatively how the period of a pendulum depends on the variables you described
  • Determine the gravitational acceleration of planet X
  • Explain the conservation of Mechanical energy concept using kinetic energy and gravitational potential energy
  • Describe energy chart from position or selected speeds

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Faraday's Law:

Light a bulb by waving a magnet. This demonstration of Faraday's law will help you to:
  • Explain what happens when the magnet moves through the coil at different speeds and how this affects the brightness of the bulb and the magnitude and sign of the voltage.
  • Explain the difference between moving the magnet through the coil from the right side versus the left side.
  • Explain the difference between moving magnet through the big coil versus the smaller coil.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Circuit Construction kit:

An electronic kit in your computer! Build circuits with resistors, light bulbs, batteries, and switches. Take measurements with the realistic ammeter and voltmeter. View the circuit as a schematic diagram, or switch to a life-like view.

Other options for exploration:

  • Discuss basic electricity relationships
  • Build circuits from schematic drawings.
  • Use an ammeter and voltmeter to take readings in circuits.
  • Provide reasoning to explain the measurements and relationship in circuits.
  • Discuss basic electricity relationships in series and parallel circuits.
  • Provide reasoning to explain the measurements in circuits.
  • Determine the resistance of common objects in the "Grab Bag".

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Sound:

The students will see and hear the effects of changing the frequency and/or amplitude of a sound wave. This animation may also be used to demonstrate the Doppler effect, reflection and interference of sound waves.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Battery-Resistor Circuit:

This simulation demonstrates how a resistor works and the relationship between voltage, current and resistance. A change in temperature is also recorded with varying the parameters.
The students will be shown the flow of electrons to make a fan spin. The more resistance that they put the slower the elctrons will move and vice versa. The students will also see the power generated by the battery.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Nuclear Fission:

Complete this virtual manipulative to gain a better understanding of nuclear fission. Study the basic principles behind chain reactions and a nuclear reactor.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Balloons and Static Electricity:

The students will rub a balloon on a sweater and see how charges are exchanged between the two objects. With these changes they will see their interactions.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Circuit Construction Kit:

The students will have the opportunity to build their own circuit loop with the materials presented to them.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

States of Matter:

Watch different types of molecules form a solid, liquid, or gas. Add or remove heat and watch the phase change. Change the temperature or volume of a container and see a pressure-temperature diagram respond in real time.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Potential/Kinetic Energy Simulation:

Learn about conservation of energy with a skater! Build tracks, ramps and jumps for the skater and view the kinetic energy, potential energy, thermal energy as he moves. You can adjust the amount of friction and mass. Measurement and graphing tools are built in.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this topic.

Original Student Tutorials

States of Matter: Phase Transitions:

Explore how heat changes the temperature or the state of matter of a material in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Heat Transfer Processes:

Explore the three types of heat transfer that occur in our world as you complete this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Educational Game

Shoot an Electron:


This interesting game is to hit the target located opposite a electron gun. The electron gun will fire an electron. This electron must not hit any walls or obstacles during the attempt. The user may direct the electron along a path by placing stationary positive and negative charges at various locations. This game will help support learning about the concept of the electric field, which is created when electrons repel other electrons.

Type: Educational Game

Lesson Plan

Elasticity: Studying How Solids Change Shape and Size:

This lesson's primary focus is to introduce high school students to the concept of Elasticity, which is one of the fundamental concepts in the understanding of the physics of deformation in solids. The main learning objectives are: (1) To understand the essential concept of Elasticity and be able to distinguish simple solids objects based on degree and extent of their elastic properties; (2) To appreciate the utility of the elastic force vs. deformation curve through experiments; (3) To be aware of potential sources of error present in such experiments and identify corrective measures; and (4) To appreciate the relevance of Elasticity in practical applications.

Type: Lesson Plan

Perspectives Video: Experts

Pendulums and Energy Transformations:

Explore how pendulums show the transformation of gravitational potential energy to kinetic energy and back with Dr. Simon Capstick in this engaging video. Don't miss his broken-nose defying test of the physics with a bowling ball pendulum.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Electromagnetic Robot Muscles:

Dr. Oates uses engineering practices to design artificial muscles that react to electrostatic fields.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Light Spectrum for Growing Plants:

Plants need visible light, just not all of it. Learn how space plants and their lights strive for efficiency.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Electromagnetism:

The director of the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory describes electromagnetic waves.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiasts

Resistivity in Wires:

An engineer that has previously worked on the F-22 Raptor explains how resistivity in wires plays a role in the development of a large machine.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Shape Affects Sound:

Learn how the shape of a didgeridoo affects its sound in this totally tubular video.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Forces and Power in Flint Knapping:

Sharpen your knowledge by understanding the forces used to make stone tools.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Seeing into Atoms with Electromagnetic Energy:

If you want to understand the atom, you'll need a lot of energy. Learn how physicists use high energy light and electrons to study atomic structure.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Current, Voltage, Resistance, and Superconductivity:

Physics is cool, especially if you want to make super-cold, super-efficient, superconductive materials.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Wave Frequency and Audio Engineering:

Want to watch a video on audio engineering and frequency? Sounds good to me.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Using X-rays in Archeology:

An archaeologist explains how he is using x-rays to reconstruct a nineteenth-century battle!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Oceans and Energy Transfer:

Dive deep into science as an oceanographer describes conduction, convection, and radiation and their relationship to oceanic systems.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Blacksmithing and Heat Transfer:

Forge a new understanding of metallurgy and heat transfer by learning how this blacksmith and collier make nails.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Bring Frequencies to Life with Balinese Music:

It's okay if you're not on quite the same wavelength as this ethnomusicologist. In Balinese gamelan tuning, that's a good thing!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Plan Your Archaeological Excavations with Radar Waves! :

Archaeologists can see underground trends before everyone else with ground penetrating radar (GPR).

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Physics of Bass Guitar:

If physics has you down, don't fret - this musician covers all the bases.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Frequencies and Communities in the Music of Bali:

Physical science and social science connect in this discussion of Balinese gamelan. Full STEAM ahead!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Optical Spectroscopy: Using Electromagnetic Waves to Detect Fires:

Hydrogen is used to launch spacecraft, but accidental fires are difficult to see. Learn about the physics of these fires and how we detect them.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Text Resource

Magnetism:

This site presents the basic ideas of magnetism and applies these ideas to the earth's magnetic field. There are several useful diagrams and pictures interspersed throughout this lesson, as well as links to more detailed subjects. This is an introduction to a larger collection on exploring the Earth's magnetosphere. A Spanish translation is available.

Type: Text Resource

Tutorials

Characteristics of Waves:

This tutorial contains information about the characteristics of longitudinal, transverse, and surface waves. This tutorial will also provide information about the amplitude, frequency, wavelength, speed, refraction, reflection, diffraction, and constructive and destructive interference of the waves.

Type: Tutorial

Sound:

This tutorial provides information about the sound and how it travels. It also includes information on the anatomy and physiology of the human ear for the learners to understand how sound passes through the ear.

Type: Tutorial

Refraction of Light:

This resource explores the electromagnetic spectrum and waves by allowing the learner to observe the refraction of light as it passes from one medium to another, study the relation between refraction of light and the refractive index of the medium, select from a list of materials with different refractive indicecs, and change the light beam from white to monochromatic and observe the difference.

Type: Tutorial

Human Eye Accommodation:

  • Observe how the eye's muscles change the shape of the lens in accordance with the distance to the object being viewed
  • Indicate the parts of the eye that are responsible for vision
  • View how images are formed in the eye

Type: Tutorial

Concave Spherical Mirrors:

  • Learn how a concave spherical mirror generates an image
  • Observe how the size and position of the image changes with the object distance from the mirror
  • Learn the difference between a real image and a virtual image
  • Learn some applications of concave mirrors

Type: Tutorial

Convex Spherical Mirrors:

  • Learn how a convex mirror forms the image of an object
  • Understand why convex mirrors form small virtual images
  • Observe the change in size and position of the image with the change in object's distance from the mirror
  • Learn some practical applications of convex mirrors

Type: Tutorial

Color Temperature in a Virtual Radiator:

  • Observe the change of color of a black body radiator upon changes in temperature
  • Understand that at 0 Kelvin or Absolute Zero there is no molecular motion

Type: Tutorial

Solar Cell Operation:

This resource explains how a solar cell converts light energy into electrical energy. The user will also learn about the different components of the solar cell and observe the relationship between photon intensity and the amount of electrical energy produced.

Type: Tutorial

Electromagnetic Wave Propagation:

  • Observe that light is composed of oscillating electric and magnetic waves
  • Explore the propagation of an electromagnetic wave through its electric and magnetic field vectors
  • Observe the difference in propagation of light of different wavelengths

Type: Tutorial

Basic Electromagnetic Wave Properties:

  • Explore the relationship between wavelength, frequency, amplitude and energy of an electromagnetic wave
  • Compare the characteristics of waves of different wavelengths

Type: Tutorial

Geometrical Construction of Ray Diagrams:

  • Learn to trace the path of propagating light waves using geometrical optics
  • Observe the effect of changing parameters such as focal length, object dimensions and position on image properties
  • Learn the equations used in determining the size and locations of images formed by thin lenses

Type: Tutorial

Video/Audio/Animations

Photosynthesis:

  • Observe the photosynthesis mechanism in the plant
  • Learn about the main chemical reactions that takes place during photosynthesis
  • Learn how solar energy is converted into chemical energy

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Science Crossword Puzzles:

A collection of crossword puzzles that test the knowledge of students about some of the terms, processes, and classifications covered in science topics

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Circuit Construction Kit (AC + DC):

Learn how to build a circuit
Show the difference between AC and DC
Describe the effect of an inductor on a circuit
Describe the effect of a capacitor on a circuit
Learn how to use an ammeter and a voltmeter in a circuit

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Light is a Particle:

This video contains a demo that can be performed to show that light consists of particles
It also uses Lasers with different wavelengths

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Conductivity:

  • Identify the driving force in a circuit using a battery model
  • Explain the difference between conductive (metals and photoconductors) and non-conductive (plastics) materials

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

LASERS:

  • Explain the processes of absorption and emission
  • Describe how a laser works
  • Determine the factors affecting lasing

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Solar Wind's Effect on Earth:

The Sun produces a solar wind — a continuous flow of charged particles — that can affect us on Earth. It can, for example, disrupt communications, navigation systems, and satellites. Solar activity can also cause power outages, such as the extensive Canadian blackout in 1989. In this video segment adapted from NASA, learn about solar storms and their effects on Earth.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Virtual Manipulatives

Black body Spectrum:

In this simulation, learn about the black body spectrum of the sun, a light bulb, an oven and the earth. Adjust the temperature to see how the wavelength and intensity of the spectrum are affected.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Reversing Velocity of a charged particle with magnetic field:

This virtual manipulative will allow the user to see how a magnetic field will effect the motion of a charged particle. The charge of the particle and the size of the magnetic field can be changed.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Photoelectric Effect:


This virtual manipulative will help the students to understand how the light shines on a metal surface. Students will recognize a process called as photoelectric effect wherein light can be used to push electrons from the surface of a solid.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Visualize and describe the photoelectric effect experiment.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the intensity of light is changed and its effects on the current and energy of the electrons.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the wavelength of the light is changed and its effects on the current and the energy of the electrons.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the voltage of the light is changed and its effects on the current and energy of electrons.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Virtual Construction Kit (DC only):

Learn how to build a circuit

Learn how to measure voltage in a circuit using a voltmeter

Determine the resistance of certain objects that can be used as part of an electric circuit

Explain the difference between parallel and series circuits

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Geometric Optics:


This virtual manipulative will allow the students to understand how does a lens form an image. Students can see how light rays are refracted by a lens. Students can recognize that the image changes when they adjust the focal length of the lens, move the object, move the lens, or move the screen.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Explain how an image is formed by a converging lens using ray diagrams.
  • How changing the lens (radius, index, and diameter) effects where the image appears and ho it looks it terms of magnification, brightness and inversion.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Charges and Fields:


This virtual manipulative will allow the students to understand that the electric field is the region where the force on one charge is caused by the presence of another charge. The students will recognize the equipotential lines that exist between the charged regions.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Determine the variables that affect how charged bodies interact.
  • Predict how charged bodies will interact.
  • Describe the strength and direction of the electric field around a charged body.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Ohm's Law:


This virtual manipulative will allow the user to see how the equation form of ohm's law relates to a simple circuit. Learners can adjust the voltage and resistance, and see the current change according to Ohm's law. The size of the symbols in the equation change to match the circuit diagram.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Neon Lights and Other Discharge Lamps:

This virtual manipulative will allow you to produce light by bombarding atoms with electrons. You can also visualize how the characteristic spectra of different elements are produced, and configure your own element's energy states to produce light of different colors.

Other areas to investigate:

  • Provide a basic design for a discharge lamp and explain the function of the different components.
  • Explain the basic structure of an atom and relate it to the color of light produced by discharge lamps.
  • Explain why discharge lamps emit only certain colors.
  • Design a discharge lamp to emit any desired spectrum of colors.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Generator:


This virtual manipulative will help the students generate electricity with a bar magnet. Students can discover the physics behind the phenomena by exploring magnets and how they can be used to make a bulb light. They will recognize that any change in the magnetic environment of a coil of wire will cause a voltage to be induced in the coil.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Identify equipment and conditions that produce induction.
  • Compare and contrast how both a light bulb and voltmeter can be used to show characteristics of the induced current.
  • Predict how the current will change when the conditions are varied.
  • Explain practical applications of Faraday's Law.
  • Explain what is the cause of the induction.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Capacitor Lab:

Explore how a capacitor works in this simulation. Change the plates and add a dielectric to see how it affects capacitance. Change the voltage and see charges built up on the plates. You can observe the electric field in the capacitor, measure voltage and the electric field.

Other investigations can include:

  • Determine the relationship between charge and voltage for a capacitor.
  • Determine the energy stored in a capacitor or a set of capacitors in a circuit.
  • Explore the effect of space and dielectric materials inserted between the conductors of the capacitor in a circuit.
  • Determine the equivalent capacitance of a set of capacitors in series and in parallel in a circuit.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Beta Decay:

This is a virtual manipulative to understand beta decay. In the Beta decay process, a neutron decays into a proton and an electron (beta radiation). The process also requires the emission of a neutrino to maintain momentum and energy balance. Beta decay allows the atom to obtain the optimal ratio of protons and neutrons.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Alpha decay:

This virtual manipulative will help you to understand the process of alpha decay. Watch alpha particles escape from a polonium nucleus, causing radioactive alpha decay. See how random decay times relate to the half life.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Resistance in a Wire:


This manipulative will help the students to learn about the physics of resistance in a wire. The electrical resistance of a wire would be expected to be greater for a longer wire, less for a wire of larger cross sectional area, and would be expected to depend upon the material out of which the wire is made, to understand this, students can change the resistivity, length, and area to see how they affect the wire's resistance. The sizes of the symbols in the equation change along with the diagram of a wire.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • What characteristics of a resistor are variable in this model?
  • How does each affect the resistance (will increasing or decreasing each make the resistance correspondingly increase or decrease?)
  • Explain your ideas about why they change the resistance.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Simplified MRI:

Whether it is a tumor or not, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) can tell. Your head is full of tiny radio transmitters (the nuclear spins of the hydrogen nuclei of your water molecules). In an MRI unit, these little radios can be made to broadcast their positions, giving a detailed picture of the inside of your head.

In this simulation you can:

  • Recognize that light can flip spins if the energy of the photons matches the difference between the energies of spin up and spin down.
  • Recognize that the difference between the energies of spin up and spin down is proportional to the strength of the applied magnetic field.
  • Describe how to put these two ideas together to detect where there is a higher density of spins.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Molecules and Light:

This activity will help to investigate how a greenhouse gas affects the climate, or why the ozone layer is important. Using this simulation, explore how light interacts with molecules in our atmosphere.

Areas to explore:

  • How light interacts with molecules in our atmosphere.
  • Identify that absorption of light depends on the molecule and the type of light.
  • Relate the energy of the light to the resulting motion.
  • Identify that energy increases from microwave to ultraviolet.
  • Predict the motion of a molecule based on the type of light it absorbs.
  • Identify how the structure of a molecule affects how it interacts with light.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Pendulum Lab:


Play with one or two pendulums and discover how the period of a simple pendulum depends on the length of the string, the mass of the pendulum bob, and the amplitude of the swing. It's easy to measure the period using the photogate timer. Students can vary friction and the strength of gravity.

  • Design experiments to describe how variables affect the motion of a pendulum
  • Use a photogate timer to determine quantitatively how the period of a pendulum depends on the variables you described
  • Determine the gravitational acceleration of planet X
  • Explain the conservation of Mechanical energy concept using kinetic energy and gravitational potential energy
  • Describe energy chart from position or selected speeds

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Faraday's Law:

Light a bulb by waving a magnet. This demonstration of Faraday's law will help you to:
  • Explain what happens when the magnet moves through the coil at different speeds and how this affects the brightness of the bulb and the magnitude and sign of the voltage.
  • Explain the difference between moving the magnet through the coil from the right side versus the left side.
  • Explain the difference between moving magnet through the big coil versus the smaller coil.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Circuit Construction kit:

An electronic kit in your computer! Build circuits with resistors, light bulbs, batteries, and switches. Take measurements with the realistic ammeter and voltmeter. View the circuit as a schematic diagram, or switch to a life-like view.

Other options for exploration:

  • Discuss basic electricity relationships
  • Build circuits from schematic drawings.
  • Use an ammeter and voltmeter to take readings in circuits.
  • Provide reasoning to explain the measurements and relationship in circuits.
  • Discuss basic electricity relationships in series and parallel circuits.
  • Provide reasoning to explain the measurements in circuits.
  • Determine the resistance of common objects in the "Grab Bag".

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Sound:

The students will see and hear the effects of changing the frequency and/or amplitude of a sound wave. This animation may also be used to demonstrate the Doppler effect, reflection and interference of sound waves.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Nuclear Fission:

Complete this virtual manipulative to gain a better understanding of nuclear fission. Study the basic principles behind chain reactions and a nuclear reactor.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Balloons and Static Electricity:

The students will rub a balloon on a sweater and see how charges are exchanged between the two objects. With these changes they will see their interactions.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Circuit Construction Kit:

The students will have the opportunity to build their own circuit loop with the materials presented to them.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

States of Matter:

Watch different types of molecules form a solid, liquid, or gas. Add or remove heat and watch the phase change. Change the temperature or volume of a container and see a pressure-temperature diagram respond in real time.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Potential/Kinetic Energy Simulation:

Learn about conservation of energy with a skater! Build tracks, ramps and jumps for the skater and view the kinetic energy, potential energy, thermal energy as he moves. You can adjust the amount of friction and mass. Measurement and graphing tools are built in.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this topic.

Educational Game

Shoot an Electron:


This interesting game is to hit the target located opposite a electron gun. The electron gun will fire an electron. This electron must not hit any walls or obstacles during the attempt. The user may direct the electron along a path by placing stationary positive and negative charges at various locations. This game will help support learning about the concept of the electric field, which is created when electrons repel other electrons.

Type: Educational Game

Perspectives Video: Experts

Light Spectrum for Growing Plants:

Plants need visible light, just not all of it. Learn how space plants and their lights strive for efficiency.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Electromagnetism:

The director of the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory describes electromagnetic waves.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiasts

Shape Affects Sound:

Learn how the shape of a didgeridoo affects its sound in this totally tubular video.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Forces and Power in Flint Knapping:

Sharpen your knowledge by understanding the forces used to make stone tools.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Seeing into Atoms with Electromagnetic Energy:

If you want to understand the atom, you'll need a lot of energy. Learn how physicists use high energy light and electrons to study atomic structure.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Current, Voltage, Resistance, and Superconductivity:

Physics is cool, especially if you want to make super-cold, super-efficient, superconductive materials.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Wave Frequency and Audio Engineering:

Want to watch a video on audio engineering and frequency? Sounds good to me.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Using X-rays in Archeology:

An archaeologist explains how he is using x-rays to reconstruct a nineteenth-century battle!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Oceans and Energy Transfer:

Dive deep into science as an oceanographer describes conduction, convection, and radiation and their relationship to oceanic systems.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Blacksmithing and Heat Transfer:

Forge a new understanding of metallurgy and heat transfer by learning how this blacksmith and collier make nails.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Bring Frequencies to Life with Balinese Music:

It's okay if you're not on quite the same wavelength as this ethnomusicologist. In Balinese gamelan tuning, that's a good thing!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Plan Your Archaeological Excavations with Radar Waves! :

Archaeologists can see underground trends before everyone else with ground penetrating radar (GPR).

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Physics of Bass Guitar:

If physics has you down, don't fret - this musician covers all the bases.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Frequencies and Communities in the Music of Bali:

Physical science and social science connect in this discussion of Balinese gamelan. Full STEAM ahead!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Optical Spectroscopy: Using Electromagnetic Waves to Detect Fires:

Hydrogen is used to launch spacecraft, but accidental fires are difficult to see. Learn about the physics of these fires and how we detect them.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Perspectives Video: Teaching Ideas

Heat Transfer Demonstrations:

A physics teacher presents some quick teaching ideas for demonstrating energy transfer through convection, conduction, and radiation.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Teaching Idea

Which has More Energy, Red or Blue Light?:

This colorful light and energy lesson idea will make you glow!

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Teaching Idea

Tutorials

Characteristics of Waves:

This tutorial contains information about the characteristics of longitudinal, transverse, and surface waves. This tutorial will also provide information about the amplitude, frequency, wavelength, speed, refraction, reflection, diffraction, and constructive and destructive interference of the waves.

Type: Tutorial

Sound:

This tutorial provides information about the sound and how it travels. It also includes information on the anatomy and physiology of the human ear for the learners to understand how sound passes through the ear.

Type: Tutorial

Virtual Manipulatives

Black body Spectrum:

In this simulation, learn about the black body spectrum of the sun, a light bulb, an oven and the earth. Adjust the temperature to see how the wavelength and intensity of the spectrum are affected.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Coulomb's Law:


This virtual manipulative will help the learners understand Coulomb's law which is the fundamental principle of electrostatics. It is the force of attraction or repulsion between two charged particles which is directly proportional to the product of the charges and inversely proportional to the distance between them.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Reversing Velocity of a charged particle with magnetic field:

This virtual manipulative will allow the user to see how a magnetic field will effect the motion of a charged particle. The charge of the particle and the size of the magnetic field can be changed.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Normal Modes:

Play with a 1D or 2D system of coupled mass-spring oscillators. Vary the number of masses, set the initial conditions, and watch the system evolve. See the spectrum of normal modes for arbitrary motion. Compare longitudinal and transverse modes.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Interaction Between a Charged Balloon and a Wall:


This virtual manipulative demonstrates the electrostatic interaction between a charged balloon and a wall. Students may play with the slider of "Charges on the balloon" to change the type and amount of the charges on the balloon. The simulation also has the option of seeing a microscopic model which helps in understanding the phenomenon. After adjusting the charge press PLAY to observe the interaction.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Lorentz Force:


This visual interactive simulation will help the student watch how a charged particle moves in a magnetic field. This force is defined as the Lorentz force which is the force on a point charge due to electromagnetic fields. There is a relationship between the movement of the particle through the magnetic field, the strength of that magnetic field and the force on the particle. The following equation described the force: F=qvB
Where:

  • F is the force in Newtons
  • q is the electric charge in coulombs
  • v is the velocity of the charge in meters/sound
  • B is the strength of the magnetic field.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Photoelectric Effect:


This virtual manipulative will help the students to understand how the light shines on a metal surface. Students will recognize a process called as photoelectric effect wherein light can be used to push electrons from the surface of a solid.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Visualize and describe the photoelectric effect experiment.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the intensity of light is changed and its effects on the current and energy of the electrons.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the wavelength of the light is changed and its effects on the current and the energy of the electrons.
  • Predict the results of the experiment, when the voltage of the light is changed and its effects on the current and energy of electrons.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Geometric Optics:


This virtual manipulative will allow the students to understand how does a lens form an image. Students can see how light rays are refracted by a lens. Students can recognize that the image changes when they adjust the focal length of the lens, move the object, move the lens, or move the screen.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Explain how an image is formed by a converging lens using ray diagrams.
  • How changing the lens (radius, index, and diameter) effects where the image appears and ho it looks it terms of magnification, brightness and inversion.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Charges and Fields:


This virtual manipulative will allow the students to understand that the electric field is the region where the force on one charge is caused by the presence of another charge. The students will recognize the equipotential lines that exist between the charged regions.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Determine the variables that affect how charged bodies interact.
  • Predict how charged bodies will interact.
  • Describe the strength and direction of the electric field around a charged body.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Magnets and Electromagnets:


This virtual manipulative will allow the students to explore the interactions between a compass and bar magnet. Students can discover that magnetic fields are produced when all the electrons in a metal object are spinning in the same direction, either as a natural phenomenon, in an artificially created magnet, or when they are induced to do so by an electromagnetic field.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Predict the direction of the magnet field for different locations around a bar magnet and electromagnet.
  • Compare and contrast bar magnets and electromagnets.
  • Identify the characteristics of electromagnets that are variable and what effects each variable has on the magnetic field's strength and direction.
  • Relate magnetic field strength to distance quantitatively and qualitatively.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Ohm's Law:


This virtual manipulative will allow the user to see how the equation form of ohm's law relates to a simple circuit. Learners can adjust the voltage and resistance, and see the current change according to Ohm's law. The size of the symbols in the equation change to match the circuit diagram.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Neon Lights and Other Discharge Lamps:

This virtual manipulative will allow you to produce light by bombarding atoms with electrons. You can also visualize how the characteristic spectra of different elements are produced, and configure your own element's energy states to produce light of different colors.

Other areas to investigate:

  • Provide a basic design for a discharge lamp and explain the function of the different components.
  • Explain the basic structure of an atom and relate it to the color of light produced by discharge lamps.
  • Explain why discharge lamps emit only certain colors.
  • Design a discharge lamp to emit any desired spectrum of colors.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Generator:


This virtual manipulative will help the students generate electricity with a bar magnet. Students can discover the physics behind the phenomena by exploring magnets and how they can be used to make a bulb light. They will recognize that any change in the magnetic environment of a coil of wire will cause a voltage to be induced in the coil.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • Identify equipment and conditions that produce induction.
  • Compare and contrast how both a light bulb and voltmeter can be used to show characteristics of the induced current.
  • Predict how the current will change when the conditions are varied.
  • Explain practical applications of Faraday's Law.
  • Explain what is the cause of the induction.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Capacitor Lab:

Explore how a capacitor works in this simulation. Change the plates and add a dielectric to see how it affects capacitance. Change the voltage and see charges built up on the plates. You can observe the electric field in the capacitor, measure voltage and the electric field.

Other investigations can include:

  • Determine the relationship between charge and voltage for a capacitor.
  • Determine the energy stored in a capacitor or a set of capacitors in a circuit.
  • Explore the effect of space and dielectric materials inserted between the conductors of the capacitor in a circuit.
  • Determine the equivalent capacitance of a set of capacitors in series and in parallel in a circuit.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Beta Decay:

This is a virtual manipulative to understand beta decay. In the Beta decay process, a neutron decays into a proton and an electron (beta radiation). The process also requires the emission of a neutrino to maintain momentum and energy balance. Beta decay allows the atom to obtain the optimal ratio of protons and neutrons.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Alpha decay:

This virtual manipulative will help you to understand the process of alpha decay. Watch alpha particles escape from a polonium nucleus, causing radioactive alpha decay. See how random decay times relate to the half life.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Resistance in a Wire:


This manipulative will help the students to learn about the physics of resistance in a wire. The electrical resistance of a wire would be expected to be greater for a longer wire, less for a wire of larger cross sectional area, and would be expected to depend upon the material out of which the wire is made, to understand this, students can change the resistivity, length, and area to see how they affect the wire's resistance. The sizes of the symbols in the equation change along with the diagram of a wire.
Some of the sample learning goals can be:

  • What characteristics of a resistor are variable in this model?
  • How does each affect the resistance (will increasing or decreasing each make the resistance correspondingly increase or decrease?)
  • Explain your ideas about why they change the resistance.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Simplified MRI:

Whether it is a tumor or not, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) can tell. Your head is full of tiny radio transmitters (the nuclear spins of the hydrogen nuclei of your water molecules). In an MRI unit, these little radios can be made to broadcast their positions, giving a detailed picture of the inside of your head.

In this simulation you can:

  • Recognize that light can flip spins if the energy of the photons matches the difference between the energies of spin up and spin down.
  • Recognize that the difference between the energies of spin up and spin down is proportional to the strength of the applied magnetic field.
  • Describe how to put these two ideas together to detect where there is a higher density of spins.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Molecules and Light:

This activity will help to investigate how a greenhouse gas affects the climate, or why the ozone layer is important. Using this simulation, explore how light interacts with molecules in our atmosphere.

Areas to explore:

  • How light interacts with molecules in our atmosphere.
  • Identify that absorption of light depends on the molecule and the type of light.
  • Relate the energy of the light to the resulting motion.
  • Identify that energy increases from microwave to ultraviolet.
  • Predict the motion of a molecule based on the type of light it absorbs.
  • Identify how the structure of a molecule affects how it interacts with light.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Pendulum Lab:


Play with one or two pendulums and discover how the period of a simple pendulum depends on the length of the string, the mass of the pendulum bob, and the amplitude of the swing. It's easy to measure the period using the photogate timer. Students can vary friction and the strength of gravity.

  • Design experiments to describe how variables affect the motion of a pendulum
  • Use a photogate timer to determine quantitatively how the period of a pendulum depends on the variables you described
  • Determine the gravitational acceleration of planet X
  • Explain the conservation of Mechanical energy concept using kinetic energy and gravitational potential energy
  • Describe energy chart from position or selected speeds

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Faraday's Law:

Light a bulb by waving a magnet. This demonstration of Faraday's law will help you to:
  • Explain what happens when the magnet moves through the coil at different speeds and how this affects the brightness of the bulb and the magnitude and sign of the voltage.
  • Explain the difference between moving the magnet through the coil from the right side versus the left side.
  • Explain the difference between moving magnet through the big coil versus the smaller coil.

Type: Virtual Manipulative

Circuit Construction kit:

An electronic kit in your computer! Build circuits with resistors, light bulbs, batteries, and switches. Take measurements with the realistic ammeter and voltmeter. View the circuit as a schematic diagram, or switch to a life-like view.

Other options for exploration:

  • Discuss basic electricity relationships
  • Build circuits from schematic drawings.
  • Use an ammeter and voltmeter to take readings in circuits.
  • Provide reasoning to explain the measurements and relationship in circuits.
  • Discuss basic electricity relationships in series and parallel circuits.
  • Provide reasoning to explain the measurements in circuits.
  • Determine the resistance of common objects in the "Grab Bag".

Type: Virtual Manipulative